Nov. 20, 2023 under clear skies, wind S 8MPH, temp 45F; sunset time 4:12PM
Out on Crow Patrol with first stops by baseball field, along Merrimack Street to view buildup in staging areas. Next out onto the Duck Bridge to observe incoming flight streams downriver from the east. Image at 18 minutes after sunset time.
Near the NXStage building most flight streams moved to south shore of river and remained in fairly low altitude flight, then at New Balance, increased altitude to roof level, on then to area around National Grid substation. While leaving Duck Bridge, about 45 minutes after sunset time, noticed impressive buildup of Crows on inside of trees closest to the north side of the New Balance building. Image at 47 minutes after sunset time.
Moved to east side of bridge to observe the 250+ yard stretch of riverside trees loaded with perched and vocalizing Crows. This is a new pattern for this year with many more Crows perched on the east side of the Duck Bridge. Image at 50 minutes after sunset time.
Final stop was at park by Mill240 apartment building with views across the river. This vantage point provided excellent views of the 200+ yard stretch of riverside trees from the west of the New Balance building towards the Casey Bridge with perched Crows on the trees and many more behind in and around the National Grid substation. Image at 65 minutes after sunset time.
The last view was the 200+ yard stretch of trees along the north side of the New Balance building. At this point many more Crows have converged from other nearby perch locations and moved into the overnight roost trees. Image at 66 minutes after sunset time. Another amazing overnight roost adventure!
Note on counts/estimates: we are now using improved methods for counting the large number of Crows while streaming, staging, and in the roost. For all images, we use both a modified open source counting software program, as well as a hand count approach, while outside next to the roost, to carefully document our observations and to significantly increase reliability and accuracy of the presented numbers. Please refer to our new roost counting guide on main page.
The Canon mirrorless cameras with the RF 50mm f/1.2 lens and the RF 28-70mm F2 excel in low-light conditions, blending versatile focal lengths with an ultra-wide aperture. Both focal lengths work extremely well in very low light conditions, while the f/1.2 and F2 aperture settings ensure exceptional performance in low light conditions, offering stunning clear, and aesthetically pleasing images, making them ideal for the challenging very low light conditions around the overnight roost.
Remember to check out the latest Crow Patrol Podcast with John Macone (Merrimack River Watershed Council): wintercrowroost.com/podcast/
Photo gear used for most outings:
Canon EOS 80D with Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS
Canon EOS 80D with Canon EF-S 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS (Infrared)
Canon EOS R6 Mirrorless with Canon RF 28-70 f/2 L IS USM
Canon EOS R6 II Mirrorless with Canon RF 50 f/1.2 L USM