Bryan's Posts About Birdwatching

A Monhegan Fallout

Today on Monhegan Island the winds blew fair with birds. Peregrine Falcons gave chase and took life. In the lilacs near the Rope Shed a Nashville Warbler cavorted with a Tennessee Warbler. A flock of a dozen Baltimore Orioles paraded around the village.

The Spineless on Monhegan

On north winds Wednesday morning the songbirds came to Monhegan – and then they left. Our gentle rain of migrants included newly arrived Yellow-throated Vireo, Blue-winged Warbler (thanks to Tony Vazzano) and Cerulean Warbler, an extraordinary bird for the island. Blue Grosbeak, Lark Sparrow and Clay-colored Sparrow, the usual Monhegan oddballs, entertained the besotted birders.

Opening Day

To borrow an entire chapter from William Faulkner: My favorite is a fish. Even though we saw more Cape May Warblers than Yellow rumped Warblers; even though Northern Gannets are plunge-diving everywhere offshore; even though Philadelphia Vireos present themselves with such elegance; even though Philadelphia Vireos make me swoon and happy; even though a Sharp-shinned Hawk chased a Belted Kingfisher by our deck during brunch; and even though we watched a couple of Minke Whales drift past Black Head; my favorite encounter during our first day with fall migrants on Monhegan Island, Maine, was the Ocean Sunfish off White Head.

Fall Warblers on the Move

Ah, the cleansing north winds of autumn. They’re bringing us songbirds. On these cooler morning you’ll find warblers nearly anywhere.

Shorebirds, Hawks and Extinction

ON THIS LABOR DAY, you need not labor over shorebirds. As sandpipers and plovers head south this month, I’ll remind you of my Solving Shorebirds post – a guide for landlocked birdwatchers. For those of you already skilled at shorebird…

Boobies and Berries

THE BIG, BREAKING BIRDING NEWS in Vermont and New York is a Brown Booby at the Lake Champlain Bridge at Crown Point, NY. Noted for a gangly apperance, big feet and spectacular plunge-dives, Brown Boobies occasional stray north – mostly along the…

Considering Cowbirds

Here’s how I learned to stop worrying and start loving Brown-headed Cowbirds. An essay for Northern Woodlands magaine.

Rain, Leaves and Warblers

FROM THE RAINS this weekend there will be birds – lots of them. Spring is coming slowly this year. Here in my home city of Montpelier, Vermont, the Bloodroot, which is normally done blooming by now, still flashes its elegant…

Chasing Spring 2014 – Warblers and Woodpeckers

Chasing the spring in North Carolina and other points northbound.

Icy Romance

In icy waters, ducks are getting hot.

Snowy Owls and Us

My essay on finding opportunity and humility in this winter’s irruption of Snowy Owls. For Aeon magazine.

A Winter Warbler

My essay on Yellow-rumped Warblers in winter is today’s feature (and my debut) on BirdNote, a daily meditation on birds airing online and on public radio stations across the country. I’ll be writing for BirdNote from time to time. Listen here…