The first two weeks of May were generally cool and dry. In the middle of the stretch, was a three day warm period with temperatures about 20 degrees above normal. Precipitation (rain) fell on three days. Migrant arrivals seemed to increase during the warm weather when winds were from the south. Ice is out on all but the biggest lakes. Snow persists in the woods but the Woodland Bog trail in Woodland and the roads near Beardsley Brook in New Sweden were snow free for the first time this week
Several raids on area feeding stations were reported. Both black bears and raccoons were reported as prime suspects in the cases.
New/Arriving birds in Aroostook Co. during this period:
Ruddy Duck (5/4)
Broad-winged Hawk (5/2)
Red-tailed Hawk (5/4)
Solitary Sandpiper (5/12)
Spotted Sandpiper (5/10)
Ruby-throated Hummingbird (5/9) southern, (5/13) central
Least Flycatcher (5/10)
Great Crested Flycatcher (5/12)
Eastern Kingbird (5/12)
Cliff Swallow (5/15)
Northern Mockingbird (5/13)
Brown Thrasher (5/10)
Gray Catbird (5/15)
Scarlet Tanager (5/15)
Nashville Warbler (5/10)
Pine Warbler (5/15)
Northern Parula (5/12)
Yellow Warbler (5/11)
Chestnut-sided Warbler (5/14)
Black-throated Green Warbler (5/10)
Black-and-White Warbler (5/10)
Magnolia Warbler (5/13)
American Redstart (5/10)
Northern Waterthrush (5/11)
Common Yellowthroat (5/12)
Rose-breasted Grosbeak (5/9)
White-crowned Sparrow (5/9)
Baltimore Oriole (5/12)
Other than *5 arriving Ruddy Ducks*, interesting waterfowl at Lake Josephine in Easton included *5 Redheads*, Greater and Lesser Scaup, a pair of Northern Pintails, Gadwall and the more usual American Wigeon and Northern Shovelers. Canada Geese are incubating eggs at locations across the county. A possible lingering Snow Goose was seen on Malabeam Lake in Limestone on the 8th. 50+ Common Goldeneyes and 111 Ring-necked Ducks were high counts at Lake Jo. A hen Hooded Merganser was incubating eggs in a nest box in Caribou and a drake was seen at Mantle Lake in Presque Isle.
Eight raptor species reported in northern Maine was a good count. Osprey, Bald Eagle and American Kestrels were all reported to be on nests in the central Aroostook area. *Seven Ospreys* were seen fishing at one time at LaPomkeag Lake in T8R7 on the 6th. Merlins were seen in New Sweden, Easton and Fort Fairfield. Northern Harrier, Coopers Hawk, Red-tailed (all Caribou) and arriving Broad-wings made up the remainder.
An (the?) adult* Lesser Black-backed Gull* was found loafing on the ice of Trafton Lake in Limestone on the 6th. It was in the company of a mixed flock of Great Black-backed, Herring and Ring-billed Gulls.
The *male Three-toed Woodpecker was drumming* in the Muscovic Road woodlot in Stockholm on May 5. Boreal Chickadees, Gray Jays and 40+ White-winged Crossbills were also seen at this location. Arriving Least and Great Crested Flycatchers as well as Eastern Kingbirds were spotted along a medium sized beaver flowage in Caribou on the 12th.
A rare find in Aroostook was a Northern Mockingbird in Portage Lake. Brown Thrashers made a good showing as well with birds reported in Caribou, Easton, Masardis and Portage Lake. The first Gray Catbird for the area was reported in New Sweden on the 15th.
A good pulse of migrant warblers arrived in Central Aroostook. 12 species were seen. Rare and at the northern edge of its range in Maine, a *Pine Warbler* was heard near Pleasant Lake in Island Falls on the 15th.
Rose-breasted Grosbeaks arrived by 9 May and were widely reported by weeks-end. Uncommon in Aroostook County, Northern Cardinals singing at Collins Pond in Caribou and on the UMPI Campus in Presque Isle were noteworthy.
An American Tree Sparrow lingered in Woodland until at least the 10th. White-crowned Sparrows were reported from Masardis, Caribou, New Sweden and Woodland. *Two male Fox Sparrows were singing* and appeared on territories near Beardsley Brook in New Sweden.
A first Bobolink arrived on schedule and was singing in Caribou on the 12th. Baltimore Orioles and Brown-headed Cowbirds were reported from yards around the area. The former is taking advantage of any citrus offerings they find. Common Grackle and Red-winged Blackbirds are still being encountered in small flocks.
Evening Grosbeaks were seen in Sinclair (5/5) and Island Falls (5/15). Pine Siskins and American Goldfinches continue to be seen in small flocks at feeders and in the woods.