Howard County Bird Club

A Chapter of the Maryland Ornithological Society (MOS)


Field Trip: Saturday, December 03, 2011

Trip Leader: Arnold, Stan

Date of Trip: Saturday, December 03, 2011

Location: Blackwater NWR

Details: Meeting time: 6:00 a.m.; first stop: 7:45 a.m. (Cambridge Visitor Center); end time: 5:00 p.m. at Wharf Road. Places visited: Cambridge waterfront, Blackwater NWR wildlife loop, BNWR Tubman Trail; Cedar Creek Road; Wharf Rd.

Number on trip: 15

Cambridge Waterfront. We stopped at the Cambridge Visitor Center, drove through the nearby waterfront park, then stopped at Oakley St. Few ducks, likely due to the mild weather.

  • Snow Goose 60
  • Canada Goose 28
  • American Wigeon 2
  • Mallard 8
  • Long-tailed Duck 2
  • Bufflehead 15
  • Common Goldeneye 4
  • Common Loon 2
  • Double-crested Cormorant 20
  • Black Vulture 16
  • Turkey Vulture 2
  • Laughing Gull 1
  • Ring-billed Gull 75
  • Herring Gull 25
  • Great Black-backed Gull 150
  • Rock Pigeon 6
  • Northern Mockingbird 1
  • Song Sparrow 2

Blackwater NWR. Weather was mild and pleasant with temp in 40s and 50s. We began along Key Wallace Drive outside refuge, stopped at visitor center, hiked the Marsh Edge Trail, then drove the entire wildlife loop, finishing back at the visitor center for lunch. Highlights were a very late Osprey and an American White Pelican.

  • Canada Goose 1250
  • American Black Duck 9
  • Mallard 140
  • Northern Shoveler 5
  • Northern Pintail 250
  • Double-crested Cormorant 4
  • American White Pelican 1
  • Great Blue Heron 8
  • Black Vulture 2
  • Turkey Vulture 12
  • Osprey 1 (flew over the parking area at the Marsh Edge Tr4ail, and then seen over the open water; quite late in the season)
  • Bald Eagle 18
  • Northern Harrier 4
  • Red-tailed Hawk 4
  • American Kestrel 1 (along Maple Dam Road before getting to the refuge)
  • American Coot 6
  • Killdeer 25
  • Greater Yellowlegs 2
  • Dunlin 5
  • Ring-billed Gull 21
  • Forster's Tern 2 (one along wildlife loop; the other just outside refuge on Key Wallace Dr)
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker 2
  • Downy Woodpecker 2
  • Fish Crow 25
  • Horned Lark 2 (along Key Wallace Drive, before entering refuge)
  • Tree Swallow 9
  • Pileated Woodpecker 2 (seen by only a couple folks; very uncommon here)
  • Blue Jay 1 (heard by a few at Marsh Edge parking lot)
  • American Crow 1
  • Carolina Chickadee 4
  • Tufted Titmouse 2
  • Brown-headed Nuthatch 14
  • Brown Creeper 4
  • Carolina Wren 2
  • Golden-crowned Kinglet 8
  • Ruby-crowned Kinglet 2
  • Eastern Bluebird 6
  • American Robin 7
  • Northern Mockingbird 2
  • European Starling 30
  • Cedar Waxwing 9
  • Yellow-rumped Warbler 1
  • Song Sparrow 13
  • Swamp Sparrow 3
  • White-throated Sparrow 3
  • Dark-eyed Junco 6
  • Red-winged Blackbird 26
  • House Sparrow 5 ( at visitor center)

Blackwater NWR — Tubman Rd. Trail. We did a counterclockwise circuit of the trail, which had a few spurts of activity, but was mostly quiet. Nevertheless, the visit added several species to our day list.

  • Turkey Vulture 2
  • Bald Eagle 9
  • Sharp-shinned Hawk 1
  • Red-tailed Hawk 1
  • Belted Kingfisher 1
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker 1
  • Downy Woodpecker 1
  • Northern Flicker 1
  • Carolina Chickadee 4
  • Tufted Titmouse 5
  • Brown-headed Nuthatch 6
  • Carolina Wren 1
  • Eastern Bluebird 10
  • Hermit Thrush 3
  • American Robin 1
  • Cedar Waxwing 12
  • Yellow-rumped Warbler 1
  • Song Sparrow 3
  • Swamp Sparrow 6
  • Dark-eyed Junco 35
  • Northern Cardinal 4
  • Red-winged Blackbird 2

Cedar Creek Rd. (Dorchester Co). We were successful in finding Short-eared Owl, but did not find Rough-legged Hawk.

  • American Black Duck 2
  • Great Blue Heron 1
  • Turkey Vulture 80
  • Bald Eagle 4
  • Northern Harrier 2
  • Cooper's Hawk 1 (seen by one group back on main road)
  • Red-tailed Hawk 1
  • Virginia Rail 1
  • Short-eared Owl 2
  • American Crow 9
  • Fish Crow 44
  • Yellow-rumped Warbler 1
  • Song Sparrow 3
  • Swamp Sparrow 1
  • Northern Cardinal 1

Shorter's Wharf Road, Dorchester. We parked in the parking area, and walked a short distance up Shorter's Wharf Rd., but found no Short-eared Owls or better. Unusual, however, was a flyby pair of Mute Swans.

  • Mute Swan 2
  • American Black Duck 17
  • Green-winged Teal 3
  • Pied-billed Grebe 1
  • Double-crested Cormorant 1
  • Great Blue Heron 3
  • Bald Eagle 4
  • Northern Harrier 1
  • Greater Yellowlegs 7
  • Dunlin 33
  • Ring-billed Gull 12
  • Red-winged Blackbird 380
  • Eastern Meadowlark 2 (seen along this road earlier in day, while we were enroute to Cedar Creek Road)