Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas Bird Count 2009

Yesterday, Mark and I participated in the 110th Christmas Bird Count (CBC). We spent the morning in our sector of the Newburyport count circle (Salisbury) and tried to see as many birds as possible despite the wind, rain, and poor visibility.

As we were driving around the Salisbury Beach State Reservation campground, we came across this very wet Merlin perched on an abandoned dock. I was so excited to see this bird and wanted to get a photo but, as I pulled my camera out of my bag, I realized that I left the photo-chip in my computer! I was so disappointed that I would miss getting a photo of the Merlin until Mark pulled a chip out of his GPS for me to use. How lucky was I!

We continued driving around looking for birds and found this small flock of Horned Larks feeding on grasses growing in-between cracks in the parking lot pavement. They too were soaking wet.

Waves crashing in on the jetty combined with a wind-swept rain made it very difficult for us to scan for seabirds ... we did manage to find a small flock of Purple Sandpipers hunkered down among the rocks.


  1. tough day for the CBC for you - and the birds - merlin seems to winter around salisbury quite often - I've seen it there several years. Happy new year!

  2. Hi Chris! I usually see the Merlin at Salisbury each winter too. I hope the weather holds on New Year's Day for my birding trip and that we see it and other good birds! Happy New Year to you!