Cape May Rare Bird Alert - 8/18/2004
You have reached the Cape May Birding Hotline, a service of New Jersey Audubon Society's Cape May Bird Observatory. This message was prepared on Wednesday, August 18th. Highlights from the last week include WHITE IBIS, CURLEW SANDPIPER, WILSON'S STORM-PETREL, BLACK TERN, PARASITIC JAEGER, NORTHERN GANNET, LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL, WILSON'S PHALAROPE, and news of the migration.

An immature WHITE IBIS was seen at site of the old Magnesite Plant along Sunset Blvd. on Aug. 15th, and the same bird (or another) was seen flying past the Higbee Dike on Aug. 17th.

A CURLEW SANDPIPER was at Stone Harbor Point on Aug. 12th.

Fifteen WILSON'S STORM-PETRELS were counted over the ocean from Cape May Point State Park on Aug. 16th, and 9 were seen from Sunset Beach on the 15th. One BLACK TERN, one PARASITIC JAEGER, and one NORTHERN GANNET were seen from Cape May Point State Park on the 15th. A young NORTHERN GANNET was found resting on the beach at Stone Harbor Point on Aug. 14th.

A first summer LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL was on the beach at Cape May Point State Park on Aug. 15th, and an adult was seen there on the 12th.

The shorebird migration is well underway. The pool atop the Higbee Dike harbored a WILSON'S PHALAROPE and several PECTORAL SANDPIPERS, WESTERN SANDPIPERS, and SPOTTED SANDPIPERS on Aug. 15th. A WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPER and ten STILT SANDPIPERS were seen at Bivalve on August 14th.

One COMMON EIDER continues to linger off Cape May Point this summer, our most recent report being from Sunset Beach on Aug. 15th. Two BLACK SCOTERS were seen here as well.

Southbound songbirds are clearly on the move right now, with birds arriving and departing every evening. We have received many reports this week, mostly from the Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area, but also from other Cape May areas with songbird habitat. The CMBO Morning Flight Project, which tallies migrant songbirds seen each morning from the Higbee Dike, began on August 15th. Here are just a few of the species noted from Higbee since Aug. 15th: CERULEAN WARBLER, WORM-EATING WARBLER, CANADA WARBLER, BLUE-WINGED WARBLER, PROTHONOTARY WARBLER, BLACK-BILLED CUCKOO, and ORCHARD ORIOLE.

The Cape May Bird Observatory offers an extensive series of regular bird walks that require no pre-registration and many special field trips and programs for which advanced registration is required. To receive a copy of our Program Schedule, stop at one of our centers, call the office during business hours at 609-861-0700, call our natural history and events hotline at 609-861-0466, or go to New Jersey Audubon's web site at http://www.njaudubon.org

This Cape May Birding Hotline is a service of the Cape May Bird Observatory, which is a research, conservation, and education unit of the New Jersey Audubon Society. Our aim is to preserve and perpetuate the ornithological significance of Cape May. Your membership supports these goals and this hotline. We detail sightings from around Cape May County, and also include reports from Cumberland and Atlantic Counties. Updates are typically made on Thursdays. Please report your sightings of rare or unusual birds to CMBO's Northwood Center at 609-884-2736, or e-mail reports to CapeMayReports@njaudubon.org. Thanks for calling and GOOD BIRDING!

Mark S. Garland
Senior Naturalist
New Jersey Audubon Society
Cape May Bird Observatory
Northwood Center
701 E. Lake Dr.
PO Box 3
Cape May Point, NJ 08212
(609) 884-2736

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