PIPL

PIPL

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Great Egrets Lingering

There have been plenty of Great Egrets spotted all over Connecticut in the last month. This individual was at a Stratford marsh last week.


We tend to think of them as a summer species with birds nesting in nearby colonies, but they arrive early in the late winter/spring, and stick with us through the autumn. Some are even found during Christmas Birds Counts! And the warmer it stays during winter, the easier it is for various long-legged waders to forgo migration and hang out with us, for better or worse.

Friday, October 25, 2019

Fall Forster's Terns

October can yield more than our songbird friends filling up the grasslands. A flock of Forster's Terns was feeding not too far from Stratford Point last week.


They were just north in the Housatonic River, hanging out with some Laughing, Ring-billed and Herring Gulls plus a handful of ducks (that are growing in number and diversity by the day). Keep an eye on the waters, especially during and after these October storms!

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Fencing removal dates

In the next few weeks we have three fencing removal dates set by CT DEEP. The Audubon Alliance for Coastal Waterbirds would appreciate any volunteers who could help us out at:

-Bluff Point on Sunday, August 25th at 10am. Rain date of Monday, August 26th at 10am.
-Sandy Point on Tuesday, August 27th at 10am. Rain date of Wednesday, August 28th at 10am.
-Long Beach on Wednesday, September 4th at 10am. Rain date of Friday, September 6th at 10am.

Assisting not only helps AAfCW but it also greatly aids CT DEEP staff and their busy schedules. It also limits the stress on our birds. Please remember that taking down fencing in late summer can be physically demanding because of the potential heat and humidity, and those who join us should remember a few things:
-wear sunscreen and a hat
-drink plenty of water or sports drink and bring a snack
-do not attempt to carry too many stakes as there will be enough volunteers and staff members so that no one should overexert themselves
-anyone who needs to limit physical exertion should stick to winding up string rolls
-take as many breaks as needed

In general we look for everyone we can to help out even if you are not a past monitor or volunteer - the more the merrier. It also makes for a more pleasant morning of bird watching and discussions on the beach. Please email us at ctwaterbirds@gmail.com if you can join us, and thank you!

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

AAfCW 2019 Volunteer Update #7

This is the seventh update by the Audubon Alliance for Coastal Waterbirds (AAfCW) for the 2019 season. Today's update includes reports of Piping Plover, American Oystercatcher, Least Tern and Common Tern from July 9 through August 12 with sightings of birds spanning the period.

Informational updates:

We are currently still monitoring nesting birds - Least Terns at several locations across the state - along with a few late Piping Plover families. We continue to survey for American Oystercatchers and Common Terns as they begin to disperse and stage with juveniles across Connecticut. Migratory groups of all four species are occurring at the typically busy beach locations. We have experienced a lot of disturbances recently from a variety of sources including dogs, active beachgoers, boats, events, cats, ATVs, predators, and more. Your continued monitoring efforts through the end of August are most certainly appreciated.

Any reports of disturbances and issues are also extremely helpful, as is any assistance in reporting events such as loose dogs to local animal control, park management, or law enforcement, as applicable. A huge thanks to everyone who regularly collects trash from our beaches, too. In a couple locations we may need extra help monitoring into September. We will let you know if that is indeed the case.

We will soon have string fencing removal dates set for some of our larger monitored beaches. These will be emailed to you with a request for volunteer help. Any and all will be appreciated, including from those who did not monitor this season. CT DEEP and AAfCW staff continue to work to take down fencing at various locations on our own whenever possible, or reduce it when needed. Thank you very much for all your help!

Survey and monitoring updates:

