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Long Tailed Duck at Thomas Point.

I tried Quiet Waters this morning just for a change of pace. I’ve had good luck there in years past, but today was a bust.

I went straight to Thomas Point, and it was about the same, but some birds were in much closer and I got some decent images.

I finished up at my friend’s house on Thomas Point Road, where many birds hang out in hopes of getting fed by the locals.

Happy New Year!

Thomas Point 20

The lighthouse at Thomas Point.

Canvasback 2018-39

Canvasback 2018-40

Female Canvasbacks aren’t as showy, but they have their own beauty.

Lesser Scaup 2018-46

You need good light to get the most from a Scaup.

Redhead 2018-13

If you look carefully through the flocks of Canvasbacks, you may find a Redhead.

Tundra Swan 2018-58

There’s always a few Tundra Swans at my friend’s house.

Long Tailed Duck 2018-26

Long Tailed Duck 2018-27

Several Long Tailed Ducks were near the point.

Surf Scoter 2018-10

Many Surf Scoters were feeding at the point.

Common Goldeneye 2018-23

This Common Goldeneye was qiuite close to shore, and I got her as she scurried away.

Bufflehead 2018-95

Bufflehead 2018-94

Bufflehead 2018-93

It’s fun to watch Buffleheads search for a meal.

Downy Woodpecker at Lake Artemesia.

The weatherman promised a sunny day and he delivered. I left early for Artemesia in hopes of getting some dawn color, but it was kind of tepid.

Canada Geese are still the dominant waterfowl, but there were plenty of others, including the continuing Goldeneyes, Great Blue Herons and a Great Egret.

A few Cormorants, Mallards and Gulls contributed, as well as a Cardinal and very cooperative Woodpecker.

Lake Artemesia 115

Dawn at Lake Artemesia.

Downy Woodpecker 2018-10

Downy Woodpecker 2018-11

This Downy Woodpecker was quite close.

Cardinal 2018-22

I haven’t gotten close to a female Cardinal in a while.

Mallard 2018-59

Mallard 2018-60

I kind of like this odd Mallard pose.

Great Egret 2018-107

I’m not sure why this Great Egret is still this far North.

Double Crested Cormorant 2018-28

There are more Double Crested Cormorants than usual.

Common Goldeneye 2018-19

Common Goldeneye 2018-20

Common Goldeneye 2018-21

I’m used to seeing Common Goldeneyes in the bay, not in an inland lake.

Great Blue Heron 2018-100

Several Great Blue Herons were feeding.

Ruddy Duck 2018-26

Only a few Ruddy Ducks were foraging.

Bufflehead 2018-90

Buffleheads will probably be around all Winter.

Carolina Wren 2018-7

This Carolina Wren was very loud.

Canada Goose 2018-42

The Canada Geese usually leave right after sunrise.

 

Ruddy Duck at Thomas Point.

I went to Kent Narrows this morning, looking for a reported Snowy Owl, but had no luck. There wasn’t much else to see, either,

Thomas Point was next. It was a warmish, calm day, and Thomas Point can be very productive in those conditions.

There were plenty of distant birds, as usual, but I did get a few decent images. I ended at my friend’s house, where I got some closer looks in good light.

Long Tailed Duck 2018-25

It’s been a good year for Long Tailed Ducks.

Lesser Scaup 2018-44

A few Scaup were hanging out at my friend’s house.

Redhead 2018-12

Redhead 2018-11

I found only a few Redheads.

Tundra Swan 2018-55 Tundra Swan 2018-54 Tundra Swan 2018-56

Tundra Swan 2018-52

Tundra Swan 2018-53

Tundra Swans will often have little spats. 

Canvasback 2018-37 Canvasback 2018-36

 

Canvasback 2018-33

Many Canvasbacks stay in the area all Winter.

 

Surf Scoter 2018-8

Common Goldeneye 2018-18

Only a few Common Goldeneyes were present.

Ruddy Duck 2018-25

Redhead at Thomas Point.

The Possum Point sunrise was a disappointment again, so I started at Quiet Waters this morning. I looked around for about an hour, but there’s just not much happening there yet,

Thomas Point was about the same as previously; plenty of birds too far away for good images.

I stopped at my friend’s house on Thomas Point Road and got the best images of the day.

Wood Duck 2018-67

This Wood Duck is still hanging out with his Mallard pals.

