Cape May Rare Bird Alert - 8/13/1998
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 August 13 include reports of WHISKERED TERN, MARBLED GODWIT, other bird news, local nature notes, and news of CMBO.

A WHISKERED TERN was found at Bunker Pond in the Cape May Point State Park on August 8. The bird was seen again on the 9th, did not reappear on the 10th or 11th, but showed up again on Wednesday the 12th. As of this tape on the 13th, it had not been seen. Observers on the 12th located the bird in the flocks of terns and gulls feeding offshore at Cape May Point, and eventually it came to roost on Bunker Pond. It most often roosts at the back end of the pond when viewed from the hawk watch platform. It has generally been seen in the middle part of the day, staying no later than about 4:15.

Three MARBLED GODWITS, along with 13 WESTERN WILLETS, were seen on the sand spit in Bunker Pond by observers looking for the Whiskered Tern on August 11.

A total of 15 UPLAND SANDPIPERS were seen in flight at Higbee Beach on August 12. Other shorebird highlights included up to three WILSON'S PHALAROPES in the South Cape May Meadows (SCMM) during the week (which dropped to one by the 13th), and two LONG-BILLED DOWITCHERS were still present at SCMM on the 13th.

Single BLACK TERNS were seen around Cape May Point on the 9th and the 12th.

Songbird migration has been relatively slow, although a fair movement of birds were moving behind the front on August 12. Highlights included: two CERULEAN WARBLERS, BLACKBURNIAN WARBLER, DICKCISSEL, and several LEAST FLYCATCHERS and TRAILL'S FLYCATCHERS.

BROWN PELICANS have been around in fairly good numbers. Seventeen were off Cape May Point on August 10, with seven on the 13th.

A BONAPARTE'S GULL was a fly-by off Cape May Point on August 12, while a SURF SCOTER was at the Concrete Ship on the 13th. A RUDDY DUCK continues to summer in the area, often found on Lily Lake.

Local nature Notes follow: The five hummingbird feeders at CMBO's Research & Education Center in Goshen are being emptied every two days by persistent and numerous Ruby-throated Hummingbirds. Local birds are being joined by migrants to put on an impressive show. Remember to continue to clean your hummingbird feeders once a week and refill with fresh solution. Cold fronts that bring birds also bring influxes of dragonflies, and later will bring influxes of Monarch butterflies. Spot-winged & Wandering Gliders, Swamp and Green Darners, and Black & Carolina Saddlebags are the five most numerous migrants. Butterfly news included the uncommon southern immigrant, CLOUDLESS SULPHUR on August 8 at SCMM. The CMBO butterfly walk on 12th had 2 JUNIPER HAIRSTREAKS, SUMMER AZURE and COMMON WOOD NYMPH, among other species.

The Cape May Bird Observatory has daily walks, requiring no preregistration, and many special field trips and programs that do. To receive a copy of our Program Schedule, stop our centers, or call 609-861-0700, or go to New Jersey Audubon's WEB SITE at http://www.njaudubon.org

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 hotline. For more information call 609-861-0700 or send a request for information to CMBO, 600 Route 47 North, Cape May Court House, NJ 08210. Don't hesitate to visit our two centers of activity. CMBO's Center for Research & Education is located at 600 Route 47 North in Goshen. CMBO's Northwood Center is located at 701 East Lake Drive in Cape May Point. Both centers feature gardens, feeding stations, nature & book stores, and birding information. The Center in Goshen also has a wildlife art gallery, featuring artists, photographer, and carvers. Each Center is OPEN DAILY 10-5.

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

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