You have reached the Cape May Birding Hotline, a service of
the New Jersey Audubon Society's Cape May Bird Observatory.
This week's tape ending May 11 includes sightings of CURLEW
SANDPIPER, COMMON EIDER, REDDISH EGRET, and many other
tips, lingering birds, and advice for the World Series of
A dark-morph REDDISH EGRET was reported from Brigantine, in
Gull Pond, in the smaller pond on the left, on May 10. A
CURLEW SANDPIPER was also reported from Brig, on May 7; it
was seen on the left side of the east dike.
A COMMON EIDER is being seen in Hereford Inlet. This is the
body of water between North Wildwood and Sea Isle City.
Usually roosting on the sandbar in the mouth of the inlet,
the best vantage point is from the base of the "free"
bridge on Nummy Island, looking east. Nummy Island is the
stretch of Ocean Drive between North Wildwood and Sea Isle.
Two BROWN PELICANS were fly-by's off Pierce's Point on the
bay shore today, May 11.
On May 13 at one minute after midnight, 54 teams from all
over the US and Canada and Great Britain will begin NJ
Audubon's 12th annual World Series of Birding. This 24-hour
birdathon will raise money for NJ Audubon's conservation
work in Nj, as well as for the numerous other conservation
groups participating in this event.
A few brief announcements for participants:
--the finish line is at the Cape May Point State Park as
always, not at the Grand Hotel.
--any level one teams that are covering a limited
geographic area who will not be at the finish line at
midnight should FAX their official team checklists to CMBO
at (609) 884-6052 by 11 PM on Saturday May 13.
--Brigantine, or the Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge, has
a $3 entry fee.
--Lyme Disease is a problem in New Jersey. Please check
yourself for ticks.
--Be sure to read the new rules sent to each team captain,
like: Luring birds in with recorded birdcall tapes is NOT
permitted. All birds must be identified by at least 2 team
members. Drive sensibly; any team that is charged with and
subsequently convicted of a moving violation is
--good luck to all teams and on with the hotline.
RED-THROATED LOONS have been scarce. A few have been seen
around the point, from the South Cape May Meadows and the
Concrete Ship. PIED-BILLED GREBES have been seen in Lily
Lake and at Fishing Creek Marsh (on Bayshore Road north of
the VIllas). This marsh has also had COOT, MOORHEN, SNIPE,
LEAST BITTERN, SOLITARY SANDPIPER, BLUE-WINGED TEAL, and
GREEN WINGED TEAL. LEAST BITTERNS are also in the S. Cape
May Meadows. The EURASIAN GREEN-WINGED TEAL is still being
seen at the S. Cape May meadows; BLUE-WINGED TEAL is also
at the Meadows, and there are 2 pairs of BLUE-WINGS in the
pond as you exit Brigantine.
NORTHERN GANNET has been a bit more frequent than RT Loons,
but look for them from the same vantages. This past week,
seawatching at the Point also produced PARASITIC JAEGER,
BLACK TERN, and ROSEATE TERN.
GREAT CORMORANTS are on the Coast Guard pilings at Poverty
Beach in Cape May (scope birds from Beach Drive); another
reliable spot in the past for these has been on the
sandbars at Hereford Inlet.
HERONS and EGRETS from the Stone Harbor Bird Sanctuary have
moved to Stone Harbor Point and Sedge Island, a small
island in the marsh in the back bay directly inland from
the Stone Harbor Bird Sanctuary. CATTLE EGRET are scarce,
but are dependable on the lawns around the lake at the Cape
May County Park on Rt. 9 north of Cape May Court House. Two
SNOW GEESE are being seen from the north dike at
Brigantine, in the West Pool. Some other waterfowl news:
BLUE-WINGED TEAL, GREEN-WINGED TEAL, and GADWALL have all
been seen at the Impoundments in McNamara Wildlife
Management Area, off Rt. 50 near the town of Tuckahoe.
BLACK SCOTER and SURF SCOTER were regular at Reed's Beach
early in the week, not so later in the week. RED-BREASTED
MERGANSER were in the Coast Guard ponds along Ocean Drive;
this is the section of the road east of the end of the
Parkway. A WHITE-WINGED SCOTER has been in the channel
between Stone Harbor and the bridge to Nummy's Island. A
male HOODED MERGANSER is using the West Pool at Brigantine,
being seen north of the north dike. A male BUFFLEHEAD was
seen in Dennis Creek, where it passes under Rt. 47 on the
west side of Rt. 47; also, a pair were in Sunset Lake
earlier this week.
