Cape May Rare Bird Alert - 3/25/1999
You have reached the Cape May Birding Hotline, a service of New Jersey Audubon Society's Cape May Bird Observatory. Highlights for the week ending March 25 include reports of SABINE'S GULL, TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE, LITTLE GULL, other bird news, and news of CMBO.

First a note on CMBO's upcoming optics sale: A two day sale on high quality binoculars and spotting scopes will be held on Saturday, March 27 and Sunday, March 28 from 9 am to 5 pm at CMBO's Center for Research and Education, 600 Route 47 North in Goshen. Manufacturer's representatives from Bogen, Leica, Nikon, and Swarovski will be on hand to answer questions and demonstrate their products. A sample of what's available: refurbished Nikon 8x42 Venturer LX at $845, and demo models like Lieca 8x32 at $710, Swarovski 7 x 42 at $745, and Bausch & Lomb 8 x 42 Nature Views at $55.

A 1st year SABINE'S GULL was seen off Cape May Point on March 23 as it flew out of Delaware Bay with LAUGHING GULLS and BONAPARTE'S GULLS.

TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE continues along the road to East Point, with a report this week on March 25. The road to East Point is accessed via a turn onto Glade Road from Route 47. The bird has been spending its time feeding on juniper berries along a stretch of road about 1.1 miles beyond Main Street.

Two LITTLE GULLS were seen around Cape May during the week. Two were off Cape May Point on March 21 (1st winter and a 2nd winter), presumably the same 1st winter was off the Point on the 23rd, and two were reported from Cape May Harbor on the 23rd.

Some signs of spring this week included: 500+ LAUGHING GULLS off Cape May Point on March 23; 3 PURPLE MARTINS and a CLIFF SWALLOW over Bayshore Road on March 25; COMMON YELLOWTHROAT at Cape May Point State Park on the 24th; PIPING PLOVER on the beach at the South Cape May Meadows (SCMM ); and RETURNING OSPREYS, AMERICAN KESTRELS, GREAT BLUE HERONS, and TREE SWALLOWS.

Other highlights this week included: a LONG-EARED OWL continuing at the South Cape May Meadows during the week; and SHORT-EARED OWL at Jakes Landing, Turkey Point, and East Point on the 23rd.

Nature Notes: The season's first butterflies have been seen over the last two weeks. Most have been those species that winter as adults like Question Mark, Comma, Mourning Cloak, and Red Admiral. But a few Spring Azures have been seen, along with Cabbage Whites. Early season butterflies often nectar on Red Maple blossoms, so scanning maple trees can be productive.3

The Cape May Bird Observatory has daily walks, requiring no preregistration, and many special field trips and programs that do. To receive a copy of our Program Schedule, stop our centers, or call 609-861-0700, or go to New Jersey Audubon's WEB SITE at http://www.njaudubon.org

The Cape May Bird Observatory is a research and education unit of the New Jersey Audubon Society. Our aim is to perpetuate and preserve the ornithological significance of Cape May. Your membership supports these goals and this hotline. For more information call 609-861-0700 or send a request for information to CMBO, 600 Route 47 North, Cape May Court House, NJ 08210. Don't hesitate to visit our two centers of activity. CMBO's Center for Research & Education is located at 600 Route 47 North in Goshen. CMBO's Northwood Center is located at 701 East Lake Drive in Cape May Point. Both centers feature gardens, feeding stations, nature & book stores, and birding information. The Center in Goshen also has a wildlife art gallery, featuring artists, photographer, and carvers. Each Center is OPEN DAILY 10-5.

The Cape May Birding Hotline is a service of New Jersey Audubon's Cape May Bird Observatory and details sightings from Cape May, Cumberland, and Atlantic Counties and near shore waters. Updates are made on Thursday evenings, more often if warranted. Please report sightings of rare or unusual birds to CMBO at 609-884-2736. Thanks for calling and GOOD BIRDING!

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