Bufflehead 2018-89

A few Buffleheads were close enough for pictures.

Canvasback 2018-33

Canvasback 2018-34

Several Canvasbacks had ventured out close to the point.

Lesser Scaup 2018-44

Scaup can be very attractive in the right light.

Tundra Swan 2018-52

Tundra Swan 2018-53

The Tundra Swans were very active today.

Long Tailed Duck 2018-25

A pair of Long Tailed Ducks is staying near the point.

Cardinal 2018-21

Several Cardinals were foraging near the point.

Mallard 2018-58

Many Mallards have been feeding in the shallows.

Redhead 2018-11

I frequently find Redheads mixed in with Canvasbacks.

Bald Eagle at Lake Artemesia.

I was going to try for sunrise at Possum Point this morning, but it didn’t look very exciting, so I waited awhile and went to Lake Artemesia. I got a couple of dawn sky images, but it wasn’t as colorful as I’d like.

Artemesia was as fruitful as it was last week. There were plenty of interesting birds willing to pose, and the light was nearly as good as it gets.  The Trumpeter Swan is still hanging around, and a couple of Mergansers posed as well. I only got one look at the Eagle, who flew right in front of me.

Yet another very good morning.

Lake Artemesia 114

Lake Artemesia 113

Dawn at Lake Artemesia.

Mallard 2018-57

Mallards look good in the right light.

Canada Goose 2018-41

There weren’t as many Canada Geese as usual.

Double Crested Cormorant 2018-25 Double Crested Cormorant 2018-24

Double Crested Cormorant 2018-26

There were at least 17 Double Crested Cormorants.

Ring Billed Gull 2018-8

Ring Billed Gulls are regulars at the lake.

 

Great Blue Heron 2018-98

Great Blue Heron 2018-99

This Great Blue Heron moved around quite a lot.

Bufflehead 2018-87

Bufflehead 2018-88

Several Buffleheads were foraging in the lake.

Hooded Merganser 2018-31

Hooded Merganser 2018-32

My first good look at a Hooded Merganser this season.

Common Goldeneye 2018-16

Common Goldeneye 2018-17

The Common Goldeneye hens are still hanging around.

Great Egret 2018-105

This Great Egret should be far South of here by now.

Trumpeter Swan 2018-5

Tundra Swan 2018-51

This Trumpeter Swan poses quite readily.

Red Breasted Merganser at Thomas Point.

I tried Possum Point early, to look at the sky, and it wasn’t at all interesting.  I tried Schoolhouse Pond next, and it was not at all interesting. Only the usual suspects, and mostly too far away.

I ended up at Thomas Point. The weather was perfect and the water was calm, which can be ideal at Thomas Point. There were certainly plenty of birds, including two FOS birds, a Merganser and a Grebe. Again many of the birds were too far for good images, but it was a good morning nonetheless.

Belted Kingfisher 14

This Belted Kingfisher made only a brief appearance.

Ruddy Duck 2018-24

Many Ruddy Ducks were at the point, and most seemed to be sleeping.

Surf Scoter 2018-7

You can hear the call of Surf Scoters from quite a distance, a soft whistling noise.

Lesser Scaup 2018-43

There were many Scaup, but only this one came in close enough for a picture.

Common Goldeneye 2018-15

I haven’t seen as many Common Goldeneyes as in past years.

Horned Grebe 2018-21

First Horned Grebe of the season.

Bufflehead 2018-84

Bufflehead 2018-85

There will be Buffleheads at the point all winter.

Tundra Swan 2018-50

Tundra Swans hang around all winter as well.

Great Blue Heron 2018-97

I found this Great Blue Heron at Schoolhouse Pond.

Red Breasted Merganser 2018-33

Red Breasted Merganser 2018-32

First Red Breasted Merganser of the season.

 

Trumpeter Swan at Lake Artemesia.

We’re supposed to have good weather for a few days, and I’ve been hearing good things about Lake Artemesia, so I left early to catch the morning sky.  I try to avoid heading West in the morning during the week because I really hate the traffic.

The morning sky didn’t disappoint, and there was an astonishing variety of birds, including the Trumpeter and a Great Egret.

A really good morning, overall.

Lake Artemesia 111 Lake Artemesia 112

Lake Artemesia 110

The dark sky and smooth water make for a nice composition.

Bufflehead 2018-83

Only a few Buffleheads were on the lake.

