The Red Crossbill irruption is widespread and I encounter them just about
everywhere I go.  The White-winged Crossbill irruption is the second largest
I've observed since living in the Adirondacks (the largest was the 2000-2001
irruption).  Crossbills are paired up and singing.  I've found them in
locations in Hamilton, Essex, Franklin, and St. Lawrence Counties.  Purple
Finches are also singing.  Pine Siskins continue to be abundant and American
Goldfinches are still around.


Ruffed Grouse and Wild Turkeys have been regularly displaying since January.
Twenty-seven Wild Turkeys live outside our home - when it is cold, they
roost and just wait for cracked corn.  They often come up the back steps and
look in our glass door when we don't get the corn out on time.  They have
also become comfortable hanging out on our front porch to eat the birdseed
that gets dropped - and some fly up to the porch roof and walk up to my
office window to look in at me!  They regularly peck our cars and they
gobble when a car drives in.  They have come to associate cars driving in
with being fed (usually by me), but they are not smart enough to learn
specific cars like a Gray Jay (& all other corvids) can.  Similar to dogs
barking, their gobbles over the baby monitor alert us to visitors!


Gray Jay pairs are becoming territorial.  I've only found a pair at Sabattis
Bog the past few days (down from the 6 to 8 birds during most of the
winter).  Bald Eagles are very active (lots of reports about the eagles in
Long Lake over the past week).


Recent sightings:


2/21/18 Long Lake & Tupper Lake (Hamilton & Franklin Co.)


I had to be in Saranac Lake and Lake Placid today, so my trip through
Sabattis Circle Road was quick.  I found 6 Gray Jays - 3 pairs at 3
different locations (1 pair along Route 30).  A Red Crossbill sang near the
outlet of Little Tupper Lake and White-winged Crossbills called.  Both
species called at Sabattis Bog.  Two Pileated Woodpeckers called - one was
chased by a Merlin.  An adult Bald Eagle was observed flying over
Kickerville Road in Long Lake and a juvenile Bald Eagle was observed on
Tupper Lake.


2/20/18 Long Lake


Two pairs of Red Crossbills gritted in the road near the triangle
intersection near the Little Tupper Lake inlet and outlet.  This was a rainy
day so I didn't linger!


2/19/18 Long Lake


An adult Bald Eagle was observed in Long Lake.  A Boreal Chickadee called
along Route 30.  Four Red Crossbills were found at the inlet of Little
Tupper Lake.


Out boreal birding on February 17 & 18, 2018 we found the following species
by visiting locations in Long Lake, Tupper Lake, Piercefield, Newcomb,
Minerva, and North Hudson (Hamilton, Franklin, St. Lawrence, and Essex


Ruffed Grouse - Horseshoe Lake Rd. and Sabattis Circle Road

Rock Pigeon

Hairy Woodpecker - Tahawus Road

Black-backed Woodpecker - 3! (a pair at a marshy area along Sabattis Circle
Road, and a male at Sabattis Bog along the same road)

Pileated Woodpecker - several

Gray Jay - at least 10! (Route 30 in Long Lake, Round Lake Trailhead and
Sabattis Bog along Sabattis Circle Road - the tailless Gray Jay was at the
bog and still tailless!)

Blue Jay - many, over-wintering for the 3rd year in a row

American Crow - over-wintering for the first time

Common Raven

Black-capped Chickadee

Boreal Chickadee - at least 4 in the Sand Lake Marsh vicinity along the
Blueridge Road (town of North Hudson)

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Golden-crowned Kinglet - 1 heard near Sabattis Station and a likely bird
along the North Point Rd.

European Starling - Tupper Lake (no starlings or Rock Pigeons in Long
Lake..yet anyway!)

Purple Finch - many

Red Crossbill - everywhere!

White-winged Crossbill - many at Long Lake locations

Pine Siskin - large irruption

American Goldfinch - many

American Tree Sparrow - at Sabattis Bog (first winter that several have been
observed over-wintering in Long Lake and Newcomb locations - including my

Dark-eyed Junco - at feeder areas (many overwintered this year, which is


Lunch was at Larkin's in Tupper Lake on Saturday and we had lunch at the
Adirondack Interpretive Center in Newcomb on Sunday (with Adirondack Trading
Post paninis delivered by my husband George!).


Twenty-one people participated in the NYS Ornithological Association's
Winter Weekend on February 10 & 11, 2018.  Thanks to Kathy Schneider for
organizing the weekend!  Matt Young gave a fascinating presentation on Red
Crossbill types on Saturday afternoon and we had a fun group dinner at the
Adirondack Hotel that night.  Matt and I led the field trip on Saturday and
Mary Beth Warburton co-led with us on Sunday.  We found the following 21
species by visiting areas in Long Lake (Route 30, Sabattis Circle Road, and
North Point Road), Newcomb locations, Minerva (Boreas River Bridge on the
Blueridge Road), and the Sand Pond Marsh area in North Hudson:


Wild Turkey

Downy Woodpecker

Hairy Woodpecker

Black-backed Woodpecker - 2 males (Sabattis Bog and North Point Road - this
male was at the edge of the road about head height and we watched it forage
for a long time - and left it still in the same place!)

Pileated Woodpecker

Gray Jay - 9 all in Long Lake (1 along Route 30, 2 at the Round Lake
Trailhead, and 6 at Sabattis Bog)

Blue Jay

American Crow

Common Raven

Black-capped Chickadee

Boreal Chickadee - 1 at the Sand Pond Marsh vicinity along the Blueridge
Road in North Hudson

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Golden-crowned Kinglet

American Robin

Purple Finch

Red Crossbill - many! (including a male that sang for a long time from the
top of a White Pine near the triangle intersection along Sabattis Circle

White-winged Crossbill - many!  (estimate was a couple dozen - Route 30 and
many locations along Sabattis Circle Road)

Pine Siskin

American Goldfinch

American Tree Sparrow

Dark-eyed Junco


(We also briefly saw a probable female Rose-breasted Grosbeak at a feeder
location outside of Newcomb.  I will keep an eye out and try to get a photo
if I spot it again.)


Lunch was at the Adirondack Trading Post in Long Lake on Saturday and at the
Long Lake Diner on Sunday!


We were fortunate to have a member of the NYS Young Birders Club attend (a
9th grader) with an adult birder from Rochester.  They were staying over
Sunday night, so we kept birding after everyone headed home.  He had missed
the Saturday field trip - and didn't get to see White-winged Crossbills or a
Black-backed Woodpecker yet that day.  We headed back to the WWCR locations
in Long Lake and found many - singing right up until dark!  Just before we
left Sabattis Bog, a male Black-backed Woodpecker flew across the bog to a
dead snag not far from us and the we had wonderful scope views!  I was
really happy that he got to see all the species he'd hoped to find that day!


Joan Collins

Editor, New York Birders

Long Lake, NY

(315) 244-7127 cell       

(518) 624-5528 home


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