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Northern New Hampshire Trip


CHRONOLOGY- June 4. Everyone arrives in Concord and we drive north through the rain with brief stops at Webster and Newfound Lakes. Night in Littleton.

June 5–  A short check of Moore Reservoir then to Lancaster and Martin Meadow Pond which was productive, especially for the male Black-backed Woodpecker (thanks Mary!), the group of Ospreys and the ultra-cooperative Black-throated Blue Warbler.  Lunch at the Mountain Grand Hotel was an interesting diversion then it was off to Jefferson with a glimpse at a Black Bear and some interesting bovines. In the late afternoon we walked in to the Pondicherry Refuge, after the showers had let up. The late day light on the pond and the Presidentials was beautiful. We were also serenaded with a spectacular “song and dance” by an American Bittern.

June 6 – This morning we went back to Pondicherry and birded our way in along the main access trail. There was just enough activity to keep us busy with some nice sightings then to Gorham and a quick trip up to Evans Notch. Then it was off to chilly Mount Washington with the beautiful and cooperative “Blonde” Fox, the mostly elusive Bicknell’s Thrushes, full-throated Purple Finches, and wind chills below freezing!

June 7– A picnic breakfast at the Nansen Wayside area on our way to the Errol/ Lake Umbagog  region (Androscoggin River valley). We met Flip Nevers at the National Wildlife Refuge office then motored slowly down the Magalloway River to the lake and visited Leonard Pond, Leonard Marsh, and the headwaters of the Androscoggin including Harper’s Meadow. In the afternoon we walked out Greenough Pond Road as far as Bear Brook Pond then stopped at the eagle nest at Magill Bay (part of Pontook Reservoir) on our way back to Gorham.

June 8– a relaxing morning with a visit to the Jefferson Notch Road and a surprisingly vocal, for 10 AM, Northern Saw-whet Owl. At the height-of-land we had a brief look at a Boreal Chickadee and longer looks at a Blackpoll Warbler before heading down hill. A glimpse of a Pine Marten for some of us was the last wildlife highlight of the trip.

several- less than 10   x- more than 10    xx- more than 100   xxx- more than 1000

Canada Goose- x, too many! This includes more than a dozen each at Airport Marsh and Leonard marsh plus a smaller flock in Harper’s Meadow as well as numerous families.

Wood Duck- several.

Black Duck- several-x.

Mallard- several.

Ring-necked Duck- about 15 in the marshes of Umbagog.

Hooded Merganser- several including a family at Airport Marsh.

Wild Turkey- several.

Common Loon- x, including four nests at Umbagog and one calling overhead as it flew in to Bear Brook Pond.

Double-crested Cormorant- three at Moore Reservoir and one on Cherry Pond.

American Bittern- an outstanding performance by a bird in clear view at Moorhen Marsh.

Great Blue Heron- several.

Turkey Vulture- several.

Osprey- a nest and a total of four at Martin Meadow Pond, two flying north of the Whitefield Airport then about a dozen at Umbagog.

Bald Eagle- an adult at Cherry pond and three nests in the Umbagog region, each with an attendant adult.

accipter species- one dashed across the Jefferson Notch Road.

Northern Harrier- a male at Whitefield Airport and a female over Leonard marsh.

Broad-winged Hawk- several.

Red-tailed Hawk- one.

Spotted Sandpiper- three at Cherry Pond and two at the Nansen Wayside area.

Wilson’s Snipe- one heard.

American Woodcock- one heard at the base of the Auto Road.

Ring-billed Gull- several on Newfound Lake.

Great Black-backed Gull- one immature over the Androscoggin River at Nansen.

Rock Dove- x.

Mourning Dove- several.

Yellow-billed Cuckoo- heard and seen in the scope. This is a very rare record for the area.

Northern Saw-whet Owl- one calling vociferously in response to the tape at 10:00 in the morning was a pleasant surprise.

Whip-poor-will- one in Gorham behind the motel.

Chimney Swift- several.

Ruby-throated Hummingbird- several.

Belted Kingfisher- several.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker- several.

Downy Woodpecker- one.

Hairy Woodpecker- several.

Black-backed Woodpecker- a male at a nest, thanks to Mary.

Northern Flicker- several.

Pileated Woodpecker- one seen briefly and another heard.

Olive-sided Flycatcher- one.

Yellow-bellied Flycatcher- one at the parking area at Jefferson Notch.

Alder Flycatcher- several.

Eastern Phoebe- several.

Great-crested Flycatcher- heard mostly.

Eastern Kingbird- several-x.

Blue-headed Vireo- heard mostly.

Red-eyed Vireo- ditto.

Gray Jay- three or four in Errol.

Blue Jay- several-x.

American Crow- x.

Common Raven- several.

Tree Swallow- x.

Barn Swallow- x.

Black-capped Chickadee- several-x.

Boreal Chickadee- one seen briefly in Jefferson Notch.

Red-breasted Nuthatch- several.

Winter Wren- heard.

Ruby-crowned Kinglet- heard only, one on Mount Washington and one in Errol.

Veery- heard only.

Bicknell’s Thrush- several glimpsed and one or two others heard.

Swainson’s Thrush- several-x, heard mostly but several seen on the Auto Road.

Hermit Thrush- several.

Wood Thrush- one heard as we left Pondicherry at dusk.

American Robin- x.

Gray Catbird- several.

European Starling- x.

Cedar Waxwing- x.

Nashville Warbler- several.

Northern Parula- several-x.

Yellow Warbler- several.

Chestnut-sided Warbler- several seen and heard.

Magnolia Warbler- several.

Black-throated Blue Warbler- one fantastic view plus many heard.

Yellow-rumped Warbler- x.

Black-throated Green Warbler- several seen.

Blackburnian Warbler- one or two but not seen by all.

Blackpoll Warbler- one seen well in Jefferson Notch.

American Redstart- one or two heard only.

Ovenbird- one seen but most heard only.

Common Yellowthroat- several.

Canada Warbler- heard only.

Scarlet Tanager- several.

Chipping Sparrow- several.

Savannah Sparrow- heard only.

Song Sparrow- several.

Swamp Sparrow- several seen well.

White-throated Sparrow- several-x.

Dark-eyed Junco- several.

Rose-breasted Grosbeak- several.

Indigo Bunting- several.

Bobolink- x.

Red-winged Blackbird- x.

Common Grackle- x.

Baltimore Oriole- heard only.

Purple Finch- x, with three or four singing at 4000 feet up Mt. Washington even in the cold and the wind then a veritable colony in Errol.

American Goldfinch- several.

House Sparrow- x.


“Red” Fox

Moose- two.

White-tailed Deer- several.

Black Bear



Pine Marten- glimpsed.

Varying Hare (a.k.a. Snowshoe Rabbit)- several.

Red Squirrel

Eastern Chipmunk

REPTILES-Painted Turtle- several seen laying eggs.

Garter Snake- several.

AMPHIBIANS- frogs mostly heard at Cherry Pond including Bull, Green, and Mink Frogs. Tadpoles and egg masses and Red Efts seen in Errol.

BUTTERFLIES and other insects- Tiger Swallowtail….

FLOWERS and plants- a partial list of the most noticeable/interesting flowers and plants includes: Rhodora,  Canada Mayflower, Painted Trillium, Starflower, Labrador Tea (not in bloom), Leather Leaf, Bunchberry, plus the alpine flowers- Alpine Azalea, Diapensia, and Bog (a.k.a. Alpine) Bilberry.

Robert A. Quinn

June 2007




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