Winter Birding brings different species

Our winter birds are back, providing birders with new glimpses of birds we haven’t seen since last winter. While on the ferry, watch for loons feeding and diving in the waterway. Loons have a similar silhouette to cormorants– they sit low in the water, but they have a sharper beak and white underparts.
Another similar bird that fished the water near the dock is a Horned Grebe. We have also seen them at the north end of the island, fishing the surf. They sit much higher in the water and have a much shorter bill than a loon does.
Also on the ferry, look for American Oystercatchers, especially at high tide. We have a great population of these every winter, and it is fun to see them fly in large flocks on the shell islands that flank the waterway.
Winter ducks are returning: Hooded Mergansers, and Bufflehead have both been seen in the impoundment, and we are keeping watch for American Coot, Scaup, Teal, Widgeons, and Gadwall; all of which have been part of our winter counts before.

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