Chincoteague NWR > November 2012
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Our November 2012 visit, timed to coincide with Thanksgiving's Waterfowl Weekend, found Chincoteague NWR much the worse for wear following the October passage of Hurricane Sandy off the East Coast.  The refuge was hard hit, with many downed trees and and significant beach erosion.  The stretch of beach access road between Swan Cove and Little Tom's Cove was heavily damaged, and as a result refuge staff blocked vehicular traffic short of Swan Cove.  (Thankfully the famous Chincoteague ponies made it through unscathed!)  Nor had the usual abundant late November waterfowl population put in an appearance.

Consequently, there was little to photograph on the refuge during the long Thanksgiving weekend.  There are almost always yellow rumped warblers in the wooded stretch on the back side of the Wildlife Loop and a few ruddy ducks were hanging out in Shoveler Pool, but that was about it.  The one highlight of the trip was the resident bald eagle pair.  Their long term nest tree had been toppled by Sandy, and they were busily engaged in constructing another.  As a result, I was fortunate enough to capture the pair of flight images below.  The eagles were at great range, stressing the capability of both gear and photographer to the maximum!


BaldEagle-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0753 copy BaldEagle-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0755 copy BaldEagles-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0462 copy BaldEagles-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0476 copy GreaterYellowlegs-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0541 copy
MallardMale-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0520 copy RuddyDuck-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0621 copy RuddyDuck-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0693 copy RuddyDuck-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0735 copy RuddyDuck-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0748 copy
RuddyDuck-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D4C0774 copy YellowRumpedWarbler-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D5A0142 copy YellowRumpedWarbler-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D5A0145 copy YellowRumpedWarbler-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D5A0146 copy YellowRumpedWarbler-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D5A0154 copy
YellowRumpedWarbler-ChincoNWR-2012Nov_D5A0157 copy