On Sept 26th, Mary Collier and I sat in our chairs, on Haven Road, enjoying the evening. It wasn't the best of days, but it certainly wasn’t the worst. A cool breeze kept us in our warm jackets. Jim Carney stopped by to say hi and engage in some pleasant conversation. That night, for the 27th year, members of Sullivan Audubon counted Wood Ducks as they fly into the Bashakill to roost for the night. Along with 1004 Woodies we also had Canada Geese, Mallards, Great Blue Herons, a Harrier, Red-winged Blackbirds, Ravens, a Blue Jay, Black Ducks, Bald Eagles, a Kestrel, a Sharp-shinned Hawk and 2 Moorhens. We also had a busy Beaver swimming around entertaining us.

Wood Duck
photo © Steve Davis
Click photo to enlarge

The next week Pat Cocot and Ellen Smith joined us. It was beautiful: 78 degrees, clear blue sky and no wind. Maybe the same Harrier from the week before flew around the marsh. A Great Blue Heron, a couple of Crows, only one Bald Eagle, 5 Black Ducks, 25 Canada Geese and one Song Sparrow were seen from our chairs. That night we counted 1371 Woodies. That brings our total, over the years, to 38,069. That’s a lot of ducks!

What made my day were the butterflies: a Bronze Copper was patrolling its territory in front of us and 2 migrating Monarchs made their way past us on their way to Mexico. I’m happy to see any butterflies in October. Even the bullfrogs were croaking with happiness!

I hope the Bashakill remains protected for years to come to provide a safe place for these ducks and other wildlife to flourish. It's truly amazing to see and a wonderful place to be. I’m already looking forward to next year, please come join us for an enjoyable evening.

Renee Davis