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Date: Thu, 3 Jun 2010 00:20:15 -0300
From: Ralph Eldridge NatureNB
Subject: MACHIAS SEAL ISLAND REPORT
Last night, June 01/02, produced a heavy drop-out of flycatchers.
Although there were YELLOW, BLACK THROATED BLUE; CHESTNUT SIDED, BLACK POLL and BLACK & WHITE WARBLERS; REDSTARTS & COMMON YELLOWTHROATS; CATBIRDS & THRUSHES; BLUE HEADED & RED EYED VIREOS, the stand-outs were the EMPIDONAX.
If your eyes were open and you were outside then you were looking at several of them.
I stood quietly in one spot for 3-4 minutes, quite near the houses, with 1 metre vegetation around. I then counted 32 Empidonax within 25 metres.
I'm lousy at IDing these fellows but YELLOW BELLIED & LEAST FLYCATCHERS seemed to be easily the most numerous.
I also saw a couple PEEWEES but no PHOEBES.
An especially bright EASTERN BLUEBIRD showed up late in the afternoon and was still feeding on the lawn and around the houses this evening. Got a few decent photos, including some of Mr. Blue and a SAVANNA SPARROW sitting & feeding together.
The ALCIDS breeding cycle is on track. PUFFINS have pretty much finished egg laying while COMMON MURRES & RAZORBILLS near to or slightly past their peak laying period.
The TERNS returned in fair number (my best estimate: about 1000) and have again been initiating courtship and nesting. Unfortunately, the likelyhood of any successful nestings is no better than previous years.
BLACK GUILLEMOTS are back to picket the usual section of shoreline just a bit up-island from the visitor landing area. Their numbers indicate the expected 2-3 nests are likely active again this year.
Also seen this past few days:
7 SPOTTED SANDPIPERS (likely returning breeders);
7 PURPLE SANDPIPERS (winter laggards);
1 RUDDY TURNSTONE;
2 CHIMNEY SWIFTS;
6+/- BARN SWALLOWS;
EAGLES (likely same 2 making return visits);
PEREGRINES (likely same 2-3 making return visits);
1 SHARPSHINNED HAWK;
1 POMARINE JAEGER (light phase);
2 pair COMMON LOONS.
Photo Credit: wikipedia.com