Saturday, June 15, 2013

A look at some of the birds and blooms of Harpswell, Maine

A whirling wooden loon sits on a railing at a gift shop at Land's End in Harpswell, Maine. Image copyright Daniel E. Levenson 2013.
I recently spent a little time birding along the beaches and craggy coves of southern Maine, in and around the Harpswell area. While I didn't add any new species to my year list (or see a moose) I did enjoy looking out at the waters of Casco Bay, watching male and female Common Ediers resting in the surf and on small islands, and generally exploring the winding roads of Cumberland County.

A Song Sparrow sings with the ocean in the background. Image copyright Daniel E. Levenson 2013.

We started off with a windy, slightly rainy morning of casual birding at Land's End, a gorgeous spot at the very tip of Bailey Island in the town of Harpswell. Here we walked along a short section of rocky beach looking out at the gently rolling waves and rocky little islands in the distance while we listened to the serenade of Song Sparrows perched prominently atop shrubs and Yellow Warblers hidden in the brush.

Even on a cloudy day the beauty of Maine's rugged coastline comes through. In the photo above a statue dedicated to the fisherman of the state can also be seen. Image copyright Daniel E. Levenson 2013.

With gray skies overhead this Lupine added a little color to the day. Image copyright Daniel E. Levenson 2013.
In addition to the 18 species of birds we saw during our two days in the Brunswick area we were also lucky enough to see the Lupine in bloom in gardens, fields and along the roadside. Sometimes it's all too easy to focus only on one aspect of the natural world, whether its birds, bugs or weather and lose track of all of the other amazing things out there waiting to be found. Most of the time we were surrounded by a sea of green trees or the ocean, but then we would come across something like the Lupines in the photo above and it would remind me to take a closer look around. Always a valuable lesson in the outdoors.

We ended our evening with dinner at a fantastic restaurant out at the end of South Harpswell called Dolphin Marina and Restaurant. I would have given this place a major thumbs up for the view alone, but the food was also delicious and the service was great. As a birder I also appreciated being able to sit next to a giant window looking out at the bay and beach and having the chance to watch a Great Blue Heron fly back and forth, silhouetted against the sunset.

The sun sets over Casco Bay at the end of South Harpswell, Maine. Image Copyright Daniel E. Levenson 2013.
Thanks for reading.

Copyright Daniel E. Levenson 2013.

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