AMERICAN KESTREL have been seen regularly at the Cape May
County Airport, from the terminal parking lot; also here,
KILLDEER, HORNED LARK, and sometimes MEADOWLARK. Good spots
to check for BALD EAGLE are East Creek Lake; Jakes Landing;
and Goshen Landing. COMMON MOORHEN and AMERICAN COOT are in
the Bunker Pond in Cape May Point State Park, seen on the
east side of the pond. PIPING PLOVER are again nesting in
the South Cape May Meadows; they are between the east road
and Second Ave. Jetty; and a colony of LEAST TERNS is
actively courting there also. Other nesting sites for
PIPING PLOVER are Hereford Inlet, Strathmere, and Avalon
PURPLE SANDPIPER can still be found at Second Avenue jetty,
the Point jetties, the Concrete Ship, and the Stone Harbor
jetties. A WESTERN SANDPIPER was reported from Brig on May
12 [sic], and also from Moore's Beach. A WHITE-RUMPED
SANDPIPER was in the tidal pond across from the Wetlands
Institute on Stone Harbor Blvd.; and at Brigantine. A
WILSON'S PHALAROPE was seen in the East Pool at Brigantine,
at the northeast corner. STILT SANDPIPERS have been seen at
Brig also, in the northwest corner of the West Pool. Two
SNIPE were at Goshen Landing Road, in the first pond on the
Hundreds of RED KNOT, RUDDY TURNSTONES, and SANDERLING are
on the Bayshore. If you go to Reed's Beach, please do not
flush the birds or trespass on private property. The Coast
Guard ponds along Ocean Drive have held a COMMON
BLACK-HEADED GULL since mid-winter. GULL-BILLED TERNS have
been seen at Goshen Landing Rd this week (reach it from Rt.
47 just north of Reed's Beach); Gull-bills are also being
seen at Brig.
CHUCK-WILL'S WIDOW are calling at dusk at the Beanery,
Higbee's Beach, and Cold Spring Campground; however,
east-west roads in the middle part of the county, like Hand
Avenue, or Rt. 618, have much denser populations.
RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS have been seen regularly at Cape May
County Park near picnic pavilion #5.
Belleplain State Forest is again good for SUMMER TANAGER
along Cedar Bridge Rd.; PROTHONOTARY WARBLER,
YELLOW-THROATED WARBLER, and HOODED WARBLERS, ACADIAN FLYCATCHER,
and LOUISIANA WATERTHRUSH, all at the bridge at Savage's
Run along Sunset Road; also for WORM-EATING WARBLER at the
big bend in Pine Swamp Road. KENTUCKY WARBLER is along Rt.
618 in Cape May County at the guard rail. Jakes Landing
Road has a good breeding population of YELLOW-THROATED
WARBLERS, and SHARP-TAILED SPARROWS and SEASIDE SPARROWS can be
found at the salt marsh at the end of Jakes Landing Road,
or across the creek. This road is off Rt. 47 1.4 miles
north of the WAWA Market in Dennisville in Rt. 47.
RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRDS are regular at CMBO's feeders.
Higbee Beach has nesting YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT, BLUE
GROSBEAK, INDIGO BUNTING, WHITE-EYED VIREOS, and hopefully
some migrants as well.
Some final words of advice to WSB participants: Don't
over-extend yourself; keep up the record of happy endings
to this event. Keep speed limits safe and tolerant, and
please don't behave in a manner that would reflect
negatively on this event or birding in general. Please
don't give birding a bad name. Good luck, and see you at
the finish line.
The Cape May birding hotline [(609) 884-2626] is a service
of Cape May Bird Observatory and includes sightings from
Cape May, Atlantic, and Cumberland counties and adjacent
areas. Updates are made on Thursday evening, more often if
warranted. [Compiled by CMBO staff; transcribed by L.
Larson (firstname.lastname@example.org).] Please report
sightings of rare or unusual birds to CMBO at (609)
884-2736. Thank you for calling; good birding.