[cayugabirds-l] Snow geese over Unions Springs, NY ... tens of thousands

2020-12-30 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
For 1/2 hr. now, almost non-stop, we've been watching huge skeins of 
snow geese up high, coming from the SW & going NE. In all my yrs. here I 
have never had this many "at one time", so to speak. Where are they 
coming from? Where are they going at 8:40-9:15 a.m.?


Thirty yrs. ago we used to see humongous flocks of Canadas but with 
changes in corn harvesting techniques & fewer grain fields, we no longer 
see those numbers. Now it's snow geese.


Fritzie Blizzard


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[cayugabirds-l] Thousands of snow geese .. Union Springs

2020-12-11 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky & I have just been watching numerous huge flocks of 
snows heading SSW over Cayuga Lake. They were high coming from ENE but 
with sun on them just before noon  ... beautiful sight. We could easily 
see blues mixed in with them. Didn't look like they were planning to 
hang around. Maybe they heard gunshots.


Fritzie  Blizzard



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[cayugabirds-l] FOY snow geese over Union Springs

2020-11-27 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky Sewell & I saw several large flocks of snow geese this 
morning flying east to west towards Cayuga Lake. A very few Canadas flew 
much lower, maybe 50 compared to a couple thousand snows. We saw Snows 
much earlier in Nov. last yr., perhaps because it was colder, & we also 
had snow squalls & flurries last yr. . According to my Oct-Nov. NYSEG 
bill, this yr. has been 6 deg. warmer than last yr..


The Mill pond along Rte. 90 here in Union Springs has been empty of 
ducks except for a few buffles 3 wks. ago. Factory St. pond has more 
ducks now. For now, it's not worth a trip to look for much here or even 
along the lake which was absolutely bare when I made a trip to Ithaca 
last Sunday. When I came back home on Rte. 89, I saw only a few mallards 
along Sheldrake except looking down from the bluffs north of Sheldrake 
where I saw a large flock of buffles diving & playing (?) &  being 
observed by maybe 6 female mallards.


Be aware if you are planning a trip north that the 34B bridge in Lansing 
by the elementary school is closed for the next 2 yrs.. The aged & weary 
bridge over the gorge is being demolished to be replaced by a different 
type. Detour takes you over on Rte. 34. Some folks are going down Myers 
Rd. to get around. There are other ways to go on 34 & then get back to 
34B without going the steep hills on Rte. 90   between Genoa & King Ferry.


Fritzie

Union Springs, NY


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[cayugabirds-l] Bar-tailed godwit record flight.

2020-10-21 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
_https://www.livescience.com/bar-tailed-godwit-record-flight.html
_

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[cayugabirds-l] First fall DE Junco 10/13/20

2020-10-13 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
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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[cayugabirds-l] Female hummer (& squirrel fibromas)

2020-09-15 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Union Springs .. Just had a female hummingbird at the feeder at 2:43 
p.m. She looks plump so hopefully she's getting a good supply of insects 
to get protein to put on body fat for her long, treacherous, strenuous 
journey. She took 17 long sips of sugar water.


Gold finches were also here, busy feeding young & titmice arrived back 
today, in force, at the feeders. I put out my first suet cake today. All 
in the crab apple tree outside my window.


I am not really missing them but I've had no house sparrows for at least 
a mo.. My family of crows deserted me last winter.


Two gray squirrels were here for 2 or 3 wks., both with many warty lumps 
on face, necks & sides.  The eye on one was completely covered with the 
tumor & the ears were mis-shapened & flat against the head.


  I found out from the Northeast Wildlife Disease Cooperative that they 
have a "pox" virus called squirrel fibromatosis virus or fibroma. This 
type virus also is found in deer, rabbits & woodchucks & is known to be 
transmitted by fleas & mosquitoes & probably by close contact with other 
animals of the same kind & by fighting where the skin is broken. With 
squirrels it can affect internal organs & cause death. Nothing was said 
about birds but it's not transmissible to humans.


Fritzie Blizzard


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[cayugabirds-l] Acorn woodpeckers wage days-long battles over vacant territories, radio tag data show

2020-09-08 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Acorn woodpeckers wage days-long battles over vacant territories, radio 
tag data show
_https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/09/200907112342.htm__
_
When acorn woodpeckers inhabiting high-quality territories die, nearby 
birds begin a battle royal to win the vacant spot. Researchers used 
radio tags to understand the immense effort woodpecker warriors expend 
traveling to and fighting in these dangerous battles. They also found 
spectator woodpeckers go to great lengths to collect social information, 
coming from kilometers around just to watch these chaotic power struggles.


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[cayugabirds-l] Half a billion Monarchs viewed by robotic hummingbird

2020-08-26 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
_https://youtu.be/Hq3X60H7aBo_

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[cayugabirds-l] For the birds: Illustrator David Allen Sibley

2020-08-02 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
_https://www.cbsnews.com/news/for-the-birds-illustrator-david-allen-sibley-8-02-2020/
 
One of the most respected and successful chroniclers of avian life has 
produced bestselling field guides for birdwatchers, covering more than 
800 species_

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Re:[cayugabirds-l] Murder most Fowl - Saturday 5/30

2020-05-31 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Are any of you considering a night-time attack when the ducks would have 
been asleep & not aware of danger from owl or weasel? I agree with Chris.

Fritzie Bllizzard

>> On May 31, 2020, at 11:53 AM, Christopher T. Tessaglia-Hymes 
>>  wrote:
>>
>>  Just throwing this out there as another possibility: weasel or 
>> ferret.
>>
>> This is, as I understand it, classic kill method used by these 
>> Mustelids. They’ve been know to kill off an entire flock of 
>> chickens in a night, severing heads with minimal disruption to the 
>> rest of the body.
>>
>> Thoughts?
>>
>> Sincerely,
>> Chris T-H
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>

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[cayugabirds-l] Big brown bats .. Union Springs

2020-05-22 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
At 7:30 this evening I saw a big brown bat flying around the spruce tree 
in front of the house. I probably missed seeing the 2nd one because I 
was checking on the orange halves that have drawn unwanted ants. I 
daubed Vaseline on the branch on which the feeder hangs.


This is the 3rd time I've seen the big bats flying in daytime. Insects 
are truly rare here altho' I did see a large moth & some kind of beetle 
flew into my hair. Thus far I've had no bug splats on my windshield.


Wishing everyone a safe Memorial weekend.

Fritzie


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[cayugabirds-l] Chimney swifts ... Union Springs 5/5/20

2020-05-05 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
On Mon., 5/4/20 I thought I saw a chimney swift  but wasn't certain. 
Today I saw 2 over the campus of Union Springs Academy but didn't have 
time to watch for more.  Swifts have nested in the tall chimney of the 
girl's dorm off & on for at least 10 yrs.. I have seen them flying over 
here & down in the village many times. They may have been there longer & 
regularly but I just haven't paid attention. I know they nested in 
another unused campus chimney many yrs. ago,


They bring me great pleasure so I'm happy to know they are here.

Fritzie B.

Union Springs, NY



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[cayugabirds-l] Ospreys

2020-04-01 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky Sewell, has been out checking osprey nests at the north 
end of Cayuga Lake from Aurora to MNWR &  on surrounding roads there & 
in Union Springs areas. As of Tues. she had found at least 21 ospreys & 
was told about 2 more Wed. 3/1 just south of Union Springs.

Her FOY O was at the Union Springs water dept. nest across from the high 
school on Sun., 29 Mar. & she finished that day with 13 Os. That was the 
first day she has been able to go out. She really has a long, complex 
route she follows to check on nests & didn't get to all of them on Sun..

On Mon, 3/20, I had 2 juvenile bald eagles flying  here over Union 
Springs Academy & 23 TVs just a bit WSW before heading down towards the 
village to wherever their roost is. Someday I MIGHT find where the TVs 
roost.

Fritzie, Union Springs.

On 4/1/2020 9:15 PM, Elaina M. McCartney wrote:
>
> Glad to see two Ospreys standing on the Union Field light pole nest 
> this afternoon. At first only one was visible, the other sitting.
>
> Elaina
>
> --
>

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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs, NY screaming female osprey

2020-03-29 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky Sewell, saw/heard her FOY osprey on the platform nest at 
the water works across from USHS about 1:30 p.m. today. She was heading 
to other known sites on her list that she shares with Candace Cornell so 
maybe she'll have more to add to the list.
I've had a flicker coming to eat seed from my bedroom windowsill since 
the 14th. The Oregon still does the same. Also had a Cooper's hawk fly 
over 3 crows that were eating food scraps in the back yard. Crows flew 
as the Coop landed in a nearby tree before going to the spruces where 
the crows had a nest last yr.. Becky saw FOY chipping sparrow here 
yesterday but has had them at her house at least a wk..


My, how the grass has "greened" since the rain yesterday & last night. A 
welcome sight although it means daily mower noise & work.


The new docks are open at Frontenac Park & should afford some good, 
steady scope viewing across Cayuga's waters.


Fritzie



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[cayugabirds-l] Maureen Cowen ... Starter grass

2020-03-22 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Maureen,

I gather fresh, dried grass clippings in the fall & "cup shape" it in 
the cleaned boxes so winter roosting birds have a warmer place to roost 
than in just a bare box or on a tree limb. We've had bluebirds & downies 
spend nights in the boxes in winter & tree swallows that come too early 
also roost in the boxes. I make the cup a bit deeper & wider than birds 
would for nests. In spring I remove some of it when I see birds showing 
interest in nesting. This sometimes is helpful if we have a cold, wet, 
perhaps snowy spring that delays nesting.

During nesting season we may have a lot of rain. Nesting material gets 
wet or blow fly larvae are so prolific that just lifting the nest to 
scrape out the larvae isn't enough so the nest grasses need to be 
replaced. I keep dry lawn clippings or some pulled dry grass just for 
that purpose.

Since blue birds often/usually nest twice I clean out the old nest, 
sterilize the box & put new grass in. Tree swallows don't ever nest here 
twice but they leave a real mess in their boxes. To encourage bluebirds, 
especially if it's getting well along in summer, if they want a 
different box, it's really important to scrub out swallow fecal matter & 
other mess & put in fresh"starter" grass.

Fritzie

On 3/22/2020 3:35 PM, Maureen Cowen wrote:
> *What is starter grass?*
On Mar 22, 2020  Fritzie Blizzard  wrote :

Bluebirds are checking their dwellings. I have blocked the openings to 
keep male house sparrows from "fixating" on certain boxes & driving away 
other box nesters. Bluebirds won't start nesting here just yet &*I 
already have put new, dry starter grass in the boxes.*

Fritzie B.,

Union Springs


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[cayugabirds-l] first kestrels

2020-03-22 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky saw her 1st kestrel on Thurs., back at the barn on Ridge 
Rd. just so. of Spring St. Rd. where they've nested for an unknown no. 
of yrs.. I saw one on a wire on Spring St. near Frontenac Elem. Sch. 
(Union Springs) back in the winter. We also saw one near Half Acre in 
the winter.

BTW .. the Oregon dark-eyed junco continues here at our feeders & is 
more aggressive than when I first saw it on 1 Dec. 2019. Becky had seen 
it before that, not realizing it was not common here. Bluebirds are 
checking their dwellings. I have blocked the openings to keep male house 
sparrows from "fixating" on certain boxes & driving away other box 
nesters. Bluebirds won't start nesting here just yet & I already have 
put new, dry starter grass in the boxes. No tree swallows yet & they 
usually nest before bluebirds.

Yesterday we had our 1st large, noisy flock of ring-billed gulls 
overhead. More of the Un. Springs turkey vultures have arrived. Still 
have not found where they roost. Largest yearly no. has been 32 but so 
far we have only about 7.

Fritzie B.,

Union Springs

On 3/22/2020 12:58 PM, k...@empireaccess.net wrote:
>
> Yes, Kestrels are here year round. In fall the young disperse to 
> feeding territories which are widely scattered and , of course, the 
> adults get the preferred areas.
>
> John Gregoire
>
> On 2020-03-22 16:07, Johnson, Alyssa wrote:
>
> I was under the impression that they were present year round. I 
> noticed one back in February at the FL airport.
Alyssa Johnson
> 

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[cayugabirds-l] Oregon junco, Union Springs

2020-01-29 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky & I continue to see the Oregon junco feeding with the 
other dark-eyed juncos, house sparrows, house & gold finches.


Fritzie Blizzard

Union Springs, NY


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[cayugabirds-l] Sly, smart hawk + Oregon junco

2020-01-17 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard

Union Springs, NY:?? 17 Jan. 2020

At 2 p.m. I saw a hawk flying low to the ground up the hill towards, & 
then directly under, my van parked just beyond my crab apple tree in 
which I have several feeders. The tree is just outside my window. When 
it's their feeding times, house sparrows regularly perch & shelter in 
the van grill & spend time getting grit from the ground under the van 
between flights to the feeders. Quite obviously they've been observed.


I suspect a Cooper's hawk since I've had them in the past but didn't 
really get enough markers to say if it was a sharpie or a Coop. It was 
in the shadows moving around under the van for several minutes. When it 
came out it had a bird in its talons as it flew to trees several hundred 
yards away. Bully for the hawk!


Daughter Becky & I again observed the Oregon junco at a feeder about 27 
ft. from my kit. window this morning.?? Usually it comes in the afternoon 
at a time when taking pictures is impossible, either too late or when 
the sun is in our faces. We both have gotten pictures but not as clear 
as we'd like.


??Becky reports Factory St. & Mill ponds still host various ducks. The 
lake was bare off Frontenac Park yesterday. Becky is out every few days 
to check. I do see Canada & snow geese flying overhead.


Fritzie Blizzard


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[cayugabirds-l] Oregon junco

2019-12-13 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Today, Fri. 12/13/19, my daughter, Becky Sewell, again saw an Oregon 
junco at my feeders. She & I both  saw it a number of times at the 
feeders on Sat. 12/6/19. She is quite familiar with Oregon juncos as 
they were very common on her ranch in CO during her 30 yrs. there. 
That's where I saw my first Oregon Juncos.


Becky took pictures but hasn't had time to look at them & isn't 
expecting them to be too showy since the sun was bright from the west 
last Sat. afternoon. Today she didn't have her camera. Birds feed here 
about 9:30 a.m & again mid-afternoon 'til almost dark, depending on wind 
& weather. I have feeders on my west-facing bedroom window sill & in the 
tree just outside my bedroom window & also up at the top of the hill on 
the east side of the house where, unless I'm working in the kitchen, I 
don't too often look.


Today Cayuga Lake was almost void of any feathers except close along the 
shore north of Union Springs & Cayuga. Mill Pond, along Rte. 90 at the 
foot of Spring St. had quite a lot of ducks again today. Factory St. 
pond has had more ducks than we've seen in the last 4 or 5 yrs..


Occasionally 2  adult & 1 juvenile bald eagles can be seen flying over 
Union Springs village, the lake & Frontenac Park areas. We sometimes see 
perhaps the same 3 bald eagles in a very tall,  large dead, bark-free, 
sycamore tree on Fire Lane 15, along Yawger Creek before you get to the 
RR tracks north of Union Springs on State Rte. 90.


