CT Young Birders: Hammo, East Shore

Today I joined other members of the newly formed Connecticut Young Birder’s Club for an exciting day of birding along the CT coast. Our first stop was Hammo where we got our biggest highlights right off the bat. The flock of Horned Larks delivered a Lapland Longspur, a regular occurrence at Hammo this time of year. A flock of Snow Buntings appeared, putting on a great show.

Snow Buntings

Our next stop was the observation platform at the start of the Moraine Trail. Here we picked up many good birds, including Common Eider, White-winged Scoter and Purple Sandpiper.

Ruddy Turnstones and a Black-bellied Plover

Common Eiders

A Surf Scoter and Hermit Thrush were some of the other goodies.

Soon we left Hammo, bound for the East Shore Sewage Treatment Plant. This is, without a doubt Connecticut’s best spot for lingering insectivores. And why? The warm sewage water keeps the insects alive which attract any late warblers, swallows, etc. Isn’t it high time for a Townsend’s Warbler to end up in CT……..

For most people in the group, the 2 Cave Swallows hanging around the plant were a life bird. I was lucky enough to see them here the day before, but even so, was happy to enjoy them once again with my fellow young birders. The Cave Swallows were undoubtedly the biggest highlights of the trip. Besides the Caves, we also enjoyed a slew of lingering insectivores, including: American Redstart, Blackpoll Warbler and Pine Warbler. I also had 2 Palm Warblers here yesterday.

Cave Swallow

American Redstart


Blackpoll Warbler

Sorry about the poor image quality. For a better Cave Swallow shot see Benjamin Van Doren’s blog.

Overall it was a very successful trip. There was an excellent turnout of young birders with Luke, Brian and Frank providing fantastic leadership. Can’t wait for the next trip!


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2 Responses to CT Young Birders: Hammo, East Shore

  1. Deanna says:

    I am so psyched about your CT young birders group, Alex. It’s really great that you’ve connected with some kids your own age who share your love of birds. And to think that Hammonasset was one of the first places you visited–my old stomping ground has some super birds all year long.
    Looking forward to seeing you next week–you’ll have to fill me in on the new group. xoxo Deanna

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