Sunday, August 17, 2008

Finally....a summer weekend

After one of the coolest, rainest Augusts I can remember, this weekend was beautiful. A perfect match-up of blue skies, white puffy clouds and warm temps. And some great birding to go along with the weather. Saturday we spent in the Blackstone Corridor -- a place we haven't been to as much lately, since we started the Breeding Bird Atlas project. It was great to see inland shorebirds, although the numbers were smaller, so were the crowds!

Seeing Great Egrets along the Providence River isn't really that unusual at this time of year, but I'm always fascinated to watch them climb in and around the rotting docks and pilings.

The Osprey numbers continue to increase along the river as well. It seemed every time one dove into the water after a fish, I was looking elsewhere though. There was something definitely running this weekend, and the Osprey were making the most of the fishing.

On the way back to Worcester we spent some time at Broad Meadow Brook attending the Barbara Walker Butterfly Festival in honor of our dear friend who past away earlier this year. There were tons of people, and it was a great way to celebrate her life and her passion for butterflies!

On Sunday we spent the morning poking around Tom Swamp in Petersham, and then worked our way north to Royalston -- not ususally a place we hit at this time of the year, but we were hoping for some of the wandering crossbills from further north (no luck).

Tom Swamp (aka Harvard Pond) from along Rt. 122 in Petersham.

One of the highlights along the back part of Tom Swamp was this Buckeye. Not the rarest of butterflies, but certainly a beautiful one. It made me remember a class trip to Moran WMA in Windsor where I saw my first Buckeye....with Barbara & Rick Walker.

......a perfect summer weekend in Central Mass!

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