Wood Duck – 3/31/21

Observer: Josh Simons Observation Date: 3/31/21 Observation Time: 11:00 AM Observation Location: Moose Hill area Common Name: Wood duck Scientific Name: Aix sponsa Comment: “sponsa” means “betrothed” — dressed for a wedding – a comment on the beauty of the male plumage. More Information: All About Birds

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Wolf Spider – 4/1/21

Observer: Josh Simons Observation Date: 3/26/21 Observation Time: 4:30 p.m. Observation Place: Moose Hill area Common Name: Wolf spider Scientific Name: Gladicosa gulosa Comments: I would have been happier finding this wolf spider outside rather than in our mudroom. I captured it and deposited it outside — before reading that some wolf spiders can be aggressive towards humans, that their bite can take a few weeks to […]

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Fisher – 2/26/21

Observer: Kurt Buermann Observation Date: 2/26/21 Observation Time: 7:43 p.m. Observation Location: Furnace St. Common Name: Fisher Scientific Name: Martes pennanti Comments: Kurt Buermann mounted a motion-activated animal cam in his yard and got this video of a fisher: https://youtu.be/FbpcRP6W3D8m. Fishers are omnivorous. You can see the fisher eating raisins near the end of the video. Fishers are sometimes referred to as fisher cats, but they […]

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Pine Warbler – 12/30/20

Observer: Josh Simons Observation Date: 12/30/20 Observation Time: 1:30 p.m. Observation Location: Moose Hill area Common Name: Pine Warbler Scientific Name: Setophaga pinus Comments: Pine warblers are typically found in pine groves. Many warbler species migrate through Sharon in May on their way to nesting areas farther north, but pine warblers nest here in Sharon, and can be found here all summer. Although they typically migrate south in winter, some of […]

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Dark-eyed Junco – 12/18/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 12/18/20 Observation Time: 8:35 a.m. Observation Location: Gavins Pond Rd. (our back yard) Common Name: Dark-eyed Junco Scientific Name: Junco hyemalis Comments: Juncos are a type of sparrow commonly seen around Sharon in winter. They head north in spring and don’t return until fall. More Information: Cornell Lab of Ornithology “All About Birds”

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Northern Cardinal – 12/18/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 12/18/20 Observation Time: 8:30 a.m. Observation Location: Gavins Pond Rd. (our back yard) Common Name: Northern Cardinal (female) Scientific Name: Cardinalis cardinalis Comments: One of the most common birds in Sharon, cardinals have a whistle-like voice, and sing strongly. Learn to recognize their various vocalizations at: http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/northern_cardinal/sound Cardinals typically travel in pairs. The male is bright red and the female is mostly tan. […]

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Springtails – 11/29/20

Observer: Kurt Buermann Observation Date: 11/29/20 Observation Time: 10:00 a.m. Observation Location: 45 Furnace St. Common Name: Globular Springtails Scientific Name: Sminthuridae Comments: I have often seen these brown dots floating in water, ponds or birdbaths. Today I got really curious. With the naked eye they seem like some sort of pollen. If you scoop a few onto your finger tip they jump off so they are […]

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Northern Cardinal – 11/27/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 11/27/20 Observation Time: 12:30 p.m. Observation Location: Gavins Pond Rd. (my back yard) Common Name: Northern Cardinal Scientific Name: Cardinalis cardinalis Comments: One of the most common birds in Sharon, cardinals have a whistle-like voice, and sing strongly. Learn to recognize their various vocalizations at: http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/northern_cardinal/sound Cardinals typically travel in pairs. The male is bright red and the female is mostly tan. More […]

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Tufted Titmouse – 11/27/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 11/27/20 Observation Time: 12:20 p.m. Observation Location: Gavins Pond Rd. (my back yard) Common Name: Tufted Titmouse Scientific Name: Baeolophus bicolor Comments: Tufted titmice are abundant in Sharon. They are often encountered in the company of chickadees. More Information: All About Birds

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Eastern Gray Squirrel – 11/27/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 11/27/20 Observation Time: 12:10 p.m. Observation Location: Gavins Pond Rd. (my back yard) Common Name: Eastern Gray Squirrel Scientific Name: Sciurus carolinensis Comments: The eastern gray squirrel hoards food in numerous small caches for later recovery. Some caches are quite temporary, especially those made near the site of a sudden abundance of food which can be retrieved within hours or days for […]

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House Finch – 11/27/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 11/27/20 Observation Time: 12:05 p.m. Observation Location: 4 Gavins Pond Rd. (my back yard) Common Name: House Finch Scientific Name: Setophaga discolor Comments: Male house finches have reddish coloration on their head and breast. Females are streaked brown. Both have a heavy, conical beak for cracking seeds open. More Information: All About Birds

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Pileated Woodpecker – 10/24/20

Observer: Faith Berkland Observation Date: 10/24/20 Observation Time: 3:55 p.m. Observation Location: 302-296 Mansfield St., Sharon Common Name: Pileated Woodpecker Scientific Name: Dryocopus pileatus Comments: Unfortunately I did not get a picture. However, this was very recognizable for the loud call, the large white spot under its wings when it flew from tree to tree and its pointy crest. I only briefly made out the coloring […]

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Pickerel Frog – 9/9/20

Observer: Josh Simons Observation Date: 9/9/20 Observation Time: 11:15 a.m. Observation Location: Moose Hill area Common Name: Pickerel Frog Scientific Name: Lithobates palustris Comments: The skin secretions of a stressed pickerel frog are known to be toxic to other frogs, as many a novice frog catcher has found when he finds only the pickerel frogs still alive in his bucket. These secretions can also be […]

