Date: 4/14/17 9:50 am From: Ronald Harrell <rharrell9...> Subject: [Maine-birds] Census of Belfast Bay on Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Gary Gulezian, Hale Morrell, and myself did the census. Pleasant weather for the morning (clear, light breeze from the NE, 36-45 F.). A total of 20 species were recorded including 94 Common Loons(perhaps waiting for inland lakes and ponds to thaw), 6 Double-crested Cormorants(our FOY), 2 Great Blue Herons(FOY), 9 Mallards(in contrast to the 200-500 seen in recent weeks), 2 Belted Kingfishers(FOY). So it appears that Spring is here.
We also recorded 1 Mourning Dove that was feeding in a muddied grassy area immediately adjacent to the brackish water of the Passagassawakeag River. We normally do not record what are regarded as land birds, but this bird met our criterion for being counted, namely it was using the bay and river as a resource. The purpose of our study is to determine the bird species that make use of the bay and the river up to its head of tide as a resource during the months September through April. Other such "land birds" that have been recorded in the study are Rock Pigeons, Red-winged Blackbirds, Common Grackles, and American Crows. Curiously, we have never found Common Ravens feeding along the shore; they are always flyovers.