About Hugh


Yellow Crowned Night Heron at Bombay Hook.

Back to Bombay Hook this morning because there’s still not much going on locally.

I arrived at dawn, but the sunrise wasn’t interesting, so I made a quick circuit as the sun rose. It was clear that many birds were visiting, so I went more slowly the second time around.

I didn’t find much in the way of migrating birds, but it was good to see that numbers are increasing. I also found a couple of friends who were visiting as well.


Many Caspian Terns were feeding in the marsh.

Eastern Kingbird 2018-22

I saw at least three Eastern Kingbirds.

Black Necked Stilt 2018-21

There were only two Black Necked Stilts.

Bald Eagle 2018-64

I don’t see Bald Eagles in flight very often at Bombay Hook.

Great Egret 2018-56

Great Egret 2018-54 Great Egret 2018-53 Great Egret 2018-52

Great Egret 2018-55

Many Great Egrets were feeding in the marsh.

Short Billed Dowitcher 2018-8

Short Billed Dowitchers aren’t getting close to the camera.

Greater Yellowlegs 2018-9

I saw many Greater Yellowlegs, mostly in the distance.

Great Blue Heron 2018-57

Great Blue Herons were in every pool.

Yellow Crowned Night Heron 2018-4

I found three juvenile Yellow Crowned Night Herons at Bear Swamp Pool. I’ve only seen this bird once before.

Yellow Crowned Night Heron 2018-6


Black Crowned Night Heron at Bombay Hook

I went to Blackwater yesterday, with Chris, an old friend, then to Bombay Hook this morning. Blackwater was almost a total bust, with cloudy, rainy weather, but Bombay Hook was much better.

We had good light all morning, and saw thousands of interesting, but mostly distant birds. Small Sandpipers were the major species, but there were also Avocets, Geese, Terns and Egrets.  A couple of Night Herons and an Eagle provided a nice show as well.

Great Blue Heron 2018-55

Great Blue Herons were scattered here and there.

Great Blue Heron 2018-54


Great Blue Heron 2018-53 Great Blue Heron 2018-52 Great Blue Heron 2018-51

Great Blue Heron 2018-56

We saw several Great Blue Herons.

Caspian Tern 2018-22 Caspian Tern 2018-21 Caspian Tern 2018-20 Caspian Tern 2018-19 Caspian Tern 2018-18

Caspian Tern 2018-23

3-4 CAspian Terns were fishing in Shearness Pool.

Short Billed Dowitcher 2018-7

Several small flocks of Short Billed Dowitchers were feeding in the marsh.

Semipalmated Plover 2018-3

We found a few Semi Palmated Plovers.

Blue Grosbeak 2018-11 Blue Grosbeak 2018-10

Blue Grosbeak 2018-12

This Blue Grosbeak was singing loudly.

Bald Eagle 2018-62

Bald Eagle 2018-63

Two Bald Eagles were sunning themselves near the road.

Laughing Gull 2018-10

These Gulls were taking a break.

Forster's Tern 2018-100Laughing Gull 2018-9Forster's Tern 2018-99

We found Forster’s Terns at Blackwater.Black Crowned Night Heron 2018-12 Black Crowned Night Heron 2018-11 Black Crowned Night Heron 2018-10

Black Crowned Night Heron 2018-13

Two juvenile Black Crowned Night Herons were preening in Bear Swamp Pool.

Tri-colored Heron at Sandy Point.

The weather has been unsettled for the last several days. You never know if it’s going to pour rain or blaze sunshine, and it can change in just a few minutes.

I’ve been hanging out at Sandy Point, because it’s nearby and I don’t have to go far from the car if I need shelter. There’s always a chance of finding stray birds there, as well, and I’ve found a few.

Today’s Tri-colored Heron was a treat, tagged as “Rare” by Ebird, along with a few nice Terns and plenty of the usual gulls.

Crow 2018-5

There’s always plenty of Crows at Sandy Point.

Royal Tern 2018-7

Royal Tern 2018-5 Royal Tern 2018-4 Royal Tern 2018-3 Royal Tern 2018-2 Royal Tern 2018-1

Royal Tern 2018-6

4-5 Royal Terns were hanging out on the beach today.

Laughing Gull 2018-7

Laughing Gull 2018-8

Laughing Gulls and others seem to like bathing in the puddles on the beach.

Forster's Tern 2018-99

I don’t often see Common Terns.

Black Vulture 2018-1

I couldn’t pass up this Black Vulture.

Osprey 2018-50

Osprey 2018-51

Several Ospreys are fishing at the park.

Tri-colored Heron 2018-4 Tri-colored Heron 2018-3

Tri-colored Heron 2018-2

I’ve seen two Tri-colored Herons this year, and I don’t see any at all most years.

Fox 108

Fox 1099

I spotted this Fox as I was waiting for the sunrise.

Blue Grosbeak at Bombay Hook NWR.

Another day, another decision. Bombay Hook wins out because there’s still not much to see locally. This is a minor deal to me because I’m no fond of the hour and a half drive, largely in the dark, which is getting to be a small problem on some days.