Fritzie Blizzard

Union Springs, NY









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[cayugabirds-l] Frontenac Island Cormorants

2019-05-13 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
It is with great alarm to report & dismay to have seen that hundreds of 
cormorants have taken up residence on the ground & in the trees of 
Frontenac Island, Cayuga Lake, Union Springs, NY.


The island is owned by the village of Union Springs & I seriously doubt 
the village fathers have any idea of what this invasion means. Just last 
mo. there was mention of what the village could do to enhance the 
condition & beauty of the island. THAT thought was BEFORE the cormorants 
descended.


Do any readers have knowledge of what the  village can do to try to get 
the invasives to leave or where to seek help?  Yrs. ago there was great 
concern, esp. by fishermen & fishing guides when the birds took up 
residence on the eastern islands of Lake Ontario, initially Little 
Galloo. Besides the fact that the birds eat great numbers of fish,  it's 
been reported that their fecal matter is so acidic that it kills any 
plant, above or below water that is lands on. On the little islands on 
Lake Ontario, wildlife specialists (?) & helpers were eventually given 
permission to cover the eggs with a soap solution (I believe) to prevent 
them from hatching.


My earlier hope that the cormorants were migrating through was 
thoroughly,  finally, dashed this evening just before dark when I went 
to the boat launch & saw the hundreds of birds there with more coming in 
to roost. I fear they will also invade the areas around Mud Lock & MNWR.


Fritzie B.,

Union Springs






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[cayugabirds-l] Crow relationship .... Union Springs

2019-05-12 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
This Mother's Day a.m. I saw a crow in our choke cherry tree & assumed 
it was an adult from the nest in the nearby spruce trees.


Here, let me say that only once in the last mo. have I heard any cawing 
from any crows so I presume they are quiet during nesting so as to not 
provoke any smaller birds into attacking them.


Almost immediately,  another crow joined the first & they seemed to 
really snuggle closely together in the steady rain.  I noticed the one 
on the right seemed to be doing something to the head of the other. They 
both turned so they were sideways to me. The one on the right appeared 
to be grooming the feathers on the top of the head of the one on the 
left.  I could see, with binoculars, that the feathers were definitely 
being lifted up & then were smoothed back down as the grooming continued.


This continued at least 5 min. & was quite interesting to watch. WHAT 
was going on???  Anyone have an answer? I have no idea if the birds were 
mates or family members since for many yrs.  a family of 3 to 7 has 
faithfully come to check out what compost I throw on the garden. Seems 
too soon for the eggs to have hatched & have a bird the size of an adult 
already.


Just another mystery of Nature.

Fritzie,

Union Springs,  where it's wet & getting wetter!


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[cayugabirds-l] Ospreys

2019-03-31 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Thurs. afternoon 3/28/19, Becky Sewell & I birded Rte. 90 from Union 
Springs to 5 & 20, and 89 north to 31 (Mucklands where, for 35 min. we 
watched thousands of snow geese flying overhead towards Cayuga Lake). On 
the muck, are still many pintails & mallards. Coming back down 90 from 
Montezuma we went onto Laraway Rd. back to 5 & 20 to check the 4osprey 
nests but in all our travels, saw only one osprey  at Harris Park in 
Cayuga.

Thurs. night & Fri. a.m. we had strong winds from the south. S 

Friday, 3/29, traveling with  non-birders, I left Union Springs just 
after noon heading north on 90. *Bingo! *Two ospreys on the water tower 
nests across from US high school, one on 326/90 nest, again on 90, one 
at Connors Rd. & 2 on the nests north of the RR tracks south of Cayuga.

On 5 & 20 the first nest had one bird & another sat in a nearby tree. I 
suspect I would have found more had I been traveling alone or with Becky.

Occupied bald eagle nest in Union Springs area was confirmed on Sat. 
3/30/19.

Here at home I have observed crows building in a spruce tree behind our 
house & next to our garden.

38 deg., brisk wind from the west with an occasional snowflake 
fluttering down, mixed with misty rain.

Fritzie B. Union Springs, NY

On 3/31/2019 9:47 AM, psaracin wrote:

> Thanks! Osprey are returning to their nests atop towers along rt. 5&20 
> on the Montezuma Refuge.
> Pete Sar
>
> Candace Cornell reported that Ophelia has now joined Orpheus at Salt 
> Point on Sat. 3/30/19.
> Salt Point Osprey Nest Camera is On-line!
>
> Salt Point Osprey Nest Cam _era_
>
> http://tinyurl.com/Salt-Point-Osprey-Cam
>
>
>
>

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[cayugabirds-l] Snow geese at the muck

2019-03-28 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
About 6:15 p.m., 28 Mar. 2019, daughter Becky & I were parked at Rtes. 
31 & 89 when great flocks of snow geese began arriving from the north.  
For 45 min. we watched as thousands of snows just kept coming, probably 
heading to Cayuga Lake.  Where in the world had they been all day??? The 
last ones seemed to be struggling in the stiff winds.


We saw hunters well hidden in the bushes & trees on the south side of 
the muck & heard gunshots.


On the muck, in the fading light, we saw 12 swans,  a few Canadas & 
other ducks among many mallards & the great nos. of pintail ducks.


Our actual aim was to look for ospreys as we traveled from one place to 
another & we did find some on the nests. OOB but the nest on the relay 
tower in downtown Geneva had a bird on the nest! Many nest platforms are 
almost totally devoid of  sticks. Especially noticeable was the old 
power tower at Mud Lock that is all but bare. We found eagles in the air 
or on their several nests, including the one across the Seneca River 
outlet at Mud Lock.


Tschache pool appears to have been drawn down to dry out. May's pool has 
more open space than in a couple yrs.. Here's hoping for good feeding 
areas for shore birds coming.


Becky noticed the TVs perched on a couple power poles along 5 & 20, 
apparently their roosting spots for the night, & commented that "they 
had no antennas."


Fritzie

Union Springs



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[cayugabirds-l] Canada geese but no snows .. YET

2019-03-13 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
3/14/19 ... many flocks, high & low over Union Springs, NY, too.

On 3/13/2019 2:15 PM, Tracy McLellan wrote:
> And over Myers and Salt Point.  Thousands and thousands.
>
> On Wed, Mar 13, 2019 at 2:02 PM Bill McAneny  > wrote:
>
> Thousands of Canada Geese flying north over area north of T. Falls SP.
>
> Bill McAneny, TBurg
>
>
> --
>

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[cayugabirds-l] Two N. pintails on Union Springs Factory Pond

2019-03-10 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Two magnificent Northern pintails were seen on Factory pond on 3/7/19, 
diving along with many mallards, gadwall, wigeons & a couple 
canvasbacks, buffles & golden-eye.  Many birds are on Mill pond along 
Rte. 90 but light has been wrong for me to see what.


I saw a GBH at the boat launch with many Canadas. The GBH seems to have 
been hanging around all winter.


This report is delayed but on Thurs. 3/7/19, Becky & I were looking at 
several obvious male A. wigeons in breeding plumage. A couple had more 
white on the wings/sides than we thought was usual but one had a very 
impressive amount of white, much more than the others. We tried to think 
of what other duck might have mated with a wigeon to get so much pure 
white & came up empty-handed. Hopefully someone else has seen them. She 
sent several photos to Dave Nutter & Bob McGuire.  Dave thought there 
was an abnormal amount of white in the flight feathers but even the 
white shoulder feathers were bright & flashy.


This evening, we were pleased after 2 yrs. of drought, to have seen 2 
short-eared owls at 7:03 p.m.. Becky got a good picture even in the 
dark, foggy conditions. To save harassment of the owls, the location is 
not given.


Last evening we saw several good sized flocks of robins on local back 
roads. Horned larks are still along the side roads picking up gravel. I 
must remember to put some sand for the birds near my feeders both for 
bird baths & for needed grit to eat when it's snowy or icy.


The beautiful little skunk comes nearly every night to get food scraps. 
Hopefully the red fox is getting some, too.


Fritzie

Union Springs




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[cayugabirds-l] King eider at Oswego .... OOB

2019-02-24 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky, & I were at Oswego yesterday (Sat.) afternoon & again 
saw the King eider, red-throated loon, dozens of white-winged scoters & 
long-tailed ducks, as well as the usual ducks & gulls. Also being seen 
in winter plumage was the male horned grebe which Kathy Strickland & I 
saw on 4 Feb.. On that date she & I also saw the male red-necked grebe 
in the river so close it was almost under our feet!


The eider has been seen since before we first saw it on 4 Feb.. I've 
seen it 3 times. (Worth the trip from Union Springs!)  It's a 
magnificent bird & yesterday was in the channel between Breitbeck Park 
at the west end of Lake St. & the breakwall. With the storm it could be 
most anywhere between there & the lighthouse & Marine Museum where there 
is more likelihood of not having to dive deeply for food or fight the 
high waves on the lake.


Hopefully the heavy snow & a "blizzard" forecast for that area eastward 
in the next couple days won't make it leave! Local birders said they 
have to look in various spots throughout the day to find the rarities 
but always below (north of) the Bridge St. bridge (Rte.104) & westward 
along & to the west end of the breakwall at Breitbeck park.


Becky & I also went to Sodus yesterday & saw the female Barrow's 
goldeneye hanging out with a large flotilla of white-winged scoters & a 
pr. of common goldeneye at the bay end of the channel. It was pointed 
out to us by a couple who were taking photos of it. With the wind it was 
bitterly cold, even in the sunshine, so without their guidance, we 
wouldn't have stayed to find it. Sorry, I didn't get their names.


We saw 2 turkey vultures just north of the Audubon Center/Savannah along 
Rte. 89 & 2 male harriers also flew over us moments later on Rte. 89.


Had a good view of a bald eagle sitting on the nest about 2 mi. west 
along Rte. 104 from where it joins Rte. 38 (Martville?). Mate was on a 
limb next to the nest.


Fritzie



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[cayugabirds-l] Oswego River/harbor/marina birds on 2/4/19

2019-02-06 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
To all ... Sorry I didn't better indicate the locations.

Head towards the Lake on _W._ _1st St._  off Rte. 104 & eventually dead 
end at the Marine Museum. For those who haven't been there, you can park 
& walk around behind the museum to view the river & harbor as well as 
the marina.  I suggest you Google Oswego Marine Museum, enlarge the area 
& that will show you the river, harbor & marina waters to the west. I 
think when most of us say "Oswego River" we mean that particular spot. 
Off W. 1st St. are one block long side streets to get you closer to the 
river.

_Lake St._ that goes west off W. 1st St.  (where you enter the driveway 
to the museum by the large fuel storage tanks)  goes up the hill to an 
overlook with good parking/viewing of the lake & marinas. Follow Lake 
St. on down the other side to _Breitbeck Park_ to walk to the lake shore.

I _don't_ bird above the lock & up-river south towards Fulton but a 
walkway exists all along behind the businesses. On rare occasions I may 
go to the Fort Ontario overlook on the east side of the river accessed  
by E. 7th St. off E. Bridge St./Rte. 104.

The grebe & large nos. of long-tails were  on the river downstream from 
the little riverside park & the lock below the Rte. 104/W. Bridge St. 
bridge & to the harbor. The L-Ts move up & down the river, into the 
marina, all along the breakwalls. They tend to fly out onto Lake Ontario 
in mid-day but that may not always be. Other birds ... mallards, 
mergansers, etc. usually are on the east side of the river on the rocks 
& waters under the bridge below the lock.

Kathy & I went to what is known as Wright's Landing to where we saw the 
many w-w scoters & the King Eider. Be aware that the birds are often 
changing locations throughout the day  so you may have to  scan various 
areas & even return to places you've already looked. A birder there had 
missed the black scoter, I think she said, that flew in to where she had 
left just moments before.

The conclusion ... birds don't stay in one spot to be seen where others 
saw them so, good luck! If you like fish, Skip's Fish Fry is at the 
corner of W. 2nd & Schuyler Sts..

Fritzie















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[cayugabirds-l] OOB ... Oswego King Eider, w-w scoters & long-tailed ducks

2019-02-05 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
On Mon. 4 Feb. 2019:

Kathy Strickland & I were thrilled to see & hear several hundred 
long-tailed ducks on the Oswego River. For the first time ever, thanks 
to my hearing aid, I heard them  to me they sounded like loud peep 
frogs or tree toads.  For a long time I didn't know what the sound was 
'til Kathy mentioned the birds "talking." Indeed, the only time we 
didn't hear them was when they were under water.

The river is very swift so the ducks would float downstream towards Lake 
Ontario & suddenly fly back upstream. When they landed they didn't 
gracefully slide onto the water as other ducks & geese do. They hit the 
water almost flat-footed & then flopped over on their faces. Very 
undignified looking & really funny but they seemed to be having fun 
splashing & occasionally all diving about at the same time. A man who 
had been taking pictures of them said he had never seen as many as were 
there. In my many trips to the river, I've not seen anywhere near what 
we saw. It was an awesome sight.

While Kathy was looking at them I saw a very small duck pop up right 
below us ... an adorable _horned grebe_ in winter plumage, far prettier 
than any handbook pictures show.  We were surprised that we could see it 
underwater for maybe 3 ft. as it dove to look for food. Various other 
ducks were to be seen, but, unlike when Becky & I were there on 15 Jan., 
I saw no cormorants altho' another birder said one had been seen. An 
adult bald eagle flew around a bit & eventually sat on the breakwall. In 
Jan. I had seen one fly up the river, a first there for me.

To finish out our wonderful day, here is our finale:

We missed seeing the black scoter but did see the male surf scoter & an 
amazing 20 white-winged scoters in the marina area. In with the flotilla 
of w-w scoters was the absolute beauty to find at the end of a 65 deg. 
February day ... the magnificent male _KING EIDER_ in all his 
showing-off glory very close to us, closer than we had dared dream.

Fritzie



















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[cayugabirds-l] 12 B. eagles bet. RR bridge & Mud Lock. Redheads, Glaucous gull/Geneva Seneca Lake SP.

2019-02-05 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Gray, mid-afternoon: 5 Feb. 2019 ...

Daughter, Becky & I counted 4 adult bald eagles & 8 immatures. One adult 
was on the nest at the mouth of the Seneca R./canal & others were in 
trees near Mud Lock.   Immatures, except for 3 in trees,  were either 
flying or sitting on the ice with swans & ducks.

Dozens, if not several hundred swans were on the ice to the west of the 
main channel. Some were flying. Many ducks & Canadas were in the same area.

In Geneva at the Seneca Lake SP we saw 3 huge flotillas of red heads, 
all doing their usual soldierly back & forth swimming "ritual." Dare I 
estimate 1,000-2,000? Some may say more.

We saw many red-breasted & common mergansers as well as common 
golden-eye & gadwall.

