Saturday, November 16, 2013

Week in review: 9 – 15 November, 2013

CMBO is pleased to provide weekly summaries of the Cape's birding highlights. Coverage is limited to sightings in Cape May County. Readers should keep in mind that some reports may not be confirmed. Information and photos that may be of use for weekly summaries should be emailed to compiler Tom Reed (coturnicops at gmail dot com). 

Location Abbreviations: ASW (Avalon Seawatch), CMHW (Cape May Hawk Watch), CMPSP (Cape May Pt. State Park), SCMM (South Cape May Meadows)  

--The period began with seasonable and tranquil conditions. A cold front passed through the area 12 Nov, bringing with it several hours of rain and the season's first snowflakes. Strong NW winds followed behind the cold front 13 Nov. The period ended with calm and mild conditions, courtesy of a developing southerly flow. Notable birds during the past week included Brown Booby, American White Pelican, Pomarine Jaeger, and Rufous Hummingbird.--

Three Eurasian Wigeon continued at CMPSP/SCMM throughout (m. ob.). Increasing numbers of Gadwall and American Wigeon could be found at CMPSP later in the period. Six Common Eiders and a Red-necked Grebe were tallied at ASW 11 Nov (CB). A Brown Booby was reported from ASW 9 Nov (CB). Large numbers of Northern Gannets moved into nearshore coastal waters during recent days. A season-high 10,504 were counted at ASW 9 Nov (CB). Peak migration for Red-throated Loon is fast approaching; 2,504 passed ASW 15 Nov (CB). Three American White Pelicans flew past CMHW 15 Nov (TR et al.), while another White Pelican flew north over Goshen 12 Nov (fide MM). American Bitterns were found daily at CMPSP, most often flying over Bunker Pond and the adjacent marsh (TR, m. ob.). The period's largest hawk flight occurred 13 Nov, when 767 raptors were counted, including two Golden Eagles, a Northern Goshawk, and a late Broad-winged Hawk (TR).

[American White Pelicans over CMPSP, 15 Nov. Photo by Tom Reed.]

A Common Gallinule appeared on Lily Lake 15 Nov (fide MC). Late-moving shorebirds included multiple Pectoral Sandpipers at CMHW 13-14 Nov, and a White-rumped Sandpiper there 13 Nov (TR). Unprecedented numbers of Parasitic Jaegers continue to be recorded at ASW, headlined by an incredible 172 on 11 Nov (CB). Single Pomarine Jaegers were recorded at ASW 9 Nov and 15 Nov (CB). Two Eurasian Collared-Doves continued in residential Cape May Point (m. ob.). A Rufous Hummingbird continued in the Town Bank section of Lower Township throughout the period (BP, WK, SG), while two Ruby-throated Hummingbirds attended a feeder in Del Haven through 15 Nov (HT). Multiple Cave Swallows could be found at CMPSP on several days, with the last sighting 13 Nov (TR). Lingering Barn Swallows continued at CMPSP through 15 Nov (TR).

[Rufous Hummingbird in Lower Township. Photo by Beth Polvino.]

[Cave Swallow at CMHW, 13 Nov. Photo by Tom Reed.]

Flyover Lapland Longspurs were recorded from CMHW most days this week (TR et al.). A growing flock of Snow Buntings took up residence on the SCMM beach (m. ob.). At least three Orange-crowned Warblers could be found at CMPSP through 15 Nov (TR et al.). Another Orange-crowned Warbler was found at Hidden Valley 15 Nov (JD). Notably late was a Bobolink over CMHW 15 Nov (TR). A Dickcissel flew over CMHW 14 Nov (TR).

Calvin Brennan, Mike Crewe, Jim Dowdell, Sam Galick, Will Kerling, Marleen Murgitroyde, Beth Polvino, Tom Reed, Harvey Tomlinson.