Thursday, June 30, 2011

Baby Boom

Firstly, apologies to regular readers for the lack of posts lately; for some reason our blog hasn't been allowing us to upload pictures - so here goes, let's see how we get on!

I was recently sent a nice set of pictures of the latest Cape May babies, and certainly mid-summer is a good time to be out and assessing how the breeding season is going for your local birds. Personally, I'm certainly noticing a lot of fledgling Carolina Wrens, Gray Catbirds, European Starlings and Common Grackles around Cape May at the moment so they all seem to be doing OK. Last week's Wednesday morninig walk also turned up fledgling Downy and Red-bellied Woodpeckers. Here's some recent photos of Cape May Babes:

Outrageously cute! Nancy Watson got a great shot of this stumpy-tailed, young Carolina Wren in her backyard.

Beth Polvino (who has far too much good luck for one person!) sent me a great series of shots of a Clapper Rail with two youngsters which certainly deserve to be seen by a wider audience. This youngster emerged with a small fiddler crab...

...and took it down to the water... get all that horrible mud off before swallowing!

Mum then emerged with her young charges...

...and a good bathing session followed...

...which was wrapped up with a good preen.

Sightings update: Bird news has been predictably quiet now that mid-summer is upon us. Indeed, so quiet has it been, that I was actually startled when my phone went off yesterday. Checking my text messages, I discovered it was a test message from NJ Birds!! No news for several days on the Purple Gallinule, though it could easily be lurking unseen. Two pairs of Black Skimmers continue to show interest in the south beach and a trickle of fall shorebirds has started, with Lesser and Greater Yellowlegs and Short-billed Dowitchers at the state park on Wednesday.

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