Re: [cayugabirds-l] Fields being mowed - state land, too

2021-06-15 Thread Alicia Plotkin
More generally, another problem are policies by NYS Parks and the 
Wildlife Management areas.  Grassland areas under their control 
increasingly seem to be rented out for farming.  For example, part of 
Willard Wildlife Management area that 25 yrs ago was in grass that only 
got mowed in late summer, and that had the full range of nesting 
grassland birds (confirmed nesting by Meadowlark, Bobolink, Northern 
Harrier, several grassland sparrows), recently has been leased to 
farmers who plant & harvest row crops there.  Probably true lots of 
other places.  This is a situation where the Bird Club and the Lab of O 
might be able to work together to encourage regulation by NYS that 
ensured the land was used in a way that is consistent with grassland 
nesting.


On 6/15/2021 4:07 PM, Kenneth V. Rosenberg wrote:
>
> Linda, thanks for bringing this mowing to everyone’s attention. In a 
> nutshell, what is happening today in those fields, repeated over the 
> entire U.S., is the primary cause of continued steep declines in 
> Bobolink and other grassland bird populations.
>
> Last year, because of the delays in mowing due to Covid, the fields 
> along Freeze and Hanshaw Roads were full of nesting birds, including 
> many nesting Bobolinks that were actively feeding young in the nests 
> at the end of June. In the first week of July, Cornell decided to mow 
> all the fields. Jody Enck and I wrote letters and met with several 
> folks at Cornell in the various departments in charge of managing 
> those fields (Veterinary College, University Farm Services) – although 
> they listened politely to our concerns for the birds, they went ahead 
> and mowed that week as dozens of female bobolinks and other birds 
> hovered helplessly over the tractors with bills filled food for their 
> almost-fledged young.
>
> The same just happened over the past couple of days this year, only at 
> an earlier stage in the nesting cycle – most birds probably have (had) 
> recently hatched young in the nest. While mowing is occurring across 
> the entire region as part of “normal” agricultural practices (with 
> continued devastating consequences for field-nesting birds), the 
> question is whether Cornell University needs to be contributing to 
> this demise, while ostensibly supporting biodiversity conservation 
> through other unrelated programs. Jody and I presented an alternative 
> vision, where the considerable acres of fields owned by the university 
> across Tompkins County could serve as a model for conserving 
> populations of grassland birds, pollinators, and other biodiversity, 
> but the people in charge of this management were not very interested 
> in these options.
>
> And there we have it, a microcosm of the continental demise of 
> grassland birds playing out in our own backyard, illustrating the 
> extreme challenges of modern Ag practices that are totally 
> incompatible with healthy bird populations. I urge CayugaBirders to 
> make as much noise as possible, and maybe someone will listen.
>
> KEN
>
> Ken Rosenberg (he/him/his)
>
> Applied Conservation Scientist
>
> Cornell Lab of Ornithology
>
> American Bird Conservancy
>
> Fellow, Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future
>
> k...@cornell.edu 
>
> Wk: 607-254-2412
>
> Cell: 607-342-4594
>
> *From: *bounce-125714085-3493...@list.cornell.edu 
>  on behalf of Linda Orkin 
> 
> *Date: *Tuesday, June 15, 2021 at 3:02 PM
> *To: *CAYUGABIRDS-L 
> *Subject: *[cayugabirds-l] Fields being mowed.
>
> After a couple year hiatus in which the Freese Road fields across from 
> the gardens have been mowed late in the season allowing at least 
> Bobolinks to be done with their nesting and for grassland birds to be 
> lured into a false feeling of security so they have returned and I’ve 
> counted three singing meadowlarks for the first time in years,  
> Cornell has returned to early mowing there as of today. And so the 
> mayhem ensues. How many more multitudes of birds will die before we 
> believe our own eyes and ears. Mow the grass while it’s still 
> nutritious but are we paying attention to who is being fed. Grass 
> taken from the land to pass through animals and in that inefficient 
> process turning to food for humans.
>
> Linda Orkin
> Ithaca NY
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[cayugabirds-l] Yellow-Breasted Chat at Montezuma

2021-05-19 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Just heard 3rd hand that there was a yellow breasted chat somewhere near 
the intersection of the Esker Brook and South Spring Trails this 
evening, observed by very experienced birders.  I have no further 
details on exactly where and it could be that this 3rd hand info on 
location has gotten degraded along the way, but perhaps there will be a 
knot of birders in the area to direct you if you go?


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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Black-throated Green Warbler

2021-04-27 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Just came home from an early morning appt to find my yard (west side of 
Ovid) awash in Yellow Rumped Warblers - had only seen 5 warblers of any 
kind before today, but there were at least 15 singing, chipping & 
gleaning at 12:45.  Still hear some singing now, 30 minutes later.  
Wasn't able to hear or see any other varieties of warbler but last night 
must have brought in some good birds.


Alicia


On 4/27/2021 11:56 AM, Ann Mitchell wrote:

It’s back at Park Preserve South!

Good birding,
Ann

Sent from my iPhone
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Natural Purple Martin nesting?

2021-04-14 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Summary of what was known in early 20th century in Birds by Bent 
 - rare but not 
completely unheard of at that time. Note that Naples, Florida was 
considered to be remote country then!
> *Nesting*.--Before the advent of the white man the martin used natural 
> cavities in trees and cliffs for nesting sites. But even in those 
> distant days there was some bird-house nesting, for the Indians were 
> fond of these birds and, as Wilson (1832) says, "even the solitary 
> Indian seems to have a particular respect for this bird." He gives an 
> account of the methods used by the "Choctaws and Chickasaws" who "cut 
> off all the top branches from a sapling near their cabins, leaving the 
> prongs a foot or two in length, on each of which they hang a gourd, or 
> calabash, properly hollowed out for their convenience." Forbush (1929) 
> adds that "when saplings were not conveniently situated the Indians 
> set up poles, fastened cross-bars to them and hung the gourds on these 
> cross-bars."
>
> Instances of strictly primitive nesting are still to be seen in remote 
> parts of the country. Roberts (1932) gives an account of martins 
> breeding among large boulders on Spirit Island, Lake Milles Lacs, 
> Minn. Howell (1932) mentions two or three examples in Florida, one 
> near La Belle and another at Naples. A unique situation came under his 
> observation on Anna Maria Key in May 1918, when he found a pair using 
> a hole in a palmetto piling over water, the cavity being about 3 feet 
> from the surface.
>
> I have seen one instance of primitive nesting in Florida, that of a 
> small colony of about five pairs utilizing a tall, dead pine 
> perforated with woodpecker holes. This tree stands near the banks of 
> the Kissimmee River, near the hamlet of Cornwell, in Highlands County, 
> Fla., and martins were using it late in March 1940. Shown to several 
> participants in the Wildlife Tours undertaken in that region during 
> the early part of 1940 by the Audubon Association, it never failed to 
> elicit the greatest interest. Flickers and bluebirds, as well as a 
> red-bellied woodpecker, were also using this avian apartment house. I 
> have had it reported that martins use the hollows in very old 
> cypresses in some of the large river swamps of South Carolina, along 
> with chimney swifts, which is certainly very likely, though I have not 
> seen this association personally.
>




On 4/14/2021 10:18 AM, Johnson, Alyssa wrote:
>
> Good morning,
>
> As I watch the Purple Martins returning, and setting up seasonal 
> residence, I wonder about natural nesting locations. I’m not asking 
> for directions to one, but has anyone ever seen one? What do they look 
> like? Do they nest in dead trees? Or holes/crags in cliffs?
>
> I’d love to see a natural nesting site, the only time I’ve ever seen 
> PUMAs are at the colonial nesting boxes! And I got to thinking- what 
> did they nest in before we built these condos for them?!
>
>  Alyssa
>
> --
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> *Alyssa Johnson*
>
> Environmental Educator
>
> 315.365.3588
>
> *Montezuma Audubon Center*
>
> PO Box 187
>
> 2295 State Route 89
>
> Savannah, NY 13146
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Bad news for Osprey along 5 & 20

2021-03-23 Thread Alicia Plotkin
It's a little early yet - there are no sightings in eBird for Osprey 
north of Jacksonville and south of Interlaken before 3/31.  Marty always 
spots them before I do, but I didn't see them until April Fool's Day 
last year.

On 3/23/2021 3:46 PM, Marty Schlabach wrote:
>
> This afternoon we drove by the cell phone tower in the hamlet of 
> Covert, on Rt 96 just north of Trumansburg, that Alicia mentioned. We 
> too had noticed several weeks ago that last year’s nest was gone.  
> Today there is still no sign of an osprey.
>
> Marty
>
> *From:* bounce-125487631-3494...@list.cornell.edu 
>  *On Behalf Of *Alicia Plotkin
> *Sent:* Tuesday, March 23, 2021 3:29 PM
> *To:* John Gregoire ; CAYUGABIRDS-L 
> 
> *Subject:* Re: [cayugabirds-l] Bad news for Osprey along 5 & 20
>
> The osprey nest on the cell phone tower just north of Trumansburg went 
> missing at the end of last winter, was rebuilt and used successfully 
> again last spring/summer, and went missing again about a month ago, I 
> assume torn down but didn't see it being done.
>
> On 3/23/2021 3:07 PM, John Gregoire wrote:
>
> The sole Osprey nest in Schuyler was atop the microwave comm tower
> behind the Tops Market. It had been there for 5 years with
> great success. Someone tore it down in the last few days.
>
> On Tue, Mar 23, 2021 at 1:07 PM Ann Mitchell
> mailto:annmitchel...@gmail.com>> wrote:
>
> The nests are being torn down and replaced with the discs. No
> sign of Osprey.
>
> Ann
>
> Sent from my iPhone
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Bad news for Osprey along 5 & 20

2021-03-23 Thread Alicia Plotkin
The osprey nest on the cell phone tower just north of Trumansburg went 
missing at the end of last winter, was rebuilt and used successfully 
again last spring/summer, and went missing again about a month ago, I 
assume torn down but didn't see it being done.


On 3/23/2021 3:07 PM, John Gregoire wrote:
> The sole Osprey nest in Schuyler was atop the microwave comm tower 
> behind the Tops Market. It had been there for 5 years with 
> great success. Someone tore it down in the last few days.
>
> On Tue, Mar 23, 2021 at 1:07 PM Ann Mitchell  > wrote:
>
> The nests are being torn down and replaced with the discs.  No
> sign of Osprey.
>
> Ann
>
> Sent from my iPhone
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Yellow Bellied Sapsucker Question

2021-02-22 Thread Alicia Plotkin
A friend a mile away reports one is regular at his feeder this winter.  
Don't remember reports of any over-wintering here on the west side of 
Ovid before this year, and there is only one report in eBird for Dec-Feb 
in the Seneca drainage of Ovid before 2021 (assuming Dave Kennedy was on 
the Ovid side of the line in Willard Town Park when he made his report 
in 2018).


On 2/22/2021 5:32 PM, Tim Gallagher wrote:
> I saw a sapsucker in Freeville last Friday morning.
>
> 
> *From:* bounce-125408654-10557...@list.cornell.edu 
>  on behalf of Tom 
> Fernandes 
> *Sent:* Monday, February 22, 2021 4:55 PM
> *To:* CAYUGABIRDS-L 
> *Subject:* [cayugabirds-l] Yellow Bellied Sapsucker Question
> There seems to be numerous reports of sapsuckers in CNY this winter. 
> In my thirty plus years living here I don't recall ever seeing one in 
> the winter. Here in McGraw I have one visiting my feeders for the past 
> few weeks. How common is it for them to winter in our area?
>    Thanks, Tom Fernandes
>
> 
>  
>   Virus-free. www.avg.com 
> 
>  
>
>
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Massive Solar Farm coming to Cayuga County

2021-02-20 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Great idea!  The Syracuse article you linked to says that a number of 
these mega-farms are in the planning stage for NYS.  Maybe an approach 
through the permitting process or legislation would be more effective 
than approaching them individually?  Does anyone on this list have good 
DEC or legislative contacts?

Does Audubon or the Sierra Club or anyone else have an updated report on 
how this can work, perhaps analyzing the effect of the Minnesota law 
mentioned in your other link - what regulations work best & why they 
don't cost taxpayers or solar farms much?  For that matter, is Audubon 
already working on this in NYS?

Alicia


On 2/20/2021 8:31 AM, david nicosia wrote:
> All,
>
> see 
> https://www.syracuse.com/news/2020/02/monster-cny-solar-farm-would-replace-corn-and-soybeans-with-power-for-3-homes.html
>  
> 
>
>
> Does anyone have any more details on this? If it is done with wildlife 
> in mind this could be a good thing. If they plant pollinator friendly 
> and native grasses this could be a positive. But if it is just plain 
> grass it could be at best just a trade-off and at worse a negative. 
> These solar farms could be good for birds and pollinators. see
> https://www.audubon.org/news/can-solar-plants-make-good-bird-habitat 
> 
>
> Maybe you are all aware of this but the big renewable energy push 
> through solar farms could be an opportunity to improve bird and 
> pollinator habitats. Anyway, just wondering if any folks have 
> information on this or have contacted solar farm companies on this.
>
> Best,
> Dave
>
>
>
>
>
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[cayugabirds-l] The saw whet that got away!

2020-11-19 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Hi,

I'm not on social media & stumbled on this 
 
randomly - if everyone already saw it, apologies for clogging you inboxes!

Have a good weekend & a safe holiday -

Alicia

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Re: [cayugabirds-l] LOON MIGRATION ALERT

2020-11-12 Thread Alicia Plotkin
East side of Seneca Lake in Ovid, was out from 7:30-7:40 and 7:50-8:45 
(maybe too late).  Saw the following:

7:30-7:40: 0
7:50-8:00: 5 in single group, a tad lower than expected but still 
migration height - moving very fast with the wind, a couple hundred 
yards inland of the shore
8:00-8:15: 1, same height/speed/track as the first 5
8:15-8:30: 1, very very high up, over center of lake, beating its wings 
hard & moving south to north - wouldn't have seen it with naked eye but 
was bored so looking at one of the resident eagles soaring high up & the 
loon crossed behind it as small blurry bird so focused on it & could 
make out characteristic torpedo shape & flight style
8:30-8:45: 0

Have been small numbers of loons on the lake here for the past week but 
none this morning when I got out.




