Cape May Rare Bird Alert - 4/3/2003
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, April 3, 2003. Highlights from the last week include LONG-BILLED CURLEW, RED-NECKED GREBE, AMERICAN BITTERN, NORTHERN GOSHAWK, ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER, RUSTY BLACKBIRD, and news of the spring migration.

The LONG-BILLED CURLEW is still present behind North Wildwood. It has now been over 6 months since this remarkable bird was first seen by Karl Bardon at the Avalon Seawatch. Best viewing for this bird is at lower tides from the west end of 26th, 19th, 17th, and 14th Streets. Our most recent report this week is from March 31st.

Seven RED-NECKED GREBES have also been around for an unusually long time, still present on April 3rd at the pond on Champlain Ave. in Villas. Others have been seen March 30th in Jarvis Sound and on April 2nd and 3rd at the end of Jakes Landing Road, where an AMERICAN BITTERN was also seen on the 3rd and a NORTHERN GOSHAWK was present on the 2nd.

An ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER was seen along the red trail in Cape May Point State Park on April 3rd.

At least 20 RUSTY BLACKBIRDS are being regularly seen around the wet woods at the Rea Farm.

More spring migrants continue to arrive in Cape May. We have reports this week of many LOUISIANA WATERTHRUSHES, PINE WARBLERS, and YELLOW-THROATED WARBLERS from Belleplain State Forest. A WHIP-POOR-WILL was heard in Eldora on March 28th. BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHERS were seen or heard from many locations this week. A STILT SANDPIPER was found from the Strawberry Ave. boardwalk at Bivalve on March 30th. Herons and egrets are migrating through and to Cape May in good numbers all of the expected species have now been reported this spring. Shorebird numbers are building, with DUNLIN, PIPING PLOVER, BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER, AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHER, SANDERLING, GREATER YELLOWLEGS, and LESSER YELLOWLEGS being frequently observed. NORTHERN GANNETS, CORMORANTS, LOONS, SCOTERS and many other water birds are also on the move in big numbers right now.

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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