Yesterday, Friday, 1/17, we went to Cape Ann (also almost 2 years since we've done that). We wanted to see some white-winged gulls (and we weren't disappointed). After being in stop-n-go traffic on Rts.3 and 128 during the morning rush hour, I realized why we don't go there as often as we used to. However, it was beautiful and certainly worth at least a yearly visit.
As we continued on to Eastern Point we stopped at every water overlook for ducks, alcids or any other unusual gulls -- but it was a strangely quiet day. We did have several close loons
After scanning for alcids (we did have a Black Guillemot) we decided to head along the coast to Bass Rocks (we missed seeing the King Eider) and then ultimately to Rockport
Along the way we scanned Thatcher Island for more snowies and checked every eider flock for the King...but we didn't luck out.
But for me what the made the entire trip worthwhile were the looks (and photos) of Harlequin Ducks in several stops in Rockport (the Granite Pier, Cathedral Ledge and Andrew's Point). Now I know that Harlequin's are expected every winter in these waters, and they certainly have been seen in increasing numbers for more than a decade.....still I get blown away every time I see a drake in breeding plumage!
|Pair at the Granite Pier|
At the end of the day, Mark tallied 150 Harlequin Ducks....and a mermaid!
We made a final stop at Folly Cove and then headed back to Worcester. BTW the drive back was MUCH better than the drive up....it took us just shy of 1-1/2 hours from the rotary to home.
So as I sit here in my office at home typing this I'm looking out at the 3 inches of snow we were NOT supposed to get today (and it's still snowing) and looking at the contrast with all the sunshine and blue skies of yesterday at Cape Ann. Maybe my next blog should be some of the highlights from last summer so we can all enjoy looking forward to what's ahead!