Field Trip Report: Giant Stairs, Bailey Island

Friday, December 15th, 2017

Seventeen birders enjoyed the walk along the Giant’s Stairs on Bailey Island in Harpswell along the rocky coastline on a beautiful December morning. Highlights of the trip starting with a calling Carolina Wren by the Chapel, good looks at winter plumage Black Guillemots and Common Loons. Sharp eyes spotted a Peregrine Falcon on one of the offshore ledges consuming its prey. And a Sharp-shinned Hawk made an apparently unsuccessful pass at some House Finches as it flew overhead. Two late Common Grackles were spotted in a tree from the south end of Washington Avenue.

EBird Checklist:

Giant’s Stairs and McIntosh Lot Preserve, Cumberland, Maine, US
Dec 2, 2017 8:30 AM – 10:40 AM
Protocol: Traveling
0.75 mile(s)
Comments: Merrymeeting Audubon Field Trip. Walked from Episcopal Chapel east along Ocean Street, then south along the Giant Stairs path, then west along the McIntoash Lot Preserve path to Washington Avenue and south to the road’s end. Returned north to Chapel by way of Washington Avenue.
29 species

Common Eider (Dresser’s) 240
White-winged Scoter 18
Black Scoter 3
Long-tailed Duck 12
Common Loon 9
Horned Grebe 2
Red-necked Grebe 2
Northern Gannet 4
Great Cormorant 1
Sharp-shinned Hawk 1 Dashed after House finches along path, but was unsuccessful.
Bald Eagle 1
Purple Sandpiper 30 Flock flying rapidly north offshore along Bailey Island. Likely the birds were flushed from rock ledges by nearby Peregrine Falcon.
Razorbill 3
Black Guillemot 2
Herring Gull (American) 70
Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon) 5
Downy Woodpecker 1
Peregrine Falcon 1 Perched on rock ledge east of Thunder Hole consuming prey item.
Blue Jay 2
American Crow 8
Black-capped Chickadee 6
Carolina Wren 1
Golden-crowned Kinglet 4
European Starling 3
Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored) 5
Northern Cardinal 4
Common Grackle 2
House Finch 20
American Goldfinch 3