Ring Billed Gull 2018-7

There were 50 or more Ring Billed Gulls.

Red Shouldered Hawk 2018-5

Red Shouldered Hawk 2018-6

A pair of Red Shouldered Hawks were very vocal.

 

Red Shouldered Hawk 2018-5

Red Shouldered Hawk 2018-6

A pair of Red Shouldered Hawks were very vocal.

Bald Eagle 2018-87

Bald Eagle 2018-88

At least three Bald Eagles were soaring above the lake.

Common Goldeneye 2018-13 Common Goldeneye 2018-12

Common Goldeneye 2018-14

Three Common Goldeneye hens have been at the lake for a week or more.

Ring Necked Duck 2018-16

I found only a single Ring Necked Duck.

Double Crested Cormorant 2018-22

Several Double crested Cormorants were fishing in the lake.

Hooded Merganser 2018-30

3-4 Hooded Mergansers were feeding in the shallows.

Great Egret 2018-104

This Great Egret is in the area very late.

Trumpeter Swan 2018-2 Trumpeter Swan 2018-3 Trumpeter Swan 2018-1

Trumpeter Swan 2018-4

I have sent off for the info about the tag on this Trumpeter Swan.

White Breasted Nuthatch at Thomas Point.

I started at Possum Point this morning, and got some decent dawn shots. There were very few birds about, so I headed to Sandy Point to look for the Snowy Owl that’s been reported. No luck with the owl, but I saw a very large number of Cardinals, more than I’ve ever seen in one place. There weren’t many ducks.

Thomas Point had plenty, but most were too far out to ID. The Wood Duck is still hanging out, and a few birds were close enough to capture.

Not a bad morning, but more variety would be nice.

Bay Bridge 4

Bay Bridge 5

Chesapeake Bay Bridge.

Possum Point 145

Possum Point 146

Morning at Possum Point.

Canvasback 2018-31

This Canvasback was at my friend’s house.

Long Tailed Duck 2018-22

I’m finding more Long Tailed Ducks than in previous years.

Bufflehead 2018-78

Buffleheads are plentiful at this time of year.

Wood Duck 2018-65

Wood Duck 2018-66

This single Wood Duck seems to have been adopted by a flock of Mallards.

Cardinal 2018-20

There were 10 or more Cardinals in the grass at Sandy Point.

White Breasted Nuthatch 2018-2

I saw this White Breasted Nuthatch as I was leaving.

Black Scoters at Thomas Point

I checked out Possum Point for the sunrise, which was a bust this morning. I went to Quiet Waters next, and it was seriously slow.

Thomas Point was the hot spot this morning, and found some Black Scoters, which I hadn’t seen yet this year. They were distant, but close enough for an ID shot.

Wood Duck 2018-61 Wood Duck 2018-63

Wood Duck 2018-62

I don’t often see Wood Ducks at Thomas Point.

Long Tailed Duck 2018-18 Long Tailed Duck 2018-20

Long Tailed Duck 2018-19

There seems to be more Long Tailed Ducks than usual.

Bufflehead 2018-77

Bufflehead 2018-76

Buffleheads are plentiful.

Ruddy Duck 2018-22

Ruddy Ducks were present in large rafts.

Lesser Scaup 2018-37 Lesser Scaup 2018-36

Lesser Scaup 2018-38

Lesser Scaup were the largest group.

These are Surf Scoters.

Black Scoter 2018-1

I haven’t seen Black Scoters for a couple of years.

Canvasback at Thomas Point.

The early skies were very cloudy, so I delayed my departure until 7:00. I began at Possum Point, which was disappointing, with only a few ducks and geese.

Thomas Point was more promising. Hundreds of ducks were in view, but most were a bit too far for good images. I met a couple of fellow birders, though, and we chatted a while.

I stopped at my friend’s house again and got some good close up shots.

Lesser Scaup 2018-34

Lesser Scaup 2018-35

The Lesser Scaup was at Possum Point.

Canvasback 2018-29 Canvasback 2018-28

Canvasback 2018-30

I think this is the first time I’ve caught a Canvasback with its beak open.

Ruddy Duck 2018-20 Ruddy Duck 2018-19

 

Ruddy Duck 2018-21

Ruddy Ducks are numerous everywhere I go.

Long Tailed Duck 2018-17

Several Long Tailed Ducks were at the point.

Bufflehead 2018-75

There weren’t as many Buffleheads as usual.