Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Day 76: Cold Listening

Arnold Arboretum, Jamaica Plain, MA, 6:55am-7:45am
very cold, chilly wind, overcast

The overcast sky suggested the sunrise was unlikely to be visible, so I decided to trek down to the frozen marsh (the "new mecca") and see how it fared right at dawn.

When I arrived, the bird sounds were painfully sparse. Literally painful - I had to remove my hood and uncover my ears in order to listen. Wind-blown frigid ears no fun! Plus my neck was somewhat immobilized by many layers of scarf/jacket, and I had to sort of thrust my whole body in whatever direction I was trying to listen. Awkward.

It was fun, though, to traverse the little raised concrete strip that I'd spotted previously, some kind of divider or drainage system which cuts right through the marsh.

I was disappointed to hear just a few cheepy sparrows here and there, nothing like the maelstrom of activity on Saturday. It made sense though- it was SO much colder today. I imagine most birds are burrowing somewhere warm and protected, far away from the windswept open marsh.

On my way out I discover the enclave of the day, a more sheltered area at the northern base of Bussey Hill, populated by robins, doves, and nuthatches.

This nuthatch won for Bird of the Day - I'm pretty sure both these clips are the same bird:

Then there was this guy, who sounds related but may not be:

A nuthatch-based groove is in the works, will eventually get posted!


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