Massachusetts Bird Sightings — Friday, September 24, 2021

September 24, 2021

The bird of the week was undoubtedly a Northern Wheatear that spent the better part of late Tuesday afternoon actively foraging in a backyard near a marsh beside Water Street in Yarmouth. A European species resembling a small thrush, wheatears are rare vagrants in Massachusetts (although there have been a number of records through the years). Their migration is remarkable—most wheatears spend the winter in Africa after undergoing very lengthy non-stop oceanic migrations. Unfortunately, the wheatear was only seen late Tuesday afternoon, but it was also well photographed.


Western MA: A Western Kingbird has spent several days in Linear Park in Williamstown, and 16 Ring-necked Ducks were seen in New Salem. A Common Tern was found at gate 25 of the Quabbin Reservoir, and a Clay-colored Sparrow was sighted in Montague. Moving eastward, notables included a Snowy Egret in Longmeadow and a Stilt Sandpiper that was found at the Longmeadow flats. In Springfield, a Black-crowned Night-Heron made an appearance. Other highlights featured 2 Sanderlings in Huntington; 3 Blue Grosbeaks at the Honey Pot in Hadley; a Dickcissel and a Clay-colored Sparrow at Arcadia Wildlife Sanctuary; and a Red-headed Woodpecker and a White-eyed Vireo in Amherst. In Northampton’s East Meadows there was a Buff-breasted Sandpiper, an American Golden-Plover, 4 tardy Yellow Warblers, and a Clay-colored Sparrow.

Central MA: Reports included a Connecticut Warbler and 2 Dickcissels at the Westboro Wildlife Area, and another Dickcissel was found along with a Clay-colored Sparrow at the Uxbridge Community Gardens.

Metro West: The Cambridge Reservoir in Waltham hosted 2 Red-necked Grebes, while a Blue-gray Gnatcatcher and 2 Blue Grosbeaks were seen at Horn Pond in Woburn. A White-eyed Vireo was observed at Mt. Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, and there were 2 Ruddy Ducks at the Arlington Reservoir. Clay-colored Sparrows were found at Danehy Park in Cambridge and Rock Meadow in Belmont, where a Connecticut Warbler was also seen. Connecticut Warblers were also reported from Groton and Kaveski Farm in Concord. Elsewhere in Concord, 3 American Coots were noted at Great Meadows Wildlife Refuge.

North Shore: Highlights included a Connecticut Warbler in Middleton, and at Plum Island a Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, a Western Sandpiper, and a Black Guillemot at Emerson Rocks.

Boston: There were reports of 6 American Golden-Plovers and 2 Caspian Terns at Castle Island near Pleasure Bay, a Long-billed Dowitcher at Belle Isle in East Boston, and a Little Gull at Revere Beach.

Metro South: A Little Blue Heron, a Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, and a Connecticut Warbler were seen in the Squantum area. At Moose Hill Wildlife Sanctuary in Sharon, a tardy Eastern Kingbird and a Connecticut Warbler were observed.

South East: Highlights included 6 Ruddy Ducks in Pembroke, plus 7 Caspian Terns at Plymouth Beach and 2 more in Marion. There were 3 Caspian Terns at Gooseberry Neck in Westport. Connecticut Warblers were observed in Dighton, Allens Pond Wildlife Sanctuary in South Dartmouth, and Gooseberry Neck in Westport. A Clay-colored Sparrow was found near Broad Cove in Somerset.

Cape Cod: Other interesting sightings of note this week included 8 American Coots, 4 Common Gallinules, and a Barn Owl on South Monomoy Island; a Razorbill near Morris Island in Chatham; a Little Blue Heron and a Glossy Ibis at Forest Beach in Chatham; a Lark Sparrow at Race Point in Provincetown; a Hooded Warbler in Centerville; and a Yellow-throated Warbler and 2 Connecticut Warblers at the Cape Cod Organic Farm in Barnstable.

Islands: On Martha’s Vineyard there was a lingering Piping Plover, a Common Raven, and a White-eyed Vireo at Gay Head. Nantucket reports were led by a Loggerhead Shrike at Tuckernuck, along with 2 Common Ravens at Sconset and a Marbled Godwit in the marsh near the UMass Field Station.


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