Delmarva Coast, February 28, 2014

Chincoteague to Home

All photos are Marshall Faintich

Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel Island #1

The temperature was 14 degrees when I awoke, and 18 degrees when Walt and I left Chincoteague for our trip back to Nellysford. At least we had some time for the temperature to warm up a bit before our first stop at the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel Island #1.

As we were driving and a few minutes before we got there, Walt spotted a large, black bird with a white patch flying over the bay, but he did not recognize what it was. When we got to the island stop, it was still bitterly cold and extremely windy. A Purple Sandpiper was sheltered out of the wind, but the ducks and Double-crested Cormorants didn't seem to mind being in the water. And then, another large, black bird with a white hip patch flew by - it was a Great Cormorant!

Purple Sandpiper

Black Scoter

Double-crested Cormorant

Female Red-breasted Merganser

Red-breasted Mergansers

Red-necked Grebes

Great Cormorant

Newport News Park and Settler's Mill, Virginia

We made a couple of more stops on the way home. Walt had never been to the Newport News Park. I had been there a few times, and it is an excellent birding location when there aren't a lot of park goers. We saw a few ducks, gulls, and woodland birds. A Winter Wren was very cooperative.

Our second stop was at Settler's Mill near Jamestown where a Western Tanager had been reported off and on since last November. We didn't see the Western Tanager, but added a few more trip birds to our list.

Winter Wren

Ring-billed Gull eyeing its next meal

Although I didn't see all of my target birds, five new life birds plus the dark morph Snow Geese made for a successful trip. And the number of birds that we saw was spectacular. After dropping Walt off at his house, I drove to my house and as I entered my garage, my car trip odometer read exactly 1,100 miles.

Click here to view additional trip photos.

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