Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Out with T and T

T and T came to town and so today we set both of the canoes in the water on a tour of the local salt marsh at the mouth of the big river.  Heavy dark clouds threatened rain and it had rained much of the night, but the air was calm and the tide was well high although still 2 hours short of the top.

T and T

We set out for the point to see what might be there.  My last trip in the marsh had been in mid-day and had been rather sparse for wildlife sightings.  Already, we were watching least and common terns and snowy and great egrets.  There were more birds present than the other day.

I spotted a black bellied plover, but in short time this took us to a flock of 50+, something I've not seen before.  I figure them to be in migration and if you don't find yourself in the marsh when they are, you don't know.

A swan was still on the first nest that we came upon with two cygnets at her side.  But while I was looking elsewhere, T cried out that they had left the nest.  It is quite likely their first swim as most waterfowl leave the nest for good as soon as they can.  Once in the water they were well protected by both of the adults.  Then, it started dumping rain.
The rain pauses.  The rain starts again.  Thunder rumbles in the distance, but not often and only at a distance.  The marsh is not good for lightning storms.

As we continued clockwise around the marsh we started spotting yellow-crowned night herons.  I just spotted my first of the season yesterday, so to find 8 or 10 on this trip was a bit of a surprise.  Up in the Beaver Creek area we came across a flock of 50 glossy ibises.  I've seen them in this spot before, but they disappear to their nests sometime soon and then I don't see them for the rest of the summer.
yellow crowned night heron
We cut once more diagonally across the marsh, a possibility only at high tide, and back to the point where we spot some dunlin, sandpipers, and a pair of oyster catchers.

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