Plum Island questions

Discussion in 'Birds' started by Guest-002, Jun 18, 2007.

  1. Guest-002

    Guest-002 Guest

    263
    Jan 14, 2006
    Worcester, MA
    Over the years, I've really admired Jim Fenton's bird pictures from Plum Island, so yesterday I made the 90 minute drive from Worcester to check it out. I was there mid-day and there weren't that many large birds around, just a handful of what appeared to be white egrets. I'm curious as to what the right season, right time, and right locations for optimum bird watching.

    BTW, its a beautiful place. We brought some beach chairs and parked ourselves for some time overlooking the marshes and the river estuary.

    Radu
     
  2. Radu,

    I can tell you this of Jim: he's a Naturalist who spends a lot of time studying the birds that he wishes to photograph before heading out to shoot them. Knowing things like preferred foods, time of day of activity etc are part of what he does to get those incredible shots. I also believe that many of his shots start in the WAY pre-dawn hours, as there is much bird activity in the mornings (early: 5-6a).

    I know he can give you better answers, but I also know he's pretty busy in the field right now, so I thought I'd toss you a quick answer. :smile:
     
  3. Guest-002

    Guest-002 Guest

    263
    Jan 14, 2006
    Worcester, MA
    Yeah, I told my wife that I suspected dawn would be a good time. She wasn't enthusiastic. I can see some early morning solo trips in my future. At least there won't be much traffic.
     
  4. jfenton

    jfenton

    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA
    Hello Rad

    Any time is great there...as long as it's early or late, spring, summer or fall :)

    Seriously....birds come and go. We have resident birds which breed and summer in the area and we have a huge migratory aspect in both the spring and fall. Winter brings raptors to the area in the form of eagles, owls, falcons and hawks....you simply need to be willing to freeze your butt off to get them.

    Early this time of year is 5:0 am TILL 8:30, after which time it's pretty much useless. Evening is the best if you know where to go (horrible biting insects however) with many nights bringing flights of egrets, herons, ducks, etc as they fly out to roost for the evening.

    Shore bird #'s will increase dramatically in late July and August as the arctic breeders stop here to fuel up, rest and ready themselves for their trip south.

    Another thing not to be misses is the incredible massing of the swallows beginning the 2nd week of August. Numbers at times approach half a million birds.

    Not positive as to when just yet, but it looks like I'll be doing a one day seminar out of the refuge sometime in August of this year.
     
  5. Oh PHENOMENAL!!!!!!!!!!! I would *love* to attend!!

    And thank you for this great information, you are kind to be so helpful! :smile:
     
  6. Gale

    Gale

    978
    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Shooting with Jim is wonderful..
    I have a few times.
    Love it
     
  7. Guest-002

    Guest-002 Guest

    263
    Jan 14, 2006
    Worcester, MA
    Jim, I'd be very interested in your seminar if my schedule permits. Please let me know when you've nailed down a date. Thing is, I only have a measly 70-200VR and TC's. But I'd still be interested in learning as I see a long lens in my future.
     
  8. jfenton

    jfenton

    Jan 26, 2005
    Haverhill, MA
    For The Paltry Sum

    of 4.2 million dollars, I'd take anyone shooting anytime :) (Except of course for Gail, whose company I'd pay for :)

    One thing I'd strongly recommend is that you sign up for one of two daily postings:

    A) there is a Yahoo group for Plum Island Birds which gets very detailed reports of what's where on the island daily...sometimes down to the location of a given thicket or pool. It is hosted by Tom Whetm[ore...and absolute superb birder who really knows his stuff and between he, Rick Heil and others, this is a absolutely required resource.

    B) Subscribe to MASSBIRD online as everyone throughout the state posts their findings whenever they have them. It's a great alert / reference to what's going on when and where in MA.
     
  9. Gale

    Gale

    978
    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Awwwwww

    :redface::redface::redface:
    You are an


    :Angel:
     
  10. Gale

    Gale

    978
    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    Jim,
    Think about a session down here next year for Merritt 5:>))))
     
  11. Guest-002

    Guest-002 Guest

    263
    Jan 14, 2006
    Worcester, MA
    Jim,
    Thanks for the excellent resources.
    How'd you come up with $4.2M? Nice work if you can get it.
     
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