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Cape Ann & Plum Island

Cape Ann
Plum Island

February 23, 2019

Kathy & Myles Conway

Eight participants enjoyed a sunny day on the North Shore with light northwest winds.  No birds showed themselves at our meeting spot in Gloucester, but when we arrived at Jodrey Pier, we found many Common Eiders, some Red-breasted Mergansers, 4 Common Loons, a Goldeneye, a Black Guillemot, and six Surf Scoters, but no white-winged gull.  We had heard about a Dickcissel coming to a feeder nearby at the home of Paul Hackett, but two visits failed to get it, though we waited a long time with others on the second visit.  A Sapsucker and Red-breasted Nuthatch were the best feeder birds there.        

After lunch, while at Foley Cove we had 2 Eiders and some Black and White-winged Scoters.  At Andrews Point, we had 50 Buffleheads, 50 Harlequins, 30 Black and a few White-winged Scoters, 25 Eiders, 20 Goldeneyes, and 20 Great Cormorants.  Less common were 2 Oldsquaw, 2 Gadwall and 2 Purple Sandpipers, 4 Common and a Red-throated Loon, many Black and a few White-winged Scoters, a Razorbill, and a Horned Grebe.  Cathedral Ledge had 50 Harlequins, 25 Eiders, an Oldsquaw, Razorbill, 4 Bufflehead, and 3 Common Loons.  Granite Pier had 3 Brant, 32 Buffleheads, 14 Surf and 12 White-winged Scoters, 6 Common Loon, and 2 Great Cormorant.        

At Brace Cove we got a Great Cormorant, all three Scoters, Buffleheads, Goldeneyes, and Eiders.  At the Elks Club we found an adult King Eider, 3 Black Guillemots, Buffleheads, Scoters, and Eiders.  At Eastern Point there were 300 Eiders, numerous Bufflehead and Red-breasted Mergansers, 15 each of Surf and White-winged Scoters, 9 Oldquaw, 2 Gadwall, and 2 Purple Sandpipers.  We went to the ocean side of Niles Pond and got good views of a flock of Greater Scaup with one Lesser Scaup.  In the pond there were two Gadwall, 2 Bufflehead, 12 Red-breasted Mergansers, 6 Surf Scoters, swans and a flying Iceland Gull.    A wonderful day of birding!