On 11/12/2020 9:07 AM, Martha Fischer wrote:
> Are birds moving?
>
> Get Outlook for iOS 
> 
> *From:* bounce-125123331-3494...@list.cornell.edu 
>  on behalf of Bill Evans 
> 
> *Sent:* Wednesday, November 11, 2020 4:23:29 PM
> *To:* CAYUGABIRDS-L 
> *Subject:* [cayugabirds-l] LOON MIGRATION ALERT
>
> Folks, the conditions look excellent and such an opportunity doesn’t 
> happen every year, so plan your morning accordingly!
>
> Favorable forecast for observing a large loon flight tomorrow morning 
> (Nov 12):
>
> 1.We are in the window when big fall flights have been documented in 
> the past.
>
> 2.We’ve had southerly winds with no loon movement since Nov 3^rd (8 
> days) - the spring is loaded.
>
> 3.Weather forecast tomorrow is for NNW wind @ 7 mph - perfect for the 
> spring to unload.
>
> 4.Viewing conditions should be good – mostly cloudy with no lake 
> effect snow.
>
> 5.Temp ~43 F, so not brutally cold.
>
> Loons from current migratory aggregations on the Finger Lakes and 
> southern Lake Ontario are likely to embark for southbound passage as 
> early as 6:40 am. The main flight off Cayuga & Seneca Lake will mostly 
> vector down the lake basins and have passed on by 7:30 am.So places 
> like Stewart Park and Clute Park (Watkins Glen) should offer good 
> viewing. If you can get there in time, Taughannock State Park can be a 
> wonderful site to view the early flight down Cayuga.
>
> The peak of the flight off Lake Ontario will likely pass over 
> Ithaca/Watkins Glen latitudes between 7:45 and 8:30, with lesser 
> magnitude continuing thereafter. The densest flight vectors from Lake 
> Ontario have been noted in the past coursing down the east side of the 
> Seneca Lake Basin and the west side of the Cayuga Lake Basin, but the 
> flight off Lake Ontario can be seen to some degree from high terrain 
> anywhere in the southern Finger Lakes and Southern Tier counties of NY.
>
> If you have the opportunity to observe, please post your results here 
> and/or eBird including the location & time period you counted, 
> direction of flight, and the percentage of loons estimated to be 
> flying below 1000 feet/300 m above ground level.
>
> Best wishes!
>
> Bill Evans
>
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] First fall DE Junco 10/13/20

2020-10-13 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Also had at least one pair breeding here in Ovid - first breeding bird I 
entered in the BBA in fact, one was collecting & carrying nesting 
material. Later saw them with fledglings but never found the nest, 
although have found nests twice before.

Alicia



On 10/13/2020 1:01 PM, Linnea Garrepy wrote:
> I've had Juncos stay around and breed for the past three summers! The 
> first brood this year was Cowbirds but they tried again and fledged 
> DEJUs. Oh, and I live in Syracuse, albeit a hilly, wooded part of the 
> city.
>
> Lin
>
> 
> *From:* bounce-125033856-83680...@list.cornell.edu 
>  on behalf of John and 
> Fritzie Blizzard 
> *Sent:* Tuesday, October 13, 2020 4:41 PM
> *To:* Cayuga Birds 
> *Subject:* [cayugabirds-l] First fall DE Junco 10/13/20
> A lone junco was feeding on my window sill in Union Springs, NY today at
> 12:25 p.m.. Old-timers thought seeing the first juncos meant that was a
> sign of snow so called them Snowbirds. Is snow in the forecast??? We had
> a few sprinkles of rain this a.m. while praying for about 5 days of
> steady rain.
>
> Fritzie B.
>
> Union Springs
>
>
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] RHWO at Long Point

2020-07-04 Thread Alicia Plotkin
In 2011 many birders, including my husband & me, went over to the Aurora 
to see the nesting RH Woodpeckers at Paines Creek, easily visible and 
audible from Rte 90.  This is abt 1/2 mile north of Long Point.  A 
gentleman who said he lived in Aurora stopped to chat with my husband & 
me.  He seemed surprised by all the birders and said he had seen RH 
Woodpeckers in Aurora since he had moved there from Mississippi, where 
he said they were pretty common, abt 10 years before.  He also directed 
me to a second nest further north on Rte 90 - he said he met his kids 
there when the bus dropped them off from school so had noticed the nest 
tree while waiting, and he suspected these weren't the only two nests in 
and around the village but they were the only two he knew of that 
spring.  I went and easily found the second nest with his directions.


There is only a scattering of eBird reports for Aurora: 1972, 1990, 
1996, 2008, and 2011 (many). Yet in 2011 the gentleman from Mississippi, 
who seemed quite reliable (and definitely knew the difference between a 
Red-Bellied & Red_Headed Woodpecker) said they were there every year.  
Does anyone in Aurora enter RH Woodpeckers in eBird when they see them, 
or otherwise keep track of them?  Does anyone else regularly check out 
the Aurora area for them?


Just curious about whether they are usually absent or only usually 
absent from birding records.


Alicia



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[cayugabirds-l] Grasshopper Sparrows are around

2020-05-31 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Hi,

I think there are a lot more of these guys than people realize.  If you 
don't happen to know what a grasshopper sparrow sounds like, take a 
listen here 
 - it's 
pretty distinctive.  At least in Lodi, Ovid & Romulus, many of the 
fields that harbor bobolinks also have a grasshopper sparrow or two or 
three if you stop and listen.  They don't sing as continually as the 
bobolinks do, but they pipe up periodically and their song carries 
surprisingly well. Even the introductory very high tick notes often can 
be heard - higher and shorter than a Savannah Sparrow's - and the buzzy 
main part of the song is distinctive and clearly audible over a distance.

Grasshopper Sparrows have been annual residents on the western section 
of Combs Rd in Ovid and are back again this year, although later than 
usual.  They also are back on McCarriger Road and on Rte 131 just south 
of Willard Wildlife Management Area (also in Ovid), and may well be in 
WWMA as well, I haven't had time to check.  In years past they have been 
in the fields leading down to Lodi Point in Lodi, in fields on Hayt 
Corners Rd near Iron Bridge Road in Romulus, and other spots between 
Seneca and Cayuga Lakes including many of the grasslands in the National 
Forest, and likely on the east side of Cayuga Lake, too.

As you note birds the Breeding Bird Atlas, you miight want to keep an 
ear out. Grasshopper Sparrows are singing right now and since they are a 
good grassland indicator, it might be particularly useful later to have 
accurate entries for them now.

Plus it's fun to find them.

Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] OT: anyone want shed snake skin?

2020-05-26 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Our resident Rat Snake shed its skin today.  Usually the skin gets 
dinged up in the process, maybe losing the last foot of tail or tearing 
the belly midway, but today's skin is totally intact and also impressive 
- just shy of 7'.  Does anyone have a use for this at a nature center or 
in a classroom (I'm assuming classrooms will become a thing again) or 
anywhere else?  Happy to get it to anyone who would like it, if not, 
I'll put it out for the GC flycatcher who has been preeping territorial 
announcements for the last ten days & presumably can make good use of it.


Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] Sampson State Park uplands at lunchtime

2020-04-13 Thread Alicia Plotkin
On this blustery cloudy day with brief bursts of light rain, not a lot 
of birds out but a few each of several varieties of sparrow were 
singing: song, Savannah, field, and towhee.  Best parts of the walk were 
two tiny blue azure butterflies flitting in front of us and a long (5+ 
minute) look from less than 100 yds at a robustly healthy and 
lush-furred Gray Fox, who didn't see or smell us and was concentrating 
on something on the ground during that time.  Never saw one for that 
long before, and never saw one at all during midday.  (Definitely a grey 
fox and not red - tail black all the way down to the tip, distinctive 
facial pattern, grizzled above and only rusty red on belly/neck.)


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[cayugabirds-l] osprey nest south of Covert?

2020-04-01 Thread Alicia Plotkin
For the past two years, osprey have nested on a cell phone tower that is 
just south of the hamlet of Covert, on the east side of Rte 96.  When I 
looked earlier this year, the nest seemed to be missing but I didn't 
stop and check carefully until today.  There may be a few remnant 
sticks, I'm not sure, but certainly the main structure is gone.  A lone 
osprey was sitting on the tower, don't know if the mate also is back or 
if they will try to rebuild it.


Anyone know what happened to the nest?  Did it blow down (seems unlikely 
since it was well-nestled in the various girders) or was it removed?


Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] Nocternal sparrow behavior

2020-03-18 Thread Alicia Plotkin

Hi,

Last night about 1:00 am I was working at my computer in a somewhat 
dimly lit room - in addition to the monitor there was a single light on, 
about 15 feet from the window and directed downward.  I heard a 
scampering/skrittering noise on the roof,* sounded like maybe a tree 
branch had fallen and was tumbling down the slope, but it persisted, and 
then it started skittering and bumping against the large window I was 
facing.  Its fluttery flight against the window was bat-like, but when I 
turned off the monitor & the light and got out a flashlight, I found a 
song sparrow that had quieted and was perched just on the other side of 
the window, on the sill.  Pinned in the beam of the flashlight, it 
didn't move much, just turned its head and then shifted slightly.  It 
was not visibly injured.  I turned off the flashlight and waited a 
couple of minutes for it to leave, then turned the lights back on - it 
apparently was still on the window sill and commenced fluttering up and 
down against the window again.  At that point I gave up, turned the 
lights off, and went to sleep.


Apparently it was trying to get into a space that where it could see 
better, but why was it up and about at all?  Wouldn't it have done 
better just to hunker down somewhere?  (FWIW, the light that had been on 
was a Stella LED light which is supposed to mimic daylight wavelengths 
but, as noted, that light was across the room and pointed downward.)


Thanks for any insight you can give!

Alicia
* As I wrote this, it occurred to me that maybe the noise came not from 
anything on the roof but from the sparrow flying against the screen of 
the small high window just under the eaves, and that's why I heard it so 
clearly?  But at the time at least it sounded like something skittering 
down the roof.


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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Meadow lark

2020-01-21 Thread Alicia Plotkin
I assumed she meant Center Rd and not Center St, which is in the Town of 
Ovid, due east of the village. Try putting 2600 Center Road Ovid into 
Google & you'll get this intersection, which often has interesting birds 
- a Snowy Owl spent 4 mos there several years ago.

Alicia


On 1/21/2020 8:12 PM, marsha kardon wrote:
> What city is this in?
>
>
> On Mon, Jan 20, 2020 at 9:41 PM Whitings  > wrote:
>
> Hi All,
> Today I found a Meadow Lark on Center St. just east of Route 129.
> I noticed it’s silhouette in a shrubs and was able to make out
> some color besides the shape against the sun. Then it flew across
> the road landing low in the grass where I was able to get a couple
> very distant poor but identifying photos which are on ebird. I
> think it was an eastern variety, but not confident enough to make
> the call. Very quiet day otherwise.
>
> Diana
>
> dianawhitingphotography.com 
>
>
>
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[cayugabirds-l] Subj should be "Sampson SP Lake Trail mess!"

2019-09-03 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Apparently I was too angry to accurately identify where the Lake Trail 
is!  It starts at the south tip of Sampson SP.  To get there, you'd take 
the road that runs through the village of Willard and past the grounds 
of the old Williard Psych Center, now partly occupied by the shock 
incarceration camp.  Road bends north at Seneca Lake and ends at a 
parking lot for the trail.  The trail extends north along Seneca Lake 
from there for 1.5 miles. The trail is black topped - it used to be a 
road - and used regularly by walkers and bicyclists.  Until recently it 
was a good birding spot, too.

Alicia


On 9/3/2019 2:43 PM, Alicia wrote:
> Hi,
>
> I've been tied up with other responsibilities this year and haven't 
> been able to bird much but yesterday evening I was able to go out and 
> got past the 1/4 mile mark on the Lake Trail for the first time in 
> many months.  I was expecting to find some migrating warblers in the 
> brush & small shrub/trees east of the trail since this generally is a 
> great spot during migration.  But not any more!  It looks like someone 
> went in and clear cut a swath of 50' or more and then followed up with 
> generous application of herbicide, leaving no vegetation of any kind 
> in a wide band for much of the 1½ mile length of the trail - hideously 
> ugly and, so far as I can see, totally unnecessary in terms of 
> protecting power lines since nothing had been even remotely close to 
> line height.  (Plus this is less than 100' feet from the Seneca Lake 
> shore - wonder what effect the herbicide that was washed into the lake 
> had on the lake ecology?)  I think the actual bush remains where this 
> past spring's Yellow Throated Warbler was seen, but so much of the 
> surrounding area is devastated that the area certainly will be less 
> likely to attract it next year.  The cedars and taller trees further 
> back remain, but the brushy spots and smaller trees on the east side 
> of the trail are almost all gone now
>
> Does anyone know when this was done?  And if it was NYSEG or the NYS 
> Parks?  I'm equal parts heartbroken and furious.
>
> Alicia
>
> P.S.  The NYS Parks 2020 Plan has set as Goal 6, "Sustain New York's 
> Natural Environment" and goes on to say,
>
> As stewards of the 335,000 acres of parkland, a central part of
> State Parks’ mission is to protect its natural treasures,
> beautiful open spaces and diversity of plant and animal life.
> • Protecting natural resources.A variety of stewardship
> initiatives–in partnership with colleges, not-for-profits and
> volunteers–will include projects to prevent the spread of invasive
> species, protect rare plants and animals, plant trees and improve
> natural habitat at parks across the State.
>
> Really?!  By wiping out a prime re-fueling stop for migrating warblers??!!
>
>
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Re: No birds - Re: [cayugabirds-l] Tree swallow

2017-06-17 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Thank you for sending this - it is exactly my experience & my concern.  
I don't worry quite so much about migration, which can skip over us 
easily due to weather patterns.  In fact there was an odd weather 
pattern in late April that seemed to sling a lot of 'my' warblers up to 
the coast of Maine where the fallout was welcomed with delight and 
surprise.

