Patrick Comins

I work as the Director of Bird Conservation for Audubon Connecticut and currently serve as President of the Friends of the Silvio O. Conte National Fish and Wildlife Refuge.  I've  always been fascinated by weather and read voraciously on the topic as a child.  This interest has only grown with time, especially since I've become an avid birder.  The weather has a huge influence on bird movements and migration.  Southbound migrants ride cold fronts to their wintering grounds, making the passage of each cold front from August to November the time to look for migrating hawks, songbirds or shorebirds.  Cold weather to our north can herald the arrival of migrant or wintering waterfowl as lakes freeze to our north.  A warm front that stalls over the coast on a spring morning can produce amazing fallouts of colorful warblers along the coast, or a warm sunny morning in May can make for a great day of birding inland.  Easterly winds can push uncommon vagrants into Long Island Sound, southwesterly winds in the fall can bring western vagrants and a tropical system can send seabirds well inland or carry tropical birds our way.  Here we will explore implications of weather patterns for birds and birding and I will attempt to make birding forecasts based on weather conditions.  I hope you enjoy them and wind up seeing some good birds in the process. 

Latest Articles

  • Hybrid Mania
    Last Monday I was excited to get some photos of a Little Blue Heron at Hammonasset Beach State Park in Madison.  I even used one of the photos in my last article, but then fellow birder Dan Rottino...
  • Finally Spring!
    It has been a long, hard winter, but spring is finally here and it is an amazing time of year to get out and enjoy nature.   This pair of Northern Shovelers was photographed at the Birdseye Boat Ramp...
  • Rock to Rock for the Birds
    On Saturday. April 26th, Audubon and our partners will be hitting the road to raise money to improve neighborhoods and migratory bird habitat in the New Haven Harbor Watershed, as part of New Haven’s annual...
  • Ten and a Half Gulls
    There seems to be a mini invasion underway.  Early spring (in some years) brings huge influxes of gulls, ducks and other birds into Long Island Sound.  We aren't sure what attracts these birds,...
  • Helping Birds and People
    More than one dozen volunteers helped to get Sandy and Morse Points ready for the nesting season and least six Piping Plovers were already there to greet us.  Piping Plovers are a listed at "threatened"...
  • Rare Birds, Great Variety Mark Photo Quest
    Back in January I decided to try to see how many species of birds I could photograph over the course of 2014.  As March draws to a close I stand at 127 species (well actually 126.5, but more on that...
  • Early Spring a Great Time for Birding in Connecticut
    March is an exciting time of year to get out birding.  Many wintering birds reamain in the state and each day brings a new spring arrival. Long-eared Owls are very rare in Connecticut and listed...
  • Volunteers Needed to Help Coastal Waterbirds
    Volunteers are needed to help steward and monitor Piping Plovers and other coastal waterbirds this spring and summer. Spend your summer days at the beach and help protect a federally threatened species! The...
  • Great Backyard Bird Count Wrap-up
    Though observers have until February 28th to submit checklists, it is looking like 133 species were found in Connecticut on the 2014 Great Backyard Bird Count.   The record count is 151 species set...
  • Great Backyard Bird Count Coming
    The Great Backyard Bird Count is coming up next weekend. The count is sponsored by Audubon, Bird Studies Canada and the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.  Anyone can participate and in this case the world...
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