Cape May Rare Bird Alert - 3/27/2003
You have reached the Cape May Birding Hotline, a service of New Jersey Audubon Society's Cape May Bird Observatory. This message was prepared on Thursday, March 27, 2003. Highlights from the last week include LONG-BILLED CURLEW, LITTLE GULL, RED-NECKED GREBE, and news of the spring migration.

The LONG-BILLED CURLEW is still present behind North Wildwood. Best viewing for this bird is at lower tides from the west end of 26th, 19th, 17th, and 14th Streets. It was most recently reported on March 23rd.

A first winter LITTLE GULL was seen at Sunset Beach, Cape May Point (the Concrete Ship) on March 22nd.

We are still receiving reports of RED-NECKED GREBES. One is still at Lily Lake, in Cape May Point, as of March 27th, and two were at Reed's Beach on March 22nd.

A number of spring migrants are returning to Cape May. We have reports of multiple LOUISIANA WATERTHRUSH and YELLOW-THROATED WARBLER from Belleplain State Forest on March 27th. PINE WARBLERS have been present in Belleplain since at least March 22nd. PURPLE MARTINS were back near Millville on March 22nd. BARN SWALLOWS and NORTHERN ROUGH-WINGED SWALLOWS have joined the TREE SWALLOWS that arrived in Cape May earlier in March.

Good numbers of AMERICAN WOODCOCKS are still displaying in suitable habitat around Cape May, with sightings reported from Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area on March 26th and from Jakes Landing on March 22nd. Large numbers of SCOTERS, NORTHERN GANNETS, and RED-THROATED LOONS are being seen migrating and feeding around Cape May Point; March 26 and 27 have been especially busy with these birds. Shorebirds are beginning to return to Cape May. Reports this week include WILLET from Nummy's Island on March 25th, MARBLED GODWIT at Nummy's on the 22nd, 2 PECTORAL SANDPIPERS at Reed's Beach on the 22nd, and PIPING PLOVERS from oceanside beaches at many locations. Other returning birds seen this week include YELLOW-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON, TRICOLORED HERON, LITTLE BLUE HERON, and FORSTER'S TERN.

The Cape May Bird Observatory offers an extensive series of regular bird walks that require no pre-registration and many special field trips and programs for which advanced registration is required. To receive a copy of our Program Schedule, stop at one of our centers, call the office during business hours at 609-861-0700, call our natural history and events hotline at 609-861-0466, or go to New Jersey Audubon's WEB SITE at http://www.njaudubon.org

This Cape May Birding Hotline is a service of the Cape May Bird Observatory, which is a research, conservation, and education unit of the New Jersey Audubon Society. Our aim is to preserve and perpetuate the ornithological significance of Cape May. Your membership supports these goals and this hotline. We detail sightings from around Cape May County, and also include reports from Cumberland and Atlantic Counties. Updates are typically made on Thursdays. Please report your sightings of rare or unusual birds to CMBO's Northwood Center at 609-884-2736, or e-mail reports to CapeMayReports@njaudubon.org. Thanks for calling and GOOD BIRDING!

Mark S. Garland, Senior Naturalist
Cape May Bird Observatory Northwood Center
701 E. Lake Dr., PO Box 3
Cape May Point, NJ 08212

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