However the lack of nesters anywhere but prime habitat is far more 
worrisome, especially without any readily identifiable weather event to 
explain it.  It's deeply concerning and I have wondered why no one is 
talking about it.  Thank you for bringing it up!

Alicia

P.S.  You left off hummingbirds, which are non-existent or in very low 
numbers for everyone I know, both folks with feeders and people like me 
whose plantings are tailored to their tastes. /I have not seen a single 
one in my yard yet. /This is hard to believe, our habitat is pretty 
prime: we live in a large clearing in the woods that is filled with 
wildflowers, additional hummingbird-favored plants we have added, plenty 
of water, trees with perfect forks for their nests (based on their past 
preference), and a neighbor who puts fresh nectar in her feeder every day.

On 6/17/2017 9:52 AM, Christopher T. Tessaglia-Hymes wrote:
> Everyone,
>
> Just pointing out the obvious here, but bird numbers in my immediate 
> area of Upstate NY are way down this year. I mean, /WAY/ down. John, 
> if you have full capacity of nesting Tree Swallows, it may be that the 
> sites you host are prime and being filled to capacity because they 
> /are/ the best locations. It sounds to me like the sub-par sites are 
> not being filled.
>
> Acoustically, birds are seriously lacking this year. Visually, birds 
> are lacking this year. Birding at the Hawthorn Orchard was a disaster, 
> yet there was food and everything was primed to receive birds. Regular 
> numbers of expected birds were hugely lacking. What happened to the 
> Tennessee Warblers and Blackpoll Warblers? I think I recorded 
> something like three Tennessee Warblers at most on one day at the 
> Hawthorn Orchard, then they were just done. Blackpoll Warblers…you 
> were lucky to see or hear a single bird this spring. Blackpoll 
> Warblers used to come through here in droves – just driving around, 
> you would pass singing Blackpoll Warbler after Blackpoll Warbler, 
> during their peak migration through this area. Remember? When all of 
> those Blackpoll Warblers came through, that marked the “end” of that 
> spring migration – the cleanup species – this simply didn’t happen.
>
> In overflow areas, where habitat may not be the best, or is sub-par, 
> and which normally fills in because the best habitats are already 
> taken by other birds, the birds simply are not there.
>
> Yellow Warblers, everywhere? Nope.
> Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, everywhere? Nope.
> Baltimore Orioles, everywhere? Nope.
> Red-eyed Vireos, everywhere? Nope.
> Chipping Sparrows, everywhere? Nope.
> Common birds absolutely everywhere? Nope.
>
> I’m just talking about the regular comings and goings of my own 
> personal activities of driving around, walking in and out of 
> buildings, coming and going from home, work, shopping, etc. I’m just 
> not seeing or hearing the abundance of birds that I’m used to seeing 
> or hearing. It just seems deadly quiet this year, if you look at the 
> whole picture – the gestalt of bird abundance this year.
>
> Sure, prime habitats may seem to have the “regular” volumes of birds, 
> but the sub-par habitats are seemingly empty.
>
> If there is not a rock solid explanation for this, then this is a red 
> flag in my opinion.
>
> Perhaps the most logical cause is weather-related.
>
> If this is not the case, then we’ve got something far more detrimental 
> going on, at least in the Northeast.
>
> Hope I’m wrong.
>
> Sincerely,
> Chris T-H
>
> On Jun 17, 2017, at 9:00 AM, k...@empacc.net  
> wrote:
>
> We have 17 boxes active, one with bluebirds, two with House Wren, a 
> one with chickadees and the remainder with Tree Swallows. Probably 
> another good year after a 100% occupancy/success rate last year. We 
> believe this is due to effective placement and predator guards that 
> function well. john
>
>
> ---
> John and Sue Gregoire
> Field Ornithologists
> Kestrel Haven Migration Observatory
> 5373 Fitzgerald Rd
> Burdett, NY 14818
> 42.443508000, -76.758202000
>
> On 2017-06-17 12:40, Glenn Wilson wrote:
>
>> We usually have a dozen or so flying and nesting until mid summer. I 
>> haven't seen a single one since early swallow migration.
>>
>> Glenn Wilson
>> Endicott, NY
>> www.WilsonsWarbler.com 
>>
>> On Jun 17, 2017, at 8:34 AM, John and Fritzie Blizzard 
>> > wrote:
>>
>> We've had one nesting pr. with 5 young expected to fledge in 11 days. 
>> Usually have at least 3 pr. with many others flying about. Not so 
>> this yr.. Same with 

Re: [cayugabirds-l] N. Parula??? [was Prairie Warbler???]

2017-04-21 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Was wondering where these lucky folks were birding?  No Parula's are 
showing up in eBird in NYS except for a posting from Sullivan County, 
haven't seen anything posted to this list, either.  An eBird listing 
might require moderator approval but would hope that was happening 
quickly this time of year, when arrival times are so variable and many 
exceptions occur.

Alicia


On 4/20/2017 11:05 AM, Kevin J. McGowan wrote:
>
> A number of people had Northern Parula today, so consider that, too.
>
> Kevin
>
> *From:* bounce-121451829-3493...@list.cornell.edu 
> [mailto:bounce-121451829-3493...@list.cornell.edu] *On Behalf Of *Geo 
> Kloppel
> *Sent:* Thursday, April 20, 2017 10:52 AM
> *To:* Karen Steffy ; CAYUGABIRDS-L 
> 
> *Subject:* Re: [cayugabirds-l] Prairie Warbler???
>
> Hi Karen,
>
> Field Sparrow can give that impression, because its song too is 
> delivered in /accelerando, /sometimes even with a slight rise in 
> pitch. If you have the Audubon Birds app, you can compare Track #3 for 
> both species to see what I mean.
>
> -Geo
>
> Sent from my iPhone
>
>
> On Apr 20, 2017, at 10:13 AM, Karen Steffy  > wrote:
>
> I heard the ascending sound of what I think is a prairie warbler
> this morning, but it seems early.  Is there a bird that has a
> similar song to a prairie warbler?
>
> /Karen/
>
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Important Lyme Disease info!

2017-03-26 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Apparently anaplasmosis also has made its way to central NY.  Our dog 
became extremely ill and nearly died last November.  Her symptoms were 
odd and it wasn't clear what the cause of her problems were until the 
test for anaplasmosis came back positive.  She already was somewhat on 
the mend by the time she was diagnosed, but a 21 day cycle of 
doxycycline hastened her recovery.

Alicia


On 3/26/2017 12:06 PM, Betsy Darlington wrote:
> This article is really important for all us outdoor lovers!
> Betsy
>
> http://www.mvtimes.com/2016/07/13/visiting-physician-sheds-new-light-lyme-disease/
>  
> 
> Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android 
> 
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[cayugabirds-l] Mockingbird mocking

2017-03-19 Thread Alicia Plotkin
We went to Sampson State Park again today where we heard a mockingbird 
singing a full repertoire of songs from apparently across the large 
field judging by the quality of the sound and the volume.  Except then I 
saw the bird, only about 50' away - he was singing in a full but very 
quiet voice, running through a couple of dozen songs with the same 
dexterity that he will showing regularly in a few weeks, except somehow 
dialing the volume way down while not changing the quality of the 
sound.  Perhaps warming up for the first day of spring tomorrow?


Cardinals, titmice, chickadees, robins & mourning doves also singing in 
the warmth of the full sun, but they weren't holding back.


Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] Eagles and Snow Geese

2017-03-17 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Beautiful day to be outside!  We took our dog for a walk at Sampson 
State Park this afternoon and as we were walking on the road that leads 
to the gate on the north end, where the private housing abuts the park, 
we saw hundreds of Snow Geese flying just above the lake from north to 
south.  We watched a continuous stream go past that 'window' over the 
gate for over a minute.  The flight was underway when we rounded the 
slight bend so have no idea how many total.   We also could hear them 
barking to west and it sounded like perhaps they had landed on Seneca 
Lake but the lake isn't visible from the road there.


Also at that spot at the north end of the park we saw a pair of Bald 
Eagles soaring together, first fairly low but gradually spiraling higher 
& higher until they were high enough that their white heads and tails 
could not be seen except with binoculars and they were hard to see at 
certain angles even if you knew where to look. Anyone know where there 
is a nest near there?


Back in Ovid, we still have one each Fox Sparrow (down from two), Am 
Tree Sparrow, and White Throated Sparrow, along with the usual feeder 
birds and occasional sorties by various black birds.


Alicia

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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Seneca Falls birds: Snowy Owl and four swan species

2017-01-07 Thread Alicia Plotkin
  We lived in Seneca Falls from 1985-1995 and during at least part 
of that time, there was a pair of black swans on a pond that I think 
belonged to the Lotts - at any rate, near the intersection of 414 and 
County House Road.

  I watched one Snowy Owl at the Lott Farm from 12:45 to 2:15 pm 
Friday.  It flew 7 times during that period, using 5 different perches, 
twice landing on the highest part of the silo structure. At one point it 
sailed out from the silo top and flew for over two minutes, making a 
large loop over the field on the south side of Airport Road and coursing 
back and forth over it a few times from quite high up, before returning 
to the silo area.  It spent the longest time (over 30 minutes) on an 
electric pole at the north end of the fairgrounds area.  Several people 
have posted photos of this bird on eBird from Friday.  Mr. Lott said 
there were 3 owls on the farm Friday morning, including one 'in the back 
field' (he gestured to the far north) but the one I saw was flying 
around at that moment and I just followed its movements & didn't look 
for any others.

 Alicia





On 1/7/2017 6:57 PM, Kevin J. McGowan wrote:
>
> I went to Seneca Falls today, as did a number of other birders, 
> looking for Snowy Owls and hoping for Gyrfalcon. So far as I know, no 
> one has refound the Gyrfalcon seen on Thursday.
>
> I managed to find only one Snowy Owl today. It was a sparsely-marked 
> individual with deep blackish markings and plenty of bars in the tail. 
> Adult female? It was perched on the highest possible perch to oversee 
> the area, on the top of a grain elevator complex west of Rt 414, near 
> the windmill, west of Lott Farm fairgrounds and well west of the airport.
>
>
> I heard that a Snowy was seen east of the Finger Lakes Regional 
> Airport runways at some point, but I didn't see it. Best birds I had 
> during several loops around the airport were a male Northern Harrier 
> on Thorpe Road, and at least one Lapland Longspur in a Horned Lark 
> flock I was told about on Hoster Rd south of Stahl Rd in a manure spread.
>
>
> There was open water along the southern end of Lower Lake Road SE of 
> Seneca Falls on Cayuga Lake, and there were lots of swan there. Most 
> were Tundra Swans, of course, but I was quite surprised to see a pair 
> of BLACK SWANS swimming off the ice edge at the far southern end of 
> the road. They're kind of unmistakable, being huge waterbirds with 
> long, gracefully curving necks, red bills, and all black body plumage. 
> But, seeing as how they are native to Australia, there is zero chance 
> they were wild vagrants. They're popular in captivity, and I don't 
> know of any established feral populations around. I looked for, but 
> did not see, their white wingtips (all swans have white wingtips; the 
> only non-domestic waterfowl that do, with one half of an exception), 
> so I can't say if they were free-flying or wing-clipped. Totally cool, 
> though. Their presence, along with the couple of thousand Tundra Swans 
> made me want to find Mute and Trumpeter swans too to get my very first 
> 4-swan day. I wasn't doing a great job of parsing the waterfowl, but 
> fortunately I talked to my son, Jay, and his birding group, and they 
> had in fact seen some Mute Swans and a single wing-tagged Trumpeter 
> along the road. With their tip, I found a pair of Mutes and the 
> wing-tagged juvenile Trumpeter to complete my four swan day. I don't 
> know when to ever expect that to happen again!
>
>
> Just for the record, I do keep track of the free-flying exotic birds I 
> see (including in the Basin, Bar-headed Goose, Egyptian Goose, 
> Red-crested Pochard, and Eurasian Goldfinch). Fortunately, so does 
> eBird! I won't count Black Swan on my year Basin list, but I do want 
> to know when and where I saw it. Some of these exotics actually get 
> established and become "countable" birds. I like to know where I first 
> saw things like Monk Parakeet (Yellow Springs, Ohio) and Eurasian 
> Collared-Dove (Marathon Key, Florida).
>
>
> Happy birding new year.
>
>
> Kevin
>
>
> Kevin McGowan
>
> Ithaca
>
>
>
>
> 
> *From:* bounce-121130380-3493...@list.cornell.edu 
>  on behalf of Marty 
> Schlabach 
> *Sent:* Saturday, January 7, 2017 6:28 PM
> *To:* Laura Stenzler; CAYUGABIRDS-L
> *Subject:* RE:[cayugabirds-l] Snowy at Lott farm
> I forgot to mention that the reason we were in the area was to stop at 
> Hoover's kitchen cabinet shop, across the road from the airport.  In 
> conversation with the cabinetmaker, I asked if he had seen a snowy owl 
> in the area.  He looked sort of surprised, and then realized that's 
> why all the cars were driving slowly around the area.  He saw people 
> with binoculars, but he said he thought they were coyote hunters.  It 
> didn't seem right to him, since coyote hunters 

Re: [cayugabirds-l] Western tanager still here

2016-03-18 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Thanks to Liisa, at 10:25 this morning I was able to spot him in the two 
smallish trees just west of the benches in Wee Stinky Glen.  He was 
eating some of the dessicated fruit in one tree (crab apple?), then went 
down to the water to get a drink, then flew back up and spent quite 
awhile in the tree with small yellow flowers (cornellian cherry?) 
preening and sunning himself.  When he isn't moving, he can be 
surprisingly hard to spot - only his breast is brightly colored - but he 
is completely lovely!


Thanks also to Vanessa Ng who posted such a great description of the 
pattern of his movements a week or two ago - he must have read her post, 
he followed it to a 'T'.


