Cape May Rare Bird Alert - 7/2/1992
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 July 2, 1992, include GREATER SHEARWATER, SOOTY SHEARWATER, MISSISSIPPI KITE, WILSON'S PHALAROPE, a few shorebirds, and AVOCETS; but the major news of the week is the continued presence of Seabirds and Whales close to the Cape May shoreline. The "Holiday" whale-watching boat out of Cape May has been seeing HUMPBACK and FIN WHALES as well as several species of seabirds for about a month. On July 1 about 20 Humpback Whales were putting on incredible displays only 6 miles from shore. GREATER SHEARWATERS and SOOTY SHEARWATERS in small numbers, up to half-a-dozen, are also seen in the vicinity of the whales, as are dozens of WILSON'S STORM-PETRELS, and a few GANNETS. "Holiday" sails every day for whale-watching, 1 to 5 PM, and 6 to 9 PM, two trips daily. The HUMPBACKS are breaching, tail-slapping, and displaying with their fins while feeding vigorously. For more details call Captain Ron at (609) 898-0055. Fishing boats and whale-watch boats report a possible half-dozen Fin Whales in the waters off Cape May. The aggregation of whales and seabirds is to our knowledge unprecedented number-wise and for this time of year. Don't miss the show of a lifetime. Two MISSISSIPPI KITES were seen July 1, over a lima bean field on New England Rd. Another was seen on June 30 nearby. A RED-SHOULDERED HAWK was seen at the Beanery on June 28. A recent survey of RED-SHOULDERED HAWK nest in south Jersey revealed only 3 or 4 active nests left. An imm. BALD EAGLE was seen over the Cape May Canal on June 30. Fourteen AVOCETS persist at Forsythe NWR, or Brigantine, this week. Fifty-five BROWN PELICANS were seen on June 29 at Stone Harbor. Others were seen at Cape May Point and Cape May daily. Shorebirds this week include LESSER YELLOWLEGS at South Cape May Meadows, also there was a female WILSON'S PHALAROPE on July 1, and several SHORT-BILLED DOWITCHERS. The Red Trail at Cape May Point State Park is now a great spot to see LEAST BITTERNS in the open. Two were observed on July 25 for at least 5 minutes. Hummingbird young are about to fledge, and VIRGINIA RAIL chicks are being seen almost daily. The Rails are seen in South Cape May Meadows on the trail just as it clears the dunes. PIPING PLOVER chicks are also visible daily at the South Cape May Meadows, but don't get too close. Cape May Bird Observatory is a research and conservation unit of the New Jersey Audubon Society. Your membership supports conservation and recreational birding here in Cape May, not to mention this hotline and other birding information services. For more information call CMBO at 609-884-2736 or write to PO Box 3, Cape May Point, NJ 08212. Our offices at 797 East Lake Drive, Cape May Point are open Tuesday through Saturday 10-5. 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 (llarson@pucc.princeton.edu).] Please report sightings of rare or unusual birds to CMBO at (609) 884-2736. Thank you for calling; good birding.

<< 6/25/1992   7/9/1992 >>