9/15/10 – Ash Creek, JB – pos. Long-billed

Sorry for the belated post. I’ve been incredibly busy lately with school, hospital visits and of course birding. With all this stuff going on, it’s hard to find time to post!

This past Wednesday, James Randall and I headed over to Jennings Beach Brush to do a short two spot tour of Eastern Fairfield. As I’ve said in earlier posts, Jennings is a spot with fantastic potential for migrants and half hardies later on in the year. When we first arrived, we got fantastic looks at a beautiful, adult Yellow Warbler. Soon after, a Brown Thrasher responded to our pishing, and those were joined by 3 Common Yellowthroats. The thrasher was parts of the mimid trifecta, as we were able to get all 3.

After Jennings, it was on to Ash Creek. It was all about quality over quantity today. We were halfway through our creek-side route when I spotted 3 Dowitchers flying down the creek. We watched them for some as they flew away, came back, flew away and vice versa. Finally they landed across the way. However, because we didn’t have our scopes we couldn’t make a good ID, that is until one of them called. I immediately knew there was one Short-billed Dowitcher in the group when they took off but still wasn’t sure about the other two.

After taking off, the group disappeared down the creek and we hoped if we continued, we’d run into them later on. While we were walking through a marshy area, James (who was ahead of me) spotted a Rail that ran across the trail. Soon the bird flushed and we could tell it wasn’t a Rail but a juvenile Green Heron. It flew down close and we got even better looks at it before it flushed a second time.

Green Heron

Time was running out so we headed for the point and into our scan located a Dowitcher sp. on the opposite side. We studied this bird for a long while and noted the structure (sloped back and bulky chest) as well as bill shape. Seeing as the bird was so far away, size and shape were our only hope for making an ID. The bird sat in the same spot and we changed position a few times in order to get a different angle. I’m really leaning until Long-billed Dowitcher on this one. However, because it was so far away, I can’t make a conclusive ID. Unfortunately.

Dowitchers in flight

pos. Long-billed Dowitcher

pos. Long-billed Dowitcher

If you have any thoughts on this bird, don’t hesitate to comment!


This entry was posted in Connecticut Birding, Fairfield Birding. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to 9/15/10 – Ash Creek, JB – pos. Long-billed

  1. Deanna says:


    Sounds like you and James had a pretty eventful day. Hope your weather in Fairfield was as nice as it was in Southwest Harbor.

    Getting ready to pack up and leave in the AM. Will go to Parsonsfield to visit with my cousin for a day or two then head back to CT. Pretty cool up here in the evening and early AM. Guess that means that fall in on its way. The bird migration affirms that summer has come to and end and the cooler weather is beaconing the birds to head south and/or north on their yearly flight to their winter grounds.

    Just think, in another few weeks we’ll be doing our migration south! We’re not so different from birds after all, are we??


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