Along the Air Line... 2006-2007 - Winter, Part 2
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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Stan Malcolm Photo

 

 

March 1st. Lots of Mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) and a lone male Northern Pintail (Anas acuta).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March 3rd. Following yesterday's drenching rain, fog rose off the marsh's ice.

 

 

High water yesterday receded quickly, leaving crystal shards of thin ice, crashing as they fell from emergent shrubs.

 

 

The male Red-winged Blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus) first appeared on the marsh today, perhaps following or driven by the storm that came up the coast. (The females will follow in a week or two.)

 

 

Afternoon, and ice on the channel side of the marsh is breaking up.

 

 

Showers moved through in late afternoon.

 

 

 

 

 

March 7th. Cold snap continues with temps in single digits. Frost forms where moisture escapes through holes in the channel banks.

 

 

March 9th. Lower water level has tented the ice around an old beaver lodge.

 

 

March 10th. Icy morning, but temps are warming up.

 

 

 

 

 

A Cecropia moth cocoon on a marsh shrub. See my Cecropia Moth Life Cycle Pages

 

 

Afternoon, and a walk into Lebanon starting from Route 207 in Hebron. Moss still the only sign of green.

 

 

 

 

 

March 11th. Rain overnight caused fog over the ice.

 

 

March 13th. Afternoon temps in the low 60s and ice is melting fast. "Exotic" ducks like these Hooded Merganser (Lophodytes cucullatus) have returned. I saw 3 pair today.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Several Red-Tailed Hawks (Buteo jamaicensis) rode the wind over the marsh.

 

 

March 15th. Ring-necked ducks (Aythya collaris) joined geese, mallards, wood ducks, hooded merganser,and a northern pintail on the marsh.

 

 

March 16th. Slushy new ice formed overnight, making it tough for ducks to get around.

 

 

Black Ducks (Anas rubripes) found a little open water.

 

 

A wood duck nesting box that I've often photographed has succumbed to winter ice.

 

 

March 17th. Winter not ready to let go yet. Snow, sleet, and rain yesterday and overnight covered everything with a thick crust.

 

 

 

 

 

Waterfowl retreated to pockets of open water.

 

 

Even so, the first Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodius) of the year points to spring just days away.