What’s been seen: The best birders are strategists. That’s not to say that they have to be to have fun and be successful – success, of course, being a personal definition. It’s perfectly fine to wander and discover. But a plan that takes into account season, weather, habitat, and past history can lead to wondrous moments of discovery.
One young birder (well, two, as I know he birds with his dad) set himself up several mornings at Fort Revere and caught September songbird migration in action. On Sept. 11, he recorded a Tennessee warbler, on the rarer side of the 30 or so warbler species, as well as a Lincoln’s sparrow. On Sept. 14, it was a Philadelphia vireo.
Elsewhere in town, the excitement of a Peregrine falcon sighting, the fastest animal on earth, took place over Summit Avenue on Sept. 2, and on the 21st another birder counted nine greater yellowlegs in the Weir River Estuary area. They are in motion, but there will be many more to come.
What to expect this month: What else is to come includes more sparrows. While the warblers and vireos get started early with their migration, the sparrows come through a little bit later. The Lincoln’s is an oddity, for sure, for Hull, but soon we will be welcoming American tree sparrows and a true harbinger of winter, the dark-eyed junco. Known as “snowbirds,” juncos typically arrive in late October when, statistically, Massachusetts can expect its first snow of the season. Hawks and ducks won’t be far behind, and nor will our great cormorants.
So, strategize or wander, you’ll be sure to see some interesting avian sights this fall on the peninsula.