Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Birding CT in Autumn: Country Roads

DSC_0040Wild Turkeys in a farm field, Salem, CT 12-9-10

Birding Connecticut in autumn feels more like winter as the cold air settles in to stay. In the evening of the second day I  make my way to Lake Hayward to a quiet cove at the second beach…

DSC_0030 Here amongst the mallards the hooded mergansers float and though I keep my distance, they are wary this autumn day and take wing…

DSC_0034 …flying in a purple blur


DSC_0037 …to alight beyond the sandbar in the violet light of dusk…

DSC_0038 …while from my point of view, it all seems a blurry dream, for the cove is quiet now, and empty.

DSC_0039 The third day I drive down country roads looking for birds.  I find these wild turkeys in some farm fields in Salem. Along the same road a red-shouldered hawk rises from the overhead utility wires as I drive by. The stonewall edged fields are full of juncos and white-throated sparrows; the trees and yards full of cardinals, nuthatches, chickadees and titmice. Clinging to the bark of trees I find first one red-bellied woodpecker, and then another. Perhaps birding Connecticut in autumn isn’t such a bad thing after all, in spite of the cold. But I am staying warm inside my car with heater running and heated seats!

DSC_0053 Down another county road on my way to the Connecticut River in Lyme…

DSC_0050… I find an ice-blue marsh where crows cry and ducks paddle in the little bit of open water they can find…

DSC_0048 …and by the roadside I see a wreath of autumn leaves, while overhead a turkey vulture scans the horizon for a meal.  At the river all is cold and windy with white caps and few birds;  just a couple of gulls over the water and a lone female cardinal and one white-throated sparrow trying to stay warm and find food in a nearby bush. You can find so many birds on country roads.



  1. The car makes a great Hide Kathie.

  2. Salem has a nice nature preserve that I visited last year. Can't quite recall the name.-Nice photos Kathie.I did a lot of birding by car myself this weekend.

  3. I love back roading. And would even more so if I had heated seats. Sweet.


Welcome to my nest! I hope you will enjoy spending time here with me and the birds. Thank you for your comments. I will try to get back to you as soon as I get back from counting more birds.