Friday, June 25, 2010

MIKI + Meadows Birds including Black Tern

Richard Crossley had a 1st year Mississippi Kite over his Cape Island home this morning.

Vince Elia checked the meadows today, anticipating some shorebird movement after yesterday evening's frontal passage. The shorebirds didn't materialize, but Vince had some interesting stuff:

"Spent 6-8 a.m. on the platform at the Meadows... although not much "active" migration, an interesting morning nonetheless... had zero active shorebird migration, with just 3 Least Sandpipers on ground in upper east side. A total of 21 Glossy Ibis moved through (E to W and presumably out across bay). Had a (the?) 1st summer Black Tern when I first arrived, feeding, then briefly roosting, before disappearing. A fairly pristine looking Blue-winged Teal was present for an hour-and-a-half before flying off to the State Park. 3 Great Blue Herons flew past lighthouse coming from the south and continued north up bay shore, likewise had 3 Snowy Egrets pass over my head flying north then northwest and up bay shore.

"The mom Gadwall and her brood that hangs in the main pool in front of platform was down from 12 to 11 chicks, and another brood of 8 is up in the SE section on the E side. There were lots of Killdeer present, and I had three in a tight group swoop in from the E and fly off toward the large plover pond. At least 4 Willets were very active all morning, chasing one another and calling. Finally, the most persistent movement all morning was a small but noticeable flight of Swamp Darners coming off the water and heading north, typical of Swamp Darner movements."

Swamp Darner, by the way, is the closest thing we have to meganeura, those dragonfly-like insects of 300 million years ago with 2.5 foot wingspans. The Darner checks in at about 3.5 inches long, I haven't measured the wings, personally - okay, it's not feet but it is our largest dragonfly and still pretty impressive . . .

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