This month has been one of my worst ever for blog posts... at least in the number that I've pumped out. I'll attribute that to the fact that I was away from home for 3 weeks.
I left off last time while I was still in western NY catching up with family and doing a little bit of exploring in nearby counties. Although I limited myself to counties I could get to in 2 hours or less, I ended up seeing a good chunk of western NY.
One such day took me up to Lake Ontario. After not having much to scope elsewhere, it felt great to have a big body of water to scan for a while. Here's a panoramic view of the piers in the town of Wilson:
One of the most obvious and abundant species at this spot was LONG-TAILED DUCK; they were calling nonstop which put me in the mood for Alaska all over again. Here's a dapper male:
Another species that was abundant here is the WHITE-WINGED SCOTER:
Although they're not uncommon in those parts, I was surprised to see this female PILEATED WOODPECKER at the suet feeder. After looking at things like nuthatches and little Downy Woodpeckers, you can imagine looking out and seeing a crow-sized woodpecker instead!
And now I'm back in Sacramento enjoying temps in the 80s, palms trees, hummingbirds.... and not having a car to go birding. :-(