Alicia

On 3/17/2016 12:50 PM, Liisa S. Mobley wrote:

At 10:15 am, the bird was sitting in the little tree in the courtyard by the 
back entrance to the Cornell store, in the sunshine.  I seem to find him most 
often in sunny areas; I don't know if he's just easier to spot, as the yellow 
feathers glow more brightly, or if he likes to sun himself.
-Liisa




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[cayugabirds-l] Chartering the MV Haendel - no actual birding content ...

2015-11-17 Thread Alicia Plotkin
(1) A group of birders chartered the Haendel awhile ago - maybe 10 yrs 
ago? - for some mid-lake birding, and & then reported back to this 
list.  Any of the folks who did that still on the list?

(2) I am on the board of The Floating Classroom 
,
 
which uses the Haendel to get kids out on the lake to see what that's 
like and to do science like measuring and tracking water transparency & 
temperature, invertebrate sampling, etc.  (It was an FC intern who first 
found and identified hydrilla in Cayuga Lake a couple years ago.)  I 
checked with our ED to see if charters still are available and he 
explained that the Haendel normally carries insurance only through 
October, as it did this year.  So while I think it might still be on the 
water, it isn't available for commercial use now.  However he thought it 
might be possible to set something up for a November charter in the 
future, it just would need to be discussed earlier in the season with 
the Ithaca Boat Tour owner so that she could arrange for continuing 
insurance - and of course the charter price would have to make it 
worthwhile for her to pay for that extended insurance.  The Haendel is 
certified to carry up to 38 passengers.

BTW, in addition to getting kids access to the lake on the Haendel, the 
Floating Classroom also runs Trout in the Classroom for elementary 
school classrooms.  This is another neat program that gets kids involved 
with the outdoors and introduces some basic ecological concepts - they 
spend the year feeding, caring for, and watching a large tank of trout 
fry get big enough to release.  In the process they learn about the 
trouts' requirements to thrive. The students choose a stream that can 
support the young trout and release them there in the spring.  If anyone 
is interested in contributing to FC programming, serving on our board or 
an advisory committee, or finding out more, please let me know & I can 
get you that info or put you in touch with someone who can.

Alicia

P.S.  Just saw Meena's post - am pretty sure it was the Haendel she 
chartered & her trip is what I am remembering ...


On 11/17/2015 3:55 PM, Christopher T. Tessaglia-Hymes wrote:
> I did approach them just this fall with this very question. Issue is 
> they remove their vessel from the Inlet for the winter in the first 
> week of November. Sometime, in the near future, the lake water levels 
> are lowered and no deep-hulled vessels can traverse the Cayuga Inlet. 
> Plus, the unpredictability of icing in area waterways or harbors, the 
> additional cost of keeping a vessel operationally winterized, and the 
> relatively low likelihood of tourist usage during the winter months, 
> makes it economically unfeasible to keep open for the winter.
>
> If there were enough interested persons to go out in late October, the 
> cost per person for a group of 10-15 would amount to something like 
> $75 per person for a chartered 8-hour day – those numbers are probably 
> off a bit, but it was something like that.
>
> I can see a very specialized charter after the passage of a very 
> uniquely situated hurricane or tropical storm; but it would have to 
> occur prior to them pulling the vessel from the water.
>
> Sincerely,
> Chris T-H
>
> On Nov 17, 2015, at 3:11 PM, Geo Kloppel  wrote:
>
>> A few weeks ago I dropped  some friends off at the dock for an Ithaca 
>> Boat Tour on the HAENDEL. I hadn't previously been up close to that 
>> steel-hulled vessel. It reminded me of the old LAKE DIVER IV over on 
>> Seneca Lake, which used to take research parties out weekly in all 
>> kinds of winter conditions. Pretty frigid sometimes (though there was 
>> a good-sized heated cabin)! Seeing the HAENDEL made we wonder if 
>> anyone has ever approached Ithaca Boat Tours about a winter birding 
>> charter?
>>
>> -Geo
>



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[cayugabirds-l] In lobbying, the medium actually is the message!

2015-07-12 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Mr. Steckler is correct.  I was told the same thing by both a 
congressional aide and a state agency staffer, namely that contact from 
citizens has impact increasingly in the following order:

  * electronic petitions carry the least weight
  * followed by form emails
  * followed by individually-drafted emails
  * followed by phone calls
  * but best of all is an old fashioned letter faxed or sent through the
mail

I had though a phone call would count less than a thoughtful email, but 
both people told me that wasn't true - they mostly just count the yea's 
 nays and the medium is what matters!

Alicia



On 7/12/2015 6:36 PM, Carl Steckler wrote:
 I would like to chime in here. Dave your info and perspective are 
 right on. The problem I have is having everyone relying so heavily on 
 a petition.

 Having given comment , all be it about Wolves, to both DEC and FWS on 
 several occasions concerning de-listing or changing status of wildlife 
 I have learned that petitions do not carry as much weight as you would 
 think.
  After talking to several FWS agents and hearing their comments 
 concerning petitions I have come to the conclusion that a letter 
 directly to the agency, clearly marked as comment  about the change of 
 protection to the Golden-cheeked Warbler will do much more than a 
 petition. Both the people from DEC and FWS have told me that petitions 
 do not carry much weight because there is little thought and effort to 
 sign a petition, it is too easy and anyone can do it without really 
 knowing the issues. I have also heard this statement from several 
 prominent wildlife biologists.

 Even a short letter outlining why you believe that a change is either 
 warranted or not warranted with sound biological reasons, and 
 certainly loss of habitat certainly qualifies as a sound biological 
 reason, means a lot more to those reviewing the issue. If FWS suddenly 
 started receiving dozens of letters commenting about this issue they 
 will be more motivated to look at the situation a lot closer before 
 making a decision.

 Is it worth you buying a stamp and spending a few minutes writing a 
 letter? You bet it is. In these days of electronic mail and web based 
 petitions a letter still carries a lot more weight. So sit down and 
 wright please.
 Carl Steckler

 On 7/12/2015 13:46, Sandy Wold wrote:
 ... for your eloquent synopsis of the Golden-cheeked Warbler 
 conservation status, educating and updating us, modeling a graceful 
 (also fair and balanced) assessment of a potentially controversial 
 issue, modelling how to acknowledge the contribution of all parties 
 concerned, and (finally) sharing your personal conclusion (absent of 
 any arm-twisting).  You not only saved some of us a lot of time, but 
 I am now personally motivated to read more about this!
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Old Birds/New Birds

2015-05-06 Thread Alicia Plotkin
The only choice they have at our feeders this time of year is sunflower 
seeds, a combination of shelled kernals and black oil in the shell.  It 
seems to attract all the birds that eats seed, including birds that 
typically like nyjer seed.


Alicia



On 5/6/2015 3:42 PM, Melanie Uhlir wrote:

What do Indigo Buntings eat at a feeder? I will buy LOTS of it!

On 5/6/2015 2:35 PM, Alicia Plotkin wrote:

Nothing borrowed but something definitely blue: brilliant male Indigo
Bunting is sharing our feeders with four Pine Siskins.  Weird year.

Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] Old Birds/New Birds

2015-05-06 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Nothing borrowed but something definitely blue: brilliant male Indigo 
Bunting is sharing our feeders with four Pine Siskins.  Weird year.


Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] Bonaparte's Gulls, Varick

2015-04-20 Thread Alicia Plotkin
As of 12:30 pm today, there were abundant Bonaparte's Gulls flying in 
streams up and down the lake off E. Varick, in the same area as 
described in yesterday's emails.  The lake was choppy and white capped, 
the light was very bright and flashing off the waves, and I have no idea 
if any Little Gulls might have been lurking among the scores of swooping 
and banking Bonaparte gulls.  While I was there the flock headed off to 
the north, still flying close to the water. No way to tell if they were 
exploring other nearby spots and might return or if they were intending 
to move on.

Also along that stretch of Rte 89: about 15 snow geese in the narrow 
strip of grass between the road and the lake at the pull off at 4590, 
and several groups of from 2-8 Horned Grebes scattered, close to shore, 
from that point to about a mile south of there.

Beautiful day, even if the bright light reflecting off the water could 
make looking at lake birds harder.

Alicia


On 4/19/2015 1:43 PM, Jay McGowan wrote:

 At least two of 3+ LITTLE GULLS of various ages found by Tim Lenz an 
 hour ago still present in Varick, on water across from 4590 Rt. 89.

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[cayugabirds-l] Fwd: Please Consider Assisting with the Rusty Blackbird Blitz

2015-04-01 Thread Alicia Plotkin
This is forwarded from another state bird list, but maybe some people on 
Cayuga Birds might appreciate the reminder if they are going to be out 
and about birding tomorrow?

Alicia


 Forwarded Message 

To help conserve this elusive and vulnerable songbird, consider 
participating in The Rusty Blackbird Spring Migration Blitz. The Blitz 
collects its data through eBird checklists, so if you're already an 
eBird user, there's only another step or two to really help out this 
program. Essentially, just bird as you normally do and search especially 
carefully for Rusty Blackbirds, and report your results to eBird under 
the “Rusty Blackbird Spring Migration Blitz” survey type (as opposed to 
traveling, stationary, etc.). If you can, to go a bit further, please 
consider visiting one of the Rusty Blackbird Areas of Interest (visit 
our interactive map at 
http://rustyblackbird.org/outreach/migration-blitz/2015-areas-of-interest/) 
to help us assess consistency of migratory timing and habitat use during 
spring migration.

For more information on Blitz objectives, along with Rusty Blackbird 
identification tips, data collection instructions, and data reporting 
information, you can find additional resources at 
http://rustyblackbird.org/outreach/migration-blitz/.The project's 
coordinator, Judith Scarl, also wrote a great piece on the ABA Blog, 
which is worth a read: 
http://blog.aba.org/2015/03/open-mic-battling-bye-bye-blackbird-conserving-a-declining-species.html.

Happy spring!

Bangor, ME




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[cayugabirds-l] multitudes of snow geese, Town of Covert

2015-03-25 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Tried to send this as soon as I got home, but just found a message from 
Lyris saying it had bounced because the original subject line referred 
to South Seneca County and Lyris said that sounded like spam for a 
vacation home rental!  So blame Lyris for it being send so late ...




On my way home from work today, about 6:15, by far the most common birds 
seen in the Town of Covert were many thousands of snow geese, carpeting 
the majority of fields adjacent to Route 96, as well as the fields next 
to Halls Corners Road west of there, and flying low overhead in swirling 
and disorganized groups everywhere.  Maybe 10% as many Canada Geese.  In 
a few fields there also were large flocks of ducks, all Mallards that I 
saw but I didn't check that many, and also did not have a scope.


Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] Ovid Siskins and White-Crowned Sparrows

2015-02-14 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Yesterday we had our first pine siskins, two females, and today we had a 
male and female, on our nyger feeder.  We also continue to have one or 
two redpolls on the same feeder most days and the female flicker 
continues at the suet as do(es) a carolina wren or wrens - usually we 
have two but have not seen more than one at a time or heard the female 
singing this winter.  The wrens are tough and will drive away 
everything, including blue jays, starlings, and downy/hairy/red-bellied 
woodpeckers, but give way to the flicker. Two white throated sparrows 
and a half dozen tree sparrows are among the usual suspects eating 
sunflower seed.  We are in the woods on the far west side of the township.


A friend who isn't on this list reports he's been hosting a half-dozen 
white crowned sparrows eating sunflower seed the last several days, and 
also has about 30 tree sparrows who have been there all month.  He lives 
on a farm a bit southwest of the village of Ovid.


Stay warm -

Alicia

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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Redpoll !

2015-01-30 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Also here in Ovid.  Hard to tell for sure how many redpolls, but at 
least two different males and one female in the swirl of goldfinch, 
house finch  juncos at the feeders.  First ones since January 2013.


Alicia



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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Waterfowl hunting regulation

2015-01-08 Thread Alicia Plotkin
In 2005 the Ithaca City Court ruled that only the State of New York can 
regulations activities in or on Cayuga Lake because the State has 
retained  its rights to regulate the lake.  The court cited a Court of 
Appeals case that ruled on jurisdiction over activity in Canandaigua 
Lake.  (The Court of Appeals is the highest court in NYS.)  So the 
courts already have looked at the question of jurisdiction over the lake 
and ruled against the application of an ordinance enacted by 
municipalities or authorities to anything happening in or on Cayuga 
Lake.  The City Court ruling was in the context of an off leash dog 
swimming in the south end of the lake, and the court threw out the case 
against the dog owner, saying the leash law didn't apply in Cayuga Lake 
because the State has no leash law.  The same logic would apply to the 
City's firearm ordinance if someone tried to ticket or arrest a hunter 
working in or on the lake.


Alicia



On 1/8/2015 8:13 AM, Geo Kloppel wrote:

I guess the courts have the final say on the validity of Ithaca's ordinance. Concern 
about the cost and risks associated with jurisdictional disputes may be explanation 
enough for the lack of enforcement heretofore. But if the city begins to enforce its 
No Hunting ordinance, then DEC will have to decide whether to accept the 
situation or challenge it.

I wonder if there's a patch for this conflict available under ECL 11-0321, which 
authorizes DEC to set up Restricted Areas for a variety of purposes, 
including protection of public health and safety. Kayaked disrupting the hunt could pose 
a public safety concern...

-Geo



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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Impacts of approved casino at Tyre:OT?

2014-12-21 Thread Alicia Plotkin
The casino is likely to be the anchor for other major development in the 
immediate area.  One $100,000,000 project already has been presented to 
the Planning Board, to be located a little further west on Rte 318, and 
proposing hundreds of thousands of sq feet of retail  commercial 
space on a 155 acre parcel.  Last week NYS gave Seneca County a $750,000 
grant to put in a sewer system along Rte 318, extending up to the 
Premium Outlets site, removing one major hurdle to further development.

Alicia


On 12/21/2014 12:32 PM, Kimberly Sucy wrote:
 The CasiNO Tyre web site ( http://www.casinofreetyre.com ) points out 
 the risk of runoff from the parking areas into White Brook as a cause 
 for concern.   It's a good site (discounting the obvious bias towards 
 one side of the issue which one would expect from the site name!).

