Friday, March 14, 2014
The Audubon Society has reported a variety of recent bird sightings in western Massachusetts.
Migrating water birds found this week were wood duck, northern pintail, green-winged teal, ring-necked duck and bufflehead.
Early land bird arrivals included turkey vulture, fox sparrow, red-winged blackbird and common grackle.
Other unusual land birds reported were yellow-bellied sapsucker, winter wren, hermit thrush, yellow-rumped warbler, eastern towhee, chipping sparrow and field sparrow. Flocks of cedar waxwings and American robins are now widespread.
Northern shrikes have been seen in New Salem and Northfield. A long-tailed duck was released in Sheffield after rehabilitation, and two lesser scaup were seen in Sheffield. A greater scaup and a male red-breasted merganser were reported on the Connecticut River in Hadley. Six greater scaup, 90 common goldeneyes, and a red-breasted merganser were seen in Turners Falls.
A flock of 65 common goldeneyes and an Iceland gull were found in Holyoke.
Two greater scaup were in Agawam, and a single greater scaup was seen in Pittsfield.
Eight rusty blackbirds were reported in Amherst.
Bird club to meet
The Hampshire Bird Club will hold its monthly meeting March 10, and will hear about the investigation into a disease that is now believed to be killing common eiders in Cape Cod Bay. The meeting, which is free and open to the public, begins at 7:15 p.m. in the Immanuel Lutheran Church Hall at 867 North Pleasant St., Amherst.
Chris Dwyer, a wildlife biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Hadley, who serves as the region’s avian health and disease coordinator, will report on the various investigations into fall die-offs of hundreds of the black and white seabirds in Wellfleet Bay since the mid-2000s. Recent research has focused on a newly discovered virus, named the Wellfleet Bay Virus, and its links with the Boston Harbor islands.
For more information and directions see http://hampshirebirdclub.org
To report a bird sighting, please call the Voice of Audubon at (781)259-8805 and leave a message.