Anyway, it turned out to be a good day weather-wise, if not as good as I’d hoped, bird-wise.

I don’t often hit these places on weekends, but it wasn’t too bad. More people than usual, but not crowded by any means.

Wading birds are still relatively scarce, but I got a good look at some passerines, so that made up for it.

Bombay Hook 10

Dawn at Bombay Hook.

Least Sandpiper 2018-10

Many Least Sandpipers were feeding on the mud flats.

Black Necked Stilt 2018-19

Black Necked Stilt 2018-20

A single Black-necked Stilt was in Bear Swamp Pool.

Lesser Yellowlegs 2018-1

This might be a Lesser Yellowlegs.

Great Blue Heron 2018-49

Great Blue Heron 2018-50

Great Blue Herons are usually very quiet as they fly.

Goldfinch 2018-13

Goldfinch 2018-15

Many Goldfinches were feeding along the road side.

Marsh Wren 2018-3

Marsh Wren 2018-4

I hear Marsh Wrens frequently, but they can be hard to find.

Snowy Egret 2018-21

This Great Egret was one of only a few I saw.

Snowy Egret 2018-20

These Egrets seemed to be snoozing.

Red Winged Blackbird 2018-35

Red Winged Blackbird 2018-36

Red Winged Blackbirds make good images in the right setting.

Forster's Tern 2018-98

I saw only a few Forster’s Terns.

Mockingbird 2018-1

I found this Mockingbird Saturday at Lake Artemesia.

Northern Flicker 2018-4

This Northern Flicker was also at Artemesia.

Blue Grosbeak 2018-8 Blue Grosbeak 2018-7 Blue Grosbeak 2018-6

Blue Grosbeak 2018-9

Blue grosbeaks seem to be more visible than usual.

River Otter at Blackwater NWR.

It’s still pretty slow around here, so I went to Blackwater this morning. Wading birds are still in short supply, but the Ospreys are about to fledge, and my Red Headed friends are very active.
I checked out the Swallows and Terns at the bridge on Key Wallace Drive, and was lucky enough to run into a River Otter. Otters are cool, and I don’t see enough of them.

Blackwater Dawn 54

Sunrise at Blackwater NWR.

Great Blue Heron 2018-47

This great Blue Heron was the first bird I saw this morning.

Osprey 2018-47 Osprey 2018-46

Osprey 2018-48

These young Osprey will be flying soon.

Red Headed Woodpecker 2018-47 Red Headed Woodpecker 2018-46 Red Headed Woodpecker 2018-45

Red Headed Woodpecker 2018-49

The adult Red Headed Woodpecker is still feeding this youngster.

Eastern Kingbird 2018-20


Eastern Kingbird 2018-21

This Eastern Kingbird was flycatching on Key Wallace Drive.

Forster's Tern 2018-95

Forster's Tern 2018-96

A few Forster’s Terns have settled in along Wildlife Drive.

Bald Eagle 2018-60

Bald Eagle 2018-61

Bald Eagles are usually easy to find.

Otter 10

Otter 9

This River Otter was a real treat.

American Avocets at Bombay Hook NWR.

We’ve had too many days of rain lately, which has kept me confined to local spots. Today looked a little more promising, so I took a chance and went to Bombay Hook. There’s nothing worse than committing to a 3 hour drive and then running into bad weather.

I lucked out, weather-wise, but it took a couple of hours before the sun was out and the clouds dispersed. From 6:00-8:00 I found almost nothing, but the sun brought in a lot of birds quickly. Avocets and Ibis were the best, but a fair number of Egrets and Herons were around as well.  Some passerines in the roadside bushes added to the fun.

Eastern Kingbird 2018-19

Several Eastern Kingbirds were flycatching near the road.

Least Sandpiper 2018-9

This group of Least Sandpipers looked to number 75 or more.

Great Egret 2018-50 Great Egret 2018-49 Snowy Egret 2018-18 Snowy Egret 2018-17

Great Egret 2018-51

Great Egrets were in every pool.

Greater Yellowlegs 2018-7

I only saw a few Greater Yellowlegs.

Glossy Ibis 2018-9

5 Glossy Ibis flew over the marsh without stopping.

Snowy Egret 2018-19

It always seems odd to see so many Egrets in a tree.

Short Billed Dowitcher 2018-4

8-10 Short-billed Dowitchers flew overhead.

Goldfinch 2018-12

There are always many Goldfinches at Bombay Hook.

Blue Grosbeak 2018-4

Blue Grosbeak 2018-5

A couple of Blue Grosbeaks were a nice treat.

American Avocet 2018-11

American Avocet 2018-12

40-50 American Avocets were foraging in the marsh.

Glossy Ibis at Sandy Point.

I was hoping to go to the Eastern Shore this morning, but it was pouring rain when I awoke, so I went back to bed and waited for the rain to stop.

I decided to try Sandy point again, because these brief storms sometimes bring stray birds to the beach. I managed to get lucky, even though the light wasn’t much good with the cloudy skies that often show after a storm.

