Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Hooded Merganser

I closed out 2014 with a check of some local birding spots.  No road trips today!

Hopkinton State Park

The ice was fluctuating and making neat popping and cracking noises.


Red-Tailed Hawk

Pilgrim UCC (before sunset)

Hager Pond, Marlboro:


Hooded Merganser (female)
Don't you just love that hair?

Mary and Martha Chapel, Sudbury, MA:

Back to Southboro, MA:

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Snowy Owls at Parker River NWR

It was much colder today than it had been for a while (high of only 29 degrees).  Add to that a brisk wind, and you have a nice case of wind chill in the teens.  I didn't realize the wind was that bad until I had already arrived at my destination.  Well, when my car was being buffeted almost into another lane on the way north, it occurred to me that it might be bone-chillingly cold out there!

There were not many people at Parker River at all.   It didn't take long walking up the empty beach to get to a Snowy Owl.  I saw a patch of white just at the top of the dune, so I put the binoculars on it.  Hello!  This beautiful Snowy Owl was almost entirely pure white.

It soon took off for a short flight and where it landed, another Snowy Owl immediately flew up.  The white Snowy Owl flew off for quieter parts.  The more speckled Snowy Owl remained.


I continued on through the refuge, stopping at various points to check out the birds.  I did see Northern Harriers 5 times, which was also a treat.  Other than that, I didn't see much.

American Tree Sparrow

Northern Cardinal

Northern Harrier

I drove up to Salisbury Beach State Reservation since I was nearby.  I didn't want to miss anything!

American Tree Sparrows

Horned Lark

Monday, December 29, 2014

Beautiful Duxbury Beach

Still enjoying my vacation days, after a leisurely breakfast with my husband, I drove down to Duxbury Beach.  I absolutely love this place!  I parked at the end of Powder Point Bridge and walked in, since I do not have a permit to take my car in.  I did not see any snowy owls, but I sure did enjoy the beautiful weather and stunning scenery!

Powder Point Bridge

 Common Eider

Bufflehead (female)

My route (on the way out)

Savannah Sparrow

Looking back at the bridge


There are several cutovers to the beach.  I went over at least three different ones, enjoying some time on the beach as well.

There were a lot of different views of Gurnet Light, but eventually I walked so close that I could no longer see it, so at that point I turned back.

White-Winged Scoters

White-Winged Scoter

White-Winged Scoter (female) having crab for lunch

Gurnet Light


How about that sky?

Song Sparrow

American Tree Sparrow

poss. Vespers Sparrow

Common Eider

Bufflehead (male)

Another favorite tree of mine

Before heading for home, I had to stop and wander through the Old Shipbuilders District.  Most of the homes date from the early 1800s.  

Love, love, love this wreath!

Sharp-Shinned Hawk

(The view that some of these shipbuilders used to enjoy)