First, an update on Atlantic Merlin, our “Curious Visitor” last week – thanks to Catherine who yesterday posted photos of her in the sea smoke off Cape Ann, taken by C.Ryan who indicated Atlantic Merlin is working on a fiber optic cable from Lynn, MA to the UK and France. Early this afternoon Marine Traffic positioned her about 20 miles NE of the Cape. Here are a few mostly wildlife updates:
Early this morning Atlantic Merlin, classified by Marine Traffic as an “Offshore tug/supply vessel” under Canadian registry, arrived a couple of miles off Eastern Point. I watched through the haze as several cargo packages were transferred to a smaller fishing boat. After the samller vessel left, Atlantic Merlin continued closer over the next several hours, finally inching out of sight up the Cape Ann coast during the sunny afternoon. It would be interesting to know what her assignment is.
There are different ways to take a dunk.
Winter birds are settling into their seasonal routines.
This year we are, of course, celebrating Gloucester’s 400+ Anniversary (the “+” is for the centuries native peoples were here before Europeans, and for the years that are yet to come). The Overture was televised locally, and the Gloucester Times had comprehensive coverage, so this is more my personal view of this opening event of the year-long celebration.
It’s been slow recently for our waterfront and wildlife activity, so here are some photos that didn’t “fit the theme” a while back, followed by a few from our recent walks.
Things were about normal for the end of the year.
Some things to keep in mind when we’re celebrating this Holiday season.
Hank Heron (‘The Great Blue’) continues to entertain us, this time dealing with the first ice of the winter on Niles Pond. Here, in his very own words.
Everything is normal for this time of year, leading up to the Holidays.
During our walk by Niles Pond yesterday we were treated to one of Hank Heron’s younger friends scoring some misses, but mostly hits, while fishing for lunch. Here’s one of his (her?) successes.
Another week enjoying our feathered friends, and the weather extremes.
There is never a lack of interesting happenings around here. Recently – historic ships coming to Cape Ann for maintenance by knowledgeable craftspeople; a mystery as to the animal contractors at Niles Pond; and celestial bodies showing off.
I’m back from the annual New England Museum Association Conference that was held “live” this year in Springfield, MA. We are fortunate to benefit from such diversity and density of museums in New England, including here on Cape Ann. I ventured out to a few of them, walking and on field trips.
A variety of encounters over the last week.
We’re getting some beneficial rain. Fall colors are now more than dry, brown leaves.
Maybe the Great White sharks are moving south, because the seals are back at Brace Cove. Yesterday I watched for 20 minutes as the initial rocks became exposed.
This week the annual Cape Ann Plein Air Festival is in full swing. The weather so far has been challenging – cold and windy. The opening event on Sunday was the Quick Draw, held at Essex County Greenbelt’s Allyn Cox Reservation. Competitors had two hours to complete their paintings, followed by a half hour to frame and submit them for judging and for sale.
Our wildlife remained active while we were distracted enjoying late summer.
There was a lot of cruise ship activity viewable from Gloucester yesterday (Friday) with Hurricane Fiona disrupting two of the prime NE coast itineraries – Bermuda and the Canadian Maritimes. “Maritime Traffic: Global Ship Tracking” (www.marinetraffic.com) is a great tool for seeing what’s going on. Following just the four ships sighted, Zaandam and Roald Amundsen docked in Boston Friday night. On Saturday morning Caribbean Princess (origin and destination shown as Boston, with no ETA???) and Norwegian Breakaway (destination NYC) headed around Cape Cod and were passing east of Nantucket. Queen Mary 2 is due in Boston from NYC this evening.
Here is yesterday’s activity of just the four visible from Eastern Point.