Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Breakfast can wait...

This morning was a classic Cape May, breakfast can wait kind of a day, when being at Cape May Point State Park early was a good move. I went down to see if yesterday's Lark Sparrow on the edge of the parking lot was going to be obliging, but it turned out that it wanted to hide from me - though Tom Johnson reports that it is still present this morning, near the museum/information building. Scott Whittle showed up with his Tuesday morning photographic walk (everyone keeps telling me how good that is, I must go on it one day!) and we strolled along checking the grass. The next thing you know, we're right by the state park entrance and I realise that I'm casually looking at an Ash-throated Flycatcher! This bird fed along the hedge line on the north side of the parking lot then headed off along the red trail. I suggest looking for it on the east side of the Red Trail loop, out of the wind. My early morning stroll ended at the Hawkwatch Platform with a stunning Golden Eagle that cut right across the corner of the parking lot while Doug Gochfeld and I struggled with the wrong photographic gear for the job! Shortly after, a second Golden Eagle, this one with less white in the wing, appeared over the tree tops to the north-east. It may be November, but migration is far from over at Cape May.

Ash-throated Flycatcher at Cape May Point State Park this morning. Note the contrast between rufous primary edges and yellowish secondary edges, the pale throat and the all dark bill. [Photo by Mike Crewe]

In this photo of the Ash-throated Flycatcher, note the very pale, lemon yellow wash to the belly and the dark on the outer tail feather, which cuts across the tip on the inner web. [Photo by Mike Crewe]

Not the best of pictures, but you get the idea! I was so excited at this close encounter with a Golden Eagle that I forgot to check that the camera was on the right settings - I really should go on Scott's walk! [Photo by Mike Crewe]

Just awesome - a pre-breakfast Golden Eagle! [Photo by Mike Crewe]

Pine Siskin at the Northwood Center [Photo by Mike Crewe]

I can see we're going to need to keep the feeders topped up! [Photo by Mike Crewe]

If you're stopping by the Northwood Center, don't forget to check out of the windows at our feeders; currently we have five Pine Siskins, three Purple Finches and the first returning Fox Sparrow here, as well as plenty of American Goldfinches, White-throated Sparrows and still both Red-breasted and White-breasted Nuthatches.

OK, now I have to have breakfast....

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