Wednesday, November 11, 2009


This is Bill, again.

I usually go to the beach to walk, look for shells, watch for dolphins and generally enjoy the beauty of it. This past Sunday, Lida and i enjoyed a time at South Beach with Peter Vankevich and Carol and Tom Pahl who all know their birds.

I could already tell a sea gull from sandpiper and a pelican from a dolphin, but with their help I learned to distinguish between a Black-bellied plover and a Ruddy Turnstone. I was shown the difference between Herring gulls, Great and Lesser Black-backed gulls (check out the color of the legs!), the Laughing gull and the Ring-billed gull (check out their bills).

We saw thousands of cormorants flying over and hundreds of Brown Pelican hanging out on the flats.

What a treat this was! It was a warm, sunny day with just a whisper of wind. And we got to see several dolphins swimming by. Now I have another reason to head to the beach: to practice my fledgling birding skills.

Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is a transcript of a letter written in 1949 by a visitor to the island. You can read the letter (which provides a glimpse into Ocracoke life sixty years ago) here:


  1. Anonymous9:39 AM

    I can close my eyes and see it all. Beautiful

  2. Anonymous7:11 PM

    how beautiful...hold on to your hats and each other as it looks like what was left of Hurricane Ida is going to rock our world! Even up here in williamsburg, va, we are feeling 20-30mph sustained winds; and it's only just safe all! 'til later, jack, celeste, katie and kelli