Becky spotted a large, almost chunky looking, GBB size, white gull on 
the ice with ring-bills. It was all white with pink feet/legs. Bill had 
a pronounced all-black tip with no sign of black or visible gray 
anywhere on the feathers. We concluded it was a _glaucous_ gull but  you 
experienced "gullers" would have to say if it's an immature. She took 
pictures but binoculars showed better features than did her camera.

We didn't try for owls anywhere. Oh, Van Cleef Lake in Seneca Falls is 
still iced over.

Temperature was 50 deg. when we arrived in Geneva. When we left 4 hrs. 
later it was 31 deg.. What a difference a day makes. It was 65 yesterday.

Fritzie

Union Springs









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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs 2 Jan. 2019

2019-01-02 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
This afternoon as I was watching a white-winged scoter all by itself on 
Cayuga Lake, out from the Harbor Marina at the bottom of Basin St., 2 
juvenile bald eagles came into view from near Carr's Cove, south of the 
village & headed north towards me.


They did their rolling, chasing fight routine for a matter of minutes, 
eventually being directly over me before flying NE & over Factory St. 
pond & out of sight.  Soon only one came back & flew south over the 
lake. Becky & I have been seeing baldies more often this past summer & 
fall, including an adult over Plaster Point on Fri., 28 Dec..


Prior to being at the marina I had been at Fontenac Park boat launch 
watching the scoter when I noticed many ducks  approaching from the 
north. Soon thousands of Aythya were flying by. I didn't have time to 
chase them southward but suspect they landed between Aurora & Dean's Cove.


While at the boat launch I had watched another "loner" bird that flew 
only because of a boater coming in. It sat high in the calm water with 
the neck straight & head erect.  It had quite a lot of light color on 
the side of its face/head. When it flew it ran on the water before 
rising into the air.  I would like to make this into a red-necked grebe 
but I didn't see other colors clearly. As its feet raised from the water 
the body seem rounder than those of ducks. It flew quickly westward but 
not very high.


Lake-water level at Frontenac Park is finally back to winter normal but 
surprisingly still high at Mud Lock & northwards, with water over the 
banks in the river & canal. Canal level in Seneca Falls is high altho' 
Van Cleef Lake looks fairly normal. There, we found 100s of Canadas on 
29 Dec..  Becky & I are amazed to find, quite unlike previous yrs.,  no 
ducks, geese or swans between Cayuga & Mud Lock except for a few ducks 
very close to the eastern shoreline just north of Cayuga village.  We 
didn't go out along the RR tracks to look over the lake towards Cayuga 
Lake SP where we have usually seen countless thousands of Aythya.


We didn't find any snowy or short-earred owls or white deer in our 
travels on the 29th but did see several red-tailed hawks & a harrier. 
Except for the usual feeder birds, the   many crows & the large nos. of 
Canadas flying over & plague of fuzzy-tailed rats, we notice the lack of 
birds elsewhere. She has a lone pine siskin hanging around her feeders.


The greatest treat on 30 Dec. was seeing a magnificent young, red fox 
that came down the bank behind the house & then went back up, probably 
to one of the many woodchuck holes in the hedgerow or to an old barn 
across the field.


Happy birdy new year to all.

Fritzie



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[cayugabirds-l] Snowy owl info

2018-12-07 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard

Fellow birders:

I was so appalled& angered by the bad, stupid & dangerous behavior of 
birders along Martin Rd. last yr. that I deliberately left locality 
information out of my post yesterday. By today, the owl could be most 
anywhere but for those of you who know about the airport, Lott Farms & 
surrounding areas south of Seneca Falls, the snowy was along Martin Rd. 
on a post, looking all the world like a light globe in the setting 
sun.   Becky got pictures. Whether someone else saw the owl & posted it 
to E-bird, I don't know because I don't "do" E-bird.


If someone wants to notify Joe Brin about the sighting or add it to the 
FOY record, please do. Becky & I were just thrilled to be able to see 
the owl so clearly in the very short time we had to swing down that way. 
Where it might have had the magic marker markings put on top of the  
head is a mystery but last yr. someone was trapping Snowies & marking 
them so they weren't being captured & re-tallied.


Fritzie


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[cayugabirds-l] First SNOWY 12/05/18

2018-12-06 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Becky & I went birding for an hr. late yesterday on our way to Seneca 
Falls. We were astounded that the lake above, & river below, Mud Lock 
are both very high   river is over the banks along River Rd.. The 
canal & river at May's is very high. I fear this high water is bad news 
for later on. At Mud Lock we saw 3 prs. of mallards, a young bald eagle 
in a tree & 2 ring-bill gulls.


No sandhill cranes were at Knox-Marcellus but saw lots of Canadas & 
ducks. Due to lateness in the afternoon all Becky could ID were mallards 
& gadwall. The muck on Armitage Rd. held nearly 200 swans, most on the 
north side. Light was too poor to tell what kind.  A female harrier was 
hunting along the edge of the road. Water is standing in the woods on 
Armitage &, again, the river under the Armitage bridge is very high.


Van Cleef Lake in Seneca Falls had 3 pr. of common mergansers & one GBB 
gull. Several robins flew over. The signs entering S. Falls are now 
covered indicating that the name is Bedford Falls for the mo. of Dec. as 
the community readies for the annual activities of "It's a Wonderful 
Life" which begin tomorrow evening & run through the weekend.


The absolute highlight about 4:15 p.m. was the Snowy owl with reflected 
sunlight giving it golden eyes,  Becky spotted it sitting on a  power 
pole on private land.  Black markings on top of its head, indicated to 
us that it had already been found & banded.


Here in Union Springs along with Canada geese flocks, we have seen only 
a couple large flocks of snow geese & tremendous flocks of hundreds of 
Am. crows that have come out from Auburn to feed in the corn fields and 
our yard! Along Rte. 90 on Mill pond are mallards, gadwall & many 
buffleheads.  Three squirrels pigging out on my feeders get fatter every 
day.  A small hawk tried for 2 goldfinches but I didn't see if it succeeded.


Factory St. pond has buffles & mallards. Over the village we have seen a 
bald eagle pair & an immature. I watched as an adult took a fish from 
the lake at Frontenac boat launch & flew to a willow tree by Factory 
pond to eat it.


Fritzie


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[cayugabirds-l] Chimney swifts ... Union Springs

2018-05-01 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
FOY   about a doz. chimney swifts (we call them cigars) but I think 
they were migrating as none stayed over the girl's dorm of Union Springs 
Academy where they roost in the tall chimney or have had nests in past 
yrs.. I forgot to go back out before it got dark to see if any did go 
down in the chimney.


Daughter, Becky, tries to keep up with ospreys in our area. We roamed 
north to Cato-Meridian Sat. afternoon in the rain & foggy dreariness & 
found 4 new osprey nests to add to our list & I showed her a new bald 
eagle nest along the east side of Otter Lake.


The large flock of turkey vultures returned to Union Springs several 
wks. ago. I have yet to find where they roost.


Fritzie

Union Springs.


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[cayugabirds-l] Larue St. Clair

2018-04-09 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Our beloved *Larue St. Clair*, 92, has been in & out of the Auburn 
hospital the last three months.

He is now at this health care center: *North Brook Heights    170 Murray 
St. Auburn, NY 13021*

He is filled with memories of visitors, friends _/& feathers/_ at 
MNWR.   What a life saver learning about birds was to him after (& 
since) his wife died about 25 yrs. ago. John & I met him shortly after 
her death when he showed us our first Tundra swan at Long Point. He was 
just out riding around to ease his grief & loneliness.

Larue & cheery volunteer, Jackie Bakker, worked well together tallying 
their findings. He knows those days are over for him but he has a keen 
appreciation of/for the interaction over the years between himself, 
visitors at the refuge & other birders, young & old.

I, personally, am extremely pleased that he lived to see the Lagoon 
named for him. How much better to let someone know while they're alive 
that they are loved & appreciated. For sure they won't know when they're 
gone. Many people saw birds, even life birds, they wouldn't have if he 
hadn't made the lists & posted them for visitors to see.

His sightings & permanent record keeping, aided in the past (??) yrs. by 
having Jackie to do the driving (& safekeeping) are invaluable 
contributions to the Refuge. We birders all owe both of them a lot, but 
especially do we need to give much credit & thanks to Larue.

Even if you didn't know him personally, I'm sure he would appreciate 
getting not get well cards but note cards of cheer, love & appreciation 
from birders.

For those who do know him, he probably would be cheered if you went a 
few miles out of your way & visited with him a few minutes. "Homes" are 
lonely places.

Thank you for loving him as we do.  Fritzie (in Union Springs)


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[cayugabirds-l] 1st Union Springs OSPREY 3/29/18

2018-03-30 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Coming south on Rte. 90, I saw an osprey on the platform nest by the 
village water works across from the high school about 4 p.m. Thurs.. 
Becky got to see it as it flew ... our 1st of 2018!


Buffleheads & a Redhead are still on Mill pond. Have seen no Snow geese 
except a lone one walking in the field behind our house on Wed..


Fritzie


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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs Snow geese at 4:45 p.m. 3/21/18

2018-03-21 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
:   






:   

Union Springs, NY 21 March 2018

Once again we are/were in awe of the tremendous numbers of Snows
overhead. This afternoon I took John for a short ride about 3 mi. east of
the Springs. We  noticed MANY dozens of Snow geese_decoys_  in a field
near Davis Rd. & Powers Rd. where it intersects with Rte. 326.
Never have I seen any live Snow geese near decoys. They're too smart!

Continuing east on Powers I saw a few Snows landing in a nearby field so
I turned around so we could watch the geese coming from the west. Thousands
of Snows were coming to the field ...  BUT flying over & ignoring the decoys,
a mi. back towards the lake. As far as we could see to the west, north & south
... were great flocks of Snows coming, many eventually flying right
over US & landing in the field less than 1/8 mi. from us. Soon the field
was white  WHITE!! And the noise ... 

Back towards Union Springs, coming home on Spring St. we saw the MUCH smaller,
insignificant flocks of 3 to 20 Canada geese coming towards us to join some
other Canadas in a field 1/2 mi. from home.

When we moved here in 1971, we only saw about 75-100 Snows but often saw the
sky almost black with flocks of Canadas, almost the way we're seeing Snows now.
Quite obviously, a dramatic change has occurred over the yrs. & not for the
good, despite the beauty of the Snows.

Would that all could get to see & be thrilled by the sights & sounds of
countless thousands of Snow geese before they head north. They usually are
expected to be on their nesting grounds in the Arctic about 5 May.

Fritzie




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[cayugabirds-l] Snow Geese Monday over Union Springs

2018-03-20 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard

About 12:30 p.m. today (19th) on our way to MNWR, (vistor's center was open)
 daughter, Becky Sewell, & I saw tens of thousands of Snows

mid-lake out from Canoga Shores (N. of Canoga) & opposite the Kozy Cove
area north of Union Springs. There were several tremendously HUGE rafts
spread over a long & wide distance.

I live 1/2 mi. east of the lake.  About 5 p.m. I was working outside for
a couple hrs.. Suddenly, overhead, gossiping, arguing, noisy snow geese
began to come by the hundreds from NW, heading SE right over my head &
spread also to the north & south of me.  It took at least 1/2 hr. for
the massive numbers to end. It's an amazing sight to see.

We saw the eagles at Mud Lock. Female is incubating & male was on watch.
We also had a low flying juvenile bald eagle just north of Cayuga. The
Eurasian wigeon was still at the Visitor's Center along with the
Snow/Canada cross goose. A Northern harrier was hunting over the marsh.

Fritzie  Blizzard  .. Union Springs


On 3/19/2018 4:28 PM, Laura Stenzler wrote:
and from the west side of the lake, about a mile south of Cayuga
Lake State Park, there is a solid mass of snow geese stretching from
shore to shore.


Laura
On Mar 19, 2018, at 3:24 PM, Laura Stenzler > wrote:
A huge flock of snow geese is close to shore just north of Aurora today,
March 19, opposite Gully Rd. The noise is amazing ! 10,000?  3:22 pm.



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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs & south to Great Gully

2017-12-31 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard










There were THOUSANDS of geese gliding in over the lake and into Mill 
Pond, mingling with more thousands of assorted ducks. For those seeking 
a good place to see lots of waterfowl, the comparatively warm water of 
Mill Pond is drawing a great concentration of many different types - 
bring good binocs and scopes, and stay in your cars, preferably on the 
far side of the street so as not to spook the birds away from the shore.

I've no way of knowing or even guessing how many there were, but on 
12/30/17 between 3:15 and 4:30 p.m. I know I saw:

*Canada geese* - /thousands/ on Cayuga Lake and Mill Pond.
*Snow geese* - on Cayuga Lake near Canoga, big flock on open water, 
smaller birds than the Swans below.
*Swan *- whichever kind makes the loud "hooting" calls, tundra? - LOTS, 
on the ice and water, both shores of Cayuga as far north and south as I 
could see.
*Mallard *- LOTS on Cayuga Lake and Mill Pond, some on Factory Pond.
*Redhead *- LOTS - an enormous raft probably numbering 10,000+ in 
midlake between Union Springs and Canoga, visible from the east end of 
Carr's Cove Rd. or Farley Pt. (I was on Carr's Cove Rd. w/landowner 
permission). Another flock on Mill Pond's NW corner suddenly began 
splashing, then raced en masse across the pond, spooking everything else 
toward the east side, leaving that corner vacant except for 2 or 3 ducks 
swimming serenely in the wide-open space left by the rest!
*A. Wigeon *- several, Mill & Factory Ponds
*Hooded merganser* - males, at least two, Mill Pond
*Bufflehead *- male & female, several, Mill & Factory Ponds
*Greenwing teal* - possible male, one? on Mill Pond
*Gadwall *- dozens on Lake and both Ponds.
If there were any scaup or canvasback, I didn't recognize them.
*Great black-backed gull *- 1, probably more on the distant ice, 
gathered around dead or dying birds.
*Gulls *- MANY in a gathering midlake, landing & quickly rising, as if 
grabbing small fish. Could not tell what kinds they were, but probably 
the usual culprits.

*Bald eagle* - at least 6-8 at and around the Great Gully Farm eagle 
nest #2, nearest Gully Creek, most perching in the nest tree. Saw one 
confirmed adult, several juveniles. Saw others on the ice, midlake, and 
one juv. flying out over the lake south of Gully Creek.
*Northern Harrier *- female, one, flying back & forth over the bay south 
of Gully Creek.

At my home on Ridge Rd., 3.5 miles east of Union Springs:

*Snow buntings* - 20-30 in a field along Spring St.*
*

*Junco at least 4*
*Northern Cardinal* - 1 male, 1 female
*Downy woodpecker* - 3
*Redbellied woodpecker* - 1 male
*Hairy woodpecker* - 1
*Nuthatch *- several
*Chickadee *- several
*Tree sparrow* - 1
*English sparrow* - 30+/-
*Mourning dove* - 2+?
*Goldfinch *- 25+?

*House finch* - 5+?
*Blue jay*- several (probably a family group)

.








