The Harlequin, Winter 2014

Download Harlequin Newsletter for 2014 (1.1 MB)

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YCAS announces Hog Island Scholarship for 2014

YCAS will again be awarding a scholarship for the Educator’s Week program, July 20-25, 2014 on famed Hog Island. Check the Scholarship Programs link under the Community Involvement heading above for more information.  The application deadline is March 15th.

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The Harlequin, Summer & Fall 2013

Summer Issue

Autumn Issue

Posted in Chapter News

Program: Monitoring Maine’s Great Blue Herons on Tuesday, November 19th at 7 at the Wells Reserve

The great blue heron is often touted as one of the most widespread and adaptable birds in North America. Here in Maine they are certainly widespread, but recent data has suggested a decline in their breeding population especially along the coast. Concerns over a population decline prompted the Maine Dept. of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to conduct a comprehensive survey of breeding colonies in 2009, and to begin a statewide adopt-a-colony program called the Heron Observation Network. Join Danielle D’Auria, a wildlife biologist with MDIFW’s Bird Group, to learn more about Maine’s largest colonial wading bird as well its close relatives.

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Savage Preserve, July 13, 2013

The leader (Sue Bickford) and three observers came together for nearly 3 hours of “winged jewel” searching. With some netted and others photographed, we were able to identify these species:

Odonata

  • Ebony Jewelwing
  • Variable Dancer
  • Twelve-spotted Skimmer
  • Green Darner (?)
  • Widow Skimmer

Lepidoptera

  • Little Wood-Satyr
  • Eyed Brown
  • Aphrodite Fritillary (?)
  • American Copper
  • Summer Azure
  • Eastern Tailed Blue
  • Common Wood-Nymph
  • Cabbage White
  • Northern Broken-Dash
  • Broad-winged Skipper (?)
  • Silver-spotted Skipper
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Field Trip: Hills Beach

Join Doug Hitchcox for a shorebird extravaganza.  Meet and park at Buffleheads restaurant at 122 Hills Beach Road in Biddeford

Contact: Doug 207-671-0185.

 

Posted in Events

Program: Monitoring Maine’s Great Blue Herons

  • Meeting to be held at the Wells Reserve at Laudholm
  • Come early to socialize
  • Come earlier to sit in on the board meeting

The great blue heron is often touted as one of the most widespread and adaptable birds in North America.  Here in Maine they are certainly widespread, but recent data has suggested a decline in their breeding population especially along the coast.  Concerns over a population decline prompted the Maine Dept. of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife to conduct a comprehensive survey of breeding colonies in 2009, and to begin a statewide adopt-a-colony program called the Heron Observation Network.  Join Danielle D’Auria, a wildlife biologist with MDIFW’s Bird Group, to learn more about Maine’s largest colonial wading bird as well its close relatives.

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Program: The Holy Grail of North American Birding

  • Meeting to be held at the Wells Reserve at Laudholm
  • Come early to socialize
  • Come earlier to sit in on the board meeting

In 2012 five YCAS members ventured off to Attu…an Island birding mecca 1500 miles from mainland Alaska which some may recall from the movie The Big Year.  Robert and Anne Watson, Pat Moynahan. Marian Zimmerman and Doug Hitchcox will share their adventure into the Eastern Hemisphere for rare birds. They saw colonies of over 2 million birds, Song Sparrows the size of robins, 20+ foot seas en route, and a bird recently back from the edge of extinction. Come hear the story of how these birders went from making a day trip to see a bird in New Jersey to traveling across the world together.

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Program: Birds Do the Darndest Things

Meeting to be held at Kennebunkport Conservation Trust

Birds Do the Darndest Things

One of the great pleasures of birding is observing the intimate snippets of birds’ lives.  Usually the birds we see are either perched, flying, or feeding.  But every so often, we glimpse less obvious behaviors, which hold us spellbound—a meadowlark fleeing a falcon, an oriole constructing a complex nest, or a jay surreptitiously stashing away seeds.

Observing bird behavior carefully often leads us to ponder some puzzling questions: Why do Yellow Warblers naively devote themselves to feeding cowbird fledglings twice their size?  How do Black-capped Chickadees remember where they have stored thousands of seed-caches?  Do birds play for the fun of it or do they play to develop certain skills necessary for survival?

Join naturalist and birding tour guide Lena Senko as she explores a slew of intriguing bird behaviors and the insights of biologists who devote their lives to studying them.

A great description of Lena can be found here:  http://www.fieldguides.com/guides/lena-senko

 

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Kennebunk Plains, July 6, 2013

Nine of us took a tour of Kennebunk Plains. It was a very hot and humid day, 75 degrees at 7:00 turning to 85 by 10:00 am. We still saw a wide variety of birds. Excellent looks and clear songs of the Upland sandpiper, Grasshopper sparrow, and Eastern meadowlarks. One of the group reported that he added 4 “life birds” to his list. Not a bad way to spend a Saturday morning.

1 Mile, 150 Minutes

Observers: 9

  • 1 Turkey Vulture
  • 2 Red-tailed Hawk
  • 6 Upland Sandpiper
  • 4 Mourning Dove
  • 1 American Kestrel
  • 1 Eastern Phoebe
  • 2 Eastern Kingbird
  • 2 Red-eyed Vireo
  • 2 Common Raven
  • X Tree Swallow
  • 1 American Robin
  • 1 Gray Catbird
  • 2 Northern Mockingbird
  • 1 Brown Thrasher
  • 12 Cedar Waxwing
  • 2 Common Yellowthroat
  • 1 American Redstart
  • 1 Chestnut-sided Warbler
  • 3 Prairie Warbler
  • 2 warbler sp. (unidentified)
  • 1 Eastern Towhee
  • 8 Field Sparrow
  • 4 Vesper Sparrow
  • 4 Grasshopper Sparrow
  • 1 Song Sparrow
  • 1 Rose-breasted Grosbeak
  • 8 Eastern Meadowlark
  • 1 Purple Finch
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