American Coot at Lake Artemesia.

I went to Artemesia this morning to see if anything new has arrived, and I was out of luck. The Trumpeter Swan is still around, and a few other ducks, but  not a lot of variety.

I also stopped at Buddy Attick afterward, but it continues to disappoint.

Lake Artemesia 76


Lake Artemesia 75

Lake Artemesia at dawn.

Trumpeter Swan 2016-30

Trumpeter Swan 2016-31

The Trumpeter Swan draws a big audience.

Carolina Wren 2016-11

It’s been a while since I posted a Carolina Wren

Hooded Merganser 2016-16

This is one of the rare days I could get decent look at the Hooded Mergansers.

Canada Goose 2016-45

Canada Geese were arriving all morning.

Ring Necked Duck 2016-33

Ring Necked Ducks are still plentiful.

American Coot 2016-8

There were many American Coots at the lake today.


Northern Shoveler at Blackwater NWR.

I was undecided as to where to go yet again. I hate going places where there’s nothing to shoot, and I’m not crazy about driving long distances. Something to shoot won out, so I headed to Blackwater, which is about an hour and a half drive.

It wasn’t really great, but it was good enough.  There wasn’t the variety I’ve come to expect at this time of year, but a quick stop at Oakley Street made up for it. The locals feed the ducks there, and you can usually find a good variety of birds, fairly close to shore.

Lesser Scaup 2016-8

I haven’t seen many Scaup this year.

Bald Eagle 2016-130

Bald Eagle 2016-129

I saw fewer Bald Eagles than usual.


Downy Woodpecker 2016-16

I don’t often see Downy Woodpeckers at Blackwater.

Bufflehead 2016-31

A lone Bufflehead was feeding with the geese.

Great Blue Heron 2016-111

This Great Blue Heron was the first bird I saw.

Canvasback 2016-23

Many Canvasbacks were eagerly waiting for a meal.

Redhead 2016-11

Only a few Redheads were present.

Hooded Merganser 2016-15

Hooded Merganser 2016-14

Hooded Merganser 2016-13

The Hooded Mergansers were very skittish.

Mallard 2016-96

There are still more Mallards than any other type of duck.

Northern Shoveler 2016-14

There were only a few Northern Shovelers.

Song Sparrow at Thomas Point.

I was at a loss as to where to go this morning, so I went with Sandy Point in hopes of a good sunrise. It was not to be. I got a few birds and a half ass sunrise , then went to Thomas Point.

The Thomas Point birds seem to be staying further out this year, so it’s tough to get good photos.

Sandy Point 463

Dawn at Sandy Point.

Canvasback 2016-21

Canvasback 2016-22

Canvasbacks can be sound along Thomas Point Road.

Tundra Swan 2016-28

Tundra Swans will be around all winter.

Ring Billed Gull 2016-10

This Ring Billed Gull has found some kind of shellfish.

Seagull 2016-5

Seagull silhouette.

Bufflehead 2016-30

These Bufflehead were waiting for the Sun to rise.

Song Sparrow 2016-25

Song Sparrow 2016-24

I heard a tap, tap, tapping-and when I turned around, this Song Sparrow was pecking at his reflection on the hood of my car.


Delmarva Fox Squirrel at Blackwater NWR.

With everything closed on Tuesday, and commuter traffic heading West. I went East to Blackwater.

It was actually pretty good, but ducks are in short supply. Eagles and squirrels made  up for it.

Snow Goose 2016-10

Snow Goose 2016-11

Thousands of Snow Geese were leaving as I arrived.

Great Blue Heron 2016-106

Great Blue Heron 2016-109

Great Blue Heron 2016-108

Great Blue Heron 2016-107

I liked this Great Blue Heron’s pose.

Bald Eagle 2016-124

Bald Eagle 2016-123

Bald Eagle 2016-122

Bald Eagle 2016-121

Bald Eagle 2016-120

Bald Eagles were abundant, as usual.

Tundra Swan 2016-26

Tundra Swan 2016-25

Many Tundra Swans were in residence.

Delmarva Fox Squirrel 5

Delmarva Fox Squirrel 4

Appearance: The Delmarva fox squirrel has a steel or whitish gray body and a white belly. It has short, thick, rounded ears. Its full, fluffy tail has black edgings and can grow to 15 inches long. The fox squirrel can grow to 30 inches in length and weigh up to 3 pounds. Habitat: Prefers quiet wooded areas, especially mature loblolly pine and hardwood forests with an open understory. Also found in woodlots near farm fields and groves of trees near water. Spends a considerable amount of time on the ground, rather than in trees like the common gray squirrel. Range: Found only in small isolated populations on the Delmarva Peninsula, mostly in Kent, Dorchester, Talbot and Queen Anne’s counties in Maryland. Biologists have moved some squirrels to other parts of Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia to help develop populations there. Historic range extended as far north as southern New Jersey and southeastern Pennsylvania.


Common Goldeneye at Thomas Point.

I managed only a short trip to Thomas Point on this gray morning as I had work to do.  A Common Eider was seen there a couple of days ago, so there were several birders looking hard, but it hadn’t been found when I left.

The good news is that there was a good variety of species, so it may be a better year than last year.

Common Loon 2016-113

Two Common Loons flew by as I waited.

Bufflehead 2016-29

Bufflehead 2016-28

Buffleheads continue to be the most common duck at the point.

Red Breasted Merganser 2016-18

Two Red Breasted Mergansers were feeding near shore.

Common Goldeneye 2016-2

Common Goldeneye 2016-1

A flock of Common Goldeneyes was actively feeding.