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[cayugabirds-l] Howland Island drone pix

2017-10-29 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Click on "events"  & then to the right see the list including "Drone 
Pics of Northern Montezuma". Aerial views are also included but the 
drone pix are closer. I never dreamed so much water & land are there.

Fritzie.


On 10/29/2017 2:06 PM, bob mcguire wrote:
> The main reason for writing this up is to alert folks to a new 
> resource. Jim Eckler and Frank Morlock (DEC Morgan Road) have recently 
> acquired a drone with camera, and they have been posting aerial photos 
> of the various DEC properties in the Northern Montezuma Wetlands 
> Complex. Think Howland Island, Martens Tract, Railroad Road, etc. They 
> intend to post updated photos throughout the season. It’s fascinating 
> to see, from the air, exactly what is out there beyond the cattails 
> and phragmities. Go to _https://friendsofmontezuma.org_ and find the 
> “what’s new” section at the top-center of the page. Bob McGuire -


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[cayugabirds-l] White winged tern south of Wellsboro, PA on 287

2017-08-13 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
PLEASE note: That is Rte. 287, not 257. The sign for 287 can be elusive 
as you near the end of the main shopping area where you turn left at the 
light onto Central Ave. at the "Village Green", the little park, home of 
the famous Wynken, Blyken & Nod in their wooden shoe statue in the 
middle of their "mist" ... water from a fountain spraying over them.

Nessmuk was the pen name of Geo. Washington Sears, an outdoorsman who 
loved the Adirondacks & who wrote many articles about his outings, by 
canoe, in the Adirondacks.

The very beautiful, White-winged Tern on the wooden pilings at the edge 
of Nessmuk Lake is not leery of all the people standing maybe 50 ft. or 
so away. Don't go to the fishing dock. Go on down the hill past that 
road in the park to the next parking area. And yes, a port-a pottie is 
there.  (:-) It's the pause that refreshes.)

Kathy Strickland, my daughter, Becky & I were there late this afternoon 
& even saw birder, Donna Scott along with folks from Pittsburgh & 
Harrisburg, PA.  LOTS of people were enjoying the rarity. Also saw 
several Cedar Waxwings, a GBH & swallows that I didn't try to ID.

Fritzie Blizzard

Union Springs


On 8/13/2017 3:03 PM, Donna Lee Scott wrote:
Still south end of Nessmuk lake, wellsboro PA OFF RT 257, south of town. 
3:06 pm sunday.
Donna Scott

On Aug 13, 2017, at 11:40 AM, Harlan Hastings > wrote:
https://www.google.com/maps/place/Nessmuk+Lake+Boat+Ramp/@41.7270862,-77.2909641,17z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x89ce2e8067b2a3c7:0x9317241c5c661891!8m2!3d41.7270822!4d-77.2887754
 

 

Park in the smaller loop on the left.  Tern was seen on pilings at south 
end of the lake this morning.
On Aug 13, 2017, at 7:27 AM, Nancy Cusumano > wrote:
Is there a park or specific location that's the best place to view this 
bird?


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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Tree swallow

2017-06-17 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
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 barn swallows. For the last 2 yrs. we've not had more 
than a doz. of either lining up on our power line in late summer before 
migration. Used to be many, many dozens. :'(


The 100 acres behind us were mowed on Wed.. I didn't see a swallow. Same 
when the school lawns are being mowed. Always before the birds were 
swooping overhead in great numbers to get insects. We no longer see 
those many insects.


Rachel Carson ... we need you again to lead a new fight.

Fritzie Blizzard

Union Springs





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Re: [cayugabirds-l] FOY House Wren

2017-06-08 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
We FINALLY saw a female hummer 20 May. Next time was 27 May. 3rd time 
was 4 June. Feeder is outside our kit. window.

First BLUEBIRDS & HOUSE WRENS hatched 5 days ago. TREE SWALLOWS hatched 
yesterday. Swallow box is on the clothes line arm, 27 ft. from the house 
& where we & others walk by.  House sparrows are here in greater numbers 
than ever, along with starlings but seem to be occupied with their own 
nests.

Maybe, hopefully, with this warmer weather we'll see more insects & more 
bird activity.

Fritzie
Union Springs

On 6/8/2017 10:51 AM, W. Larry Hymes wrote:
> Yesterday afternoon our first HOUSE WREN of the year popped into our 
> yard and investigated one of our nest boxes.  This is around one month 
> later than usual.  Also, on my walk around Beebe and Mundy yesterday I 
> was hearing more RED-EYED VIREOS than I had before. Are more birds 
> still migrating in, or was this just coincidental? We still haven't 
> had any HUMMINGBIRDS, since seeing our first one on May 11.
>
> Larry
>


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More Re: [cayugabirds-l] Ominous

2017-05-28 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Here in Union Springs I've had my feeder outside my kitchen window for 3 
wks.. Finally saw a female hummer, just once each day, on the 20th & 
27th.  In the past they have /always/ come when my columbines begin 
blooming & they opened nearly 3 wks. ago. I've not seen the female go 
near the columbines that are all along the back of the house.

Another noticeable lack ... _/normally/_ we have _/many/_  tree & barn 
swallows, esp. when the campus lawns are being mowed & normally I'll  
have at least 3 boxes of tree swallows & 2 of blue birds, (with house 
sparrows plaguing them.)  Thus far we have only one box with tree 
swallows & the female just laid her 5th egg 3 days ago.  This is late. 
Same with the one box with bluebirds. No wrens yet but we're seeing 5-7 
chimney swifts still using the tall chimney on the girls' dorm.

/House sparrows have now lost about 20 eggs from 3 boxes to this human 
predator. /

I fear squirrels may be getting some adult birds, eggs & nestlings in 
the trees & hedgerows.

What IS quite noticeable here, is the lack of insects, esp. with ideal 
wet weather for mosquitoes & black flies. We had a few of both a couple 
wks. ago along with midges but now, next to nothing & it's still wet. 
The fields are planted to grass, not corn this yr. so I feel that is 
more conducive habitat for insects. Alas, the insecticides have probably 
killed off the bugs so desperately needed by our feathered friends. 
Where is Rachel Carson?? Who will take up the battle???

Fritzie


On 5/28/2017 10:46 AM, Marty Schlabach wrote:
>
> We’ve had our hummingbird feeders up for several weeks, changed them a 
> couple of times and have as of yet only seen a hummer twice, both 
> times a female.
>
> Marty
>
> Interlaken, NY
>
> *From:* **Ellen Haith
> *Sent:* Sunday, May 28, 2017 8:22 AM
> *To:* Kelly Lee Smith 
> *Cc:* CAYUGABIRDS-L 
> *Subject:* Re: [cayugabirds-l] Ominous
>
> 8:15 a.m Sunday, just checking all the ominous notes and explaining 
> the reality to my husband, and TWO males arrived at the one visible 
> feeder and the battle for the goodies took but a moment!
>
> May I say 'Whoopee!' and 'Whew?'
>
> e.h.
>
> On Sun, May 28, 2017 at 8:13 AM, Kelly Lee Smith  > wrote:
>
> I saw my first hummingbird yesterday at an Amish greenhouse in
> SummerHill; the Amish ladies said the birds have been in the
> greenhouses for a couple of weeks.
>
> Kelly
>
> 
>
> *From:*Ellen Haith  >
> *Sent:* Saturday, May 27, 2017 3:44 PM
> *To:* CAYUGABIRDS-L; CAYUGABIRDS-L
> *Subject:* [cayugabirds-l] Ominous
>
> Along the west shore of Cayuga Lake we occasionally have up to
> three Hummingbirds at a time at either feeder. So far this spring
> (?) - we have seen ONE female sitting on the edge of a feeder
> looking away from the cottage - none other. Might this be a result
> of the late and frequent cold snaps and the subsequent lack of
> either floral food or human assistance?
>
> Info and/or assurance gratefully accepted.
>
> Ellen
>
>


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[cayugabirds-l] 23 Brant geese at Seneca Lake SP @ Geneva, NY (5/7/17)

2017-05-07 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
After Becky got off work & had lunch at 4 p.m. with us, she & I went to 
Geneva, scarcely daring to hope we'd find the Brant mentioned in a post 
much earlier in the day.

Before I even got to the park entrance, she spotted them on the grass to 
the East of the Visitor's Center. She only has a little point & shoot 
Canon camera but she got some nice pictures. The Brant weren't really 
skittish so she walked about 30 ft. behind them & "herded" them towards 
me as I sat in the car. She was thrilled to finally see them. I had held 
an injured one that John & I took to Cornell some 12 yrs. ago so I knew 
how beautiful they are.

The jaunt yielded us 3 new osprey nests as well, even tho' they're not 
in the Cayuga basin. We saw Chimney swifts over the Smith's Opera House 
in Geneva, our 1st for the yr..

At_Mud Lock_ we saw a bald eagle in a tree near the new nest which is 
still quite visible.  The waters of Seneca River & canal are quite high 
& overflowing the banks from the lock northward.

Fritzie Blizzard

Union Springs, NY



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[cayugabirds-l] Snow geese at the muck

2017-05-01 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Saw 5 snow geese close to the road just east of the potato building 
along Rte. 31 Mon. about 5:45 p.m.. Sky was already getting dark before 
the storm so I couldn't see much other than dozens of gulls.


At Mud Lock I saw one bald eagle in the tree near the new nest & an 
osprey on the nest atop the old elec. platform. Another osprey landed on 
the power line with something that he wasn't able to get off the talons 
of his left foot. When the storm hit, he flew off towards the woods 
across from the lock.


Then the storm hit & a man with 3 fishing poles in the water & one in 
his hand, just threw a blanket over his head & body & continued to fish. 
I don't quite know how to label such (?) dedication (?).


I made my way rather slowly in the pouring rain to Union Springs with 
flashers on from Cayuga.


Fritzie


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Re:[cayugabirds-l] Red-necked Grebes, Dryden Lake 4/13/17

2017-04-14 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky, & I, got to see them late yesterday afternoon. What a 
treat. Also had one pied-billed grebe & a kingfisher. Disappointed to 
not see any mergansers.  A fisherman said he had seen 2 bald eagles at 
the far east end but didn't know where the nest was.Has anyone seen 
a nest?

Lake Como was VERY quiet/calm but we did see a kingfisher in a tree in  
the swamp.

Fritzie


On 4/14/2017 7:03 AM, Jay McGowan wrote:
> Last night at sunset two nice alternate RED-NECKES GREBES accompanied 
> a flotilla of 11 Horned Grebes on Dryden Lake. Not sure if they'll 
> still be there this morning, but it might be worth checking.
>
> Jay
> --
>


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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs Ospreys

2017-04-02 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
This a.m. I noticed our NYSEG  ospreys on Number one Rd. are back. One 
was on the nest & the other on the perch pole. I suspect they have been 
back a few days but I hadn't been able to walk up the hill to check. 
Becky had checked the nest on Fri. evening & saw nothing but it may have 
been too dark.  Always thrilling to have them fly over the yard.


Several days ago I saw a crow carrying a stick to a large, nearby, 
spruce tree. Our family of 5 crows have split up & now, as usual, we 
have three always together. This has been going on for at least 15 yrs.


Not much activity out on the lake from Frontenac Park or at the ponds. 
The large rafts of ducks are gone.  Becky was pleased to have Marie Read 
as a customer at Surefine this a.m..


Fritzie


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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs ... 6 Sandhills

2017-03-25 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
3/25/17   6 Sandhill cranes flew NE directly over our house at 4:20 
p.m.. Guess I might call them a "yard bird" first as well as FOY for me!


Yesterday the Cayuga Lake waters seen from Frontenac Park were well 
dotted with the usual ducks & a few Canadas.


I saw close to 40 Am. wigeon fly from the lake to land in the park where 
they eagerly began "grazing" on the  grass. The fields, finally devoid 
of snow up behind our house, east of the lake, had MANY Canadas.


Mill pond had 3 buffles yesterday ... one male & 2 squabbling females.

How nice it is to see the yellowing of the gold finches & the arrival of 
more house finches at our feeders each day.


Fritzie


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Re:[cayugabirds-l] dead cardinals

2017-03-19 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
 Another thought . Male cardinals defending their territory, esp. 
at mating, pre-mating season, could have been chasing each other when 
they hit the windows. That, or older males chasing away younger males.


Fritzie

Union Springs


On 3/19/2017 7:27 AM, Gerry Rising wrote:
Mary Jane, I suspect windows. A few years a go I had a call about two 
birds found together on a patio at this time of year. They were fox 
sparrows, both in near perfect condition. Especially when birds can see 
light coming though from other windows they think that they can fly 
through. And your decals won't help with that. Sad to lose birds this 
way. Good that you keep your cats indoors. Gerry



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[cayugabirds-l] Mud Lock bald eagle is nesting 2/19//17

2017-02-19 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard

Saw her on the nest in the big tree just after 1 p.m. today.

Dozens & dozens of swans, hundreds of snow & Canada geese were between 
Cayuga & the Lock.


Fritzie

Union Springs


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[cayugabirds-l] Bald eagles ... adult & juveniles 1/16/17

2017-01-16 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
This a.m. Becky & I saw 2 juvenile bald eagles flying along the shore 
just north of the  village of Cayuga.


We also saw 2 adult bald eagles in the trees next to the nesting tree at 
Mud Lock north of Cayuga.


Along Martin Rd. south of Seneca Falls, Becky spotted a male pheasant 
feeding in the cornfield  along the road & pointed it out to several 
other birders. We also saw a Snowy atop Lott's grain elevator/silo. 
Didn't take time to look for more as we were already late on our way to 
Corning.  Several other birders, including one man from Buffalo, were 
cruising about looking for the owls & the gyrfalcon. Great day to be out 
birding.


Fritzie

Union Springs


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[cayugabirds-l] Snowy owl

2017-01-06 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard

What a beautiful day to be out. Cold, but nice otherwise.

Is it late to have pied-bill grebes? Daughter, Becky, & I saw one in 
close at Van Cleef Lake in Seneca Falls this afternoon. Saw about 20 
each of hooded & common mergs there along with mallards & gulls & about 
300 Canadas. Didn't take time to try to do an exact count as we were 
headed to the airport to look for the owls. She spotted the newly banded 
one on a snow pile between the last 2 buildings along the runway & 
another atop the tallest silo at Lott Farms. One that was in the 
cornfield along the runway may or may not have been another or could 
have been the newly banded one, scared by the planes with pilots 
practicing landing & taking off.


Struck out on the gyrfalcon. Sun was wrong to look for it or the shrike.

We also saw 2 female harriers & 1 male hunting in the field along the 
runway. Ran out of light to go look for the shrike.


Last Fri. (30 Dec. 2016) when we were leaving the airport & going out on 
414 we saw thousands of snow geese overhead heading towards Cayuga Lake. 
Quite an impressive sight.


This afternoon we noted unknown swans, probably tundras, overhead & on 
the water between Cayuga & Mud Lock.


Has anyone checked down Genoa way for snowy owls? Becky found three down 
that way about 3 winters ago.


