You have reached the Cape May Birding Hotline, a service of
the New Jersey Audubon Society's Cape May Bird Observatory.
Highlights of the week ending May 18, 1995, include: RUFF,
LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL, LESSER GOLDEN PLOVER, PAINTED
BUNTING, migrant warblers, vireos, and flycatchers, RUSTY
BLACKBIRD, SCISSOR-TAILED FLYCATCHER, LAPLAND LONGSPUR,
EURASIAN WIGEON, ROSEATE TERN, COMMON EIDER, EURASIAN
GREEN-WINGED TEAL, SOOTY SHEARWATER, WILSON'S STORM-PETREL,
results of the World Series of Birding [omitted - see May
14 edition -LL], local nature notes, and announcements.
A RUFF in breeding plumage was seen at Higbee Beach in the
impoundment visible from the dikes, reached via the road to
the jetty. The Ruff was seen the morning of May 18, flew
and was not found again that day. The same area held two
first-year LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS on May 13. A
second-winter LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL was at Thompson
Beach on May 14. A LESSER GOLDEN PLOVER was reported at
Higbee also on May 18.
A female PAINTED BUNTING was seen May 13 at Higbee Beach in
the tower field, but amazingly, it was missed by all 54
World Series teams that day. The bird was rediscovered May
15 in the same field. A female CERULEAN WARBLER was in the
trees around the parking lot at Higbee on May 13. Higbee
held 2 WARBLING VIREOS, NASHVILLE WARBLER, OLIVE-SIDED
FLYCATCHER, and WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW on May 18. A
WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW and lots of warblers were there May
17; SOLITARY VIREO, GOLDEN-WINGED WARBLER, and BAY-BREASTED
WARBLERS were there May 16. In addition, the breeding birds
are putting on a show, including BLUE GROSBEAK,
YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT, & INDIGO BUNTING; migrant BOBOLINKS
are to be heard calling there now.
Nearby, Hidden Valley held a RUSTY BLACKBIRD and 2 WARBLING
VIREOS on May 13.
On May 13 at Brigantine National Wildlife Refuge, WSB Teams
discovered an immature male SCISSOR-TAILED FLYCATCHER in
the field on the south side of the Barn Owl box. A male and
a female LAPLAND LONGSPUR were on the dikes at Brig about
100 yards before the exit; and a male EURASIAN WIGEON was
Nine ROSEATE TERNS were on a jetty off Cape May Point on
May 12, and 4 were seen offshore from St.
Peter's-by-the-Sea Church on May 13. Two were seen on the
pipe in Bunker Pond, also on May 13. An immature male
COMMON EIDER was seen on the sandbars in Hereford Inlet,
viewed from the base of the "free" bridge to Nummy Island,
May ??. On May 13, the same bird was seen on the shoreline
of Nummy Island, seen from the road near the toll bridge,
as one looks out into the inlet. Nummy Island is the salt
marsh island south of Stone Harbor.
A EURASIAN GREEN-WINGED TEAL was reported as recently as
May 12 using the South Cape May Meadows area east of the
trails toward Cape May City. The PIPING PLOVERS which breed
in the Nature Conservancy sanctuary we call the Meadows are
experiencing one of their best years, with 4 or 5 pairs
present. LEAST TERNS are also setting up territories there.
A SOOTY SHEARWATER and 8 to 12 WILSON'S STORM PETRELS were
seen off Avalon from the 60th st. area on May 12. Two
WILSON'S STORM PETRELS were seen from the Cape May - Lewes
Ferry on May 10.
RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS are again breeding in the Cape May
County Park on Rt. 9 just north of the town of Cape May
Court House. They nest in the oak woods across the road
from the Zoo.
Many of the breeding birds are in at Belleplain State
Forest, like YELLOW-THROATED WARBLER, BLACK-AND-WHITE
WARBLER, PRAIRIE WARBLER, PINE WARBLER, PROTHONOTARY
WARBLER, HOODED WARBLER, N. PARULA, WORM-EATING WARBLER, &
BLUE-WINGED WARBLER. Also present, LOUISIANA WATERTHRUSH,
OVENBIRD, GREAT CRESTED FLYCATCHER, BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHER,
RED-EYED VIREO, SCARLET TANAGER. Pine Swamp Road, Sunset
Road, and Cedar Bridge Road are good places to see these
species. The pine stands along Jake's Landing Road are good
for YELLOW-THROATED WARBLERS which breed there.
WHIMBRELS are still migrating through and numbers were seen
May 14 on the marshes near Nummy's Island. Also look for
them at Shell Bay Landing, at exit 9 on the Parkway.
RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRDS are back on territory and their
courtship displays have been seen this week. CMBO's feeders
are a good place to see them.
The Delaware Bay shorebird gathering is in full swing. RED
KNOT, RUDDY TURNSTONE, and SANDERLING in near- or
full-breeding plumage are here en masse. Reed's Beach is
one of the best viewing beaches; the $1 parking fee helps
build good will and promotes ecotourism. Call CMBO for
information on field trips to view the shorebirds in the
next two weeks.
[World Series of Birding totals omitted; send me e-mail if
you need a copy. -LL]
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.