Saturday, May 13, 2006

NJ Audubon World Series of Birding

Great Egrets and Black-Crowned Night Herons at Plum Island

I love World Series Day! I've been participating with the Century Run team for Sandy Hook Bird Observatory for a number of years and always have a good time. The last few years I haven't been able to bird the whole day because of other things going on, but in my experience the hours from dawn until noon are the best, anyway. It was very foggy and damp when we started out at 5:30 this morning, but the weather had cleared by noon when I left and it turned out to be a beautiful day.

The following is the trip report sent via email by the team leaders and a few pics from the day.

SHBO Century Run Team at Plum Island

"The SHBO Sandy Hook Century Run today tallied 131 species between 5:30 am and 8:30 pm; much better than we anticipated given the rather weak migration this week and the dominance of easterly winds. Our day started off with a nice shorebird flight over Plum Island with 200+ Least Sandpipers, dozens of Black-bellied Plovers, Semipalmated Plovers, Greater Yellowlegs & Short-billed Dowitchers, 4 Lesser Yellowlegs, and 8+ Solitary Sandpipers. Our only Little Blue Heron, Black Skimmers, and Black-billed Cuckoo of the day were here also.

Chestnut-Sided Warbler

The Locust Grove was quite active with passerines today, highlights including a calling Alder Flycatcher, Yellow-throated Vireo, numerous warblers with a female Bay-breasted being the standout. A vocal Least Bittern was calling from the east end of North Pond. Lots of diurnal migrants overhead with flocks of Eastern Kingbirds and Blue Jays predominating.

Dare ya to find the snoozing Nighthawk!

The Raccoon Alley area had a perched and oblivious Common Nighthawk, 6+ Blue-headed Vireos, Yellow-throated Vireo, Warbling Vireo (scarce migrant at the hook), Blackburnian Warbler, and Canada Warbler.

Scarlet Tanager

Saltmarsh Sharp-tailed Sparrows must have been migrating today: we saw 4-6 in the spartina marsh at Plum Island and there was another individual in the thick upland grass adjacent to k-lot.

Magnolia Warbler in Poison Ivy. My favorite pic of the day.

After comparing notes at dusk and getting a sneak peak at the "Sandy Hook Platform Onlies" bird list, we have a preliminary total of 150 species for the hook today, including 23 species of warbler and a fly-by Mississippi Kite that passed the migration watch around 4:30 this afternoon."

Final standings and more info on the World Series is available here.

3 comments:

Susan Gets Native said...

Awesome!
I wonder...do birds get itchy from poison ivy? Hope the little magnolia had some calamine.
I didn't know it until after we set up the trip, but there are local "Big Sits" around our area on IMBD. Sounds like more my speed than running around! :-)
I'm so glad the sun came out for you!
(we had rain, rain and rain)

John said...

Birds love poison ivy! I seriously doubt that they have allergic reactions to it, because I see birds in poison ivy quite frequently. Those birds inclined to eat fruit will chow down on the poison ivy berries in the fall and winter. Normally it's the little birds like yellow-rumpeds, but I once saw a pileated snacking on poison ivy berries, too.

Patrick Belardo said...

Congrats on a great day Laura! We had 126 for Ocean County... I miss the Century Run sometimes, but we had a nice day. I put a recap of our day with pics on my blog.