Water level on Factory St. pond is higher than I've ever seen. Mill pond 
level is also up. I have seen evidence of sharp teeth of a beaver along 
Mill. More gadwall are on Mill than we've seen in many yrs.. Redheads 
are there in increasing numbers along with some buffles & A. wigeon.


Fritzie

Union Springs




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[cayugabirds-l] Mill pond .. Union Springs 11/22/16

2016-11-22 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Gadwall (10-12)Buffles, (didn't count - no time -they kept diving)   
A. wigeon (6)   G.W. Teal (1)  at 2:30 p.m.


Fritzie


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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs sign finally corrected!

2016-11-19 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Drove by the Mill pond along Rte. 90 a couple days ago & noticed the 
labeling of the green heron picture had FINALLY been corrected, changed 
from Pileated Woodpecker to the correct ID of Green Heron. Shame on the 
scout leader who didn't catch the very obvious mistake many mos. ago 
before he awarded the scout the Eagle Scout honor! I felt very 
embarrassed for strangers to see the glaring error. And, yes . I did 
write to the mother of the scout many mos. ago to tell her the ID was 
incorrect. No  comment from her!


Fritzie


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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs Buffleheads

2016-10-29 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky Sewell, saw the first buffleheads on the Union Springs 
Mill pond Sat. 10.29.16.


Fritzie


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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs: Hundreds of crows

2016-10-28 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
My yard & all surrounding fields & lawns are suddenly FULL of beautiful 
black crows. I haven't been to Auburn, NY yet at night lately to see any 
but feel sure these must be part of the thousands that roost there every 
winter. I've never had them come in such great nos. to just feed &, I 
assume, socialize all around us on the ground.


Had the 1st dark-eyed junco on my bedroom window-sill feeding area this 
a.m. but others have been at the feeders up on the hill for a couple 
wks.. For the 1st time ever, tit-mice & white-breasted nuthatches have 
been coming to the window sill, too. "Boy" cat wishes  as his tail 
swings 


The Eagle Scout sign at Mill Pond on Rte. 90 still shows the green heron 
as a pileated woodpecker.


Fritzie Blizzard


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[cayugabirds-l] Am. Wigeon: Mill Pond, Union Springs

2016-10-02 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Keep forgetting to post.  Saw 7 Am. wigeon on Mill Pond on Thurs. 
morning, 29 Sept. 2016. First since spring.

Last I looked, the Mill pond sign put up by the scout still had the 
green heron listed as a pileated woodpecker.

I had seen wood ducks & babies on Factory pond numerous times through 
the summer. Man across the street said this was the_first yr. ever_, in 
his 40 yrs. living there, that he had seen woodies actually nest there 
... & successfully raise young without a snapper getting them. Two 
females ... one had 4 , the other 5.  Last I saw the young, they were 
almost adult size.

Fritzie B.

Union Springs, NY


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[cayugabirds-l] SPEAKING OF NATURE: Fishers are back | Lifestyle | fltimes.com

2016-09-04 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
What a wonderful & thrilling report in the Finger Lakes Times by John 
Van Niel!! Thanks Chris.

Fritzie


On 9/4/2016 6:20 PM, Chris R. Pelkie wrote:

*_http://www.fltimes.com/lifestyle/speaking-of-nature-fishers-are-back/article_d7d8fafe-6cba-11e6-ab55-038e8d6a63c3.html_*

/Thought the many of us who go to Montezuma would find this interesting. 
Justifying posting to Cayuga birds as John says that crows found his 
fisher for him. Keep watching the crows! ChrisP /



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[cayugabirds-l] Eastern Kingbird terrorist!!

2016-07-18 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Back in the 1960s whenever my stepfather would go to work in his garden 
or just out into his yard, an Eastern kingbird

would would suddenly appear & constantly dive at his head whether or not 
he was wearing a cap. That went on most all

summer. The bird never bothered anyone else. However, I  have seen E. 
kingbirds  showing aggressive behavior towards

adults once in a while in the last 10 yrs. or so with no /apparent /nest 
or young birds nearby. Here, male tree swallows dive

bomb anyone who gets near the birdbox after the eggs hatch but the 
bluebird males don't. Nature is interesting.

Fritzie,

Union Springs, NY


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[cayugabirds-l] Mill pond sign in Union Springs

2016-07-08 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Failed to mention that I have contacted Mrs. Aguilar, the scout's 
mother, to commend her son for his project & hard work but also to point 
out a glaring error on the sign/kiosk. He has the picture of a Green 
heron listed as a Pileated woodpecker. :-(


Hopefully he can correct that ASAP.

Only bird on Mill  pond today is the lingering redhead duck that appears 
to be in molt. The water level is up, indicating that the overflow pipe 
is partially blocked, either by brush or else another beaver is trying 
to build a dam. Didn't take time to look.


Fritzie


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[cayugabirds-l] Umbrella for my bluebirds: Union Springs

2016-07-08 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Four bluebirds hatched on 4 July, as expected. By early a.m. 5 July, & 
since then, temps have been in the mid-90s in the shade so surely inside 
the bird box on the clothesline arm had to be hotter.  Years ago, under 
the same circumstances, I had successfully put an old umbrella over the 
box to shield it from the sun & heat, so on the 5th I did the same. The 
birds were wary for about 45 min., alternately sitting on the 
clothesline or making aborted trips towards the box entrance. Finally 
the male dared go in. After that the umbrella became just a part of 
their natural surroundings & feeding has proceeded.

The 4 ft. high garden fence, distanced some 8 ft. all around the 
clothesline post, protected the tree swallows from the neighbor's cat. 
Four of the five fledged right on schedule, with the feeding help of the 
second female after the male disappeared, but the 5th was a runt that I 
found down under the much larger sibs.  I found it dead the a.m. of the 
3rd day after the others had fledged. Apparently the female had her own 
built-in sense of how long she should feed. How much we DON'T know about 
nature!

For those who don't know, according to _Stokes_ _Field_ _Guid__e_, "The 
Tree Swallow is the only N. Am. passerine with an immature plumaged 
female in the 1st (& sometimes 2nd) yr.. The imm. plumage allows them to 
approach breeding adults & their nests without being chased away. This 
lets them monitor breeding pairs & be ready to replace any adult female 
that dies during the nesting season."  In this case, it was the male 
that was replaced. I am noticing even more this yr. than last the lack 
of insects, which I believe is due to the the farmers using  more 
insecticides, so I'm seeing far fewer swallows. Strangely, the numbers 
of chimney swifts staying here has increased this yr..

I am still over-run with house sparrows despite destroying eggs & 
females (catching them at night.) I have put 2 set mousetraps in boxes 
to which the male sparrows are attracted (once I was sure no swallows or 
bluebirds will use them.) By a fluke I've caught a male that way.  Of 
course, it's the males who destroy the eggs & kill the bluebirds & swallows.

I am dismayed about the spay & neuter program started here in the 
village by several women who, for several mos., have been feeding larger 
& larger nos. of strays  some 22 to 30 by their own counts & 
sightings _in just 2 colonies_. I love cats but won't have any that 
aren't "fixed." I am angry to see these feral cats coming here into my 
area, some distance away from downtown, as they hunt, (despite now being 
well fed), spread fleas & fight with house pets. A vet comes from Ithaca 
to Wells College to spay, neuter & give shots for $40 ... funded in part 
by the Facebook "Go fund me" page. Last I knew the women had collected 
about $1200!!! These cats have no true shelter so come winter, once 
again, cats will have frostbitten limbs & ears, or will freeze to 
death.  And who will be able to catch & pay for cats that have other 
diseases or abscesses & other injuries from fighting?

Late getting this posted but for those who haven't been by Mill pond 
along Rte. 90 for a couple wks.. The Eagle Scout, perhaps with help from 
someone in the village, has erected a kiosk with a bit of history of the 
area along with very nice pictures of ducks & geese that have frequented 
the pond during migration. The only activity on/in the pond recently has 
been a GBH  (great blue heron.) I've seen no one sitting on the new 
benches the scoutput along the pond.

On Factory pond, Becky saw a new set of "woodie" woodlets following 
their mom last wk. but I didn't see any yesterday. The first set of 
"woodlets" are almost full size now. These are the first wood ducks to 
raise young there in quite some time that I know of. Becky & I have seen 
some very large fish in the pond & suspect someone put their catch of 
carp in the pond, maybe thinking they would clean up the scum on the 
surface.  I complained to the village public works supervisor about how 
disgusting Factory pond looks with the mung all over it & the beaver 
fallen trees in the water.  Waste of breath!That's the news from 
Union Springs. I'm grateful for a cloudy day today.

Fritzie



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[cayugabirds-l] East Rd. Purple martins?????

2016-06-22 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
The Mennonite couple who lived in the house that burnt on East Rd. put 
up a Purple martin house several years before they moved away about two 
yrs. ago. The box had been occupied by martins almost from the time the 
box was put up & I saw martins there last yr.. I don't recall anyone 
ever having posted to the list about seeing martins. I didn't just 
because I didn't have the time.  Last I knew, the box was still there, 
out by the garage. This is just a heads up for others to keep an eye out 
for martins & not "just swallows."


Becky & I missed the stilt yesterday at Know-Marcellus but found more 
new osprey nests & the starts of 3 others on our travels. We saw 5 
ospreys on poles north of the Van Dyne Spoor Rd. platform which we think 
are the parents & 3 offspring.


After you cross the RR tracks, just past Wright Rd., an unmarked road 
bears off to the left from Van Dyne Spoor & a new kiosk has been placed 
there but no information is yet on it.  That road parallels VDS Rd. & at 
the end are 2 newly placed picnic tables, a pit grill & a lovely nature 
mural  has been painted on the old  bridge abutment. From that spot you 
can look north & see the Morgan Rd. facility. Hope I'm not turned around 
on directions : N, E, S, W The woods are close along the road & seem 
to be very birdy. I chose to not drive beyond the picnic area, esp. 
since that area had had enough rain Mon. night to make puddles so I 
suggest the road beyond be walked. We did see "No Trespassing" signs in 
the woods. Becky heard a lot of birds singing in the woods.


For those looking for food, pizza, salads, ice cream, drinks, pit stop, 
gasoline, etc. a new Byrne Dairy has opened in Magee on the corner of 
Rtes. 318 & 414. We had very good "subs" made of bread .. sub rolls 
aren't used. Food & prices were better than the Day & Night gas station 
on 5 & 20 at Rte. 90 east of the refuge entrance.


Fritzie

Union Springs.





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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Stilt

2016-06-22 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
You aren't alone there!  And you left the apostrophe ('s) off else. 
So .. why try? We all knew what you meant!


Chuckled to see your post. Our neighbor is also Judy Wright but she's 
handicapped so WE KNOW she can't go birding.


Fritzie . Union Springs

On 6/22/2016 1:40 PM, Judith Wright wrote:
In my posting yesterday evening I accidentally called the 
"black-necked stilt" a “black-necked stint”.
I can proof read anyone else work but it takes days for me to see my 
mistakes


Judy Wright
Baldwinsville. NY




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[cayugabirds-l] Tree swallow male replaced

2016-06-11 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
This past Mon., 6th,  John realized the male tree swallow hadn't been 
"standing guard" on the weather vane on our clothesline post. Since the 
neighbor's long, strong, male Siamese type cat had gotten the first 
male, I have to feel the cat also got the 2nd male which had been very 
chatty with me as had been the female since he & she had set up 
housekeeping & accepted my white feathers for their nest.


On Tues., right on schedule, 5 babies hatched at 12 days. With rain & a 
nasty, chilly wind blowing, Mom seemingly was hard pressed to know 
whether to stay "inside" & keep babies warm or go out to try to find 
bugs. Same on Wed. while I kept praying a single female might be in the 
area as I reached in to pet mom & be certain babies were still there. 
Thurs. a.m. ~ ~~  an answer to prayer ~ ~ ~  I saw a 2nd swallow fly to 
the box & enter as the one inside exited. Since then the comings & 
goings have continued. Tomorrow I will check on the no. of babies & 
their growth.


While this is the 1st time I've had an obvious female replace a lost 
male it is not the 1st time I have seen a 2nd female help parents raise 
a brood.


Since the neighbor cat constantly lurks nearby, often let outside before 
daybreak, Wed. evening I took some 4 ft. high garden fencing & made a 
wide enclosure around the bottom of the clothesline pole. Thus far it 
has thwarted the cat & at the same time, encouraged the bluebirds to be 
more enthusiastic about checking out the birdbox on the opposite end of 
the clothesline arm. They also are defensive against the ever watchful, 
destructive male house sparrows.


Daughter, Becky, was working in the garden yesterday a.m. & spotted a 
pr. of brown thrashers feeding a youngster on the ground. We've been 
thrilled to have the thrashers coming to eat bird seed along our back 
sidewalk about 20' from the door. I laughed one day to see a thrasher 
grab hold of  the tail of a male house sparrow & pull as the sparrow 
tried to escape.


On Factory St. pond here in Union springs, NY, I saw no wood duck adults 
on Fri. but did see 2 ducklings swimming in the mung on the water. Hard 
to say whether the other 5 babies were caught by a turtle or a great 
blue heron. Most people, even birders, are unaware that GBHs find 
ducklings easy pickings.


A green heron was on the Mill pond last evening along with a GBH. Thurs. 
Becky & I found yet another new nest start for an osprey along Rte. 90 
south of Union Springs on a pole  almost across from Kings Corners Rd..


She was able to see the Garganey duck at Knox-Marcellus last evening but 
it swam out of view before I got to the scope. Mark Miller was there & 
also got to see the duck. Tomorrow is my 83rd BD so maybe I should try 
again for the Garganey. Belated BD wishes to Donna Scott who got to see 
it yesterday on her BD.


A (?) swan was on a muskrat mound at May's Pool with several cygnets. 
Also saw wood duck moms with babies. Didn't look for the red-headed 
woodpeckers as we ran out of light.


Fritzie



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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Observation

2016-05-09 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard

Hm, Carol,

I've wondered the last 2 or 3  yrs. why narrow strips of bark have been 
peeled from a cedar tree. Didn't look like where a deer
had rubbed its antlers on the tree yrs. ago. I noticed the missing bark 
when I went to get thin strips of bark for our son when he
was here teaching some people survival techniques including how to start 
fires. Thanks for the heads up!


Fritzie in Union Springs, NY

On 5/9/2016 7:16 AM, Carol Keeler wrote:

 A starling was peeling bark off my River Birch. I assume it was for 
nesting material. I've watched birds gather many nesting materials but 
never peeling bark.



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[cayugabirds-l] Cormorants on Frontenac Island ... dozens!!!

2016-05-04 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
At 11 a.m. I was quite dismayed to see many, many, many dozens of 
cormorants in the trees, on the rocks & in the waters of Frontenac 
Island in Cayuga Lake here at Union Springs. :-(:-(   The Bass 
tournament will take place here 23-24 June if the cormorants leave any 
fish! This is the first yr. I have ever seen them FILLING the trees on 
the island. Hopefully they will move on.

