Saturday, October 18, 2008

A few lists for the last couple days, seawatching, Golden Eagle...sparrows, sparrows, sparrows and other stuff

Where to start? Well, sparrows have definitely moved the last couple nights. Song, Swamp, White-crowned and White-throated Sparrows have all been well represented around Cape May the last day or so. Yesterday at Higbee, there were areas where you literally were flushing sparrows with every steep you took. There were reports of Vesper (mentioned in the Hotline below) and Clay-colored at Higbee for yesterday. If you have yet to do so you should check out the radar images posted to David La Puma's site

Today I was at the State Park and again, in patches (particularly the back part of the park) there were good numbers of the aforementioned sparrows. I did have a quick and not satisfying look at a Lincoln's Sparrow
but no other unusual sparrows that we uncovered on the Optics Test walk. I have seen reports form others that indicate some different sparrows in other locations. At least one Vesper Sparrow and a Dickcissel were seen at Higbee. Another Lincoln's Sparrow at the Beanery, to name a few.

A nice surprise for me today were the numbers of Pine Siskins flying over. I estimated at least 25 or so but this easily could have been many more. I did here at least one Purple Finch and six or so Winter Wrens along the walk.

Between 11:00 a.m. and about 11:30 I received text messages about a Swainson's Hawk that had been seen and a Golden Eagle over the hawkwatch platform. While many of Cape May's Swanson's Hawks do come late in the season and should always be in mind when hawkwatching, today did start off seeming like a perfect day for a Golden Eagle. From my experience counting they seem to like the gloomy days (or at least that is when I remember seeing them) when there has been at least a day of good northwest winds. With the wind forecast to pick up but still be N-NNE there is still a good chance at other goldens will show over the weekend into the first of next week. Make sure you bundle up though as the temps are supposed to drop into the 30's over the next few nights. with winds as high as 30 mph.

Lastly a quick note about the Orange-crowned Warblers reported the other day. Side Note: Laura and I did have two at Higbee yesterday and I've heard of at least one or two sightings today. It seems that from all the reports received that on 10/12 there were no fewer than 6 Orange-crowned Warblers on Cape Island. Sure it doesn't seem like a huge number but pretty good for this species. In fact I'd say this is shaping up to be one heck of a fall for this species. I can't remember a fall in recent past with this many sightings.

As usual below are list from our wanders the last couple of days. All estimates of species numbers are by and far on the low side.

Location: Cape May Point SP
Observation date: 10/18/08
Notes: 3005 steps = approx 2 miles
Number of species: 73

Canada Goose X
Mute Swan X
Gadwall 25
American Wigeon 18
Mallard X
Blue-winged Teal X
Northern Shoveler X
Northern Pintail 8
Green-winged Teal X
Ruddy Duck 2
Common Loon 8
Double-crested Cormorant 35
Great Egret 2
Turkey Vulture X
Osprey X
Northern Harrier 4
Sharp-shinned Hawk X
Cooper's Hawk X
Red-shouldered Hawk 1
Red-tailed Hawk 2
American Kestrel 1
Pectoral Sandpiper 1
Short-billed Dowitcher 2
Laughing Gull X
Herring Gull X
Great Black-backed Gull X
Rock Pigeon X
Mourning Dove X
Belted Kingfisher 2
Red-bellied Woodpecker 3
Downy Woodpecker 1
Northern Flicker (Yellow-shafted) 10
Eastern Phoebe 6
Blue-headed Vireo 1
Blue Jay X
Fish Crow X
Tree Swallow 8
Carolina Chickadee X
Tufted Titmouse X
Red-breasted Nuthatch 5
Winter Wren 6
Golden-crowned Kinglet X
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 20
American Robin X
Gray Catbird X
Northern Mockingbird X
Brown Thrasher 5
European Starling X
American Pipit 1
Cedar Waxwing 18
Yellow-rumped Warbler X
Pine Warbler 1
Palm Warbler X
Blackpoll Warbler X
Common Yellowthroat 4
Eastern Towhee 4
Field Sparrow 6
Savannah Sparrow X
Song Sparrow 40
Lincoln's Sparrow 1
Swamp Sparrow 40
White-throated Sparrow X
White-crowned Sparrow 6
Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored) 4
Northern Cardinal X
Bobolink 2
Red-winged Blackbird X
Eastern Meadowlark 1
Rusty Blackbird 6
Purple Finch X
Pine Siskin 25
American Goldfinch 6
House Sparrow X

This report was generated automatically by eBird v2

Location: Higbee Beach
Observation date: 10/17/08
Notes: 2347 steps = approx 1.5 miles
Number of species: 53

Common Loon 1
Double-crested Cormorant 1
Osprey X
Sharp-shinned Hawk 3
Cooper's Hawk 1
Herring Gull X
Great Black-backed Gull X
Mourning Dove 20
Red-bellied Woodpecker 4
Downy Woodpecker X
Northern Flicker (Yellow-shafted) 25
Eastern Phoebe 6
Red-eyed Vireo 1
Blue Jay 10
American Crow X
Fish Crow X
Tree Swallow 10
Carolina Chickadee X
Tufted Titmouse X
Carolina Wren X
House Wren 1
Golden-crowned Kinglet X
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 35
Hermit Thrush 3
American Robin 100
Gray Catbird X
Northern Mockingbird X
Brown Thrasher 5
European Starling X
American Pipit X
Cedar Waxwing 18
Orange-crowned Warbler 2
Northern Parula 1
Black-throated Blue Warbler 2
Yellow-rumped Warbler 1000
Palm Warbler 200
Blackpoll Warbler X
Common Yellowthroat 6
Eastern Towhee 5
Chipping Sparrow 4
Field Sparrow 40
Song Sparrow 150
Swamp Sparrow 85
White-throated Sparrow 100
White-crowned Sparrow 4
Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored) 6
Northern Cardinal X
Indigo Bunting 2
Dickcissel 1
Red-winged Blackbird X
Rusty Blackbird 6
House Finch 1
Pine Siskin 3

This report was generated automatically by eBird v2

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