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 April 9 include sightings of WHITE IBIS,
SEDGE WREN, ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER, local nature notes, and news
of CMBO's upcoming programs and field trips.
A WHITE IBIS was reported as a fly-over heading from the South
Cape May Meadows (SCMM) to The Cape May Point State Park on April
4. It was not seen thereafter.
A SEDGE WREN has been singing at dusk in SCMM near the platform
on the center trail. It was heard on both April 6 and 7.
AN ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER was seen for a short time along Sunset
Blvd. on April 6, before flying off toward West Cape May.
A late season AMERICAN TREE SPARROW was at Hidden Valley on April 5.
The first sizable flights of DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANTS occurred
on April 7, with small flocks totaling hundreds of birds were
moving north most of the day. A GREAT CORMORANT was also seen
that day. Small numbers of GREAT BLUE HERONS and COMMON LOONS
were also headed north. GLOSSY IBIS are also on the move, with
six seen at Stipson Island Rd. on the 6th and 12 over Erma on
FORSTER'S TERN numbers are building each day, with a hundred or
more present around Cape May Point this past week, and numbers of
RED-THROATED LOONS continue to stage in Delaware Bay. Scan from
places like the Concrete Ship to pick them up as they rest in the
Six BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHERS and three RUBY-CROWNED KINGLETS were at
Higbee Beach on April 7, both are typical mid-April migrants.
A LEAST BITTERN was at Lighthouse Pond at the State Park on April
5, while an AMERICAN BITTERN was at SCMM on the 6th.
CMBO's daily spring morning bird walks have begun. Some
highlights follow. The Stone Harbor Point walks are enjoying
looks at YELLOW-CROWNED NIGHT HERON, TRI-COLORED HERON and
LITTLE BLUE HERON, N. GANNETS flying by, RED-THROATED LOONS and
breeding plumage OLDSQUAW in the surf, SEASIDE SPARROW and
Ipswich SAVANNAH SPARROW. The Beaver Swamp WMA walks are
enjoying WOOD DUCK, BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHER, YELLOW-THROATED
WARBLER. The Belleplain Walks are enjoying singing LOUISIANA
WATERTHRUSH and numbers of PINE & YELLOW-THROATED WARBLERS. As
each day unfolds new spring migrants will entertain us on these
walks. CMBO's April 4 Bald Eagle Cruise on the Maurice River
enjoyed good looks at a number of BALD EAGLES, including several
adults -- despite the rain!
Local Nature Notes follow: Beaver Swamp WMA on April 8th
entertained with mating FALCATE ORANGETIPS, HENRY'S ELFINS,
SPRING AZURES, BLUE CORPORAL SKIMMERS and FRAGILE FORKTAILS.
Old Robbins Trail off Jakes Landing Road had a freshly emerged
PINE ELFIN that was gorgeous shades of purple. Many frogs are
calling and snakes and turtles are sunning. Shadbush is in full
bloom and indeed the fish, shad, are migrating up into the
Delaware Bay and river to spawn. Trees really budded out this
week with the warmth. Great Horned Owlets are growing, having
hatched at the end of February. Bald Eagles are all on chicks or
newly hatched young now. Eric Stiles of the NJ Endangered &
Nongame Species Program reports that this year there are 16 pairs
of Bald Eagles in the state, 13 of them on active nests. Screech
& Barn Owls are on eggs now. Bluebirds are regulars at CMBO's
Center in Goshen, especially one of the nest boxes behind the
CMBO's next Open House will be Wednesday evening, April 15th, at 6:00
p.m., featuring a program by Peter Dunne on the "World Series of
Birding, a Strategy Session." All are welcome! The Cape May Bird
Observatory's upcoming preregistration spring programs include a
"Cruising For Loons" trip on April 18, a workshop on "Binoculars &
Spotting Scopes for Birders" also on April 18, a Workshop to learn "The
Art of Taking Field Notes & Making Field Sketches" on April 19, a "Rail
Watch" on April 25, a "Bird Watching for Beginners Course" on April
25-26, a "Workshop for Business Owners to Learn How to Reach the Birding
Market" on April 29, a "Prothonotary Warbler Outing" May 2, our first
"Champagne Island Cruise for Spring Shorebirds" on May 2 and another on
the 30th, and much more.
To register for the CMBO sponsored Sunday & Monday "Birding By Boat"
trips at 9:30 a.m., call 609-884-3100, and be sure to say you learned
about the trips through CMBO since a portion of the proceeds go back to
CMBO's 5-Day Spring Migration Workshop IS FULL, so we've added another.
The new Workshop is 4 days, runs from May 11-14, will be led by Clay
Sutton and Louise Zemaitis, and precedes our Cape May Spring Weekend.
Mark your calendars now to set Saturday, April 25th, aside when NJ
Audubon will be hosting an all day, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. "Backyard
Habitat Day Festival" at CMBO's Center for Research & Education in
Goshen (600 Route 47 North). This is NJ Audubon's way of celebrating
Arbor Day & Earth Day -- A festival celebrating habitat for wildlife.
There will be learning opportunities for families, teachers, and general
nature enthusiasts through mini-workshops and programs all day long,
crafts and games for kids and families, a plant swap, exhibitors, and
good company! And it's FREE. Rain date: Sunday, April 26.
CMBO's DAILY bird, butterfly and dragonfly walks, requiring no
preregistration, are in full swing. Friday: "Higbee Beach Walk" at 7:30
a.m.; Saturday: "Cape May Point Walk" at 7:30 a.m.; 3 Saturday
"Belleplain Bird Walks" will be offered May 2, 23, and 30; Sunday:
"Hidden Valley Bird & Butterfly" walk at 7:00 a.m.; Tuesday: "Birds of
the Seashore" walk with Pete Dunne at 7:30 a.m.; Tuesday: "Sunset
Birding at Stone Harbor Point & the Avalon Rookery" at 5:00 p.m.;
Wednesday: "Beaver Swamp WMA Walk" at 7:30 a.m. and a "Butterfly &
Dragonfly Walk at Beaver Swamp WMA" at 10:00 a.m.; Thursday: "Spring
Birding in Belleplain" walk at 7:30 a.m.
If you are not a member and would like our Spring Program Schedule with
all the details about the dozens of programs, walks, and workshops we
offer, stop by either center or call us at 609-861-0700.
ATTENTION CMBO Members: your copy of the Spring Program Schedule was
inside the recently mailed Peregrine Observer. If you are a CMBO member
and did not receive the Peregrine Observer, call Kathy Iozzo at
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 birding hotline. For more information regarding Cape May
birding, our programs and field trips, and the Observatory, call
609-861-0700 or send a request for information to CMBO, 600 Route 47
North, Cape May Court House, NJ 08210. If you are in the area, do not
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 butterfly & hummingbird 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