Along the Air Line... 2010-2011 - Winter, Part 5
The Air Line Trail in Eastern Connecticut - Stan Malcolm Photos

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Stan Malcolm Photo

 

 

March 2nd.

 

 

Lots of Red-winged Blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus), and a first few Common Grackles (not pictured).

 

 

 

 

 

Wood Ducks (Aix sponsa) are back!  A female (left) and two males.

 

 

A pair of Mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) take flight from flowing open water at the far end of the marsh, part of a flight of roughly a dozen birds.

 

 

 

 

 

Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapilla).

 

 

 

 

 

Three American Robins (Turdus migratorius) were feeding together.

 

 

Male breasts are a deep rust color.

 

 

 

 

 

Back in the afternoon for another walk.  Mallards (Anas platyrhynchos) were feeding at the marsh outlet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A group of noisy American Crows (Corvus brachyrhyncos) passed by.

 

 

Dark clouds rolled in.

 

 

 

 

 

March 3rd.  Eleven degrees and not nearly the bird activity of yesterday.  Red-winged Blackbirds (Agelaius phoeniceus) were down in the bushes and hummocks for the most part.  No sign of any other birds.

 

 

Previous warm temps have removed all but a thin crust of snow from the marsh ice, revealing cracks from expansion and changes in water level..

 

 

March 4th.  Thirteen degrees.  Despite the cold, the sunny side of the trail is showing soil.  The Red-winged Blackbirds were calling from the tops of trees again.

 

 

Listen to the marsh!

 

 

Epaulettes raised, wings spread, and throat feathers puffed, this Blackbird is in full display and calling.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March 5th. Thirtyfive degrees, cloudy with occasional light showers.  Standing water atop the ice. With more warmish days and light rain ahead, I think we may see some open water soon.  With that will come geese and perhaps some "exotic" (for the marsh) ducks.

 

 

 

 

 

Some ice on the channel side is breaking up.  Further west, near the marsh outlet, most of the ice is gone.