Piping Plover
1 nest at Waterford Town Beach on 7/8
2 pairs, 8 adults, 1 hatchling, 7 fledglings at Long Beach on 7/8
2 pairs, 7 adults, 1 hatchling, 7 juveniles at Long Beach on 7/9
3 adults, 2 fledglings, 6 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/9
2 adults, 2 fledglings at Long Beach on 7/9
9 pairs, 3 adults, 2 hatchlings, 13 fledglings, 1 juvenile, 1 nest at Long Beach on 7/9
2 adults at Milford Point on 7/9
3 pairs, 7 adults, 2 fledglings, 17 juveniles at Long Beach on 7/10
2 pairs, 3 adults, 1 fledgling, 5 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/10
2 pairs, 7 adults, 11 juveniles at Long Beach on 7/11
7 adults, 2 hatchlings, 4 fledglings, 2 juveniles, 1 nest at Milford Point on 7/11
17 adults, 2 hatchlings, 3 fledglings, 1 nest at Long Beach on 7/11
2 pairs, 6 adults, 2 fledglings at Bluff Point on 7/12
8 adults, 2 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/13
1 adult, 1 hatchling at Silver Sands on 7/13
1 adult, 1 fledglings at Milford Point on 7/13
1 adult, 1 hatchling at Silver Sands on 7/14
1 adult, 1 hatchling at Silver Sands on 7/15
1 adult, 7 fledglings, 4 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/16
7 adults, 8 hatchlings, 2 fledglings, 7 juveniles at Milford Point on 7/16
14 adults, 4 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/17
2 pairs, 1 adult, 2 juveniles at Long Beach on 7/17
1 pair, 5 adults, 4 hatchlings, 2 juveniles at Bluff Point on 7/19
12 adults/juveniles, 4 adults, 7 hatchlings at Milford Point on 7/19
3 adults, 2 fledglings at Milford Point on 7/20
1 fledgling at Silver Sands on 7/22
1 juvenile at Silver Sands on 7/23
4 adults at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/24
1 pair at Milford Point on 7/24
22 adults/juveniles, 1 adult, 1 hatchlings at Milford Point on 7/25
5 adults, 7 hatchlings, 8 fledglings at Milford Point on 7/25
2 adults, 4 hatchlings at Bluff Point on 7/26
1 adult, 3 hatchlings at Bluff Point on 7/26
1 pair, 1 adult, 3 fledglings at Milford Point on 7/27
4 adults, 1 juvenile, 1 nest at Long Beach on 7/29
4 adults, 4 hatchlings, 4 fledglings, 21 juveniles at Milford Point on 7/30
2 adults, 4 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/31
2 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/31
1 pair, 9 juveniles at Milford Point on 8/1
6 fledglings at Sandy/Morse Points on 8/1
2 adults, 5 hatchlings, 10 individuals at Milford Point on 8/2
2 adults, 1 fledgling at Bluff Point on 8/2
2 adults at Milford Point on 8/3
2 adults, 2 fledglings at Long Beach on 8/3
1 adult at Sandy/Morse Points on 8/3
1 adult, 3 juveniles at Long Beach on 8/4
5 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 8/5
1 juvenile at Sandy/Morse Points on 8/8
1 adult, 5 fledglings at Bluff Point on 8/9
1 pair, 4 adults, 1 juvenile at Milford Point on 8/10

American Oystercatcher
1 pair, 1 adult, 1 fledgling at Long Beach on 7/8
1 pair, 1 fledgling at Long Beach on 7/9
2 adults at Long Beach on 7/9
1 pair at Milford Point on 7/9
4 adults, 1 fledgling/juvenile at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/9
2 pairs, 15 adults, 1 fledgling, 1 nest at Milford Point on 7/9
1 pair, 1 juvenile at Long Beach on 7/10
2 pairs, 3 adults, 3 fledglings at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/10
3 adults at Griswold Point on 7/10
1 pair, 1 juvenile at Long Beach on 7/11
13 adults, 1 hatchling at Milford Point on 7/11
2 pairs, 1 hatchling at Long Beach on 7/11
1 pair, 1 adult at Bluff Point on 7/12
2 pairs at Milford Point on 7/13
3 adults at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/13
1 adult, 2 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/16
3 adults, 1 hatchling at Milford Point on 7/16
4 adults, 2 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/17
1 pair, 1 juvenile at Long Beach on 7/17
23 adults, 1 hatchling at Milford Point on 7/19
2 adults at Silver Sands on 7/19
2 pairs, 3 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/24
1 pair, 1 juvenile at Milford Point on 7/24
15 adults, 1 juvenile at Milford Point on 7/25
6 adults, 1 juvenile at Milford Point on 7/25
1 pair, 2 fledglings at Bluff Point on 7/26
1 pair at Milford Point on 7/27
6 adults, 1 juvenile at Milford Point on 7/30
8 adults at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/31
1 pair, 1 fledgling at Sandy/Morse Points on 8/1
1 pair, 1 juvenile at Milford Point on 8/1
3 pairs, 2 fledglings at Bluff Point on 8/2
26 adults, 1 juvenile at Milford Point on 8/2
1 pair at Milford Point on 8/3
2 adults, 1 juvenile at Sandy/Morse Points on 8/3
1 adult at Long Beach on 8/4
5 adults at Sandy/Morse Points on 8/5
1 pair, 1 juvenile at Long Beach on 8/6
2 adults at Waterford Town Beach on 8/7
2 pairs, 2 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 8/8
1 pair at Milford Point on 8/10

