You have reached the Cape May Birding Hotline, a service of
the New Jersey Audubon Society's Cape May Bird Observatory.
Highlights for the week ending June 15 include sightings of WILSON'S
STORM PETREL, BROWN PELICAN, SURF & BLACK SCOTER, BLACK TERN, ROSEATE, ROYAL
and ARCTIC TERN, Humpbacked Whales, BLACK-NECKED STILT, news of spring
hawk flights and nature notes.
#'s of WILSON'S STORM PETRELS have been seen from shore this week. June
14th, 79 were in sight at once from the end of Sunset Boulevard and the
15th, 20 were counted from Whilldan Avenue in Cape May Point. Don't
necessarily expect to see petrel with the naked eye, but instead scan the
waters offshore and all the way out to the horizon, looking for black
swallow-like birds that appear to be walking on the water -- dipping and
darting among the waves low over the water. While you are scanning also
be on the lookout for BROWN PELICAN, N. GANNETS, and a few lingering SURF
and BLACK SCOTER. A lingering COMMON LOON has been seen recently in the
waters around Stone Harbor. Jersey Cape Nature Excursions' "Backbay Boat
Trip" reported it on June 8th.
The waters off Cape May Point known as the "the rips," where the Delaware
Bay and the Atlantic Ocean meet, were HOT birdwise on June 11. 1 BLACK
TERN, 1 ROSEATE TERN, 4 ROYAL TERNS, and 1 ARCTIC TERN were all seen.
While you are scanning those offshore waters, be on the lookout for
whales! 5 Humpback Whales were in the waters off Cape May on June 11, one
of which was seen as recently as June 14 way up the Delaware Bay near
2 BLACK-NECKED STILTS were seen briefly in the morning of June 11 in the
The Nature Conservency's South Cape May Meadows, as well as an AMERICAN
A mini spring hawk flight occurred on June 9th over Cape May Point,
including 3 BLACK VULTURES, 3 BROAD-WINGED HAWKS, 1 RED-SHOULDERED HAWK,
1 COOPER'S HAWK, and 1 immature BALD EAGLE. An immature BALD EAGLE was
also seen over the South Cape May Meadows on June 14.
The spring's last MISSISSIPPI KITES were seen June 8th, 3 birds over the
The Nature Conservency's preserve on Sunset Boulevard again has breeding
PIPING PLOVER and LEAST TERNS. These nests are on the open beach, so very
vulnerable to disturbance. PIPING PLOVER chicks are hatching now.
VIRGINIA RAIL and LEAST BITTERN also breed in the freshwater marsh on
this property. On June 8 and 9, WILLOW FLYCATCHERS were heard calling
along the East Path through the Meadows, no doubt on territory.
RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS are again breeding in the Cape May County Park on
Route 9, just north of Cape May Court House. Drive straight into the
Park, continue to the zoo (which is on your left), and the RED-HEADED
WOODPECKERS are in the oak woods to your right. Stroll around the amidst
the picnic shelters to find them. They nest in the oaks with holes.
The saltmarsh habitat at the end of Jakes Landing Road attracts a number
of breeding birds that may be hard to see elsewhere, like SEASIDE
SPARROW, N. HARRIER, and CLAPPER RAIL to name a few. And the pine stands
mixed forest along the road out to Jakes Landing have again attracted
breeding YELLOW-THROATED WARBLERS, OVENBIRDS, WOOD THRUSH, WHITE-EYED
VIREO, BLUE-WINGED WARBLER, and RUFFED GROUSE.
RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRDS are regular at CMBO's feeders and in people's
yards where hummingbird and butterfly gardens have been planted.
The state of NJ has closed the parking lots at Higbee Beach WMA -- again
for the summer. This does not mean that Higbee Beach is closed, just the
parking lots. You can still bird and butterfly the area, but you must be
dropped off there, ride a bike, or park in the Hidden Valley parking lot
further up New England Road and walk down. The parking lot closures are
the state's attempt to address illicit activities that occur there during
warm summer months.
[Local Nature Notes and Program Information Omitted]
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 our
office at 609-884-2736 or a send a request for info to CMBO, P.O. Box 3,
Cape May Point, NJ 08212. If you are in the area, do not hesitate to
visit our headquarters and growing birding bookstore at 707 E. Lake Dr.,
Cape May Point. We're open 9-5 every day but Monday.
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
J. Bickal (email@example.com) for 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.