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Goldrenrod Bunch Gall Midge – 9/9/20

Observer: Josh Simons Observation Date: 9/9/20 Observation Time: 11:00 a.m. Observation Location: Moose Hill area Common Name: Goldrenrod Bunch Gall Midge Scientific Name: Rhopalomyia solidaginis Comments: This peculiar insect makes a gall on goldenrod. More Information: iNaturalist

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White Banded Crab Spider – 9/7/20

Observer: Josh Simons Observation Date: 9/7/2020 Observation Time: 11:00 a.m. Observation Location: Moose Hill area Common Name: White-banded Crab Spider Scientific Name: Misumessus formosipes Comments: These spiders (also called flower spiders) can change color to match the flowers they are hunting in. Cool. More Information: iNaturalist

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Bee Fly – 9/4/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 9/4/20 Observation Time: 2:15 p.m. Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (TTOR) Common Name: Bee fly Scientific Name: Systropus macer Comments: This fly looks like a wasp. It was feeding on a late purple aster blossom beside the dirt road under the power lines. More Information: Forestry Images and Bugguide.net

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Gray Hairstreak Butterfly – 9/4/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 9/4/20 Observation Time: 2:00 p.m. Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (under power lines) Common Name: Gray Hairstreak butterfly Scientific Name: Satyrium melinus Comments: This Gray Hairstreak butterfly was feeding on Sweet Everlasting. More Information: Raising Butterflies

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Pure Gold-Green Sweat Bee – 9/4/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 9/4/20 Observation Time:  1:10 p.m. Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (TTOR) Common Name: Pure Gold-Green Sweat Bee Scientific Name: Augochlora pura Comments: The pure gold-green sweat bee is a solitary sweat bee native to the eastern United States with striking green iridescence. This species is an important native pollinator in eastern deciduous forests and other habitats. It emerges in spring […]

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Clouded Sulphur Butterfly – 9/4/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 9/4/20 Observation Time: 1:00 p.m. Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (TTOR) Common Name: Clouded Sulphur butterfly Scientific Name: Colias philodice Comments: A common butterfly seen from late April to mid-October. This patch of blooming Joe Pye weed was alive with clouded sulphurs feeding on the nectar. Note the big green eyes. More Information: Massachusetts Butterfly Club

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Praying Mantis – 9/4/20

Observer: Paul Lauenstein Observation Date: 9/4/20 Observation Time: 12:50 p.m. Observation Location: Moose Hill Farm (TTOR) Common Name: Praying Mantis Scientific Name: Mantis religiosa Comments: Mantises are the only insects capable of turning their heads from side to side. Being able to turn its head without moving the rest of its body is a key advantage for a mantis when hunting, allowing for minimal movement […]

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Gray Catbird – 8/28/20

Observer: Ilan Fisher Observation Date: 8/28/20 Observation Time: 2:00 p.m. Observation Location: near intersection of Beach & Harding Streets Common Name: Gray Catbird Scientific Name: Dumetella carolinensis Comments: Catbirds are one of three mimics in our area. Mockingbirds and Brown Thrashers are the other two. Catbirds repeat sounds just once, whereas Brown Thrashers repeat sounds twice, and Mockingbirds repeat them three or four times before moving on to […]

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Mallard – 8/28/20

Observer: Ilan Fisher Observation Date: 8/28/20 Observation Time: 12:00 p.m. Observation Location: near intersection of Beach & Harding Streets Common Name: Mallard Scientific Name: Anas platyrhynchos Comments: Perhaps the most familiar of all ducks, Mallards occur throughout North America and Eurasia in ponds and parks as well as wilder wetlands and estuaries. The male’s gleaming green head, gray flanks, and black tail-curl arguably make it […]

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Northern Cardinal – 8/22/20

Observer: Ilan Fisher Observation Date: 8/22/20 Observation Time: 5:00 p.m. Observation Location: near intersection of Beach & Harding Streets Common Name: Northern Cardinal (male) Scientific Name: Cardinalis cardinalis Comments: One of the most common birds in Sharon, cardinals are also one of the most striking. Cardinals have a whistle-like voice, and sing strongly. Learn to recognize their various vocalizations at: http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/northern_cardinal/sound Cardinals typically travel in pairs. The female is mostly […]

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Downy Woodpecker – 8/22/20

Observer: Ilan Fisher Observation Date: 8/22/20 Observation Time: 2:00 p.m. Observation Location: near intersection of Beach & Harding Streets Common Name: Downy Woodpecker Scientific Name: Dryobates pubescens Comments:  “Pubescens” refers to its downy hairs of puberty compared to those of the Hairy woodpecker, D. villosus. [The Dictionary of American Bird Names by Ernest A. Choate] Downy woodpeckers look very much like hairy woopeckers, but downy woodpeckers are much smaller than […]

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Great Blue Heron – 8/20/20

Observer: Ilan Fisher Observation Date: 8/20/20 Observation Time: 10:00 a.m. Observation Location: Lake Massapoag Common Name: Great Blue Heron Scientific Name: Ardea herodias Comments: Adult great blue herons weigh about 5 lbs. They weigh more than great horned owls, which weigh about 3 lbs., but they are not the largest bird found in Sharon. Bald eagles can reach 14 lbs. More Information: All About Birds

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