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The Magic of Hughes Hollow

Posted Monday 5th May 2008 at 02:23 by Terry O'Nolley
Hughes Hollow is a place that doesn't officially exist. There are no state, county or city maps with "Hughes Hollow" on them. But birders all over Maryland know what it means when someone says "Hughes Hollow".

Hughes Hollow is a location within the McKee-Beshers Wildlife Management Area which lies just outside of the city of Poolesville, Maryland. It is a tract of land owned by the state of Maryland and publicly available 365 days year.

And it offers some of the best birding in the state.

Another good selling point for Hughes Hollow is that it borders the C&O Canal and a birding walk through Hughes Hollow could easily run together with a birding walk along the historic C&O canal and Potomac River.

If you want to take a look at what it looks like, here is the Google Maps link:

OK. So why do I call it "magic"? Because every time I get in a conversation with another birder there and they mention a bird they have seen at Hughes Hollow and I say something like "Good sighting! I have not seen a (fill in the blank) yet this year.", within a half hour or so, [b]I see that species[/b]. Seriously! It has happened over and over and over again. Species I have ticked right after having such a conversation include Palm Warbler, Indigo Bunting, Orchard Oriole, Baltimore Oriole, Common Yellowthroat, American Bittern and on and on. It is very strange...

I can't recommend a visit to Hughes Hollow highly enough! If you live in the DC metro region then you may want to consider making a day of birding Hughes Hollow.

I was there for 5 hours today (from 7:00 - 12:00) and saw over 40 species.

I can't recommend this place highly enough. If you live close enough to be considering birding the area, send me a PM and ask about whatever you are interested in. I can hopefully make your outing more productive.
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