New Year Round-up …

As any birder reading this blog would know, the “new year” rings in more than just cheer and some tired old resolutions … for many of us, it means a fresh start and a new “year list”. I have to admit that I haven’t actually kept a year list for a good while now (especially now that I have a young family and less time to go birding), but I still get that urge on January 1 to get up early and go out of my way to see all the species I can – starting with the rare ones that have lingered into winter and might be hard to see later on.

There are a few notables on that list already in 2013 … including the PINK-FOOTED GOOSE that was originally discovered on the outskirts of St. John’s in mid-November and a more recent TOWNSEND’S WARBLER that was discovered on Boxing Day (Dec 26) and still being seen regularly as of today.

This hardy little Townsend's Warbler has been feeding along a small section of trail along the lowest portion of the Waterford River for a week now - amazingly the 11th record for this short stretch of river valley.- Photo: Jared Clarke (January 1 2013)

This hardy little Townsend’s Warbler has been feeding along a small section of trail along the lowest portion of the Waterford River for a week now – amazingly the 11th record for this short stretch of river valley.
– Photo: Jared Clarke (January 1 2013)

After sneaking away from my sleepy family early New Year’s morning, I managed to catch up with the Townsend’s Warbler feeding quietly in a patch of conifers along the lower Waterford River. Amazingly, this is the 16th record of this west coast species in Newfoundland – the 13th for St. John’s and (most amazingly) the 11th for this little river valley stretching just 2-3 kilometres!! I then spent the rest of the morning scouring the Goulds where the Pink-footed Goose had been spotted sporadically between November 19 and December 10, only to find out that it was relocated two days later (today!) at a duck pond in Bowring Park. Most ironic was that I had been at the park myself just yesterday with the kids, visiting a nearby playground and turning down an adamant request by my daughter Emma to go see the ducks just a 5-10 minute stroll away.

Other local rarities around the city include a late Yellow-breasted Chat visiting a couple gardens along the lower Rennies River, a Northern Mockingbird frequenting the same street, and Pine Warblers reported at both the lower Waterford River and a neighbourhood bordering Quidi Vidi Road. A report of six Snow Geese feeding on a lawn in Salmonier, Burin on January 1 marked a very unusual arrival of a species reported less than annually in the province and usually in smaller numbers.

- Photo: Jared Clarke (January 1, 2013)

Townsend’s Warbler                                                      – Photo: Jared Clarke (January 1 2013)

Happy New Year! 2013 is off to a roaring start …

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s