2nd LITTLE GULL of the season
First of season LONG-TAILED DUCK
First of season WHITE-WINGED SCOTER
First of season POMARINE JAEGER
Great blue heron
Wilson's storm petrel
Bird activity continues to build out on the bay with a number of new species. Large groups of shearwaters, alcids and gulls continue to feed in the area off of Whitehorse Island, surrounded by feeding fin and minke whales.
|Great shearwaters and herring gull. The flounder was caught by a seal and then stolen by the gull|
The occasional PARASITIC JAEGER can be spotted harassing terns and other birds. On Aug. 8th, while watching finbacks in the fog I spotted the first adult POMARINE JAEGER of the season. On one of the days that I was not on the boat, Danielle reported seeing a small jaeger-like bird with a very long pointed tail. This could of possibly been a long-tailed jaeger but the sighting was so brief that it is impossible to know for sure, I will keep my eyes out for this bird in the future.
Whitehorse island continues to host many bald eagles that are constantly chasing after and being chased by the many island inhabitants. It also continues to be a popular area for roosting GREAT CORMORANTS.
|Immature eagle and herring gull|
|Great cormorant and black-backed gull|
|Raft of moulting female eider ducks|
There has been an increase in the number of RED-NECKED PHALAROPES seen on our trips. I counted many groups of between 5 to 30 individuals over the last few days. Some groups were very close to shore, just off of Casco island and Campobello. I have also been seeing small groups of other shorebirds, likely semipalmated sandpipers but I still have a hard time ID'ing these birds from a distance.
There was an adult male LONG-TAILED DUCK just off of Whitehorse Island on the 9th of Aug. This is the first of the season and the earliest I have seen this species show up in my three years on the bay.
|Adult male long-tailed duck|
On Aug. 10th I recorded a single COMMON NIGHTHAWK flying south over Passamaquoddy bay.
I spotted another LITTLE GULL near Head Harbour passage on the 11th. This was a different individual from the one I reported on the last post, having a much more complete dark underwing pattern.
Lastly, I had my first of season WHITE-WINGED SCOTER on Aug. 12th, another early sighting for this species. Looking forward to seeing what else shows up!
I would like to end with a non-bird related video that I took on the 12th. Trying to get underwater footage of whales has been a project of mine this year and finally it worked out when a curious minke approached and swam right under me, within a few feet. The video is shot in 1080p HD so be sure to watch the high quality version if you have a good connection! To view the video click HERE.