 -kimberly


 On Dec 21, 2014, at 12:09 PM, Dave Nutter wrote:

 I think the location will be convenient for travelers on the Thruway 
 by being immediately on the north side of the interchange of I-90  
 NYS-414, near Magee at the west edge of the Town of Tyre. I would 
 expect additional traffic on NYS-414, NYS-318, to the east 
 NYS-5/US-20, to the northeast maybe on NYS-31, and to the south on 
 NYS-96A, NYS-96, and NYS-89. My hope is that the other roads around 
 the Montezuma Wetlands Complex and the north Cayuga Lake Basin will 
 not see much impact because they do not efficiently serve Magee or 
 any large population center. Of course workers to build and run the 
 complex have to come from somewhere, so expect a general local 
 increase. We might be okay for traffic as long as there are no new 
 roads or road straightenings or road expansions. Maybe it'll be a 
 flop, since casinos elsewhere are failing, and after construction 
 we'll see very little traffic. Maybe the light pollution will be 
 limited to the interchange area. About 2 miles west of the 
 interchange on the north side of the Thruway is a large pond/swamp 
 full of dead trees with a major heronry, and herons and egrets 
 commuting between here and the Montezuma Wetlands Complex may overfly 
 the the casino site. Please chime in if you see other problems or 
 think I've got it wrong. I only saw one map of the proposal awhile 
 ago, and it was hard to track down.
 --Dave Nutter

 On Dec 19, 2014, at 12:10 PM, Betsy Darlington 
 darlingtonb...@gmail.com mailto:darlingtonb...@gmail.com wrote:

 And not just the light pollution!  It's a massive project.
 Betsy

 On Fri, Dec 19, 2014 at 7:48 AM, Karen Edelstein k...@cornell.edu 
 mailto:k...@cornell.eduwrote:

 My advance apologies if this question is outside of list bounds
 (please weigh in, Chris). I am wondering if there are concerns
 about the light pollution from the gigantic casino facility just
 approved for Tyre, and the impacts this gaming development may
 generate at Montezuma NWR. When this project was first proposed,
 I asked Tom Jasikoff if a study would be done, but never heard back.

 Thanks for your thoughts. Please email me off- list if Chris
 says this is not ok too discuss here.

 Karen

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[cayugabirds-l] Wake of vultures?

2014-09-10 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Heading north on Rt 414 this morning at 7:30 AM, about 2 miles north of 
the 96/96A intersection in Ovid, at least 30 Turkey Vultures were 
scattered around the ground in a field that appeared to have had hay cut 
recently (maybe yesterday judging by the dark green color) and gathered 
into long parallel heaps.  I couldn't stop to observe carefully, but 
they seemed mostly to have their heads up (not eating on the ground) and 
no two were together.  Any idea what was up with them?  Seems like a 
heck of a lot of birds for the odd vole or bunny that would have been 
killed in the haying process.

Alicia


On 9/10/2014 11:47 AM, Nancy wrote:
 Yes, these are fields of harvested grains-oats, wheat and rye I 
 believe. So short enough for the mallards to be gleaning leftover grain.

 Cayuga Dog Rescue has saved more than 450 dogs since 2005!
 Learn more at cayugadogrescue.org http://cayugadogrescue.org


 Sent from my iPad

 On Sep 10, 2014, at 9:10 AM, Jody W Enck j...@cornell.edu 
 mailto:j...@cornell.edu wrote:

 Hi Nancy,
 Thanks for the post about flocks of mallards in farm fields.  It 
 brought back fond memories of growing up on our farm in south-central 
 PA.  Sometimes mixed flocks of dabbling ducks would land to feed in 
 our harvested small grain fields (wheat, barley, oats) in late 
 summer, but they seemed especially attracted later in the fall and 
 early winter to the harvested corn fields.  They would come and go at 
 different times of day, but I have wonderful memories of lots and 
 lots of birds coming into those fields between sunset and dark.  Much 
 fun!

 Thanks for the memories.
 Jody

 Jody W. Enck, PhD
 Program Development and Evaluation
 Cornell Lab of Ornithology

 *From:* Nancy mailto:nancycusuman...@gmail.com
 *Sent:* ‎Wednesday‎, ‎September‎ ‎10‎, ‎2014 ‎8‎:‎58‎ ‎AM
 *To:* CAYUGABIRDS-L mailto:cayugabird...@list.cornell.edu

 There have been flocks of a couple hundred mallards in the ag fields 
 around our house lately. Is it unusual to see them in such great 
 numbers on land? They have been in the field at the corner of Perry 
 City and Dubois rds, and also in the field next to our home at 5011 
 Dubois. Along with lots of geese...

 Nancy Cusumano

 Cayuga Dog Rescue has saved more than 475 dogs since 2005!
 Learn more at cayugadogrescue.org http://cayugadogrescue.org


 Sent from my iPad
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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Suing over Bald Eagle deaths (explanation, perilously close to off-topic ...)

2014-08-15 Thread Alicia Plotkin
This is a fascinating article and I hope everyone reads beyond the 
headline if they click through to it.  Money is indeed at the heart of 
it, but the groups suing aren't making any money except to get the costs 
for bringing the lawsuit reimbursed - /the money here is what the 
industry claims is the cost of complying with the regulation that the 
lawsuits compel./  The lawsuits are forcing the Environmental Protection 
Agency and other federal agencies to enact regulations and industry is 
saying these regulations (decreasing particulate mercury in the first 
example) cost a lot.

The headline reflects the source: the Center for Policy Analysis openly 
admits its goal is to eliminate government regulations - see its 
homepage - believing they interfere with a free market. The free market 
was seriously interfered with when DDT was banned, so it's particularly 
apt to raise eagles in this context!

Money certainly is at the heart of this: the money that industry resents 
having to spend to clean up its act, and the lack of money in the 
regulatory agencies.  The EPA, for example, had its budget slashed by 
the Bush Administration and then, before those cuts were made up, faced 
additional cuts due to budget sequestration - no one talks about 
sequestration anymore but those annual cuts continue for most parts of 
the government!  Many federal agencies have been finding it increasingly 
difficult to meet deadlines imposed by statute because they are 
underfunded.  That's the heart of this issue: if the agencies had the 
resources to do their jobs, there would be no basis for these lawsuits 
and there would be no resulting 'rushed' regulations./'Sue  settle' 
certainly is not the best way to get regulations promulgated, but until 
these agencies are properly funded, it may be the only way - which the 
Center for Policy Analysis well understands and as a think tank founded 
to eliminate regulation, that is why it is so riled up!/

I realize that this post is not centered on birds, but birders should be 
aware that the EPA is so underfunded that it cannot possibly do its job, 
and that _does_ impact birds. Sequestration did not help US Fish  
Wildlife, either, which manages Montezuma: at least initially USFW had 
to absorb $127 million in annual cuts due to the sequester - including 
substantial cuts to visitor services and more modest ones to new 
construction. (Don't know the current impact, there's a limit to how 
long I am willing to search through the annual Greenbooks  budget 
announcements!)

Best -

Alicia



On 8/15/2014 7:30 AM, John and Sue Gregoire wrote:
 http://www.ncpa.org/pdfs/bg174.pdf

 This is fascinating.   It now explains to me why the ABC is suing the U.S. 
 gov't
 over bald eagle deaths.  Like everything about this subject, it's about the 
 money.



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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Support NW Refuges

2014-08-05 Thread Alicia Plotkin
This might just be an Ithaca policy.  We get one every year  haven't 
done that yet for 2014-15, but at least as of last year we always were 
able to pick it up at our local post office in Ovid.

Best -

 Alicia

On 8/5/2014 12:31 PM, Melissa Groo wrote:
 FYI, the Duck Stamp is only available at the Warren Rd post office in 
 the Ithaca area, I bought mine there a couple weeks ago when the new 
 one first became available (after going to the downtown p.o. which 
 didn't have it). You can also order it via the American Birding 
 Association (even if you're not a member), which is a nice way to make 
 your purchase count as a birder. Go here: http://aba.org/stamp/
 I agree that we need to help support our wildlife refuges and make 
 them as inviting as we can to as many people as we can.
 Melissa


 On Tue, Aug 5, 2014 at 10:08 AM, Donna Scott dls...@me.com 
 mailto:dls...@me.com wrote:

 Have all you birders considered buying a duck stamp to help Pay
 for all these wildlife refuges we use  enjoy?

 I just bought mine at the US Post Office for $15. It has a
 beautiful painting of Canvasbacks.
 Yep, hunters go there too, but if we want large habitats like this
 to be preserved  maintained, we millions of birders could really
 add a lot of support.

 PS: I agree with Kevin and others on the  educational value of
 helping people to learn about birds by having pedestrians allowed
 in some format at MNWR.

 Sent from my iPhone
 Donna Scott
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[cayugabirds-l] YB Chat in FL National Forest

2014-07-11 Thread Alicia Plotkin

Hi,

This was a life bird for me so I came home to do some checking 
before posting.  At 2:30 PM today I saw a yellow-breasted chat next to 
the Ravine Trail in the FL National Forest in Hector.  The bird was 
first near the short wooden stairs that are just northeast of the turn 
around point on the loop.  I was enjoying watching a RB Nuthatch when a 
strange cacophony started just up behind me, mixing sounds like a 
playground whistle, a blue jay's call, and the way a crow might laugh if 
a crow had a higher voice and was capable of laughter.  I turned and saw 
a smallish bird flitting in a hemlock tree about 10 feet away and got on 
it with binoculars.  It was bigger than a solitary vireo, which was my 
first thought as I glimpsed the spectacles, although never thought a 
solitary vireo was making those sounds and assumed I was on the wrong 
bird, but then it sang.  Was somewhat backlit making exact colors hard 
to see, but had clear white spectacles, dark back  long slim tail, 
lighter colored beneath, no wing bars.  It moved around and briefly 
fickered through better light, which gave an impression of a yellowish 
breast, but I never got a clear look  can't say I got the full effect 
of a brilliant yellow breast.  However, having now compared the sounds 
it was making with those online, and noting the size, bold spectacles, 
and long thin tale, I am very confident of the identification.  When I 
saw the bird it was moving around in the hemlocks and small trees, 
moving gradually north.  It sang pretty consistently for 2-3 minutes, 
then fell silent until several minutes later it sang from further north 
and I found it again about a tenth of a mile further up the trail, still 
on the same side of the little creek.


 If you go, there also were  at least three hermit thrushes, two BT 
green warblers, a pair of scarlet tanagers, and ovenbirds (this trail is 
extremely reliable for these four species in spring  summer), plus a N. 
waterthrush, all singing at midday; among other common woodland birds 
like juncos  chickadees and both nuthatches.


   Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] OOB Red-Headed Woodpecker in Ovid

2014-06-29 Thread Alicia Plotkin
For the second time in 20 years, we had a brief visit from an adult RH 
woodpecker this morning.  The first time, which was at least 15 yrs ago, 
one stopped in for a quick bite at our sunflower seed feeder in early 
spring.  This morning's bird snacked on ripe cherries.  (The tree has 
small sweet cherries that draw a multitude of birds for a week or ten 
days each spring, including lots of woodpeckers.)  Since at least this 
past Friday, red-bellied woodpeckers and downy woodpeckers have been 
flying into the tree with fledglings and feeding them, but the RH 
woodpecker was unaccompanied by young.


Alicia, on the west side of Ovid

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RE: [cayugabirds-l] Fairgrounds Access

2014-06-26 Thread Alicia Plotkin
TMI on Seneca Falls and fairgrounds: There actually /is/ something 
called the Seneca County Fairgrounds, but they have nothing to do with 
the Lott Farms and in fact are in Waterloo, on the north edge of the 
village off Swift Street.  Every year the Seneca County Fair is held 
there in mid-July.  So far as I know there aren't any interesting birds 
there although there are lots of sheds on the property so, who knows, 
maybe Monk Parakeets have moved in!

The Lott Farms used to be a working farm but for the last 25 years or 
so, it mostly has hosted Empire State Farm Days in early August each 
year.  This is probably where the idea that it is a fairgrounds began, 
but that is just a private arrangement between the NYS Potato Growers 
Assn and the Lotts - Empire State Farm Days essentially is an 
Agricultural Expo by businesses who want to sell farming related stuff.

Maybe the Lott Farm should be referred to by its own name to avoid 
confusion, just in case Parakeets do invade the real Seneca County 
Fairgrounds?

Alicia



- Original Message -
From:
Gary Kohlenberg jg...@cornell.edu

To:
randrew...@gmail.com randrew...@gmail.com, CAYUGABIRDS-L
cayugabird...@list.cornell.edu
Cc:

Sent:
Thu, 26 Jun 2014 15:38:31 +
Subject:
RE: [cayugabirds-l] Fairgrounds Access


Ralph Lott Farms are what I call the Seneca County Fairgrounds.

*315 568-9501*

I always get an answering machine; ask permission, leave my name and
# with a description of the vehicle I will be driving. They have
been very generous in giving people access.

Gary

*From:*bounce-116574009-3493...@list.cornell.edu
mailto:bounce-116574009-3493...@list.cornell.edu
[mailto:bounce-116574009-3493999@list.cornelledu
mailto:bounce-116574009-3493...@list.cornell.edu] *On Behalf Of
*Andrew Dreelin
*Sent:* Thursday, June 26, 2014 9:51 AM
*To:* CAYUGABIRDS-L
*Subject:* [cayugabirds-l] Fairgrounds Access

Hi all,

Eric Sibbald and I are headed up to the Montezuma area today, and we
would like to see Upland Sandpipers. I understand that the
fairgrounds where

they're seen reliably is restricted access. Does anyone know how I
can go about obtaining permission? Is there a number I can call?
Please contact me off-list via email (randrew...@gmail.com
https://mail.google.com/mail/mu/mp/972/?source=naphr=1hl=en), or
phone (706-587-9312). Thank you very much!

Happy birding,

Andrew Dreelin




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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Sparrows in the area

2014-05-21 Thread Alicia Plotkin

On 5/21/2014 8:15 PM, Chris R. Pelkie wrote:


... Our recent mob of singing White-crowned Sparrows have headed north 
as have our winter feeder Juncos.


