Wednesday, February 29, 2012

St. Mary's Pond and Birding

Yesterday, I went birding with my good colleague Doug and we started out at a new location that we had not birded before.  We went to St. Mary's Pond in Middletown, Rhode Island.  St. Mary's Pond Is a part of the City of Newport Water Division.  It is located off at Union Street in Middletown, Rhode Island.  There is parking on the street near the gate that leads into the pond.St. Mary's Pond
Walking down the path toward the pond, we looked at a good number of passerines, which not only included the most common birds, but there were American Tree Sparrows present.

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American Tree Sparrow
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American Tree Sparrow
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Male Ruddy Ducks
On arriving at the pond and walking up to the embankment overlooking the pond, what really surprised us was the number of Ruddy Ducks that were present on the pond.  There were at least 150 or more Ruddy Ducks, in flocks, scattered throughout the lake.
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Ruddy Duck Flock
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Female Ruddy Duck
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Canada Geese
We also walked the path over to Sisson Pond, where there were even more Ruddy Ducks and some Northern Shovelers present.  The list of ducks and geese that we saw included Canada Geese, Gadwall, American Widgeon, American Black Duck, Mallard, Bufflehead , and Hooded Merganser.
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Song Sparrow
For photography, I had a couple of problems; the first it was bright and sunny and the sun was shining toward me, and the second problem was that the embankment was mostly open and the docs, etc. could see you and would swim away.  When there was concealment from trees and bushes on the edge of the pond.  It was difficult to photograph the birds through the thickets.
What I would do for my next photo outing to the pond is utilize my Eckla Beach Rolly Gear CartECKLA-Beach-Rolly-55550_D1 to carry my photo gear, a seat and camouflage to place over myself and the camera and lens.  I also would hope for and try to plan on a bright, overcast day and that I would want to arrive prior to sunrise, so I could be set up and then hope for the best.