A raw morning with occasional freezing rain, snow, and sleet, along with a stiff northerly wind turned out a few intrepid birders. But those who did come out were rewarded with a lot of birds!
With the conditions, the Town Landing Tour was in order, and it did not disappoint. We had some impressive tallies of most of the expected species of waterbirds as we traveled between the South Freeport Town Landing and the Cumberland Town Landing.
Our "best" birds were the two drake BARROW'S GOLDENEYES that were off of Winslow Park, as observed in the distance from the South Freeport yacht club. There was a BELTED KINGFISHER in Yarmouth harbor, about 600 COMMON EIDERS all together at Sandy Point Beach, and a kiting RED-TAILED HAWK right over our heads at Madeleine Point that remained motionless for a truly impressive amount of time.
This isn't the most productive route for landbirds, but nonetheless we had some enjoyable sightings such as 5 EASTERN BLUEBIRDS at Sandy Point Beach and 8 GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLETS at Madeleine Point.
We kept an eye out for any storm-tossed alcids, and sorted through dabblers hoping for something unusual. No luck with either, but the overall numbers of common waterbirds were more impressive than they have been so far this winter. Our tallies of all species included: 710 Common Eiders, 275 BUFFLEHEADS, 144 AMERICAN BLACK DUCKS, 120 HERRING GULLS, 96 COMMON GOLDENEYES, 83 MALLARDS, 57 LONG-TAILED DUCKS, 19 RING-BILLED GULLS, 9 GREAT BLACK-BACKED GULLS, 8 COMMON LOONS, 7 RED-BREASTED MERGANSERS, 3 HOODED MERGANSERS, 3 SURF SCOTERS, and the two aforementioned Barrow's Goldeneyes.