ChrisP


Chris  Richard,

 Keep in mind that there may not be mobs of them time time of year, 
but juncos do breed here.  A junco has been darting into our porch to 
glean fur from the cover of the dog bed there, presumably to line her 
nest, and a pair continues to come to our feeder daily.


  Alicia

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Re: [cayugabirds-l] ANy resource for hybrid warbler photos?

2014-05-14 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Yep, that's it!  While I haven't found any quite as weird as the bird I 
saw, the mask definitely seems identical to several, and one shows small 
blotches on the upper breast.

Thanks, Jay!

Alicia



On 5/14/2014 11:59 AM, Jay McGowan wrote:
 Hi Alicia,
 Warbler hybrids do occur, but in general they are less frequent (or at 
 least less frequently reported) than in some other groups, such as 
 ducks. The exception of course is Blue-winged x Golden-winged crosses, 
 which are seen quite frequently, especially in this part of the world. 
 The bird you describe sounds to me like an immature male American 
 Redstart, which look essentially identical to females their first year 
 but often look blotchily transitional their second. I just saw a 
 similar looking bird to what you describe at Sapsucker Woods, mostly 
 like a female redstart but with a small black mask and blotchy black 
 markings on the body. Take a look at some photos on the web and see if 
 that seems reasonable for what you saw.

 -Jay


 On Wed, May 14, 2014 at 11:52 AM, Alicia Plotkin t...@zoom-dsl.com 
 mailto:t...@zoom-dsl.com wrote:

 Hi,

  As often happens after storms in May, we had a bunch of
 warblers in our yard this morning, and I just got in from four
 hours of watching them.  (Since the part of our yard involved is
 only about an acres, this is a lot of time - partly it was birdy,
 partly it's hard to come in when there is anything at all to watch
 or hear.)  One bird definitely was not a standard issue warbler,
 but I don't have a camera so am reduced to looking at other
 people's pictures, although it was extremely cooperative and
 staying in clear view at or a little above eye level for 20
 minutes and may still be there for all I know!  (But my neighbors
 with cameras have all gone to work.)  It seemed redstart-ish in
 many ways - size, feeding patterns, songs variable and generally
 w/i the redstart spectrum - and it also in many ways was like a
 female redstart in overall color.  However, the tail had a bit
 less yellow, it had a single short and very slim buffy wingbar,
 and, most peculiarly, it s head had a greyish cast and also a
 black mask that extended to the eyes. It had the same yellow
 shoulder patches but it also had a fairly large blotch of black on
 it's upper breast that was slightly off center to the left, where
 it met the yellow patch, but didn't extend nearly as far to the
 right; and a much smaller blotch a bit below that and on the
 right, with one or two very short vertical black lines below that
 smaller blotch.  The rest of the chin and breast, all the way to
 the tail, were white.

  I don't really expect anyone to recognize this bird from this
 description, but if you could point me toward a resource with
 photos. I'd be much obliged.

Alicia
oob in Ovid

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 Macaulay Library
 Cornell Lab of Ornithology
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[cayugabirds-l] Fwd: RE:[nysbirds-l] Willow Ptarmigan Point Peninsula YES [OOB]

2014-04-26 Thread Alicia Plotkin

More info on the Willow Ptarmigan  at Point Peninsula as posted to the 
NYS BIrds list

 Original message 
From: Arie Gilbert ariegilb...@optonline.net
Date: 04/26/2014 12:15 PM (GMT-05:00)
To: Arie Gilbert ariegilb...@optonline.net
Subject: RE: Willow Ptarmigan Point Peninsula YES


New location @ 12:14 PM

Here is a link to my current viewing location: 
http://maps.google.com/maps?q=loc:43.963096,-76.270219

Arie Gilbert
No. Baylon NY


Sent from Loretta IV in the field



 Original message 
From: Arie Gilbert ariegilb...@optonline.net
Date: 04/26/2014 10:56 AM (GMT-05:00)
To: NYSBIRDS-L@cornell edu nysbird...@cornell.edu
Subject: Willow Ptarmigan Point Peninsula YES


Currently being seen with Ian Resnick and Derek Rogers.

Here is a link to my current viewing location: 
http://maps.google.com/maps?q=loc:43.965551,-76.266438


04/26/2014 @ 10:56 AM

Arie Gilbert
No. Baylon NY


Sent from Loretta IV in the field
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[cayugabirds-l] Injured Red-Tailed Hawk

2014-04-01 Thread Alicia Plotkin

Hi,

 On my way home from work, at 5:30 PM, an injured mature (and 
gorgeous) red-tailed hawk was in a field just south of Interlaken. It 
was able to jump and flap for very short distances - maybe 3' in lift 
and 10' in distance - and was progressing through a series of flap/hops, 
but appeared to have an injury to the left wing and possibly weakness in 
the left leg.  It was extremely alert - it watched crouched by the side 
of Rte 96A for a series of cars and trucks to scream past and then 
flap/hopped across the road - but surely will tire quickly.  The field I 
last saw it in is I think the same one where a Snowy Owl was seen 
briefly earlier this year (not be me) and is a favorite of foxes and 
coyotes.


 Anyone have the name/phone number of someone willing to go after 
this strong but injured bird?  I can give more specific directions then, 
or meet someone there to show them where it was last seen.


Alicia

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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Injured Red-Tailed Hawk - update request for help

2014-04-01 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Hi everyone,

 By the time Rose and I made contact today, it was too late in the 
day for me to get back to Interlaken and confirm the bird was still 
visible and for her then to make the trip  arrive before sunset.  I 
will look again tomorrow morning and see if I can find it on my way to work.

  As of 5:30 PM today, the hawk was on the ground in the spot marked 
with a pin here http://tinyurl.com/py5lx62. It had just crossed 96 and 
was hopping/flapping generally north. While it is injured, it still is a 
powerful and alert animal  I doubt anyone without the right experience 
and equipment can catch it without hurting both themselves and the hawk.

  My suggestion is that if you see the bird and it is possible for 
you to wait in the area while help comes, then call either the Cornell 
Wildlife Center (607-253-3060 and follow the prompts to the Wildlife 
Center to discuss the situation and get directions) or call Rose at the 
number she gave below and see if someone can come catch it.  You /must/ 
stay with the bird to keep an eye on where it goes, though - it is 
unlikely someone would be able to just show up a half hour later and be 
able to find it unless you do this, as these fields have lots of cover 
in and around them!

   If someone does try or succeed in catching this hawk, could you 
let me know?

   Thanks -

  Alicia

On 4/1/2014 6:18 PM, Rosalie V Borzik wrote:

 Hi Alicia,

 If you go back to that area, tell me the hawk is still there and wait 
 for me to arrive, I will come. Otherwise, it's a long drive for what 
 is likely to be a wild goose chase.

 Email me at rbor...@audubon.org mailto:rbor...@audubon.org or call 
 my cell 607-342-0271 tel:607-342-0271

 Rose Borzik

 Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE Smartphone

 -- Original message--

 *From: *Alicia Plotkin

 *Date: *Tue, 4/1/2014 6:08 PM

 *To: *CAYUGABIRDS-L;

 *Subject:*[cayugabirds-l] Injured Red-Tailed Hawk

 Hi,

   On my way home from work, at 5:30 PM, an injured mature (and
 gorgeous) red-tailed hawk was in a field just south of Interlaken. It
 was able to jump and flap for very short distances - maybe 3' in lift
 and 10' in distance - and was progressing through a series of flap/hops,
 but appeared to have an injury to the left wing and possibly weakness in
 the left leg.  It was extremely alert - it watched crouched by the side
 of Rte 96A for a series of cars and trucks to scream past and then
 flap/hopped across the road - but surely will tire quickly. The field I
 last saw it in is I think the same one where a Snowy Owl was seen
 briefly earlier this year (not be me) and is a favorite of foxes and
 coyotes.

   Anyone have the name/phone number of someone willing to go after
 this strong but injured bird?  I can give more specific directions then,
 or meet someone there to show them where it was last seen.

  Alicia

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Re: [cayugabirds-l] American three-toed woodpecker

2014-03-09 Thread Alicia Plotkin
I can't remember whether it was a Black-Backed or Three-Toed Woodpecker, 
but one of these was seen 20-25 years ago by an experienced birder from 
the Eaton Birding Society - maybe Lyn Jacobs? - at her home near 
Canandaigua Lake. The sighting pre-dates eBird and apparently never was 
entered but a few other semi-local sitings have been.  So while these 
woodpeckers are very rare in this area they certainly are not unheard of.

Best -

Alicia


On 3/9/2014 3:35 PM, Martin Fellows Hatch wrote:
 Dave,

 Hairys come to our suet feeder often. It's not a Hairy. I'd say that 
 the Hairys don't have as much bulk as this bird did.

 Sorry I don't have more to describe of the body wing colors. The bird 
 perched on the suet feeder in such a way that I could see only its 
 left side. What I remember of it is that the belly was black/grey with 
 white flecks and the wing was similar. Not as much white anywhere as 
 I've seen on a Hairy, especially the belly. There was also a whitish 
 stripe under its eye. Later this afternoon there has been a Downy and 
 Hairy at the feeder. They both had more clear white on their bodies, 
 especially on the underside.

 The thing I remember most clearly was its call, the base tone of which 
 was lower than the hairy's and still lower than the downy's, and the 
 cheep of it all was somehow richer than that of the downy and hairy.

 About size, I'd say that it is hard to know if it was larger or 
 smaller than the Hairys I've seen, but I said larger because of the 
 bulk of it.

 Best, Marty

 On Mar 9, 2014, at 2:36 PM, Dave Nutter wrote:

 Marty,
 The back and sides are more distinguishing between the species, so 
 more detail would be helpful. I think immature Hairy Woodpeckers 
 occasionally show yellow on the crown.
 --Dave Nutter

 On Mar 09, 2014, at 01:12 PM, Donna Scott d...@cornell.edu 
 mailto:d...@cornell.edu wrote:

 Dear Marty  Susie
 Please describe more about the feather patterns on the woodpecker. 
 What pattern is on its back and sides?

 My Sibley guide says the three-toed is a bit smaller than the Hairy 
 wdpkr. (Altho without the two seen together, size is hard to judge, 
 as they tell us in Spring Field Ornithology class)

 However, the Black-Backed wdpkr, which also has a yellow head patch, 
 is slightly larger than an Amer. Three Toed and the Hairy.

 Both the Black- Backed and Amer. Three-toed Woodpeckers would be 
 rare here, but w this severe winter weather it seems like anything 
 is possible.
 Thanks for more description of the bird.

 Donna Scott
 Lansing

 Sent from my iPhone
 Donna Scott

 On Mar 9, 2014, at 1:53 PM, Martin Fellows Hatch m...@cornell.edu 
 mailto:m...@cornell.edu wrote:

 Hope that this report is not too casual for you all, but we have 
 had an American three-toed woodpecker at our suet feeder and on a 
 maple tree nearby today. The feeder is out the window, within 10 
 feet of our dining-room table, so we can see it clearly. What we 
 see is the following. Slightly larger than a Hairy. Head slightly 
 larger. A Yellow stripe on the front of the top of the head 
 (beginning behind the beak and above the eye and extending towards 
 the top).

 It has also been on a maple tree about 20 feet away from the 
 feeder, moving about a bit on the trunk and branches and making a 
 cry unlike those of the hairy and downy that I have heard: short 
 and chippy, with a timbre that is bright and brisk, but the 
 base tone is lower than the hairy and downy.

 Marty and Susie Hatch
 Snyder Hill Road, opposite Besemer Hill Road



 Subject: Re: American Three-toed Woodpecker Sighting?
 From: John and Sue Gregoire k...@empacc.net mailto:k...@empacc.net
 Date: Sat, 8 Mar 2014 14:29:04 -0500
 X-Message-Number: 10

 That would be exceedingly amazing for this area. Never say never 
 but that report is
 entirely too casual to be believed.
 -- 
 John and Sue Gregoire
 Field Ornithologists
 Kestrel Haven Avian Migration Observatory
 5373 Fitzgerald Road
 Burdett,NY 14818-9626
 Website: http://www.empacc.net/~kestrelhaven/ 
 http://www.empacc.net/%7Ekestrelhaven/
 Conserve and Create Habitat

 On Sat, March 8, 2014 14:25, David Weber wrote:
 Can anyone validate this sighting, or is it just another 
 misidentification?

 http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S17357540

 Good birding,
 David

 --


 *David Jonas WeberCornell University, Class of 2016Natural Resources,
 Applied Ecology*

 --

 --

 Subject: Re: American Three-toed Woodpecker Sighting?
 From: Rob Blye rwb...@comcast.net mailto:rwb...@comcast.net
 Date: Sat, 8 Mar 2014 21:10:04 +
 X-Message-Number: 12

 The species has been changed to hairy woodpecker which is much more 
 likely.


 Rob Blye
 East Coventry Township
 Chester County, Pennsylvania

 - Original Message -
 From: John and Sue Gregoire k...@empacc.net 
 mailto:k...@empacc.net
 To: David Weber weberbird...@gmail.com 
 mailto:weberbird...@gmail.com
 Cc: 

Re: [cayugabirds-l] count v hunting: a possible solution

2013-12-31 Thread Alicia Plotkin
As Dave may remember from his days skirmishing with dog walkers at 
Treman Marina, the City neither owns nor controls what happens offshore 
in Cayuga Lake.  The lake bottom, and what happens above it, is 
regulated solely by the state of NY.   (Unlike most bodies of water in 
NYS, both Cayuga and Seneca Lakes, including the lake bottoms, are owned 
by the state.)  This  which is why if you want to build a dock or boat 
house over the lake, for example, you have to get permission from the 
State in addition to regular building permits.  So while the City can 
control who carries guns in Stewart Park, it can't keep someone from 
having a gun if s/he is standing in the lake itself. The Ithaca City 
Court recognized the limits of the city's power when it held the city 
could not ticket off leash dogs swimming in the lake at Treman Marina: 
while the city has a law against off leash dogs, as does the state park 
system, the state itself does not and it is NYS that regulates the 
lake.  Similarly, the city can prohibit someone from landing a boat at 
Stewart Park, but unless there is some state law giving it the power to 
do so, it cannot prohibit one from approaching, regardless of what the 
statute says.  Finally, FWIW, Treman Marina is located geographically 
within the city but as state park land, it is not subject to city laws - 
the state park laws and state laws regulate what is permissible there.

