Cape May Rare Bird Alert - 7/3/1997
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 July 3 include sightings of Common Raven, Yellow-headed Blackbird, Mississippi Kite, Sandwich Tern, news of a conservation emergency that demands your immediate action, local nature notes, and news of our upcoming programs and field trips.

A note that the Higbee Beach parking lots have been closed for the summer again, but this does not mean Higbee Beach is closed -- you just need to get here by bike or by walking.

The CONSERVATION EMERGENCY that demands your immediate action follows. On May 29, New Jersey's Governor Christine Whitman, instituted a 60 day moratorium on the commercial harvest of horseshoe crabs. This emergency measurewas taken to stem the rapid and catastrophic decline in the horseshoe crabpopulation -- a decline that has undermined the food base used by one and a half million migrating shorebirds that use Delaware Bay as their last refueling stop enroute to the Arctic. While the moratorium is in the long term interest of Delaware Bay's environment and those whose lives are dependent upon it, some commercial fishermen have orchestrated a campaign to reverse the Governor's ban. So, we are asking you to please call the New Jersey Governor's Office TODAY at 609-292-6000 and tell them that "you support theGovernor's Moratorium on the harvest of Horseshoe Crabs." Then call your family, friends, and co-workers and ask them to do the same. Otherwise oneof the planet's greatest and most celebrated natural spectacles may becomehistory!

A COMMON RAVEN was seen on July 2 at the Cape May Point State Park. It was observed heading toward the Beanery, and then back toward the Point before it was lost from view. At one point it was being harassed by a crow.

A YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD was present at a feeder in Goshen on June 27 and 28.

Two MISSISSIPPI KITES were seen around Cape May Point on June 27.

A SANDWICH TERN was seen on Champagne Island in Hereford Inlet on July 3, while a ROSEATE TERN was a fly-by at the South Cape May Meadows on July 1, a Royal Tern was also in the Meadows on the 1st, with a Gull-billed Tern there on the 29th of June.

Two summering COMMON EIDERS and the OLDSQUAW were seen at the jetty south of Alexander Avenue on July 3.

A BROWN PELICAN was seen this week off the Sunset Beach, Cape May Point on June 29.

A few shorebirds have begun moving south this week. Most notable was an extremely early BUFF BREASTED SANDPIPER seen at SCMM on June 27. Also notable was a STILT SANDPIPER seen at SCMM also on the 27th.

Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are very regular now that they are back on territories. A female is regular coming to the feeders at CMBO's new center in Goshen and numbers are regular at CMBO's Cape May Point center. If you have feeders, be sure to clean them out thoroughly each week and refill with fresh solution. Otherwise the solution ferments and can be hazardous to hummingbirds.

CMBO's new Center for Research & Education in Goshen is now open every day,9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. We're at 600 Route 47 North in Goshen, either 1 mile south of the traffic light at Rt. 657 or 1.7 miles north of the Gulf Station in Goshen. From either direction we are just around a bend. Look forthe split rail fence, brand new sign, large parking lot, and big new building beyond.

CMBO's Program Schedule for July includes morning bird walks every Tuesday,Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday; a Sunset Bird Walk on Friday, Birding By Boat trips on Sunday afternoon and Monday morning, and a Kayak Nature Tour on Tuesday afternoons. Stop by either center to pick up the progra m schedule with full details.

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 new Center for Rese arch & Education at 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 2 birding bookstores. The Northwood Centerin Cape May Point at 701 E. Lake Drive in Cape May Point is open DAILY, 10-5. The Center for Research & Education in Goshen is open Daily, 9-5.

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 birdsto CMBO at 609-884-2736. Thanks for calling and GOOD BIRDING!

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