Longspurs, Larks, and Buntings

~Snow Bunting in the uh well, snow. Black Dirt Region, 2/8/15.~

This past Sunday, I finally got my first Snow Buntings of the year. I know that folks have been seeing them throughout the black dirt region, but I somehow kept coming up empty. After Karen Miller and I tried unsuccessfully for the Ulster County Gyrfalcon in the morning, we decided to head back to the black dirt region to try for Snow Buntings. We did well, finding 6 in a flock of  approximately 75 Horned Larks.

Then, today after work I received a text from Linda Scrima who had a couple of Lapland Longspurs in the black dirt. I met her out there and took some photos before heading over to the Wallkill River NWR Liberty Loop viewing platform, where it was relatively quiet. For the first time in a long while I did not see any Northern Harriers. We did get good looks at a dark morph Rough-legged Hawk, one distant Turkey Vulture and several Red-tailed Hawks. It was getting pretty dark when the Short-eared Owls got up; I counted four of them.

~I’m not sure what was going on while taking these photos, all of them are soft. Snow Bunting in the Black Dirt, 2/8/15.~
~Snow Bunting with a Horned Lark, Black Dirt, 2/8/15.~
~I love these guys. Lapland Longspur with a Horned Lark in the Black Dirt, 2/11/15.~
~A nice look at the feet of the Lapland Longspur. Black Dirt, 2/11/15.~
~Larks and Longspurs in the snow piles. Black Dirt, 2/11/15.~

6 thoughts on “Longspurs, Larks, and Buntings”

  1. Love the chorus line. The longspur on the bottom of the hill looks as tentative about walking up the slope as I do.

    Guess we reversed gears this weekend: you had the buntings & larks Sunday while we got the gyrfalcon, vice versa from Saturday.

  2. Great shots Matt
    I still need to see the longspur and the bunting with good light. Hopefully sometime this winter.
    I really lucked out greatly at the Rio creek yesterday with the eagles. I got fantastic shots with my new lens!!!

    1. Awesome that you are enjoying your new lens Wilma! It’s likely just a matter of time before you get the LALOs in good light. Matt

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