Least Tern
3 pairs, 3 adults at Long Beach on 7/8
18 adults at Long Beach on 7/9
10 adults at Milford Point on 7/9
7 adults, 2 nests at Long Beach on 7/9
15 adults at Long Beach on 7/9
30 adults at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/9
26 adults, 10 nests at Milford Point on 7/9
14 adults at Long Beach on 7/10
30 adults at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/10
3 adults at Griswold Point on 7/10
6 adults at Long Beach on 7/11
40 adults, 15 nests at Milford Point on 7/11
43 adults, 2 nests at Long Beach on 7/11
1 pair, 12 adults at Bluff Point on 7/12
21 adults at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/13
20 adults, 1 hatchling at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/16
20 adults at Milford Point on 7/16
12 adults at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/17
20 adults at Long Beach on 7/17
45 adults, 20 nests at Milford Point on 7/19
3 pairs, 12 adults at Bluff Point on 7/19
20 adults, 1 hatchling at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/24
15 adults at Milford Point on 7/24
40 adults at Milford Point on 7/25
73 adults, 2 hatchlings at Milford Point on 7/25
5 adults at Bluff Point on 7/26
3 pairs at Bluff Point on 7/26
4 pairs, 100 individuals at Long Beach on 7/29
50 adults at Long Beach on 7/30
120 adults, 9 hatchlings at Milford Point on 7/30
4 adults at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/31
20 adults at Sandy/Morse Points on 8/1
40 adults at Milford Point on 8/1
100 adults, 20 juveniles at Milford Point on 8/2
57 adults, 2 nests at Long Beach on 8/2
60 adults, 10 juveniles at Long Beach on 8/4
30 adults at Long Beach on 8/6

Common Tern
3 adults at Milford Point on 7/9
60 adults at Milford Point on 7/9
1 adult at Long Beach on 7/10
39 adults, 1 juvenile at Griswold Point on 7/10
3 pairs, 2 adults at Long Beach on 7/11
3 adults at Long Beach on 7/11
55 adults at Milford Point on 7/11
5 adults at Milford Point on 7/16
6 adults at Long Beach on 7/17
1 adult at Bluff Point on 7/19
60 adults/juveniles at Milford Point on 7/19
6 adults at Milford Point on 7/25
150 adults/juveniles at Milford Point on 7/25
5 adults at Bluff Point on 7/26
30 adults at Long Beach on 7/30
75 adults/juveniles at Milford Point on 7/30
28 adults, 3 juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 7/31
25 adults at Milford Point on 8/1
1 adult at Bluff Point on 8/2
28 adults/juveniles at Long Beach on 8/2
225 adults, 25 juveniles at Milford Point on 8/2
30 adults at Long Beach on 8/4
100 adults/juveniles at Sandy/Morse Points on 8/5
40 adults at Waterford Town Beach on 8/7

This concludes update #7 through 8/13/18 as of 4:00 a.m.

Massive Shorebird Flock Video

From earlier this spring, here's the video of the flock of primarily Semipalmated Sandpipers at the global Important Bird Area that is Stratford Point on Memorial Day. Other species included Dunlin, Semipalmated Plover, Ruddy Turnstone, Sanderling, Least Sandpiper, Black-bellied Plover, and White-rumped Sandpiper. You can see some birds sitting on our reef balls in the video, too. However, they are covered by the tide once it nears its peak, and all of the birds had to head to the shoreline.


Having roosting locations like this available are extremely important to these birds as they traverse the hemisphere. Being able to preen in peace and maintain their feathers is critical to their survival and successful migration to arctic breeding grounds. Again, numbers like this are only rarely seen here in southbound fall migration, and hosting several thousand birds like this in the spring is unprecedented during the decade we have been working at Stratford Point. Please do all you can to help protect stopover sites like ours, and ensure you do not add to the many disturbances that can harm or kill these birds.