Wednesday, January 30, 2008

New England, U.S. - January 2008 (6)

Rhode Island - 2

We spent a couple of days on the southern coast of Rhode Island, and despite the sub-zero temperatures, we struck lucky with quantity and quality.

male King Eider in breeding plumage, Point Judith. After methodically sifting through the thousands of Common Eiders off the point with no luck, we checked the bay just around the corner, to the south of the lighthouse - and there amongst a few Long-tailed Ducks, RB Mergansers, GN Divers and Common Seals, this bird stole the show.

Belted Kingfisher, Ningret Reserve

Saltmarsh Sharp-tailed Sparrow, Chafee Reserve, near Point Judith. Acting like a Lanceolated Warbler, this wholly unexpected and beautiful little bird ran through the grass, hid under ice overhangs in the drainage channels in the saltmarsh, and generally did its best to elude us until we finally got conclusive views. As far as we can tell from field guides, it was several hundred miles out of range..... perhaps the best find of the trip.