Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Purple Martin colony, Ulster County - 22nd June

A long overdue trip was to the Purple Martin colony at a private house about an hour north of me. The site is called Paradeis Lane. The site comprises several different types of nest box including multi-level boxes and individual 'gourds'. Apparently gourds were put up by Native Americans as nest boxes, but I'm not sure what they got out of it. Maybe they just liked Purple Martins?

Female Purple Martin...
...could be a juvenile...
Definitely a male!

Friday, June 17, 2016

Roseate Terns at Nickerson Beach - 17th June

An early start at Nickerson Beach where I found 2 Roseate Terns. They really stood out from the Common Terns. The tern nesting area is very busy and I was bombarded several dozen times, some birds getting amazingly close! Lots of Black Skimmers nesting too. I only found one Piping Plover, but didn't spend much time looking.

Roseate Tern. At least 2 birds together in amongst the Common Terns breeding on the beach. Not sure if they have nests elsewhere, or they are a pair that have not started breeding yet. This one has leg-irons!
The pink wash on the breast was quite striking
American Oystercatcher. One of a pair of chicks that can't be much more than a day or two old.

Jamaica Bay - 15th & 17th June

A couple of visits to Jamaica Bay this week looking for a White-faced Ibis hat has been frequenting the south end of the East Pond. No luck, but there were plenty of other birds including 4 or 5 Yellow-crowned Night Herons on both days, plenty of Glossy Ibis, Forster's Terns and 2 Black Skimmers. At Big John's Pond the two fledgling Barn Owls can be seen readily in the nest box. At least 2 Yellow-billed Cuckoos were present on Wednesday, as were 2 Great Crested Flycatchers. Willow Flycatcher on both days as well.

Lots of Yellow-crowned Night-Herons about at the south end of the East Pond today...
With another posing at Big John's Pond.

Painted Turtle

Northern Diamondback Terrapin.
I watched one of these walk across the beach and into the bay, the only species of terrapin in North America that is tolerant of brackish water apparently