Caspian Tern 2018-15

Two Caspian Terns waited calmly for breakfast.

Snowy Egret 2018-15

Two Snowy Egrets stopped by briefly.

Sanderling 2018-2

I saw this Samderling from a distance, and he walked right up to me.

Ring Billed Gull 2018-1

Ring Billed Gull 2018-2

This Ring Billed Gull has found a meal.

Glossy Ibis 2018-8

I was lucky to spot this Glossy Ibis who flew overhead very quickly.

Little Blue Heron at Sandy Point.

It’s that time of year again. Nesting is over for most birds, so they’re not as active. Migration hasn’t begun yet which means there’s not a lot of movement. I expect things to pick up very soon, but it’s been very slow for about three weeks.

I haven’t gone far in the last few days. It’s been hot, birds are scarce, and inspiration is in short supply. We had a small storm last night, so I tried Sandy Point in hopes of finding some strays.

There were the usual Gulls, in good  numbers, a couple of Terns and Egrets and a surprise juvenile Little Blue Heron. It was a worthwhile trip.

Cardinal 2018-13

I found this Cardinal at Greenbury Point.

Great Egret 2018-47

Great Egret 2018-48

This Great Egret flew in as I was watching the gulls.

Forster's Tern 2018-93

Forster's Tern 2018-94

Two Forster’s Terns were loafing on the beach.

Snowy Egret 2018-13

Snowy Egret 2018-14

This Snowy Egret flew in at the same time as the Little Blue Heron.

Herring Gull 2018-2

These Herring Gulls seemed to be bathing.

Canada Goose 2018-30

Many Canada Geese were grazing in the grass.

Sandpiper 2018-2

I don’t often see Least Sandpipers by themsilves.

Laughing Gull 2018-6

Many Laughing Gulls were present.

Little Blue Heron 2018-4

Little Blue Heron 2018-5

Little Blue Heron 2018-6

I had to study this Little Blue Heron for a few minutes to be sure of the ID.


Orchard Oriole at Blackwater NWR.

It’s that time of year when birds are hard to find. Most have finished raising young, so they’re less active, and there’s no migratory movement going on. I exxpect thing to pick up in a few weeks.

I’ve been hitting the usual places, with shortened days due to the heat. There’s a few finds here and there, but nothing really exciting.

I went to Blackwater again this morning, and it was an improvement. Still no egrets or sandpipers, but a few images are good enough to publish.

Sandy Point 510

Sandy Point 511

Dawn at Sandy Point.

Osprey 2018-42 Osprey 2018-41 Osprey 2018-40 Osprey 2018-39

Osprey 2018-44

Osprey young have not quite finished fledging.

Red Headed Woodpecker 2018-43 Red Headed Woodpecker 2018-42

Red Headed Woodpecker 2018-44

Red Headed Woodpeckers are still quite active.

Great Blue Heron 2018-45

Only a few Great Blue herons were hanging around.

Orchard Oriole 2018-16 Orchard Oriole 2018-14 Orchard Oriole 2018-15

Orchard Oriole 2018-17

This female Orchard Oriole landed right near me.

Tree Swallow 2018-47

Barn Swallow 2018-13

Tree Swallows and Barn Swallows have finished nesting and are gathering in groups.

Least Tern 2018-4

Least Tern 2018-5

Least Terns are fishing at Terrapin.


Fox 106

This Fox was foraging at Blackwater.

Glossy Ibis at Bombay Hook NWR.

Graeme, Prayoon and I headed out very early to Bombay Hook in hopes of finding some birds we don’t get to see around here. The water was still low, but we found a few interesting specimens anyway.

There weren’t many people visiting, and there were far fewer wading birds than my last visit.  We could see a decent sized flock in the distance, but much too far away to get decent images.

Some Terns were very active, and many Herons were fishing, but Egrets were not numerous. The insect population seems to be less, for some reason. We didn’t miss them.

Greater Yellowlegs 2018-5

Greater Yellowlegs 2018-6

Many Greater Yellowlegs were foraging in the distance.

Tree Swallow 2018-46

There’s still many Swallows in the marsh.

Forster's Tern 2018-90 Forster's Tern 2018-89 Forster's Tern 2018-88 Forster's Tern 2018-87 Forster's Tern 2018-86

Forster's Tern 2018-91

This Forster’s Tern has found a large fish.

Killdeer 2018-1

Several Killdeer were feeding at the edge of the marsh.

Black Necked Stilt 2018-16

Black Necked Stilt 2018-17

This flock of Black Necked Stilts flew quickly by us.

Mallard 2018-36

A lone Mallard was hanging with the Herons.

Laughing Gull 2018-5

We saw a couple of Laughing Gulls.

Great Blue Heron 2018-41

Red Winged Blackbird 2018-34

Red Winged Blackbirds can be seen and heard everywhere you go.

Glossy Ibis 2018-7

A few Glossy Ibis flew by close enough to photograph.