Sunday, November 10, 2019

November update

Well, this year's southbound migration has been pretty rough to this point! Here in Connecticut bird numbers have been remarkably low throughout the second half of the year. Shorebirds, warblers, hawks and sparrows were all pretty weak overall. Much of this is probably just luck of the draw. Still, on the occasions when weather conditions have set up for classic migration days, most have been disappointing. In these instances, the appearance of rarities can spice things up, but we've been largely left out of that game too. The rares have been in the region (Massachusetts cleaning up per usual), but we're in a rut here.

Here's hoping for a change in luck as we get into waterfowl and CBC season. November especially is known for its rarities, though we are in the midst of back-to-back early deep freezes, which should effectively push out or kill any non-hardy vagrant insectivores.

This first freeze of the season has really brought the geese in full force. Here is an interesting CACKLING GOOSE from this weekend. It is likely a dark-plumaged "Richardson's" type. Structure is pretty classic for this form in that is has a steep forehead and blocky head overall with a crown that slopes up slightly and peaks towards the rear. The overall darkness of the bird, including the breast with a ruddy tinge, was interesting.


Cackling Goose

 - NB