I'm presuming the scout who put the benches & cut out a path along the 
south side of Mill pond is the one who, a couple wks. ago, put up 3 duck 
boxes a few ft. from the path along the pond edge & not far from the 
benches. They are not adequately safe-guarded from predators. Another 
duck box has been put on a post along the south side of the path. I saw 
at least one bluebird box attached to a tree, with no predator shield.  
This was done by the scout seeking to get his Eagle Scout ranking & 
whose mother told me they knew nothing about birds.  Give them credit 
for wanting to do a good deed & following through with structures that 
look good. We'll have to wait a yr. to see if anything other than 
starlings build in the boxes. Stay tuned!

Several pairs of Buffleheads continue on Mill pond along with a Redhead 
& a Ring-necked pair.

Why is it the feral & neighborhood cats (from 2 & 3 blocks away) don't 
ever seem to catch any of the several doz. house sparrows? Yesterday I 
destroyed 5 of the 6 sparrow eggs in one of 6 bird boxes.

Fritzie

Union Springs



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[cayugabirds-l] Mating turkey vultures

2016-04-20 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
This morning atop a tall chimney on the Union Springs Academy campus, I 
observed a pair of copulating turkey vultures.


This is late but last Wed. a.m., (13th)  a golden eagle came flying 
right over our house. Had very good binocular views of all sides of the 
bird with the sun showing highlights.


Yesterday afternoon, Becky & I went out checking osprey nests around 
MNWR areas. We found 2 new nests on back roads between Port Byron & 
Montezuma.   As light began to fade she saw a new nest on a high tension 
power pole NE of Rte. 5 & 20 near Rte. 90. We stopped. Saw another nest. 
Thinking about roads in the areas to the north we went searching for the 
side road that would get us closer to the power poles. We hit paydirt. 
Found another nest. Went then to the next side road & parked under the 
power lines focusing on poles to the east & saw 3 nests in a row. As I 
looked up to the west, right beside me next to the road was a pole with 
a nest on it.


Becky keeps a list of all the nests we have found & whether they are 
occupied. Two yrs. ago when I decided to count nests between Union 
Springs & the refuge that I knew about I had only 17 nests. A few days 
later Becky & I found 6 more. Since then, with Candace Cornell eagerly 
on the trail we now have over 80 known nests!!! Not all are occupied, 
perhaps for various reasons such as birds may not have survived 
migration, but their nos. are climbing.


Fritzie
Union Springs


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[cayugabirds-l] Turkey vultures: Union Springs

2016-04-10 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
At 9:30 this a.m at least 24 TVs were in the field between Spring St. & 
Seminary St.  with wings
outstretched, facing the sun. They stayed for nearly an hour with one at 
a time eventually taking
off. I have seen them circling around the tall evergreens immediately 
west of where they sat &
wondered if they might be roosting there instead of down in the swamp 
behind the high school.


Factory St. pond has been hosting 3 to 5 prs. of wood ducks. Several 
buffle heads continue on Mill.


I have birdhouse holes covered to keep out house sparrows until I see 
bluebirds & tree swallows.


Daughter Becky, has been out checking osprey nests & finding a lot of 
them occupied & several new
NYSEG installed risers on utility poles. During our warm spell early 
last mo. a  man on Kozy Kove Rd.
put up a very tall pole with nice "regulation size" platform with a 
perch pole & "seeded" it with sticks.


Fritzie Blizzard

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[cayugabirds-l] Cayuga Osprey

2016-03-19 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
I saw no osprey in Cayuga nor did I see any in my travels today. A lady 
walking the Seneca Trail along the river took a picture of a male 
hovering above the platform (seen from the bridge on Rte. 5 & 20, just 
E. of MNWR entrance) & showed it to the lady at the desk. MNWR main 
drive will open on 1 April.


The bald eagle on the Mud Lock nest was moving around, maybe turning her 
eggs. An adult eagle was in a tree on Frontenac Island west of Union 
Springs. Maybe someday the trees there will grow large enough for an 
eagle to safely build a nest.


Many pintail ducks remain in the flooded field along Carncross Rd.. Nice 
to see May's  pool is flooded. Lots of muskrat houses will provide 
nesting sites for Canadas & ducks & maybe the rats will keep the 
cat-tail growth in check so birders can have better viewing.


Fritzie

Union Springs

On 3/19/2016 11:28 AM, Diane Morton wrote:
A perched osprey perched in a tree above the lake, village of 
Cayuga. Seen from rte 90 NW of blinking light.






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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs 12/28/15

2015-12-28 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
_Mill pond_ finally has feathers on it!

Redheads & Gadwalls ... at least 50 each
Green-winged teal  1 pair
Am. wigeon .. 2 pair
Bufflehead  10-12
Canada geese ... 12 +-
Mallards . 12 +-

_Factory St_. pond

Gadwall . one lonely pair.

_Overhead_, at home on east edge of the village:

Snow geese . 1,000 minimum ... heading south
Canadas .. 50+- ... going out to feed

Have had bluebirds, titmice, juncos, nuthatch, red-tail hawk, harrier,
red-bellied, downy & hairy woodpeckers, house & goldfinches,
A. robins, far too many house sparrows, 100s of crows & starlings,
night crawlers, flies & a honeybee.

Cold weather has finally set in so maybe things will be back to normal.
I scavenged a tossed C'mas tree, put it by a feeder on the clothesline
arm that birds have ignored & within about 15 min. a goldfinch was at
the feeder. Proof that birds prefer having "shelter" nearby.

Happy New Year, everyone. May your blessings be many.

Fritzie Blizzard

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[cayugabirds-l] Snow Geese and a magical moment in the sun

2015-12-20 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
And I saw hundreds heading south this afternoon about 3 p.m. just east 
of our house on the east edge of Union Springs village. These were the 
1st I've seen this _FALL_ ... ha, ha ... tomorrow is _WINTER_!

Fritzie

On 12/20/2015 7:08 PM, Sandy Wold wrote:
> Today, I found myself very fortunate to be looking up just as a 
> glorious flock of Snow Geese flying high, so high I could not hear 
> them, and flying southbound. Hundreds of geese glistened and sparkled 
> like jewels in the bright sun.  I savored this sight for less than two 
> minutes, until their angle of reflection changed. About 200-300 
> individuals danced through the sky in a loose but connected formation 
> of V's and v's which rippled about but stayed connected.  It was 
> nothing less than spectacular! Seen from Cascadilla Gorge, Fall Creek 
> this morning around 8:30AM.
> --


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[cayugabirds-l] Turkey Vulture with white wings

2015-11-21 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Good to know. Thanks, Ann. I've been wondering if anyone had seen it as 
I haven't seen any posts this yr..


Fritzie


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Re: [cayugabirds-l] Stewart Park birds, plus OT comments

2015-11-19 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Brief & to the point but I agree with Linda Tuyn. I wish I could write 
as well as has Dave.


Fritzie Blizzard.

On 11/19/2015 8:50 PM, Linda K Tuyn wrote:

I appreciate all the information you have posted, and find it eloquently 
stated.



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[cayugabirds-l] New Roots Cayuga wetland project

2015-11-11 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
When I first saw Dave Nutter's post about what the charter school 
teacher/students had in mind I was going to write almost what Phillip 
Bonn has written. All one has to do is look at May's pool to see how 
fast an area is overgrown & ruined by cattails. Think how quickly the 
Main pool has filled back in after the muskrats had all but wiped out 
cattails (on the surface) several yrs. ago. Now Tschache is showing 
signs of its invasiveness. I'm also noticing that Phragmites are being 
allowed to grow on the refuge.

Too many people get "ideas" that "sound good" but are anything BUT! To 
get them off their backs, those in authority who should know better, 
cave in  This is an issue, an idea, that needs more thought & more 
resistance from all of us birders.

Fritzie



On 11/10/2015 8:07 PM, Phillip Bonn wrote:
>
> Hello everyone,
>
> I usually don’t reply to posts but this one really caught my attention.
>
> Cattails are highly invasive and spread by underground runners as well 
> as by seed. They can and will grow in areas you don’t want them and 
> create monocultures…not good for a wetlands project.
>
> I suggest that they plant something more beneficial to wildlife; 
> Arrowhead is a good choice, ducks love eating the roots, pickerel weed 
> is another good choice as are bulrushes or sedges. All these are low 
> growing emergent plants that supply vegetative cover and food.
>
> The Plantsman has some sedges/rushes they could purchase or check with 
> the Lab of O, see what they have planted in the pond, maybe they would 
> be willing to give them some root stock.
>
> Ask a wildlife biologist for input on what to plant other than 
> cattails, they might as well plant Phragmities!
>
> Anything but cattails!
>
>


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[cayugabirds-l] Knox-Marcellus Sandhills & East Road house fire

2015-11-03 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Around the drive at MNWR were many people looking for the mystery 
"cinnamon" teal. No one we talked to had seen it. Frogs  & turtles were 
out enjoying the warm day. Becky helped a painted turtle across the 
road. A crow captured a leopard frog & flew away with it. We saw more 
frogs on the road across from Larue's & more crows watching for them. 
Love the harriers & juvenile bald eagles.


Has anyone noticed that what may be a new pool is being dug in the field 
toward the Thruway north from Eaton Marsh between Benning & the river? 
That is probably where the dirt is coming from to make the raised area 
across from the Thruway fence.


Today Becky & I saw no fewer than 43 sandhill cranes continuing at 
Knox-Marcellus. Time was short so we couldn't stay long.


What was of importance to us was the remains of the lone house on East 
Rd., once owned by my distant Mennonite cousin. It burnt to the ground 
either Fri. night or sometime Sat.. It was still smouldering this 
afternoon & we could feel the heat from it. Becky & I had been by it at 
almost dark on Fri. evening & saw voluminous clouds of black smoke 
coming from the chimney, something I'd never seen in all the yrs. I'd 
been by there or when I'd stopped to visit Janelle. The house was heated 
by a wood furnace in the basement.


We saw Jackie Bakker & Larue St.Clair at the entrance to the refuge but 
they had no news nor had they been by the house. The nearest fire dept. 
is in Montezuma village. Such a sad loss. Just wanted fellow birders to 
know when & what as that gray house has been a marker for a number of yrs..


Yesterday on Mill pond, we had many mallards, several prs. of buffles & 
2 female woodies. Today 2 teachers  had at least 20 middle school youths 
at the gazebo, looking at the buffle-heads.


Fritzie B.


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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs Mill Pond .. 1st Buffleheads

2015-10-27 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky, reported seeing 7 buffleheads  on her way home from 
work this afternoon. She is by the pond everyday & these are the first 
she's seen. Only thing I've seen has been mallards.


This was a bird filled day here today as I was working in the garden. 
Nothing spectacular but nice!
Many crows ... gleaning in the 100 acres of freshly mowed field. 
Probably finding lots of dead mice.

Cedar waxwings
Starlings
FOY House finches
Bluebirds again checking out their boxes
Robin
Downy
Canadas
Ring-billed gulls
Sharp-shinned hawk
Red-tailed hawk
Mourning doves
Chipping & House sparrows
Blue jays

Fritzie B.
Union Springs

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[cayugabirds-l] Meena's report re: TVs migrating

2015-10-04 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky & I went to Upper Saranac Lake on Thurs.. North of 
Oswego on Rte. 3, for at least 20 mi. we saw perhaps 200 TVs migrating 
on either side of the road. We didn't try to count but neither of us had 
ever seen so many. The sky seemed to be full, far as we looked. We saw 
none at Derby Hill, though. Saw only a few RB gulls there. Wind was 
fierce from the north all day.

The Adirondacks  was rather devoid of feathers ... a few crows, juncos & 
blue jays but only one each of loon, song sparrow, bald eagle & ring 
neck duck. Not one TV. Tree color was mostly green &  nowhere near peak 
color except as we traveled between Speculator & Hinckley Reservoir 
yesterday on our way home. If I hadn't seen a recent post about how LOW 
the water is there, I would have been shocked beyond what I was. 
Hinckley has always been a favorite stopping spot for us. No more. The 
beauty is only a memory. Sad that the waters have been drawn down so 
far. We usually could depend on seeing loons there. Saw only a lone, 
scrawny RB gull.

Here at home this evening, bluebirds & a downy were checking out my bird 
boxes. They both roost in the boxes in fall & winter. Today we saw 2 
flocks of Canadas flying very high, heading north!!

Fritzie,
Union Springs

On 10/4/2015 3:12 PM, Meena Madhav Haribal wrote:
> So far 34


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[cayugabirds-l] Mill pond path ... Union Springs

2015-09-29 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Today I walked along the new "path" along the south side of Mill pond. 
Needless to say, it left me feeling angry that the scout's mother, who 
admitted to me that she knew next to nothing about birds & their needs, 
pushed through their (her) agenda of making the path, DESPITE all the 
letters you caring, knowledgeable birders wrote. Letters that were 
polite, filled with suggests & reasons why the path should not be there.

This was a mother pushing her shy son into something she thought he/they 
could do so he could become an Eagle Scout. I understand ...  it's hard 
to find projects that would earn a merit badge. (The roofless, gazebo 
with no seats was one.)

  I don't know who on the village board gave the final approval or if 
liability has been considered. I do know that the former mayor who 
recently resigned, was ready to give immediate approval at that 1st 
meeting after only the _barest_ of plans were presented. Indeed, there 
were no _real_ plans presented at the meeting I attended. It was _just a 
proposal_ with the boy to give more thorough plans at a future date as 
to what part the village would play & what the boy was to do. Oh, & he 
proposed erecting a sign about the birds that stop there.

So folks, today I did a slow boil as I walked the rough path which still 
needs a LOT of clearing, leveling, digging out stumps & putting in wood 
chips. The path is as close as 5' from the water (with no bushes to hide 
walkers) & as far as 20'. Beware, in places there is poison ivy 
underfoot & along the path. A beaver has dropped a tree into the water. 
I was happy to see a catbird in bushes between me & the water. ALL the 
ducks were at the NE area of the pond. Not unusual but what will it be 
like when the pond is full? Futile question.

Thank you all who tried, as did I, to keep the pond edge & the pond as a 
safe haven & home for "our" birds.

Fritzie    24 yrs. here, loving & enjoying the birds of Union Springs.



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[cayugabirds-l] Willet

2015-08-23 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter Becky  I saw the Willet at Larue's late Friday afternoon. 
Several other birders were there looking at it but I didn't have time to 
find out who they were.


We enjoyed the beauty of the 20 Caspian terns at Eaton Marsh where we 
also saw 2 great egrets  several common gallinule preening at the edge 
of the reeds.


Fritzie Blizzard
Union Springs

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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs: N rough-winged swallow

2015-06-18 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Normal level of Cayuga Lake is 382 ft. but on Mon. I read that it was at 
384 ft.. The underside of the docks here at Frontenac Park have been 
used for yrs. by the rough-wings for nesting. I watched several swallows 
sitting on, or flying over the docks on Mon. a.m.. Perhaps they were the 
males with the females caught in the nests as the water rose  no way to 
escape since the water was several inches above the bottom of the docks. 
On Tues. the level was even higher.

