[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
Fulvous, Vermilion, and Eared in Goldsboro!
- To: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Subject: Fulvous, Vermilion, and Eared in Goldsboro!
- From: Joshua Stuart Rose <email@example.com>
- Date: Fri, 1 Dec 2000 18:21:15 -0500 (EST)
- Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org
First, before I start spewing my usual nonsensical banter, the BIG news:
the Vermilion Flycatcher was seen this morning. We first saw it in the
usual spot, for about 30 seconds, just before 10 AM. It then flew over
the hill within the fence and out of sight. Shortly thereafter, we
re-found it on the far side of the fenced enclosure, flycatching from the
barbed wire. It very stayed in this area for nearly an hour, and was
still there when we left.
In addition, two of us later visited the Wayne County wastewater
treatment plant. In addition to finding three Eared Grebes, as we halfway
expected, we also found a lone Fulvous Whistling-Duck in the midst of a
massive flock of 4-500 Green-winged Teal! The Fulvous, the grebes, a
Great Black-backed Gull, a hundreds of other birds were all in the ponds
on the north side of the road; the plant presently doesn't allow access
to this area, but we saw all of the birds from the dike that runs along
the south side of the road.
And now, the rest of the story (apologies to Paul Harvey):
Frank and I set out around 7:30 this morning from Durham; Randy Emmitt
originally planned to join us, but reconsidered and came later. We
arrived at the Vermilion site at 9 AM, but the Vermilion wasn't there.
Jeff Lewis was, and Randy arrived not long after we did; Eric Dean came
and left. Frank wandered off after a flock of sparrows, and Randy went
down to the riverbank.
Shortly before 10 AM, Larry Lynch and Lauren Scott, listowners of the
Virginia birding listserv, pulled up. And wouldn't you know it, the
Vermilion Flycatcher appeared minutes later! It disappeared before Randy
and Frank returned, but Jeff Lewis and I walked around the back of the
fenced enclosure and found it again. This time, it stayed put for nearly
an hour. We took photos until Larry and I ran out of film, and Randy
stalked until he was too close to focus his collossal lens!
Around 11 AM, we left the Vermilion to enjoy his flycatching exploits and
headed to the Wayne County wastewater treatment plant to look for Eared
Grebes. Frank and I somehow got separated from the others, wandered
around lost for a while, and finally arrived, but never caught up with
the rest of the crew. The more closely accessible ponds near the office,
on the south side of the road, were loaded with birds, especially
American Coot, Northern Shoveler, Gadwall, Ruddy Duck, and Hooded
Merganser. Amid these were smaller numbers of Ring-billed and Bonaparte's
Gulls, Canada Geese, Great Blue Heron, Mallards, Lesser Scaup,
Ring-necked Duck, and Canvasback. We had amazingly close looks at three
Least Sandpipers, one American Pipit, and a Killdeer foraging on the mud
less than ten feet away. However, the only grebe in evidence was
As we headed back towards my car I realized that, although we had been
forbidden to cross the road, we could scan the ponds over there from the
dike on the near side. There were many more Ring-billed Gulls over there,
with a Great Black-backed among them, and also many more shorebirds; most
appeared to be Least Sandpipers, but we also picked out a few Dunlin and
possibly some Westerns. While walking down the dike, we also flushed a
seemingly very late Spotted Sandpiper on the shoreline of the closer
pond. The waterfowl, in addition to lots more Coots, Shovelers, Ruddies,
and Ring-necks, also included hundreds of Green-winged Teal, 3-400 of
which took flight simultaneously at one point.
Shortly after the Teal settled back down, I noticed a lone duck flying at
treetop level. I immediately noticed a suspiciously long neck,
reminiscent of the Fulvous Whistling-Ducks from Pea Island. Then a white
rump and black tail; it WAS a Fulvous! Maybe one of the same individuals,
now dispersed? It lit on a mud bank among the teal and took a nap there.
In the meantime, we also spotted an Eared Grebe. Alas, when Eric Dean and
a friend of his arrived to see, the Fulvous had disappeared, although we
did find two additional Eared Grebes.
My friends are pulling me away for dinner; good luck to anyone seeking
the Vermilion, or the Fulvous (which is only a few minutes' drive away).
Joshua S. Rose
Department of Biology (Zoology, R.I.P.)