Thursday, July 19, 2007

Lightning Strikes Twice . . .

. . . in the form of the, or a, breeding plumaged Stilt Sandpiper that dropped into the same spot at the same time it did exactly one week ago. The spot is the little tern/shorebird island in Bunker Pond at Cape May Point State Park, and once again our Thursday morning walk participants enjoyed nice comparisons between the Stilt Sandpiper and a nearby Short-billed Dowitcher. Greater and Lesser Yellowlegs also offered side-side views, as did multiple Common and Forster's Terns. There is no better way to learn to distinguish similar species than to see them this way, side by side.

Purple Martin chicks are sitting visible in the martin house holes at the state park, and the Least Tern chicks in the South Cape May colony continue to grow and continue to be urged to fly by their parents to fly. It's a funny time of year, really - all this "baby stuff," and yet the shorebirds migrate on.

As do some others. Prior to the walk, I heard two Yellow Warblers "seep" overhead, as well as two Indigo Buntings with their distinctive "zzeep", buzzier than than the warblers'. Bobolinks contiue to fly over as well - "boink" is the best I can do to describe the overhead note of this species.

The full list for today's walk follows:

Location: Cape May Point SP
Observation date: 7/19/07
Notes: CMBO's Thursday "Bird Walk for All People," co-led by Bert Hixon. Hot, clear/hazy, light south wind.
Number of species: 45
Canada Goose 1
Mute Swan 25
Great Blue Heron 2
Great Egret 5
Snowy Egret 15
Glossy Ibis 10
Osprey 2
Piping Plover 1 1 juv in Bunker Pond
Killdeer 1
Greater Yellowlegs 5
Lesser Yellowlegs 10
Spotted Sandpiper 1
Sanderling 10
Semipalmated Sandpiper 1
Least Sandpiper 10
Pectoral Sandpiper 1
Stilt Sandpiper 1
Short-billed Dowitcher 10
Laughing Gull 50
Herring Gull 10
Great Black-backed Gull 2
Gull-billed Tern 1
Royal Tern 3
Common Tern 50
Forster's Tern 30
Least Tern 75
Black Skimmer 2
Rock Pigeon 10
Mourning Dove 5
Eastern Kingbird 2 Female now sitting on nest (construction observed 1 wk ago)
Fish Crow 5
Purple Martin 50
Tree Swallow 5
Northern Rough-winged Swallow 2
Barn Swallow 10
Carolina Wren 1
Gray Catbird 1
Northern Mockingbird 1
European Starling 15
Yellow Warbler 2 flyover
Northern Cardinal 1
Indigo Bunting 2
Bobolink 6 flyover
Red-winged Blackbird 5
House Sparrow 5
This report was generated automatically by eBird v2(

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