Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Chasing down Ross's Goose at Floyd Bennett...

The message that a Ross's goose was seen at Floyd Bennett came through on Tuesday and I could not resist the urge to join the chase in seeing what was possibly a Brooklyn first or second recorded sighting. Today, I set out on the chase; unfortunately, the goose proved elusive. I searched various parts of the field with a few other birders, but we could not land the prize. There was, one goose that raised a few eyebrows and I was asked to take a look. After driving to the location where the goose was sighted and reviewing the subject, I decided that it was an immature "Blue Morph" Snow Goose. Further confirmation later in the evening with my friend and well known birder and naturalist Don Riepe, proved that the call was correct. Despite the disappointment at not finding the Ross' geese, I was happy at the good looks I had of other birds. They include Horned Larks, Swamp Sparrows, White-crowned Sparrows, Song Sparrows, White-throated Sparrows, American Tree Sparrows and Eastern Meadowlarks. In fact, I was able to get a much better photo of the Meadowlarks and counted about 10 of them. The presence of Meadowlarks at Floyd Bennett, in my opinion is a big deal because it suggests that they are over wintering. This, is a boost to the ongoing efforts of restoring the grasslands in this area. Hopefully in time we may see these birds breed at Floyd Bennett.

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