An online resource based on the award-winning nature guide

Archive for March 9, 2010

Welcome to a photographic journey through the fields, woods, and marshes of New England

Here I’ll be sharing some photographs I’ve recently taken as well as some of my favorites from my forthcoming book Naturally Curious. I’ll be updating my blog periodically with new images, new stories, and more glimpses of New England in all seasons.

COMMON GRACKLES BACK

Common grackles are back right on time! Males arrive back about a week before females, and with their yellow eyes, iridescent bronze or purple feathers and long tail, are very noticeable. If you haven’t seen one, try listening for its sharp, harsh call, or song, often described as sounding like a rusty gate opening or closing (although I think the call of rusty blackbirds sounds even more like a rusty gate). This member of the blackbird family is often disliked for its habit of eating other birds’ eggs and nestlings, as well as its reputation as an agricultural pest. However, it is a major consumer of Japanese beetles, so it does have at least one redeeming quality. Go to http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/common_grackle/id for more information and to hear what common grackles sound like.