Redhead at Buddy Attick Park.

The weatherman promised a sunny day, and he delivered, for a change. The local parks are closed for Christmas, so I headed to College Park to check out the ducks.
Oddly, there were very few, but the Trumpeter Swan was very cooperative.
I decided to try Buddy Attick, which hasn’t been good to me recently, and I found a few good, albeit distant, ducks.

Pied Billed Grebe 2016-26

Three Pied Billed Grebes were fishing together.

Canada Goose 2016-43

Canada Goose 2016-42

A few Canada Geese flew while I was watching.

Great Blue Heron 2016-105

This Great Blue Heron appeared to be napping.

Hooded Merganser 2016-12

These Hooded Mergansers were staying near the center of the lake.

Trumpeter Swan 2016-27

Trumpeter Swan 2016-26

Trumpeter Swan 2016-25

Trumpeter Swan 2016-24

I got very close to this Trumpeter Swan.

Redhead 2016-10

Redhead 2016-9

I haven’t found many Redheads this year.

American White Pelican at Blackwater NWR.

I went back to Blackwater this morning as I’d heard more ducks were in. I didn’t really find that many, but the Eagles and Pelicans made up for it.

American Wigeon 2016-8

American Wigeon 2016-7

American Wigeons are one of my favorites.

Canvasback 2016-20

Canvasbacks were fairly numerous.

Great Blue Heron 2016-104

This Great Blue Heron looked a little awkward as he too off.

Snow Goose 2016-9

A large flock of Snow Geese flew off as I approached the marsh.

Killdeer 2016-10

A few Killdeer were in the mud flats.

Hooded Merganser 2016-11

Hooded Merganser 2016-10

These Hooded Mergansers spooked easily.

Bald Eagle 2016-116

Bald Eagle 2016-115

Bald Eagle 2016-113

Bald Eagle 2016-112

There were plenty of Bald Eagles around today.

Tundra Swan 2016-24 Tundra Swan 2016-23

Tundra Swan 2016-22

A large flock of Tundra Swans was in the marsh.

American White Pelican 2016-4

American White Pelican 2016-5

American White Pelican 2016-3

This is the first time I’ve seen the Blackwater Pelicans in flight.


Trumpeter Swan at Lake Artemesia.

Between the weather and work I haven’t posted much lately. I had a decent day today, so this is a catch up as well.

Sandy Point 462 Sandy Point 457

Sandy Point 459 Sandy Point 460 Sandy Point 461

Sandy Point 458

Sunrise at Sandy Point.

Bufflehead 2016-26

Bufflehead 2016-27

Three Buffleheads were on the lake.

Ring Necked Duck 2016-31

Artemesia is the only place I’m seeing Ring Necked Ducks.

Lesser Scaup 2016-7

Lesser Scaup 2016-6

Lesser Scaup 2016-5

I haven’t seen many Scaup this season.

Ruddy Duck 2016-29

Ruddy Ducks are doing well at the lake.

Hooded Merganser 2016-8

Hooded Mergansers have been in short supply so far this year.

Brown Pelican 2016-6

Another Brown Pelican at Thomas Point.

Bufflehead 2016-25

I found this Bufflehead at Thomas Point.

Northern Shoveler 2016-13

This Northern Shoveler was at Blackwater NWR.

Red Tailed Hawk 2016-12

This Red Tailed Hawk was at Blackwater NWR.

Double Crested Cormorant 2016-37

Double Crested Cormorants at Sandy Point.

Trumpeter Swan 2016-4

This gives you a good idea how large the Trumpeter Swan is-the Canada Geese look like ducks.

Trumpeter Swan at Lake Artemesia.

I took another weekend trip to Lake Artemesia and it was well worth it. The Trumpeter Swan has been there in the past, and apparently just returned.

The usual ducks were in attendance, and a few passerines showed up as well.


A view of Lake Artemesia.


There are many Song Sparrows along the edge of the lake.


A small flock of Cedar Waxwings is almost always around in Winter.


A very cooperative Mockingbird.


These Bufflehead hens were at Thomas Point.


Distant Brown Pelicans.


This Common Loon was also at Thomas point.


I forget where I saw this Robin.


Tundra swans have returned.


Fish Crows at Thomas Point.



I caught this Ruddy Duck as he was taking off.



Several flocks of Dark Eyed Juncos were feeding near the lake.


mallard-2016-93 mallard-2016-91


Mallards can be found any time of year.



There were three Northern Flickers in this tree.


bald-eagle-2016-110 bald-eagle-2016-109





I saw a lot of Bald Eagles this week.




Cornell: “Trumpeter Swans demand superlatives: they’re our biggest native waterfowl, stretching to 6 feet in length and weighing more than 25 pounds—almost twice as massive as a Tundra Swan. Getting airborne requires a lumbering takeoff along a 100-yard runway. Despite their size, this once-endangered, now recovering species is as elegant as any swan, with a graceful neck and snowy-white plumage. They breed on wetlands in remote Alaska, Canada, and the northwestern U.S., and winter on ice-free coastal and inland waters.”


White Breasted Nuthatch at Buddy Attick.

I started early at Lake Artemesia, which had only the usual suspects,and not very abundant.

Buddy Attick was also slow, but I did see a few birds I hadn’t found in a while.



Ring Necked Ducks are still present in good numbers.


Chickadees are very athletic.



A flock of Blue Jays was moving around the park.


White Throated Sparrows are all around the lake.


This Robin has fund a nice feast.



This Ruddy Duck is stretching to rearrange his feathers.



Mallards always look good in the right light.


I haven’t seen a White Breasted Nuthatch in quite a while.