Sunday, October 18, 2015
This morning I had the good fortune to encounter Upper Valley Birders (George Clark, Chris Rimmer, Scott Johnson, Ed Hack, Peter LaBelle, Tii McLane and others) as they were close to finishing another Windsor County Birding Quest walk for 2015, this time in Windsor at Paradise Park/Lake Runnemede. No doubt the find of the morning was a Nelson's Sparrow first spotted and identified by Ed and with perseverance observed several times albeit briefly by others in the group. The bird spent most of the time skulking under the cover of tall grasses, goldenrod and joe-pye weed in a patch of old field habitat adjacent to the northeast corner of the "pumpkin patch." From time to time the sparrow revealed its location either when foraging by twitching grass stems or taking a brief flight before dropping back into thick cover. Luckily I was able to click off several photos (a couple posted here) of this handsome sparrow and uncommon migrant passing through the Connecticut River Valley for more southern climes.