Welcome to the vinalhaven sightings report – December 31st, 2011
thanks to vlt and mcht for supporting the VSR
"i heard the coyote left"
Alan Lazaro - mentioned that he had a close encounter with the Great Horned Owl out in back of his house. Flew right by and the owl was startled enough to flap audibly. Cool sighting
Ferry Rides – (12/17) Rockland Christmas Bird Count – Each year gazillions of birdwatchers and birders alike pick a day between mid- December and early january, to head out and count all the birds they can. The area(s) they cover are well defined (15 mile radius of a selected spot) and are located completely within the Western Hemisphere. These organized outings are referred to as Christmas Bird Counts, or CBCs, and have been going on for a long time. And as with many forms of nature observation, the CBC had a less than completely sensitive beginning . From the Wikipedia …
“Up through the 19th century, many North Americans participated in the tradition of Christmas "side hunts", in which they competed at how many birds they could kill, regardless of whether they had any use for the carcasses and of whether the birds were beneficial, beautiful, or rare. At the end of that century the U.S. ornithologist Frank Chapman, an officer in the recently formed National Audubon Society, proposed counting birds on Christmas instead of killing them.”
Highlights of the trip were the 3 Red-throated Loons in Rockland Harbor, and seeing all of the scoter species (3!) before getting out of Hurricane Sound.