Best -

Alicia


On 12/31/2013 12:32 PM, Linda Orkin wrote:
 It will come as no surprise that I would be very willing to work with 
 others to enact out existing statutes regarding this. This is great 
 information Dave and thank you.

 You will be sorely missed tomorrow.

 Linda

 Sent from my iPhone

 On Dec 31, 2013, at 11:46 AM, Dave Nutter nutter.d...@me.com 
 mailto:nutter.d...@me.com wrote:

 I support keeping New Year's Day for the Ithaca count, despite the 
 difficulty in explaining to people why our Christmas Bird Count is on 
 the wrong holiday. The reasons have to do with data, birds, and 
 people, and an alternative solution.

 The Ithaca count has a long tradition of being on this date starting 
 with Doc Allen, so our records are likely more valuable for 
 consistency than most counts, many of which vary by several days 
 between years as they try to use (and conflict with one another) on 
 weekend days. Being late in the 3-week window for counts, our count 
 may also give a better picture of winter bird numbers. As climate 
 change occurs it's even more important to have data which is taken 
 consistently from year to year. Yes, the disruption of waterfowl in 
 the past several years has been significant, and should be noted in 
 the records for those using waterfowl data, but the Christmas Bird 
 Count is not just of water birds and not just on the lake. Sorry, 
 Ken, that your job has been made more difficult as Stewart Park 
 counter. I'd like to try to change the situation in the City (more 
 below).

 On the human side, I think having the count on this secular holiday 
 is both good for getting a large and consistent turn-out of counters 
 (I think I am an exception in that I work Wednesdays regardless so I 
 won't be counting this year.), it is appropriately celebrated by 
 birders as we start our year lists. Of course always want more 
 counters because we have higher standards for coverage than most 
 counts, and we always miss the great birders who migrate away 
 according to the academic calendar, but I don't think we are likely 
 to get more college folks participating unless we move the date to 
 the very earliest end (with maximum data screw-up), and meanwhile any 
 change from New Year's Day will lose a bunch of regular counters.

 About gunning season, from what I have just read in the resources 
 which others have supplied to this listserv (thank-you!), I think the 
 feds set the start and end date, as well as the maximum number of 
 days in between which may be open, while the states decide which 
 calendar days will be open. The state is nominally open to input, but 
 (again looking at those resources) clearly is interested mainly 
 (only?) in the views of those wanting maximum shooting opportunities, 
 so the state makes a big effort to include as many weekends and 
 holidays as possible, which of course are also the times when those 
 of us who are not killing things or endangering anyone also have the 
 most free time to be out, so the conflicts are maximized. We could 
 try, but I think it would be difficult to get a holiday from shooting 
 on New Year's Day. It's another question whether it's possible to 
 reason with the particular individuals who are so intent on killing 
 birds at the south end of Cayuga Lake that it appears to me they are 
 willing to break various rules.

 Regarding the City of Ithaca, in 1994 it rescinded the lake hunting 
 whose start was bemoaned in the historic newspaper column which Jane 
 Graves posted on the club 

[cayugabirds-l] meadowlark question

2013-06-26 Thread Alicia Plotkin
A meadowlark was singing on territory in  neighbor's hayfield at least 
by April 28th this year.  I heard him regularly, early in the day, for 
over a month and then my schedule changed so I do't really know if he 
still is singing there mornings or not.


To my surprise, our neighbor just asked me if 'those birds of yours have 
finished with their nests' because he has been waiting to mow (!), but 
he says he can't wait much longer or his machinery will jam.  A little 
research suggests that from first egg to fledging is under 30 days - so 
would it be safe to say that the meadowlarks should be finished nesting 
and it's OK to mow there now?


BTW, I'm pretty sure there aren't any bobolinks are in that field - the 
only male we had this year seems to have left after the field across the 
road was mowed late last month.   :-(The sad thing is that even just 
ten years ago we had scores of bobolinks and maybe a dozen male 
meadowlarks, as well as grasshopper  more common grassland sparrows, 
and usually harriers, nesting on this one half mile stretch of road, but 
agricultural uses of the land have changed and now there is only this 
tiny remnant holding on ...


So would really like to make sure this last meadowlark male  his harem 
have had the chance to finish nesting, but not prolong it to the point 
where my neighbor doesn't want to do this in future years.  Is it safe 
to tell him to go ahead and mow?


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[cayugabirds-l] Lumpy Hooded Warblers?

2013-05-14 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Hi,

Many hooded warblers are sleek little birds, looking much like this 
http://www.greglasley.net/hoodedwarbler.html.

A couple days ago, I was watching the local male signing, and he had a 
distinct hump on his back, like this 
http://www.lilibirds.com/gallery2/v/warblers/hooded+warbler_001/hooded+warbler+2.jpg.ht
 
only even a bit more pronounced.  It was a warm day, before the weather 
turned, so there was no thermal reason for him to be fluffing out his 
back feathers, and it seemed no different in size during or between 
bursts of song.  Photos on the internet show some other males with 
similar bumps or humps, and some without.

So does anyone know what's with the hump?  Is this a fat deposit? (This 
male has been back on territory since May 5th, but I don't know how long 
it would take him to replenish fat reserves, or if there would be a 
concentration of fat on his back.)

Alicia



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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Lumpy Hooded Warblers? - better link!

2013-05-14 Thread Alicia Plotkin
The link for the lumpy warbler photo isn't working (thanks, Fritzie!) 
sohere's http://www.avibirds.com/html/Hooded_Warbler.html one that 
does, and here's 
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-TCWSQn8YsY8/UALj6WpH8kI/AxA/nRUwfdn2pP8/s1600/BP+Hooded+Warbler+E.jpg
 
another!


On 5/14/2013 9:03 PM, Alicia Plotkin wrote:
 Hi,

 Many hooded warblers are sleek little birds, looking much like this 
 http://www.greglasley.net/hoodedwarbler.html.

 A couple days ago, I was watching the local male signing, and he had a 
 distinct hump on his back, like this 
 http://www.lilibirds.com/gallery2/v/warblers/hooded+warbler_001/hooded+warbler+2.jpg.ht
  
 only even a bit more pronounced.  It was a warm day, before the 
 weather turned, so there was no thermal reason for him to be fluffing 
 out his back feathers, and it seemed no different in size during or 
 between bursts of song.  Photos on the internet show some other males 
 with similar bumps or humps, and some without.

 So does anyone know what's with the hump?  Is this a fat deposit? 
 (This male has been back on territory since May 5th, but I don't know 
 how long it would take him to replenish fat reserves, or if there 
 would be a concentration of fat on his back.)

 Alicia


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[cayugabirds-l] More on SSW today a question about the BirdCast forecast

2013-05-10 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Usually 11 warblers on May 10th isn't so exceptional, but this year it 
felt like a jackpot!  Late in the morning there was a (live) 
BLACK-THROATED BLUE hanging out with two or three BLACK-THROATED GREENS 
at the northeast corner of the Hoyt Pileated Trail. Initially he sang a 
weird song partway between BT Blue  BT Green, but then he settled down 
and did several repetitions of beer beer brie and established his 
identity.

Earlier in the morning I had my first warbler flock of 2013 on the north 
branch of the Wilson trail, where it splits: 3 or 4 Yellow-Rumps, 2 
REDSTARTS, 1 MAGNOLIA, and 1 BLUE-GREY GNATCATCHER, all vocalizing and 
heading roughly east.  There were also singing yellow warblers, orioles, 
and a house wren all competing for aural attention - it was almost like 
a regular spring for a moment there!

Two VEERIES were veering near the shelter on the Wilson Trail; one of 
them, or possibly a third, obligingly hopped around on a log in front of 
the netting a little later.  A BLACKBURNIAN and another BT GREEN were ar 
the intersection with the Severinghaus Trail, and a single NASHVILLE was 
in the trees off Sapsucker Woods Road at the entrance to the East 
Trail.  Not sure if ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAKS are old news but there was a 
male singing early in the day north of the north part of the Wilson 
Trial, and a pair near the intersection of the Woodleton Boardwalk and 
the Hoyl-Pileated Day, hopping around right on the trail with a pair of 
Cardinals?!

Question re BirdCast: has anyone else noticed the forecast for May 12-18 
http://birdcast.info/forecast/regional-migration-forecast-12-18-may-2013/?  
It actually starts with tonight, Friday May 10th, and predicts moderate 
to heavy migration tonight  with possible fallout throughout this area 
for tomorrow.  For real

 Alicia


On 5/10/2013 8:34 AM, Chris Pelkie wrote:
 Unfortunately almost the first bird of the day was a BLACK-THROATED 
 BLUE WARBLER who sang once as I stepped out the back door of the lab, 
 then flew up from a perch probably on our BBQ grill a couple feet from 
 the windows, smacked it, broke his neck and fell to the ground. I 
 picked him up hoping for a revival but it was not to be, so he will 
 soon be an educational device in the skins lab. Seemed to be not quite 
 in full breeding color. These windows have black see-through curtains 
 to help cut down bird strikes but they didn't help this time.

 Coming back out after putting him inside, I saw the 2 GREEN HERONs 
 reported yesterday fly one after the other across the pond to the snag 
 tree near Sherwood. Also watched one of the nesting GREAT BLUE HERONs 
 bring a new stick to the nest where it was gratefully accepted by the 
 mate who raised neck and bill straight up and made the peculiar 
 throaty noise reserved for such an occasion.

 Walking around the pond got looks at YELLOW-RUMPED and YELLOW 
 WARBLERs, my FOY MAGNOLIA WARBLER foraging and singing quietly, heard 
 OVENBIRD, heard and saw HOUSE WREN(s), heard BLACK-THROATED GREEN 
 WARBLER, thought I might have heard Black-and-white, but when I went 
 to check the board at the front desk, found that Brad had posted 
 Blackburnian so maybe I heard a trace of them (not claiming either). 2 
 BARN SWALLOWS flew over, and more than one BALTIMORE ORIOLE was 
 singing. A BLUE-HEADED VIREO was heard a couple times. Singing 
 BROWN-HEADED COWBIRD, Chickadees, Robins, Titmouse were all noted.

 Highlight though was that while at the base of Sherwood, almost ready 
 to walk out to the platform where I might have come across the 
 Kentucky Warbler that Brad and Mary found only a short time earlier (! 
 drat !), I heard really intense crow mobbing SW of the platform back 
 in the thicket of pine. After I listened for a bit, I said  'that is 
 NOT a hawk, it MUST be an owl; oh boy, these guys might have found me 
 a Barred Owl!. So I had to go all the way around by the bench, then 
 to the trail fork onto West Trail, the mobbing getting more intense as 
 I got closer. Scanning high and low and realizing the mob was down in 
 the thick part, I finally raised glasses and 50 yds away saw in full 
 front view on a branch, the GREAT HORNED OWL looking back at me. A few 
 seconds later, one of the crows, literally sitting 2' away on a 
 branch, lunged at the owl and everyone flew off into the forest.
 __
 *
 *
 *Chris Pelkie
 Research Analyst
 Bioacoustics Research Program
 Cornell Lab of Ornithology
 159 Sapsucker Woods Road
 Ithaca, NY 14850*

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[cayugabirds-l] Migration on radar?

2013-05-01 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Could someone more learned than I - which is just about anyone - 
interpret what is happening on radar right now  what it might mean for 
tomorrow morning?  I'm hoping good things ...


Thanks!

 Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] Montezuma?

2013-04-06 Thread Alicia Plotkin

Hi,

 Have a friend who was thinking about going up the west side of 
Cayuga and checking out Montezuma tomorrow.  Anyone go up today who 
could give us an idea of what is there this weekend?


Alicia Plotkin

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[cayugabirds-l] OT: Comet visible in western sky now

2013-03-20 Thread Alicia Plotkin

Hi,

   In case I'm not the only one who has searched fruitlessly for Comet 
PanSTARRS, it is visible right now, significantly north of west, and 
higher in the sky than I expected - maybe ~6 full moon diameters (?) 
above the horizon - I'm even worse at astronomical descriptions than 
bird descriptions!  But it is the lowest object I can see in the western 
sky with the naked eye: a very faint dot from my backyard, but thru 10 
power binoculars, it is far more impressive with a fairly wide filmy 
tail pointing straight up.


And to make this marginally bird relevant, for the first time in 
several nights there is not a mass of snow geese barking in the middle 
of Seneca Lake tonight.  They don't make as much noise as when they fly, 
but there is a constant murmuring all night long many nights this time 
of year.


Alicia in Ovid


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[cayugabirds-l] Raptor Love is in the Air

2013-01-06 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Yesterday about 5 pm I heard two Great Horned Owls dueting close by 
while the dogs and I were out stretching our legs.  After several 
minutes the duet changed to a single 'hoot' that was repeated over 30 
times evenly on one pitch, then a short pause, then another set of 37 
hoots, then back to duets.  According to the Owl CDs put out by the Lab 
several years ago, this is a 'copulation call.'


Also saw two Red Tailed Hawks flying together on Friday afternoon, so 
close that their wing tips nearly touched, then they landed high up in a 
bare tree and sat together quietly side by side, still there without 
changing their position when I had to leave after 5 minutes.


 Alicia Plotkin
 Ovid

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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Rufuous Hummingbird

2012-10-26 Thread Alicia Plotkin
I stopped in to the Schlabachs around 1:15 this afternoon and also got 
to enjoy a couple visits by the hummingbird, about 20 minutes apart.  I 
echo Candace's thanks to Marty  Mary Jean - just sitting in the sun at 
their picnic table waiting for the hummer was lovely: an Amish man with 
a team of horses was loading hay onto a wagon in a field a hundred yards 
to the east, and behind that more fields  hedgerows repeated until 
Cayuga Lake could be glimpsed a mile or so away.  Chickadees, titmice, 
blue jays, house finches, bluebirds, and a very affectionate cat kept us 
company while we waited for the hummingbird to make his/her 
appearances.  FWIW, I thought the throat was light colored and assumed 
it was female or immature, but only had binoculars so may have been 
mistaken.

