Sunday, October 18, 2009

Images from a Windy Day

What a marvelous day in Cape May. Click to enlarge all photos.

[Peregrine Falcon moving the Laughing Gull it just killed to a less windy location at the Cape May County Airport. A Peregrine came over the hawk watch today carrying a Sharp-shinned Hawk! Another Peregrine was doing more than playing with a female American Kestrel, which eventually dove into the cedars next to the hawk watch and stayed there for 2-3 minutes to escape, not exactly normal behavior for a kestrel. There were 10 kestrels on the wires at the Beanery as I drove home this afternoon.]

[The two American Avocets spent all day on Bunker Pond.]

[Ruby-crowned Kinglet hover-gleaning. Hover-gleaning allows tiny, athletic birds like kinglets access to prey that larger, clumsier birds can't reach.]

[There were more White-crowned Sparrows than White-throated Sparrows at Cape May Point State Park today.]

[This Swainson's Thrush was feeding on Virginia Creeper berries near the Cape May Point State Park entrance. Note the buffy eye ring and supraloral, forming spectacles.]

[A nearby Hermit Thrush also fed on Virginia Creeper. Note that the eyering is whitish, not buffy, that the spectacle-effect is absent, and that the bird has rufous edging to the primaries and primary coverts.]

[Field conditions, Northern Gannet from Coral Avenue. Pointed at all ends, big, with a completely black "hand."]

[The scoter flock off Coral Ave held all three species, including this male White-winged Scoter, 4th bird from left. Note the slightly larger size compared to the Black Scoters, and of course the markings around the eye and on the bill.]

[A Common Eider was also with the scoters, center bird, more or less. Bigger, browner, with a sloping forehead.]

Tomorrow and Tuesday should be awesome days of birding.

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