The N. rough-wings also nest in the cinder block holes of the park 
bathhouse.

We're once again enjoying the flying cigars ... chimney swifts flying 
over the Union Springs Academy grounds.

Fritzie

On 6/17/2015, Suan Yong wrote:

I was at RH Treman SP Sunday afternoon watching a northern rough-winged 
swallow fly in and out of one of the holes in the stone wall holding up 
the changing room plateau, just downstream from the swimming area. Last 
year there was an occupied hole high in the wall, just a few feet from 
the top (10 feet above water level?). This year's hole was much lower, 
probably five feet above water level. Based on some of the flash flood 
footage from youtube, it's very likely this nest hole got inundated.

Suan

On Jun 17, 2015, @ Elm Beach, Ellen Haith  wrote:

With a rise of a couple of inches in the lake level at this site, the 
Northern Rough-Winged Swallow has decided that, after all, she would 
prefer to nest under the UPPER section of the dock!


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[cayugabirds-l] Red-headed woodpecker 3.4 mi. from Union Springs

2015-05-20 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Daughter, Becky arrived home from work about 4:30  p.m. to the flash of 
clearly defined, bright black  white color in her trees on Ridge Rd. 
out of Union Springs. Grabbing her binox from her car she soon found the 
bird also had a bright red head!


She called me as she was taking pix  listening to its loud call. 
Needless to say, she was thrilled. Kathy Strickland lives not too far 
away  she will no doubt try to re-find it when she gets home. Both 
Kathy  Becky are in the basin so a happy find for Becky, esp. since 
she saw it BEFORE going out to mow her lawn. We're hoping it will find a 
nesting hole  a mate in that area. Her pix leave NO doubt about the ID.


Fritzie
Union Springs

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[cayugabirds-l] Kingfisher-gull squabble

2015-05-06 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
At Myers Park, flying down Salmon Creek at 5:30 this evening was a 
kingfisher with a Ring-billed gull in hot pursuit. The kingfisher flew 
into a tree where the gull couldn't follow. It took a swift turn  came 
back towards the tree, joined by another gull. The kingfisher stayed 
put,  well out of reach  the gulls went back upstream to sit on a log. 
Wonder what caused such behavior?


On another note ..

Ten min. or less after I put two mouse traps side by side inside the 
bluebird box on the east clothesline arm on Mon., I caught the miserable 
killer, male house sparrow. He had already destroyed at least one 
bluebird egg in another box  was a constant plague to the tree swallows 
in the west clothesline box to the point that they seemed about to 
abandon the nest. He had no mate but was making sure no other birds 
could use the box he was in. I feel sure he would have destroyed the 
eggs or killed the swallow mom  babies just because that's his nature.


Needless to say, he won't be destroying anymore eggs or killing anymore 
moms or babies. I am only 30 ft. from the boxes so can keep close watch. 
Had seen the male going in  out. No other bird had been near for 
several days so rather than struggle to put the commercial bird trap 
inside on the door I used mouse traps, deciding to watch but to remove 
them when I had to go elsewhere.


Another pr. of sparrows had built in another box. On Mon. I removed 2 of 
the 3 eggs there. Will soon check on the box to continue to remove all 
but one egg or to put 2 mousetraps in that box. Yes, it seems mean  
heartless but when you see as many destroyed eggs  dead babies  moms 
as I have, you decide to take drastic measures against invasives. The 
male sparrows go into the boxes to destroy the eggs or to peck the moms 
 babies to death. It's a pitiful sight to see their scarred heads.


Only one male bufflehead duck remains on Mill pond in Union Springs. 
Seems late. Saw the eagle on the new Aurora nest this evening.


Fritzie.



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[cayugabirds-l] Chimney swifts in Union Springs!!

2015-04-30 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
4/30/15:  Here in Union Springs at 2 p.m. the first 4 chittering 
cigars flew overhead  circled down to the tall chimney on the girl's 
dorm. Becky was here  suddenly at least a doz. were overhead. :-) I 
hope I am wrong  that they make the chimney their summer home but 
somehow I felt they were migrating  :'( Come back, pretty pretties!


Mama Bluebird is sitting on eggs in a box up on the hump.  Tree 
swallows have claimed John's new birdbox on the west end of the 
clothesline arm  they let us get about 4 ft. from them, chittering as 
we talk softly to them. They have had a lot of fun with the white 
feathers I put out on the ground for them.


The male house sparrow guards the box on the east end even tho' he 
hasn't yet found a mate. Don't know what's in the other 3 boxes. Surely 
the wrens will claim their old house. Crows are in a tree in the  
hedgerow. Robins are in a spruce by the garage. Haven't discovered where 
the chickadees, cardinals, doves  orioles are yet.


Enjoying spring!!

Fritzie
**
On 4/30/2015 12:31 PM, Joshua Snodgrass wrote:

FOY chimney swifts at 12:20pm. Chittering boomerangs flying over my yard


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[cayugabirds-l] Varied Thrush in Irondequoit, NY

2015-04-29 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
On Mon., 4/27/15, Kathy Strickland  I played hookey  journeyed to the 
Rochester suburb of Irondequoit to look  for the female Varied Thrush. 
After about 15 min., thanks to the quick eye of Jim Tarolli of 
Baldwinsville, we got to see it, a lifer for the three of us!


Several people had been waiting quite a while (one woman for over an 
hr.) with no luck so we felt quite privileged to see it so soon after 
arriving. Jim got a really good picture of it in a tree overhead  I am 
pleased that he forwarded a copy to me.


Dave Wheeler was there with Jim but I don't know if he was as fortunate. 
Dave has been tallying birds at Derby Hill this spring, certainly a 
cold, dismal  often boring,  perhaps thankless, job ... until migrants 
began coming through in respectful numbers.


The home owner where the Thrush was seen has been very gracious to the 
many eager birders who came to her home, even inviting them to sit in 
deck chairs on her back porch. She apparently doesn't own binoculars so 
some appreciative folks are donating money to have a birder get a pair 
for her as thanks for her kindness. :-)


At MNWR visitor's center  later at Sodus on the break wall birding was 
rather poor but at both places we saw always beautiful Caspian Terns. 
Watching the many gulls just floating in the air always makes us wish 
we could fly as they do, seemingly without a care, but Kathy then 
mentioned how tough life really is for birds that have to seek food each 
day, all day, to survive.


Here in Union Springs, my daughter Becky spotted a brand new osprey nest 
at Frontenac Harbor last wk., easily seen from the west end of Basin 
St.. Hopefully the birds will not be disturbed by all the activity that 
goes on by the many boaters at the marina all summer.


Fritzie

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[cayugabirds-l] Loons, no. Cormorants, yes at Mud Lock

2015-04-23 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
John  I went to Frontenac Park about 1 p.m. today. I counted 17 
cormorants just south of the island  no fewer than 20 more /within 
sight/  south towards Carr's Cove. John had seen more fly that way as I 
counted the ones at the island  they no doubt were hidden behind the 
point. I came home deliberately to get my scope to be sure they were 
cormorants  not loons. The slight uplift of the bills, heads held well 
out of the water  the fact that they were so close together indicated 
to me that they were cormorants. With the scope  seeing the color of 
their bills  I confirmed that they were not loons.

Becky  I went north, leaving her place about 2:45 p.m., to check on  
count osprey nests. An exceptionally large flock of cormorants, which 
she estimated to be at least 100, lifted from the lake in the area south 
of Harris Park in Cayuga  flew north. We didn't watch to see where they 
went.

Last Fri., 17th, at the Lock, I saw one lone loon floating about 200 
yards from the actual dam. It was the ONLY bird in the area that day 
except for an eagle on the nest.

Fritzie
Union Springs



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[cayugabirds-l] Osprey and other spring arrival dates

2015-04-03 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
The e-mail below was sent by Matt Medler 7 yrs. ago in response to a 
question asked by Linda Van Buskirk. With numerous folks mentioning 
osprey sightings, it seems like an informative e-mail to re-send. For 
you newbies in the hobby, Matt Medler was always someone who would 
find an answer to a dumb or puzzling question ... indeed a wonderful, 
patient, MUCH appreciated help to inexperienced birders. We have MANY 
people in the hobby who are quick to help  I thank them.

While this osprey information was sent in March 2008 it seems relevant 
to 2015 as some of us have become aware of the increasing numbers of 
ospreys  nests in the Cayuga Basin. We're thankful that Robyn Bailey, 
her husband  NYSEG have worked together to have protected, elevated 
nesting platforms placed securely atop utility poles.

After my report of finding about 18 or 20 nests here at the north end of 
Cayuga Lake last spring, Candace Cornell *_cec222@gmail.com_* was given 
the opportunity to be the official record keeper. I would ask that all 
osprey sightings be posted, giving exact locations of nests so Candace 
can document them. She would appreciate if any birder can keep track of 
nests they see  record when birds,  how many, hatch. And down the 
line, when they fledge. She can give more information to those desiring it.

Matt, if I failed to see it  you have updated this information, please 
post it (again).

Fritzie, Union Springs

Subject:Osprey and other spring arrival dates
Date:   Thu, 27 Mar 2008 14:16:56 -0400
From:   Matthew Medler m...@cornell.edu






Hi Linda and All,

Information on Osprey and other arrival dates for the Cayuga Lake Basin 
can be found at the Cayuga Bird Club web site at: 
_http://www.birds.cornell.edu/cayugabirdclub/firstrecords.htm_

In addition to First Records lists for 1998 to 2008, this page also 
includes two different arrival lists. The first is a list of historical 
arrival dates, prepared by Dr. Charles Smith based on data from 1903 to 
1993. The second is a list of arrival dates that I prepared based on 
Basin sightings from 1999 to 2004. I plan to update this second list 
with ten-year averages after this spring migration.

The average arrival date for Osprey on Dr. Smith's list is April 12. 
During the past decade, the arrival date for Osprey has been about two 
and a half weeks earlier. The median arrival date on the list that I 
compiled for 1999-2004 is March 26, and this is also the median date in 
looking at records from 1998 to 2007. The arrival date for Osprey was 
amazingly consistent during those ten years, with 9 of the 10 records 
coming in a six day span (March 23 to March 28).

John and Fritzie Blizzard's sighting on March 16 this year (March 17 for 
a non-leap year) is notably early, even compared with the past ten 
years. It is interesting to see that the next sighting of the species 
didn't come until ... March 26 (March 27 for a non-leap year).

Good birding, Matt Medler
Niskayuna

Linda P Van Buskirk wrote: What's the current accepted date of osprey 
arrival? I remember some discussion last year, but not the specific date 
that they were expected to arrive. Linda


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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs ... 1st osprey 4/2/15

2015-04-02 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Becky was leaving for home at 3:15 p.m. when she came running back to 
say an osprey was atop a pole light just below the house. Yaaa Ho 
 YES!!! It was eating a large fish. I didn't see our osprey across 
the field on the platform yet today but now will watch. Also will soon 
check the other 10+ nests in our area.


Fritzie

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[cayugabirds-l] Montezuma Wildlife Drive is open.

2015-04-01 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard

   I received this today because I am a member of Friends of MWC. 
Figured other   birders would like to be updated.
  Returning from Dryden this afternoon I saw an eagle on the Aurora, NY 
nest  one in an adjacent tree. Didn't have my scope so couldn't check 
on the Great Gully farm nest in the tree along the lake shore.
In a field on the west side of Rte. 326 across from Sevior Rd. between 
Union Springs  Half Acre I saw several thousand Snow geese on the 
ground  swirling in the air.

Fritzie, Union Springs, NY where gas is $2.25.9


Date:   Wed, 01 Apr 2015 21:02:06 +


Reply-To:   Friends of the Montezuma Wetlands Complex 
friendsofmontez...@gmail.com





Montezuma Wildlife Drive is open.


(Do Not Reply to this email. See Contact info below.)

The Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge Wildlife Drive is scheduled to 
open today, April 1. The Drive will accommodate 2-WAY TRAFFIC up to the 
Benning Marsh area, until road conditions improve to allow for safe 
passage down the rest of the route.

The Mail Pool has small pockets of open water where some ducks are 
gathering. Bald eagles have been busy, as well; a look from the visitor 
center tower may get you a glimpse. Mud Lock remains a great place to 
spot the eagles at their nest and to see a number of ducks, geese and 
swans. Please follow State Route 90 to the Lock, rather than passing on 
River Road. Visit East Road, off of State Route 89, to view 
Knox-Marsellus Marsh (a scope is handy). Ducks, geese, swans, and even 
sandhill cranes are likely visitors.

For up-to-date information, call the refuge office at 315/568-5987.

'The Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge Wildlife Drive is scheduled to 
open tomorrow, April 1. The Drive will accommodate 2-WAY TRAFFIC up to 
the Benning Marsh area, until road conditions improve to allow for safe 
passage down the rest of the route. The Mail Pool has small pockets of 
open water where some ducks are gathering. Bald eagles have been busy, 
as well; a look from the visitor center tower may get you a glimpse. Mud 
Lock remains a great place to spot the eagles at their nest and to see a 
number of ducks, geese and swans. Please follow State Route 90 to the 
Lock, rather than passing on River Road. Visit East Road, off of State 
Route 89, to view Knox-Marsellus Marsh (a scope is handy). Ducks, geese, 
swans, and even sandhill cranes are likely visitors. For up-to-date 
information, call the refuge office at 315/568-5987.' 
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[cayugabirds-l] Chipping sparrows: Union Springs

2015-03-27 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
On Wed. 25 Mar. 2015 Becky Sewell, my daughter, saw 2 CHIPPING SPARROWS 
under her feeders. She is 3.5 mi. east of Union Springs, inside the 
Basin  has far more varieties of feeder birds than I do.

I've had a SONG SPARROW under my feeders since 26 Mar.. I saw one on 18 
Jan. but didn't try to keep track of it or other birds because of high 
winds/weather/snow, etc.. A Bluebird was checking out my bird boxes on 
the 26th.

On 23 Mar. when I went to look at the Snowy owl between Aurora  King 
Ferry, I looked at the new BALD EAGLE nest by the creek at the south 
edge of Aurora at the corner of Rte. 90  Poplar Ridge Rd.  saw the 
white head sticking up. The nest at Great Gully farm is too far away for 
me to see with binox.

Seems that part of our resident Turkey Vultures have returned. Saw the 
1st ones on 24 Mar.. Still don't know where they roost. Also on the 24th 
I found a Canada goose with a large white elongated cap atop its head 
 the chin strap was shorter  more narrow than normal. Got Becky  she 
took pix  posted them on her Facebook page.

Becky has, for over a wk., seen  taken pictures of a male RED-NECKED 
GREBE on Mill Pond here in Union Springs. I saw it today now that the 
vast numbers of Canadas weren't there. A COOT joined the Mallards, 
Buffles  Redheads today. Pond outlets along Frontenac Park have many 
swans, ducks  geese. Lake ice is still down to Farley's but with the 
thaw  rain, water is now atop the ice.

