Sunday, May 4, 2008

Observations from Cape Island scouting

Laura and I were up early again this morning looking for night birds with pretty much no success. We did have some nice sightings after sunup. While it was hazy over the ocean we could still do a good amount of sea watching, that is until the pea soup rolled in. Much to my dismay there really was nothing of real interest in Cape May Point to see. But, we were driving around and not spending much time really searching. Laura did receive word that a CMBO volunteer had a Cape May Warbler in the yard this morning (in the vicinity of Coral and Cambridge in Cape May Point) and multiple Baltimore Orioles. The Northwood Center has been playing host to an adult male Orchard Oriole, pretty much all day.

I read word of a Roseate Tern seen up at Sandy Hook yesterday so anyone sea watching from Cape May Point should keep this species in mind. Look for a more slender, long tailed, dainty looking; "white" tern whose wing beat is stiff, somewhat like a Least Tern. I say "white" because the mantle of a Roseate is a very pale gray. If you are looking at terns on a jetty look for a slightly smaller tern (compared to Forster's and Common). The all black beak should be noticeable and you may actually see the "rose" blush to the breast and belly for which the Roseate Tern was named. Also note that the tail should project much farther past the wingtips, unlike the Common which wingtips are relatively even with the tail. Or Forster's even, whose tail does project past the wingtips but not nearly as much as the Roseate. The rest of my WSB team has a couple Black Terns the other day so it seems that my predictions of Black and Roseate Terns being hot on the heels of the first Common Tern came to fruition.All in all 83 species for about 5 hours (3 of which we could actually see) is not too bad. We'll have to do a good bit better on Saturday though.

One last note. As the WSB draws near, scouting becomes extremely intense. We (being Don, Tom and myself) will do our best to keep you as up to date with sightings as we can while still trying to spend as much time as possible in the field. Please pardon any delays that may happen during this time as we do our bets to raise as much funding for our conservation, research and eduction mission as possible.

A partial list is below.

Location: Cape Island
Observation date: 5/4/08
Notes: 5439 steps = approx. 3.5 miles
Number of species: 83

Canada Goose X
Mute Swan X
Gadwall X
Mallard X
Red-throated Loon X
Common Loon 9
Northern Gannet X
Double-crested Cormorant X
Great Blue Heron 7
Great Egret 2
Snowy Egret 1
Black-crowned Night-Heron 2
Semipalmated Plover X
Killdeer X
American Oystercatcher 2
Solitary Sandpiper 2
Lesser Yellowlegs 2
Sanderling 15
Least Sandpiper X
Laughing Gull X
Ring-billed Gull X
Herring Gull X
Great Black-backed Gull X
Least Tern X
Common Tern X
Forster's Tern X
Royal Tern 3
Black Skimmer 8
Parasitic Jaeger X
Rock Pigeon X
Mourning Dove X
Red-bellied Woodpecker X
Downy Woodpecker X
Eastern Kingbird X
Blue Jay X
American Crow X
Fish Crow X
Purple Martin X
Tree Swallow X
Northern Rough-winged Swallow X
Barn Swallow X
Carolina Chickadee X
Tufted Titmouse X
Carolina Wren X
House Wren X
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher X
American Robin X
Gray Catbird X
Northern Mockingbird X
Brown Thrasher X
European Starling X
American Pipit 1
Cedar Waxwing X
Northern Parula 1
Yellow Warbler 3
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) X
Pine Warbler X
Prairie Warbler X
Black-and-white Warbler X
American Redstart 1
Ovenbird X
Common Yellowthroat X
Eastern Towhee X
Chipping Sparrow X
Field Sparrow X
Savannah Sparrow X
Song Sparrow X
White-throated Sparrow X
Northern Cardinal X
Rose-breasted Grosbeak 1
Indigo Bunting X
Red-winged Blackbird X
Eastern Meadowlark X
Common Grackle X
Brown-headed Cowbird X
Orchard Oriole X
House Finch X
American Goldfinch X
House Sparrow X

This report was generated automatically by eBird v2

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