30th January 2011 – Guilly-not!

After a quick run in the morning, I was busy devouring an “everything” Bagel and  was looking after Alex when the “bat-phone” went off. Greg Hanisek’s name came up on caller id. which instantly sends a message to the brain that could result in “joy” or “stress” hormones being deployed by my autonomic nervous system. Which one gets released depends on a) what it is that he is looking at, and  b) how far away he is from your house! He told me they had found a Common Murre (aka Guillemot) at Hammo. Cool, alcids are rare in Long Island Sound, but I’ve seen plenty of them in the homeland, so I wasn’t as excited as Greg sounded. It was only when talking to Frank Gallo via cell phone, as he watched it swimming into the distance,  that I learned  it wasn’t on the State list!!!  They occur in Rhode Island waters 40 miles away, yet apparently one had never made it into CT waters. So, a real mega for the locals!

Pic by Keith Mueller here: http://blogs.rep-am.com/nature/2011/01/30/a-not-so-common-murre/

With the Guillemot, now a Guilly-NOT, I took advantage of Sandy and Alex visiting parents in Bloomfield, to take a quick solo-run down the local beaches from West Haven-Woodmont to see what I could find.

The boat ramp at West Haven was devoid of birds and then looking over the snow bank, I discovered why..

Not a good day to be a Pigeon! Juv. Cooper's Hawk munching away!

With a superb display of prowess and fieldcraft (aka luck!) I managed to fire off 200 images as this bird picked and plucked away. Amazing!!

After that, it was rather lack-lustre..loafing gulls and brants and a few horned grebes around Woodmont, but little else…certainly no alcids!

Picturesque Woodmont..haunt of my only CT Harlequin way back when


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