[va-richmond-general] Westmoreland trip report

  • From: tyler turpin <tylerturpin@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: va-richmond-general@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sat, 3 Feb 2007 18:13:44 -0500 (GMT-05:00)

10 birders visited George Washington’s Birthplace National Monument and the 
Town of Colonial Beach this morning.44 species of birds were seen.

Bald Eagle sightings ,from distances of half a mile or less, were too numerous 
to mention all. They began with an adult Eagle carrying a squirrel carcass, 
right in front of the group, as we were driving, on Route 3, on the way to the 
park. Two Eagles were seen on the first trip to the beach. When the Visitor 
Center and its parking lot opened at 9.A.M, another Eagle was seen in the inlet 
by the Visitor Center. Tundra Swans, rafts of American Coots and Ruddy Ducks, 
and a few Red Breasted Mergansers were seen in the inlet from the Visitor 
Center deck and the trail onto the cliff by the Historic Area. Everyone got to 
see a pair of Yellow Bellied Sapsuckers several times, and the pair was only 10 
to 20 feet from the group. The second trip to the beach, this time with a 
spotting scope in use, revealed a few Surf Scooters, Buffleheads and American 
Coots.The Buffleheads were seen on both trips to the beach without the use of a 
scope being required to make a positive id.

An adult Eagle was flying over the Potomac River and portions of the town of 
Colonial Beach as we started to leave our cars to go to the coffee shop in the 
town. This was after we went to the end of the entrance road to the town 
(Colonial Avenue) which dead ends at the Potomac and saw Surf Scooters from 
only 20 feet away.

After lunch we birded the waterfront road (Irving Avenue) from several public 
parking lots. Hundreds of Ruddy Ducks, some Scaup and two pairs of Canvasback 
Ducks were seen. A group of Hooded Mergansers was seen in Monroe Bay from the 
parking lot of the Public Boat Landing.

Some birders were able to take photos of waterfowl species not often seen in 
camera range. Hope to see more participants next year on this very productive 


Tyler Turpin

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