American Redstart

American Redstart, New World warbler enjoys cooling off in My Neck of the Woods on Fishers Island.

– A Snippet from The Field by Justine Kibbe August 22, 2017.

grounded osprey

Grounded juvenile Osprey with injured wing watched over near Dock Beach. Fishers Island community lent a hand this past August weekend- getting the bird across the Sound, where rehabilitators from Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center, Mystic will assess and keep us posted.

– A Snippet from The Field by Justine Kibbe August 22, 2017.

Spring Eve At Hungry Point

It’s early May off Hungry Point, Fishers Island. Male Eider ducks appearing “handsome” for their mates, while bell buoy lulls Harbor seals to sleep.

– A Snippet from The Field by Justine Kibbe August 17, 2017.

Young Ruddy

Young Ruddy Turnstones rest on rocks off South beach where tidal wrack lines support healthy habitat here on Fishers Island.

– A Snippet from The Field by Justine Kibbe August 17, 2017.

Spotted Sandpiper

Along the dune grasses south side of Elizabeth Field airport, a rarely sighted Spotted Sandpiper perches above its nesting grounds this quiet summer eve on Fishers Island.

– A Snippet from The Field by Justine Kibbe August 17, 2017.

Green Heron

Green Heron

– Field Note by Justine Kibbe June 17 2017.

I can always tell when perhaps I am paying too close attention to my own life on an Island – the way I “feel” it rather than “the way I see it” as a Naturalist. Kind of an inside joke between me and Nature but it often comes across in my photo moments out in the field.

Up east at Oyster Pond, ranging a bit from my neck of the woods on Silver Eel Cove, I met this Green Heron(plumage of the species is actually more slate blue) while on my bicycle. It was early eve, both of us blanketed under June’s shroud of fog-the utter stillness, well, it felt surreal. I got home to discover the image indeed almost looks like an artist’s painting.

The canvas that is Fishers Island though is constantly changing. My job taking note, documenting, and journaling natural history over time; it’s no secret diary (except of course how I feel about my Significant Otter!).

And it appears so quickly – this ever evolving natural environment impacted with our human alterations and transitions; it’s not at all like watching paint dry.

It’s a tough learning curve- being cautious -not letting my own feelings get in the mix. It’s difficult not getting swept away with the surge of cars and folks that swells from 200 or so of us to 2,000 of us in less than 48 hours-just a Memorial Day weekend.

I try not to feel blue as bright red helicopters scream “touch down”, and brighter yellow hovercrafts hover over Black-crowned night herons snoozing under the ferry dock.

Newly installed sliding glass doors at The Village Market slowly got my green light-more speedily than the nearly official traffic light up at Gate House.

And it sure feels like no joke this climate change, wearing my gloves this late, soaking wet spring-June just could be the new April-no fooling!

But some things never change; I still feel grateful to live on an Island.

Piping Plover Eggs

Treasured nest and eggs found along Conservancy’s Sanctuary of Sands, parallel Elizabeth Field Runway. Please tread respectfully, leash all dogs, and take pride in our Island’s unique environment and wildlife.

father bluebird

– A Snippet from The Field by Justine Kibbe May 15, 2017.

Male Eastern Bluebird serves up Mother’s Day dinner for mate and brood here in a peaceful meadow, eastern Fishers Island.

His timing was perfect. Last Jaunuary 19th; I had just about given up wanting to reside on this “God forsaken rock”. Life in those moments was one swirl of blizzard with north winds whipping, pipes freezing, a wool hat that was becoming too much a part of me; in a place where “wuthering” really did exist and it wasn’t very romantic. I believe he appeared just when we needed each other. His odd sounding pheasant screetch was like a precisely set alarm clock every morning. His cocky attitude-flying up against the back door if cracked corn breakfast was late. He was, I think farm raised and put up with my humor-the routine “Come on Bird” with a pronounced southern drawl. And I in turn put up with his (believe me!) when neighbors would tease me “Your gentleman caller is peeking in your windows” or “Oh, your boyfriend’s a colorful character!”

In fact it was Bird whom I dubbed “My Ring-necked of the Woods” and got me writing…It was Bird who was patient with all the other birds-waiting his turn when a Mallard family moved in, then being generous with the quail covey… It was Bird who also came every evening, sometimes just to sit and be himself- a pheasant. Last week for some reason I attempted to extend my open hand filled with seed. There we are grounded, in the grass, eye to eye. Then there was that moment of trusting -fulfilled.

A kind neighbor informed me he found Bird had been struck by a car yesterday. Bird,who made “My Neck of The Woods” an even kinder place.


I think the coast is clear. That’s what the Island feels like. Like those of us who have been a bit in hiding are making an appearance. I believe The Island itself sighs with a sense of relief-just all the cars off its back.

And so the scenes shift: I stop looking inward and look outward. September shadows, sultry breezes, chorus of crickets, squalls of swallows dancing over queen anne’s lace

This Green Heron is like us islanders, very secretive. Walking across an old plank, in a brackish marsh, it was spying a frog or two for lunch. I knelt with my camera as the crowd of beachgoers in summer walked by behind us. Just us two sneaky birds….