Alicia



On 10/26/2012 6:09 PM, Candace Cornell wrote:

 Nancy Ostman and I enjoyed a number of excellent views of the Rufous 
 Hummingbird at the Schlabach home between 9:40-10:50 am. today. It is 
 a stunning male, especially when the sunlight catches it just right. 
 Many thanks to Marty and Mary Jean for opening their yard to birders!


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Re: [cayugabirds-l] snow geese movement

2012-02-20 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Same thing happening between Cayuga  Seneca Lakes: at 5:00 PM today, 
tens of thousands of Snow Geese coming out of the north and flying SSE 
over Rock River  Wycoff Roads in Ovid, in steady streams with hardly a 
break between flocks.  I could only stay about 10 minutes, so have no 
idea how long the river of flocks continued.   They were flying pretty 
much parallel to Cayuga Lake, hard to say just where they were headed.

Alicia Plotkin
Ovid


On 2/20/2012 8:25 PM, Eben McLane wrote:
 Owasco Lake 4:30 PM Monday: enormous flight of several thousand snow 
 geese flying SW, low in the sky (heading where? to the fields before 
 overnight stop on Cayuga Lake?); 8 PM : many, many more (by the sound 
 of it) on central Owasco Lake.

 Eben McLane
 Scipio, NY


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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Crow hunting regulations

2012-02-09 Thread Alicia Plotkin
On 2/9/2012 9:05 PM, Mark Miller wrote:
 ... but if you happen to be from Geneva or Auburn it's kind of hard to 
 find anyone pro crow due to the devastation they cause. The rules 
 are designed to help maintain population levels at healthy limits. 
 Just FYI, I had a flock (murder) of about 1000 crows flying over me in 
 the town of Waterloo about 7 AM this morning (96A/East Lake Rd).

There have been winters when crows roosted in downtown Ithaca, and the 
sidewalks became covered with the inevitable result in the area where I 
park my car - sometimes the car, too.  It didn't make me want to shoot 
them, although sometimes I did wish someone would bring in a Goshawk or 
other raptor big enough to scare them off!

Seems hard to argue that crow hunting has any relationship to 
maintaining healthy population limits in NYS, given how sporadic and 
relatively unregulated it is.  Seems more like a bunch of people wanting 
to go out and shoot at a bunch of birds, and then compare body counts 
over beers. In Auburn the 'hunt' was run by a bar, making that 
particularly easy for participants.

 Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] Eagles 7/1 - and just how many RH woodpeckers are there in Aurora?

2011-07-02 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Hi,

  Thanks to all for suggestions on the best places for eagles - we 
did succeed yesterday.  As many suggested, we drove up the east side of 
Cayuga, stopping first to watch the Red-Headed Woodpeckers at the 
intersection of Poplar Road  Rte 90.  We had a late start and didn't 
get to Aurora until after 11 AM, but as soon as we got out of the car I 
heard the distinctive q from two different spots in the black 
walnuts around the famous sycamore tree.  Soon there were multiple views 
of two adult RHWO flying around in those trees, and many chatter calls.  
Then both birds flew across Rte 90 to the lakeside of the road, where 
they spent periods in the grass and on tree trunks and a utility pole.  
They generously provided long close looks for the 45 minutes we were 
there, staying mostly on the west side of Rte 90.  We did not always 
have both birds in view, but usually did, and did not see them ever land 
on any part of the sycamore tree.  We finally left, the birds still in 
clear view, and the kids very impressed with their beauty.  Needless to 
say, these are not birds they see in France!

 Our next stop was the Bet the Farm store in the village, where we 
mentioned to the proprietors we had been seeing the RH Woodpeckers at 
Poplar Ridge Road.  The pleasant man said oh, there are some there, too? 
He had been watching a pair daily this spring as they went in and out of 
their nest hole while he waited with his son there at the school bus 
stop - near where _Wells_ Road came into Rte 90!  I asked if perhaps he 
meant Red Bellied Woodpecker, which has a red head, and he said 'no, I'm 
from Alabama, I've seen RH Woodpeckers all my life - they really aren't 
as much like RB Woodpeckers as Ladder-Backed Woodpeckers are.  Well, 
shut my mouth!  He said this nest tree was between Rte 90 and the lake, 
very close to where Wells Rd meets Rte 90.  Looking at a map, this would 
be about 2/3 mile from Poplar Ridge, and it seems unlikely but not 
impossible that we all would be watching a pair consistently by Poplar 
Ridge Road, and it actually would be nesting 2/3 mile north ... so are 
there perhaps two pair of RH Woodpeckers in Aurora?

 Traveling north from Aurora, we saw many osprey, including a pair 
several miles south of the north end of the lake, soaring over their 
nest on a platform just east of Rte 90.  At mud lock my young friend Zak 
found an adult eagle in a tree where we watched it for a half-hour but 
it was not inclined to fly.  We went up to Armitage Rd but it was well 
past noon at this point and the eagles surely were at their siesta - at 
any rate, they weren't in evidence.  Zak did find a pellet that had been 
cast by some raptor while we scanned the surrounding area for eagles.  
Moving on, we watched another pair of osprey with at least one chick in 
an active nest on 520, not far east of Rte 89.  When we got to the 
visitor center, there were reports of multiple immature eagles on the 
Wildlife Drive eating carp, but we had a hungry 7 year old with us, as 
well as the 10 year old eagle lover, so we headed for the Finger Lakes 
Creamery for a late lunch and ice cream dessert.

 That evening, back in Ovid, while canoeing on Seneca Lake with my 
husband, Zak looked up and spotted a mature bald eagle flying overhead.  
They got a clear view as it passed overhead.  They had not brought 
binoculars but my husband said the bird was fairly low and they got 
excellent looks.  We see eagles in the area a few times a year, usually 
immature - how wonderful that this bird swung by today!

 I had told Zak of all the help people on this list gave us and the 
first thing he said when he got back was, you have to tell the internet 
about our eagle.  So I have.

 Thanks again for all your help in making this a very memorable day 
for Zak and the rest of us, too!

Alicia



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[cayugabirds-l] Eagles at Mud Lock

2011-06-29 Thread Alicia Plotkin

Hi,

I have a young (10 yr old) friend visiting from France who is not a 
birder but who is interested in seeing an adult Bald Eagle this week.  
Are the mud lock eagles still in the general area of the nest?  Are any 
other adult eagles likely to give good looks and, if so, what's the best 
place to check?  He is only here for a few days and it probably isn't 
worth the drive from Ithaca to Montezuma - even with a stop at 
Fingerlakes Creamery! - unless there is a fairly good chance of getting 
an eagle close enough for good binocular looks (we don't have a scope).


 Thanks for any advice, even if it is that this isn't likely to pan 
out for him!


Alicia

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Re: [cayugabirds-l] downtown pileated woodpecker/waxwings

2011-06-05 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Cedar Waxwings also were in the midst of the furor in Bank Alley 
yesterday, calmly eating cornelian cherries (I think) while the Physics 
Guys shot puffs of air in their direction.


Alicia

On 6/4/2011 8:39 PM, M Kardon wrote:

I was surprised to see a pileated woodpecker on a telephone pole at the 
southeast corner of Buffalo and Meadow Sts..  Also saw two cedar waxwings in a 
tree on Cayuga St. in the midst of the Ithaca Festival craft fair.  Marsha 
Kardon


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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Prothonotary Warblers

2011-05-30 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Hi,

 Prothonotaries were observed  photographed carrying food to 
peeping nestlings at a nest site in a cavity in a dead tree that arced 
over the Canal, just south of this same bridge, in the early 1990's.*  
They continued to nest there for two or three years, until the tree fell 
into the water one winter.  If they continued after that, I am not aware 
of anyone locating the nesting site.  Given that much of the land north 
of Armitage at this point is not real accessible (and not public land), 
perhaps they nested at last some other years since then, undetected by 
birders?  Seems like over the years there have continued to be 
occasional reports of Prothonotaries in the general area.

Alicia

* Fred - didn't you photograph these birds???


On 5/30/2011 9:59 PM, Kenneth Victor Rosenberg wrote:
 I should add that we did observe the north-side male entering a cavity 
 in a rotted stump about 30 ft. in from the road (and sing from the top 
 of this snag), so they are definitely /thinking/ about breeding -- of 
 course it will take a prospecting female to make this happen.


 Ken Rosenberg
 Director of Conservation Science
 Cornell Lab of Ornithology
 607-254-2412
 607-342-4594 (cell)
 k...@cornell.edu mailto:k...@cornell.edu

 On May 30, 2011, at 9:33 PM, Julie Bertram wrote:

 Hi,
   Today at 11:00AM the Protonotarys were about 300 feet west of the
 bridge on the north side. At times they would come to within 15 feet of
 the road.

 Fred Bertram
 -- 
 www.pbase.com/fjbertram http://www.pbase.com/fjbertram

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[cayugabirds-l] SSW at 1:00 pm today

2011-05-25 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Had a few minutes on the Wilson Trail after lunch - best bird was a 
Wilson Warbler working the shrubs just north of the foot bridge on the 
branch of the Wilson Trail that is closer to the wetlands - very 
cooperative and visible bird.  Also, with others, saw a YB Sapsucker 
completely flattened out, wings spread  head forward with mouth open, 
lying on the board walk to the Owens Observation Platform.  He flew away 
after awhile and started drilling on a tree, so apparently he was 
sunbathing.  The feathers on his head seemed damp, so maybe he had 
bathed and was drying himself in the sun?


The sweetest sighting was a tiny faun, lying no more than 8' from the 
Wilson Trail.  I had stopped for a Canada Goose family to cross the 
trail and the faun suddenly stood up on his (very long  spindly) legs, 
teetered there for a moment, and then curled up and went (back to?) 
sleep.  Had he not stood up, I never would have seen him - he was 
well-camouflaged and incredibly small, his body no bigger than a house 
cat's although his legs were longer - and the cute factor was off the chart.


Alicia

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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Field Sparrows?

2011-05-23 Thread Alicia Plotkin
I'm over in the Seneca Basin, but there seems to be one or two singing 
males in each of the usual fields near our house in Ovid, FWTW.

 Alicia
 Ovid

On 5/23/2011 12:39 PM, Annette Nadeau wrote:

 I heard one Field Sparrow singing last week along Central Chapel Road 
 (just before it intersects with Boiceville and Valley roads) in 
 Brooktondale.

 Annette

 Brooktondale

 *From:*bounce-31540423-14356...@list.cornell.edu 
 [mailto:bounce-31540423-14356...@list.cornell.edu] *On Behalf Of 
 *Kevin J. McGowan
 *Sent:* May 23, 2011 12:38 PM
 *To:* CAYUGABIRDS-L
 *Subject:* [cayugabirds-l] Field Sparrows?

 Where are all the Field Sparrows?  The severe mowing of the powerline 
 cut beside my house could account for the lack of my regular yard one, 
 but I haven't heard a single song this spring.

 Kevin

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Re:[cayugabirds-l] Red Winged Blackbirds/Grackles

2011-03-06 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Hi,

 For the first time in the 20 yrs we have been here, our yard with 
its two modest feeders has transformed into a set from The Birds - 
over a hundred grackles, RW blackbirds, and a few starlings have taken 
over the feeders, driving away the usual titmice, nuthatches, 
chickadees, goldfinches, cardinals, sparrows, juncos  woodpeckers - 
even the RB  hairy woodpeckers spent the afternoon hovering on the 
outskirts rather than challenge the masses of blackbirds.

 I know the other birds won't starve - they have been stashing as 
much as they've eaten all winter - but I am too cheap to be willing to 
feed this army of blackbirds!  Will they be able to open black oil 
sunflower seed if I convert both feeders to that for awhile?  Or is the 
only solution to stop feeding for awhile?  They aren't interested in the 
small nyger feeder that's off to the side but, then again, neither are 
most of the regular feeder birds!

 Thanks for any suggestions -

 Alicia


On 3/6/2011 5:32 PM, Donna Scott wrote:
 Along with all my other feeder birds on this snowy day, there are ~ 
 2-300 Red Winged Blackbirds and a dozen or so Grackles here at my 
 feeder areas (along with 33 C. Red Polls and many Cardinals and 
 Goldfinches, etc.). Most the RW B.birds are male, but there are a few 
 females with them.
 Donna L. Scott
 535 Lansing Station Road - by Cayuga Lake
 Lansing, NY 14882
 d...@cornell.edu mailto:d...@cornell.edu



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[cayugabirds-l] snows - buntings and geese

2010-12-10 Thread Alicia Plotkin

Hi,

 A flock of 35-40 snow buntings has been hanging around the 
intersection of Munson Rd  Hall Rd (town of Ovid) this week; and a 
flock of ~200 snow geese was foraging through the stubble of a corn 
field just south of Interlaken, in the bend of Rte 96, at 11:30 this 
morning.


Alicia

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[cayugabirds-l] Only FOY sightings welcome?!

2009-10-18 Thread Alicia Plotkin
Dave Nutter wrote:
 Some neat birds were found Saturday that didn't get posted on Cayugabirds-L 
 ...  Neither was a first of year observation nor a bird which is unexpected, 
 but both are tough basin birds which few people have seen this year.  Should 
 such observations be put on the RBA?  
There are hundreds of birders who subscribe to Cayugabirds and 
relatively few keep first of year lists, let alone seek to be recognized 
as the person who discovered a FOY bird.  A posting of any even slightly 
unusual bird has value to us.  What a strange turn of events, that a 
list intended to disseminate information about wild bird sightings in 
and around the Finger Lakes Region in a timely manner might be morphing 
into one where only the documentation of first sightings is 
unquestionably appropriate.  I personally have no interest whatsoever in 
who saw a particular bird first, or if it was the first or second or 
whatever seen in the basin this year - I just want to hear about the birds!

  Alicia Plotkin

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