Saturday, March 28, 2015

Notes from My Nest: Progress

3-17-14 ducks in the new meadows river Ducks on the ice in the New Meadows River 3-17-15

We are making progress here in Maine as the snow slowly melts and spring fights to take hold. In spite of My Broken Wing and the cold I have still managed to get out and do some birding, even if it is only around town at the local eBird Hotspots and any parking lot I happen to be in!

3-17-15 Wharton Point I stopped by Wharton Point on my way home from town on March 17 and saw some of the first Red-winged Blackbirds of the year in the brush. I had seen my first one in my own yard that very morning. I counted six more here. However, Maquoit Bay was still frozen on this day with only a few gulls gathered on the ice shelf.

3-17-15 Wharton Point marsh The only open water was the creek that meandered through the marsh. But, the nearby trees were full of birds singing and I even saw a few bluebirds!

3-23-14 Mere Point bay It has been so cold and so snowy that both Mere Point Bay and Maquiot Bay have been frozen solid for over two months, but finally the weather has warmed enough to start them thawing. I photographed this open blue water on Mere Point Bay on March 23rd. This is definitely progress! The frozen bays seemed to enhance that confined feeling that winter was giving me, along with my injury. Seeing the open blue water made me somehow start to feel free again myself!

3-24-15 doc office birdingI count birds at the doctor’s office whenever I go for an appointment for the orthopedist or Physical Therapy. On March 24th the parking lot was alive with birds and I even spotted  a pileated woodpecker in a tree at the edge of the parking lot! I always bring my binoculars with me, and while others are reading magazines or playing with their smart phones in the waiting room, I am looking out the windows watching for and counting birds!

3-24-15 Bay Bridge landing It was a really nice day on March 24th, so I decided to check out a new birding place I had learned about earlier this year. It is called Bay Bridge Landing and it sits on a bend in the Androscoggin River. 

3-24-15 trail at bay bridge I had hoped that maybe the river was starting to thaw, but it was still frozen solid, so I walked down a short trail instead. I saw a few juncos and nuthatches here.

3-24-15 walking back at bay bridgeThe trail dead ended at a broken bridge, so I turned and went back, but it felt good to be out in the sunshine and fresh air. I couldn’t get enough of it!

3-24-15 mere point cove So, on the way home, I stopped at the boat launch as well! The cove was still frozen then, but when I went there tonight it was all open water! There is hope!

3-24-15 common redpolls in yard In my own yard things are in transition. I have seen a few spring migrants, like starlings, red-winged blackbirds, and common grackles, but the American Tree Sparrows and the White-throated Sparrows are already moving on. The funny thing is, I have had Common Redpolls here for two months, but as of March 24th they are considered a Rare Bird for this time of year in this location. But they are still here now and this morning I had at least 14 in my yard! Yesterday I had only 1, but on Thursday I counted 26!

3-25-14 hands up As for me, I am making progress as well. When I posted about my arm 2 weeks ago I was so discouraged. But, the things I have been doing have really helped. By the time I finally got in to see the physical therapist I had already made good progress. Then, she did some stretches with me that literally brought me to tears, it hurt so much! The day she did it I came home and slept all afternoon. I drank a ton of water, and by the next day I could move my arm so much further! She and I have continued to work on it and when I saw the orthopedist on Monday she could not believe the improvement in my range of motion! She said she had never seen anyone improve so much so fast! I had my daughter take these photos of me on Wednesday. In this photo I still could not raise my left arm above my head. Today I almost can!

Perhaps I will be able to fly again soon!

3-25-15 trying to flyI could not do this two weeks ago!

However, I still need to be able to get my left arm behind my back.

3-25-15 more work to do This is as far as it will go for now.


3-25-15 new hairdoBut I now have hope!

And I am not the only one making progress!

2-21-15 buried table This was my driveway and patio table on February 21st.

3-26-15 mud season This is how it looks now!

Yes, mud season is upon us, but spring can’t be far behind…

3-28-15 bird bath revealedBecause, I can finally see my bird bath once again! 3-28-15

I hope to post more bird photos soon, but for now, here are my latest eBird Stats:

Kathie’s 2015 eBird Stats Life Year Month
Total Species 479 68 53
Total Checklists 7632 255 93
Total Maine Species 199 68 53
Total Mere Point Cottage Yard Birds 111 47 27


New species added to my 2015 Year List this month:

61. Song Sparrow 3-4-15 Mere Point Boat Launch

62. Killdeer 3-9-15 Brunswick Landing

63. Red-winged Blackbird 3-17-15 Mere Point Cottage

64. Fish Crow 3-20-15 Brunswick Town Center

65. Turkey Vulture 3-23-15 Woodside Road, Brunswick

66. Common Grackle 3-26-15 Mere Point Cottage

67. Fox Sparrow 3-27-15 Mere Point Boat Launch

68. Brown-headed Cowbird 3-28-15 Mere Point Boat Launch

Notes: For those of you keeping track, I removed Hoary Redpoll from my Life and yard list because I did not feel confident in my sighting and I did not have photo documentation. Thus, my Maine Life List is back down to 199. I am still waiting to see my 200th species for this state!


  1. Looking forward to the day when this winter will be only a memory. Of course, I'll be complaining about the heat by then. :-)

  2. Love all the photographs of the snow however I am glad it is now melting for you and soon you will see grass again! You are making Marvellous progress with your arm, truly on the mend. Have a great weekend.

  3. Wonderful photos, Kathie! I am glad you are making progress with your broken wing! Take care and happy birding!

  4. Keep your spirits up, Kathie. I'm sure the spring sunshine will make you feel better, and feeling better will help you to keep on working at your movement - all these things get harder as we get older I think!

  5. With spring comes new birth and growth of our spirits. Wonderful to see the snow melting but best to see your wings reaching out and up.

  6. Yes, March certainly is the 'stuck in the mud' month of the N.Hemisphere above a certain latitude. I am so sorry to hear about your shoulder injury. These things take time, once upon a time it took me 18 mtgs. before I was able to brush my hair. I fell again recently and injured my shoulder but because I regularly do (small) weight exercises, two weeks off and slowly back to my routine, it mended quickly and completely.
    Loved your poem about arms, so very true. Blessings . . . Arija

  7. Exciting new birds are coming your way!!! Your arm will be back to normal in no time:)

  8. Shoulders are the hardest joint to get moving after an injury. Good for you for putting up with the pain during therapy and working so hard at your exercises!! I am amazed.


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.