My Bird Blog: A blog about my birding discoveries, bird feeders, birds on my life lists, and all things bird related

Sue's Bird Blog Archives

Five Lifers at Batavia Wastewater Treatment Plant

Published October 21, 2012
Tags: Parks and Preserves, Ruddy Duck, Common Merganser, American Pipit, Herring Gull, Eared Grebe, Eastern Bluebird, Red-tailed Hawk

I drove out to Batavia today to see if I couldn't find some of the birds a few people have posted to the bird list: Wilson's Phalarope, Eared Grebe, and a Forster's Tern. I found one of the three, the Eared Grebe - plus picked up another four lifers: the Ruddy Duck, Common Merganser, American Pipit, and Herring Gull!  I know the gull is common, but I haven't officially identified it and added it to my life list until today.  It's very close to the Ring-billed Gull without the ring - go figure!  ;)

The Eared Grebe usually migrates to the Pacific in the fall but Audubon says that each year a few turn up on the East Coast. I'm very glad I had the opportunity to see this guy today!

It was a beautiful, sunny day, but the high winds brought an icy chill along with some additional photographic challenges.  As usual, it was difficult getting close to any of the water fowl, but the winds made them even more difficult to capture.  I got a few decent shots, though, and the day was very enjoyable.

Also, the Batavia Wastewater Treatment Plant is an amazing facility that utilizes its 400 acres and numerous ponds to turn sewage into clean water. The six to nine month journey one molecule of water takes from beginning to end is quite amazing - and no chemicals. The process is all natural, based on ancient Egyptian engineering with some modern technology applied.

I never made it to the hiking trails like I wanted. The place closes at 3 PM and, as usual, the times went too quickly.  I'll have to return next spring as the place is popular with  flycatchers, herons, Snowy Egrets, and other bird life.  Apparently, they love the place! You can read more about the facility in this article, "Batavia Wastewater Treatment Plant, one of city's hidden treasures".
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I saw this Red-tailed Hawk on my way
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Ring-billed Gull - I never got a good photo of a Herring Gull
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Northern Shovelers
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Ruddy Duck
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Common Mergansers
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Common Mergansers
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American Pipit
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American Pipit
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American Pipit
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Eared Grebe
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Eared Grebe
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Eared Grebe
Reply from: Lynn on 10/22/2012 9:38 AM
 Sounds like you had a wonderful day. As usual, I'm amazed at the varied species you identify. And congratulations on your feature in the Buffalo News. It was a fun read!
Reply from: Sue on 11/4/2012 8:08 AM
 Thank you, Lynn; it was so cool to have the blog in the news! And sometimes, the identifications are not all that easy - don't give me too much credit. I have to look up many species in field guides or online - and if I still don't feel confident in my ID, I consult some expert birders! Even then, I've still been wrong and later corrected on the blog!
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