Tag Archives: Rockport Harbor

WHERE DO SWANS GO DURING A STORM?

We friends of Mr. Swan think he is practically a genius. You would have to be, to survive the oftentimes inhospitable shores of Cape Ann. And, too, he is well over twenty years old and has out lived two mates!

Mr. Swan at Brace Cove

Mr. Swan is a species of swan called a Mute Swan, which do not migrate great distances. Instead, they move around from body of water to body of water within a region. When Mr. and Mrs. Swan were raising their young, by mid summer, when food was becoming less plentiful and water levels receding at Henry’s Pond, the entire swan family–mom, dad, and all the cygnets–would travel for the remainder of the breeding season to Niles Pond, a larger pond with a more plentiful supply of aquatic vegetation. Several weeks ago, the brackish water of Henry’s Pond thawed. Mr. Swan returned to the Pond, but then with a stretch of cold weather, it quickly refroze. He headed over to Pebble Beach to forage for food in the saltwater cove. This week, sensing the coming nor’easter, Mr. Swan moved over to Rockport Harbor, which rarely freezes, is less rough than Pebble Beach, and where a supply of food is readily available. Whether a September hurricane or March blizzard, Mr. Swan rides out the storm tucked in along the edge of pond or harbor.

Don’t you find it very interesting that although not indigenous to this country, Mute Swans have adapted many strategies for surviving our changing seasons, and with the seasonal changes, the differing types of, and amounts of, food available.

Mr. Swan at Rockport Harbor

If you see Mr. Swan at any of our local bodies of water, please be very kind to him. Dogs, no matter how well meaning, will make any swan feel threatened. And please, if you must feed him, only feed him whole corn. No junk food ever. Swan junk food includes bread, crackers, chips, and Doritos. In all the years that I have been filming Mr. Swan, never once have I fed him. Mr. Swan has friends, wonderfully kind stewards, who regularly look after his well-being, supplementing his native diet of pond greens and seaweed with cracked corn, and that is quite sufficient for his good health.

Thank you everyone for looking out for Cape Ann’s one and only Mr. Swan!

Mr. Swan at Henry’s Pond

Mr. Swan at Rockport Harbor and Niles Pond, with His Ever-present Entourage of Quackers

CROWS OF THE SEA

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These aquamarine-eyed beauties were very nearly made extinct from the use of the pesticide DDT and from hunting. DDT wreaked havoc on avian creatures nationwide and since its ban, the Double-crested Cormorant has made an extraordinary recovery, so much so, that some communities spend a great deal of time and expense planning how to kill, or cull, these remarkable birds. Read here for a very thoughtful article on the topic, “To Kill a Cormorant.”double-crested-cormorant-rockport-harbor-massachusetts-3-copyright-kim-smithdouble-crested-cormorant-rockport-harbor-massachusetts-2-copyright-kim-smithdouble-crested-cormorant-rockport-harbor-massachusetts-copyright-kim-smith

doublec-crested-cormorants-rockport-harborPair of Juvenile Double-crested Cormorants at Rockport Harbor

double-crested-cormorants-massing-essex-river-1-copyright-kim-smithDouble-crested Cormorants massing at the mouth of the Essex River in late summer

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800px-double-crested_cormorant_during_breeding_seasonThe Double-crested Cormorant get its common name from the double tufts of feathers seen on both male and females, showing only during breeding season. The crests can be white, black, or a combination of both. Photo courtesy wiki.

 

EARLY MORNING SCENES FROM BEAUTIFUL ROCKPORT HARBOR, GRANITE PIER, MR. SWAN AND DUCK ENTOURAGE, PAIR OF JUVENILE DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANTS, FV WINDY, AND OF COURSE, MOTIF NO.1

Photos from an early morning walk all around Rockport Harbor (sub0zero walk I should add). My technique for photographing when it’s 10 degrees out is to snap away until my fingers can’t stand it any more, run back to the car, which has been left running, warm up, and then try again. Repeat in ten to fifteen minute intervals. I have the utmost respect for the fishermen; I don’t understand how they can work on the water when the air temperature is so cold.

rockport-congregational-church-sun-rays-copyright-kim-smithRockport Congregational Church and Shalin Liu Sunrays

Double-crested cormorant-juvenile-sleeping-rockport-harbor-copyright-kim-smithOne of a sleeping pair of juvenile Double-crested Cormorants

Can’t Quite Put My Finger On It

Hmmm.   There’s something different about Rockport Harbor these days.  I can’t quite put my finger on it.

Could it possibly be the massive marine crane that is resting alongside our sleepy and iconic Motif 1?

It has taken me by surprise several days in a row upon coming to the end of Broadway to turn up South Street to head home.

The equipment, for the record, is in town to work on the Rockport Breakwater.

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Swabbing the Deck, Rockport Harbor, circa 1950

US Coast Guard sailors swab the decks on their launch Straightsmouth. The launch was most likely the transport to Straightsmouth Island Light. The 37 foot lighthouse marks the course to Rockport Harbor with its green flashing light. The island is now owned by the Massachusetts Audubon Society.

US Coast Guard sailors swab the decks on their launch Straightsmouth. The launch was most likely the transport to Straightsmouth Island Light. The 37 foot lighthouse marks the course to Rockport Harbor with its green flashing light. The island is now owned by the Massachusetts Audubon Society.

24 hour Countdown to Santa in Rockport

In 24 hours, Saturday at 3:45PM the Freemantle Doctor will round up and head into Rockport Harbor. You can open this post (click the header) then refresh the photo to get the most up to date view of the goings on.

Sandy Bay Yacht Club Net Cam

Sandy Bay Yacht Club Net Cam

Sandy Bay Yacht Club has two Net Cams click here. But better to get down there in person to meet Santa, enjoy some hot chocolate complete with mini-marshmallows,  enjoy the caroling in Dock Square and the lighting of the most awesome tree to ever grace Dock Square.

While you’re at the Sandy Bay Yacht Club web site go ahead and sign your kids up for sailing lessons next summer. Sailing season will be here before you know it.

The New Ocean Reporter

It was great to catch the new Ocean Reporter in rockport Harbor last week.

I wonder if there is a meaning of the penquin standing on the pilot house.

Or just a decoration.

Helicopter Over Cape Ann Pictures From Chris Roenker Part II

Beth Roenker writes-

Joey, attached are some pictures Chris Roenker of Rockport took on Thursday from a helicopter piloted by Dan Zimmermann also of Rockport.  They flew around Cape Ann and got some really great shots.  Thought you might want to share them.  Love the blog!  Beth

click pics for larger versions

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15 – Pigeon Cove Harbor

16  Rockport Harbor

15 – Pigeon Cove Harbor

21  Thatcher Island

22  Loblolly Cove

23 Cape Hedge and Long Beaches

24 Good Harbor Beach

25 Gloucester Harbor

27 Hammond Castle

29 is just pretty

Lightning Show This Morning

Driving in from the west at 3:30AM this morning I followed the light show of a lightning storm as it headed east.

Lightning is very hard to photograph. No tripod and no idea how to keep the lens open on the camera. This is from I4C2 and the light in the distance is not the sun coming up. It’s about 4:15.

Had to burn some time before going epic fail rock hunting so went to Rockport. Lightning still going nuts but much harder to catch any since the shutter would not stay open. I took a ton of shots between strikes.