Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Stonington Point (CT) - Razorbill

A half hour of seawatching this morning from Stonington Point in Stonington, CT was rewarded with fantastic looks at a RAZORBILL right off the point. These were undoubtedly my best looks at this species from land in CT and I was able to digiscope a few photos, though the 20 mph West wind made that difficult.












Razorbill

The bird's identity from that distance was unmistakable, but views of alcids in CT waters are usually quite distant and fleeting. If you're not too familiar with alcids, the most likely ID problem would probably be basic plumaged Thick-billed Murre. Compared to the murre, this Razorbill shows a deeper bill, a diffuse patch of white behind the eye (can be difficult to see from a distance), and a long tail that projects far beyond the folded wingtip. Any alcid other than Razorbill is VERY rare in CT waters, and Razorbill itself is a very uncommon winter resident, mainly in the eastern LI Sound.

Also scoped from the point were 13 COMMON EIDER (increasingly common in CT and now expected at this location during winter), 10 lingering Double-crested Cormorants and a single AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHER.

- Nick

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