Ridgefield NWR

I went up to Ridgefield pretty dang early yesterday where I was greeted by this fuzzy little fellow...


Shorebirds are still abundant with yellowlegs being the friendliest of the bunch.  There was a fairly even mix of Greaters and Lessers.


The best shorebird I found was a lone Semipalmated Plover hanging with other peeps (buddies, as Seagull might say). 


This has got to be the best time of year for seeing bitterns... I saw at least three different ones around the refuge.  


Perhaps it is just the best time of year for tadpoles.  There was one tree bustling with birds, mostly young Song Sparrows, but also this lady Black-headed Grosbeak:


There was a Red-tailed Hawk perched on a post near marker 11...


So I wasn't surprised to see a hawk perched on another post farther down the road... Till I realized it was a Red-shouldered Hawk!  The closest I had ever gotten to one actually... And my $%#&!! camera would not focus on it!


One last thing- I saw several people (a couple and one single) walking the refuge roads, nowhere near a car.  I thought this was not allowed??


Ah well... Good times!

Comments

  1. Clearly it is complete anarchy at Ridgefield. Besides the bicycle guy last time, there was a birdwatcher who kept getting out of his car to take photos or whatever. The Red-shouldered Hawk was a good sighting! I was thinking I might go up there this weekend. Really want to see some coyotes!

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  2. Nice photos and a cool spotting of the RSH! I don't think there is any restriction about walking the refuge this time of the year as long as you stay on the road and mind the signs. I know folks who have walked the 4 mile loop and they were refuge volunteers. Visitors are free to exit their vehicles until Sep. 30 and they are free to walk the road if they choose. I could be wrong but this is my understanding. Great post today, Jen!

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    1. Thanks, they should probably take down all of the "STAY IN YOUR VEHICLE" signs if that's the case..

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  3. Cool birds and sightings, Jen! the Red Shouldered Haw is great but I am amazed at how often you see the Bitterns.The NWR around must be different. I have seen many birders out of their cars, walking and biking? Great shots. Happy Birding!

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    1. Yes, many refuges have different rules... I was always under the impression (due to signage) that this was a strict auto tour... There other units of this refuge with walking trails and whatnot.

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  4. Pretty pretty. I feel like I know all the loops and ponds and birds of Ridgefield from your posts (ok, not really, but it does seem like a sweet spot).

    You must've said something to that Raccoon to make him run-off like that/ Are you playing nice Flycatcher Jen?

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  5. Hmmm are you not allowed to get out of your car? Weird. Anyways Great shots..love the bittern and the red tail, and a good sighting of the red-shouldered too!!

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  6. Hey, what do I know. From the Friends of Ridgefield site: "In addition to vehicles, the auto tour route is open to foot traffic between May 1 and September 30." Thanks Dennis!

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    1. Eh, I still think that's stupid! The birds seem way less affected by cars than they do people walking around (not to mention the mammals!).

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    2. Probably they want us to stay in the car the other months so that we have some protection from hunter bullets- heh, heh

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  7. That is a great shot of the bittern! And the Red-tailed Hawk! Sounds like maybe we will be hearing about your adventure on foot at Ridgefield in the near future:)

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