Snows  Canadas were late getting into the air today. Finally about 11 
a.m. great flocks of them headed out to feed  at 4 p.m. I saw many in 
fields east of us. Seems most any farm fields east of Rte. 90 between 
King Ferry  Mud Lock, as well as all over MNWR lands, people can find 
geese. Also saw many in fields going down 89. Snows are still here in 
great nos..

No ospreys here in Union Springs, yet, that I've seen.

Fritzie



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Re:[cayugabirds-l] Snowy Owl, Location/Correction/ NOT Lake Road, Cayuga

2015-03-23 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Laura Stenzler  my daughter, Becky, are_just south of Pumpkin Hill 
Bistro_ (/south of Aurora/) looking at the owl sitting atop a snow drift 
in the field on the_west side of Rte. 90_. The co-ordinates given below 
are correct BUT the location Cayuga, NY is not.

Becky said a row of spruce trees is just south of the  apple orchard  
the owl is between the spruces  Lake Rd. that goes down to Long Point SP.

Hope this clarifies the  location for anyone mystified by Lake Rd. 
fields, Cayuga since there is no Lake _ROAD_ in Cayuga  no fields are 
along Lake St. in Cayuga.

Becky said the owl is easily seen from Rte. 90 but the west wind is 
really bitter.

Fritzie

On 3/23/2015 12:40 PM, Jay McGowan wrote:
 Snowy Owl (Bubo scandiacus) (1)
 - Reported Mar 23, 2015 by Barry Bermudez
 - Lake Road fields, Cayuga, New York
 - Map: 
 http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8t=pz=13q=42.7105226,-76.6885614ll=42.7105226,-76.6885614
 - Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S22484819
 - Comments: Large white owl, round head with some breast barring 
 observed on the ground within a large field. Good looks from the road.


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[cayugabirds-l] Along Cayuga west shore MNWR

2015-03-20 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard









20 March 2015

Daughter Becky  I played hooky on Thurs. afternoon after she came from 
work. Since Gary K. mentioned an outing to MNWR for Sat., I went to see 
if the situation there had changed in the last wk. NOPE!!! All iced over 
 snow on top. Visitor's center won't be open until 1 April  the drive 
may not be open then unless we get a real heat wave to melt the ice  
dry the mud. Potholes in the drive along the Thruway were terrible when 
I was there late in the fall.

I have not been south of Union Springs for several wks. so don't know 
what the situation is.

Various ducks, swans  geese are at Factory St.  Mill Pond outlets 
along the lake north  south of Frontenac Park. Both Union Springs ponds 
have a few ducks  Canadas. A GBH has been hanging out at Factory outlet.

 From south of Harris Park (village of Cayuga, off Lake St.), where we 
saw coots, to Mud Lock are _great _nos. of ducks, geese  swans. The 
eagle was on the Lock tree nest  the mate was soaring overhead. The 
channel from the RR bridge to the Lock has widened greatly in the last 
wk.  is loaded with birds in the water  on the ice. A few ducks  
Canadas are on the Seneca R. north of the Lock.

We went _down 89_ to Taughannock with side trips to_Elm Beach Rd_., 
_Wyers Rd_. to Sheldrake. The Creamery wasn't open until 5 p.m. so we 
didn't get to stop to celebrate with some soft ice cream. Taughannock 
Falls has dirty gray ice with lots of water coming over the crest. Oh, 
yes, a dead rabbit was in the middle of the road going down the hill 
towards Taughannock. The Red-tailed Hawk that stopped to feed on the 
carcass had been hit by a car  laid in the gutter. I thought it was an 
owl 'til Becky picked it up.

Besides those in the air  fields, thousands of Canadas, snows  ducks 
are on the lake, the most I've ever seen along the west shore. We tried 
to make a Common merganser into a loon but failed. :-( Saw all 3 mergs 
in various places. At Dean's Cove, Sheldrake  all along we were amazed 
at the nos. of C  RB mergs..

North  South of Dean's Cove  out across the lake towards Aurora were 
thousands of Snows in tight rafts or strung out in long lines. Loved the 
noise.

I swung back by Martin Rd.  Seneca Falls airport. Found no Snowy owl 
but in a puddle in a corn field at the end of Seybolt Rd. we found 2 
prs. of N. Pintails ... our only ones for the day. Saw killdeer at the 
airport construction site  many Horned Larks along country roads but no 
Snow buntings.  Van Cleef Lake in S. Falls is still solid ice.

Hope Sat. turns out better than usual for any takers for the birding 
jaunt. Our fine snow that began at 9:15 a.m. has mostly melted with 
temps. in the high 30s. Wind has been strong from the SSW all day.

Shurfine in Union Springs usually has hot drinks by the front window. 
Subs  snack foods are available. No bathrooms. Pizza shop next door may 
have them. I don't know what's available at the gas station.

Fritzie Blizzard





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[cayugabirds-l] Male Harlequin at Oswego today, 3/9/15

2015-03-09 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
*_THE male __H__arlequin!!_ Our treat for today. Lifers for daughter, 
Becky  me, tho' 17 yrs. ago I had seen a female at Sodus. Becky was 
thrilled because she has thought Woodies  Common mergansers are the 
most colorful of the ducks.  Beautiful day to be out. Less snow in 
Oswego than in Union Springs but Lake Ontario was almost all solid ice 
as far as we could see, with not a visible bird out over the lake*!*All 
roads  streets were basically dry.*

*On the Oswego River were C  RB Mergansers, Scaup, (G), Long-tails, 
Buffles, Golden-eye, White-winged (?) Scoter, Ring-billed  Gbb gulls. 
We saw perhaps 10 dead birds out on Oswego River ice. Most seemed to be 
Common mergansers. We didn't have time to go up river to the post office 
area to view the many ducks there.

We were on the slushy walkway under the RR walkway bridge (between the 
W. Utica St. bridge  the one on Rte 104) when I saw what looked like a 
piece of flotsam rapidly floating down river between shore  the first 
RR bridge support. Becky quickly yelled that it was the Harlequin  
shoved her binox in my hands. It disappeared but then showed up on the 
far side of the river with some Golden-eye where it stayed a few minutes 
before flying back up river to the rapids to float back down again  
again as many other ducks were doing.

Hope many of you will try to see this beautiful bird. The best place to 
access the pathway is to park in the free parking area, maybe behind 
Jreck sub shop  walk upstream along the pathway until you get to the RR 
walkway  W. Utica St. bridges. You can't access the pathway right down 
next to the river as the snow hasn't been cleared but the upper pathway 
behind the businesses, while slushy, is fine. Neither can you access the 
pathway from the W. Utica St. or RR walkway bridges as the stairways 
there have not been cleared of snow.

Fritzie, happy to see the snow melting, Blizzard
*




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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs: Squirrel Notodric mange

2015-02-26 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
I've found pictures on-line with squirrels, primarily grays, looking 
like the one I have at my feeders. The*Notodric* mange supposedly is 
squirrel specific  doesn't seem to cause the misery that Sarcoptic 
mange does in other animals. Depending on health of the squirrel  if it 
can survive the winter weather, they can recover!

This squirrel is not a bit concerned about me trying to chase it from 
the squirrel-proof feeders. I think squirrels  pigs should be in the 
same class.

Fritzie

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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs Bluebirds

2015-02-25 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard

Union Springs, NY

Five (5) Bluebirds flew across our back yard yesterday. Eight (8) 
goldfinches fought over niger feeder perches. Our family of 7 crows 
continues but an extra  one was with them this a.m.. They stop by 
several times each day to see if any morsels of bird seed was missed. 
Snow is too deep for me to get up to the feeders. Becky waded in hip 
deep snow to fill the feeders on Sunday. This a.m. a squirrel, minus all 
its fur from just behind its ears to its arm pits was on the hanging 
feeders on the hill  down here at the house. Skin was wrinkled looking 
 certainly had to be very cold in the nasty wind. Didn't even think to 
try to get a picture of it. Can't imagine what might have caused such 
complete fur loss.


Water level on Factory St. pond has suddenly dropped close to two ft. 
below what it's been for several wks..
Seven swans continue on Mill pond along with the ice shelf on the west 
side.


As pertaining to turkey vultures: Usually they can find deer carcasses 
along roads or in fields but I haven't even seen a deer or a track since 
early Jan.. I saw a TV here a couple wks. ago. Goose nos. are way down 
now that fields are so deeply covered with snow.


Fritzie

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[cayugabirds-l] Factory pond, Union Springs, NY

2015-02-13 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Some of you might want to see Factory pond. Beaver has felled 2 fair 
sized trees along the south side. One has fallen almost entirely into 
the water. The other is about 1/2 in the water. Geese  ducks have never 
been able to swim where they are now. Gets more interesting each day.


When at the P.O. at 2 p.m. I saw a bald eagle fly over the village , 
once again, fly to the WSW out to the lake. Men are ice fishing out near 
Frontenac Island so if I wasn't so old, I'd go for a walk to the island 
again. Much easier when some snow is underfoot. Walking on bare ice is 
nearly impossible. Some 22 yrs. ago a group from our church walked, 
slid, danced our way to the island. Kathy Strickland's son wisely had 
brought his ice skates  had no problem.


Beautiful, sunny, VERY crisp, windy day here. Must remember to stop at 
Mud Lock  Aurora Bay soon to check the eagle nests. The one at Great 
Gully may be a mite too far away.


Fritzie  (yes, it really is) ... Blizzard

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[cayugabirds-l] bird feeders and Hemlock Woolly Adelgid

2015-02-08 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Hi Diana,

Was the note anonymously hand written or was it an official  DEC or Ag 
Dept. notification?  I would be very inclined to call Cornell 
Co-operative Extension or a local AUTHORITY about birds _in winter_. 
Birds*ARE* known carriers but so is the wind  so are small  large 
mammals  rodents. I did see one Dept. of AG site that suggested that 
bird feeders be moved away from hemlocks. No matter what we do, human 
damaged nature will take it's course.

Fritzie



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[cayugabirds-l] Mill Pond, Union Springs

2015-02-06 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Along with 5 other adults   one juvenile is a neck-banded Tundra Swan 
on Mill Pond. The band is turned in such a way that I couldn't see the 
number. Perhaps someone with a good scope can see it  post their 
findings. The swans have been on the pond for a couple wks..

Gadwall continue on both ponds along with mallards, wigeon  buffles. 
Haven't taken time to look for the g-w teal. About three +- wks. ago I 
saw traps along the east shore of Cayuga Lake, north of Aurora with good 
nos. of black ducks inside  out, awaiting banding. This was the most 
blacks I've seen there for probably 8 yrs..

Factory St. pond water level, thanks to a busy beaver, is higher than I 
have ever seen it, with geese  ducks actually able to swim above the 
grassy area that is lawn in summer. I hope the rocks at the overflow are 
well anchored, otherwise, when that water gets high enough  washes away 
the dirt fill along the rocks, the pond will be pretty well drained.

Gas at Byrne in Auburn was $2.13.9 yesterday. The former Union Springs 
Cayuga Nation _Lakeside Trading_ gas station is now called Union Springs 
Mart. Gas is priced 5 cents higher than in Auburn. It's getting _very_ 
_little_ business.

Fritzie B.



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[cayugabirds-l] Song Sparrow

2015-01-19 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard

Union Springs: 19 Jan. 2015.

Confirmed this a.m. that the bird I saw yesterday afternoon in dim light 
under one of our cedar trees was indeed a SONG SPARROW, my FOY.
As I was watching the song sparrow a Cooper's hawk came sweeping by on 
its way to the stand of spruces where the the little birds hide out. It 
has been patrolling quite regularly.


Deer came again about 1 a.m. to raid a feeder that is no longer where 
they can bump it to get sunflower seeds. At least one skunk comes to get 
seed droppings. If deer, squirrels, possums, racoons, rabbits, chucks  
rodents were as useful as skunks, I wouldn't resent their presence. As 
it is, they aren't welcome!!!


35 deg.  very windy.

Fritzie

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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs: Bald eagles, ducks, GBH

2015-01-12 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
_At 2 p.m. today._   12 Jan. 2015.
_
Mill pond_: mallards, redheads, buffles  1 gw teal.
_Factory St. pond_; gadwalls, buffles.
_Factory St. pond outlet_: mallards  2 great blue herons.
_Frontenac Park views towards the island:_ thousands of ducks ... 
redheads  ???
Had no scope  foggy mist was too thick to see anything much with binox 
other than ducks,  geese  gulls but the water along the ice edge was black.
_Frontenac Island:_ 2 adult bald eagles in the trees.
_Overhead in the village_: 1harrier  hundreds of Canadas.

I drove by the gambling place today. The cigarette/tobacco sign had been 
removed  I saw no activity around the trailer where tobacco was being 
sold last Fri.. No vehicles were tying up traffic so I assume some 
authority put an end to the sales there. Hopefully that is the end of 
the bad traffic situation there.

Fritzie



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[cayugabirds-l] Union Springs Mill Pond, Scout Project

2014-12-18 Thread John and Fritzie Blizzard
Birding friends,

Below is an e-mail from the mother of the Scout about whom I wrote that 
wanted to make a path along the south side of Mill Pond.  I have sent 
her copies of e-mails I've received. Today I sent her the last of the 
many I've received over the last few weeks  this is her reply. Now you 
must step in  try to help him. At 81, with an 84 yr.old husband not in 
the best of health, I can't do more to lead this project but I'll try to 
be the go-between, if necessary. I have deliberately not revealed _ANY_ 
e-addresses so as to protect everyone.

I am proud of all of you who took time  effort to write to me, the 
mayor  village trustees. Kathy has said she  her son are open to 
suggestions///_OR_/ to abandoning the proposal all together. Dave Nutter 
has offered to help, busy as he is. I will try to talk to Kathy soon but 
perhaps not 'til after after Christmas. In the meantime, put on your 
thinking caps  if you are visiting Union Springs, look at the pond 
surroundings near the street  try to picture what might be a project 
the lad could do. He also will need to be looking at things in a 
different light with time to plan  present findings to the village board.

Thanks to you all for your input. May you all have a very merry, birdy 
Christmas.

Fritzie Blizzard ( no, I didn't order snow for Christmas!) ;)


Date:   Thu, 18 Dec 2014 16:21:12 -0500
From:   Kathleen Aguilar






Hi Fritzie,

  I have been receiving your emails and reading all the notes written by 
your fellow bird enthusiasts. I appreciate their graciousness in 
acknowledging my son's good intentions. I totally understand their 
worries about a path around the pond and how it might negatively affect 
the bird life on the Mill Pond.

I was hoping maybe we could meet the next time you have a meeting and we 
could talk.

Several letters had suggestions of some projects that would support bird 
watching on the Mill pond (blinds, kiosk...) We are VERY open to 
suggestions to adjust our original proposal (or even abandon it 
altogether).

It seems like maybe we could combine my son's enthusiasm to do a service 
project for his hometown with the birding community's knowledge to 
produce something that would enhance the bird life on the pond and the 
community as well. With the Village Board's blessing, maybe we could 
design something new that accomplished both goals.  :)

Kathy





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