Cape May Rare Bird Alert - 8/27/1998
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 27 include reports of REDDISH EGRET, SANDWICH TERN other bird news, local nature notes, and news of CMBO.

A brief note: Brigantine NWR will be closed every Wednesday in September and October; in September to allow hunting of local Canada Geese, and in October to hunt Snow Geese.

An immature REDDISH EGRET was present at Brigantine NWR for much of the day on August 24, but there have been no further reports. The bird was seen from the north dike, both inside and outside the impoundments.

Up to four SANDWICH TERNS were in the Cape May Point State Park on August 25, two adults and two juveniles. They were part of a good concentration of ROYAL TERNS. Other terns seen this week were Caspian on the 26th and one or two BLACK TERNS on most days.

Observers at Brig looking for the REDDISH EGRET reported at least 10 and as possibly as many as 30 BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPERS, five BAIRD'S SANDPIPERS, two HUDSONIAN GODWITS, seven WILSON'S PHALAROPES and a number of AMERICAN GOLDEN PLOVERS. Shorebirding around Cape May has been somewhat less spectacular, although the South Cape May Meadows continues to hold a good variety of shorebirds. A WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPER was there on the 23rd. Marbled Godwit was reported from Thompson's Beach on August 21.

Songbird movements were relatively slow this week, but highlights included an early SAVANNAH SPARROW in the State Park on the 22nd, MOURNING WARBLER at Higbee Beach on the 22nd, GOLDEN-WINGED WARBLER at Higbee Beach on the 23rd, and two CAPE MAY WARBLERS and a DICKCISSEL on Cape May Point on the 25th. BLUE-WINGED WARBLERS have been daily at Higbee Beach, and WORM-EATING and CHESTNUT-SIDED WARBLERS have been present.

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 also of Monarch butterflies. Monarch's have become more common as northerly winds have predominated. Spot-winged & Wandering Gliders, Swamp and Green Darners, and Black & Carolina Saddlebags are the five most numerous migrant dragonflies. Butterfly news included a major Little Yellow invasion with 30-40 in Cumberland County near Berrytown Road. Little Yellow is normally a very uncommon southern butterfly. Three were seen on August 22 along the dunes in the State Park along Bunker Pond. A good influx of Cloudless Sulphurs, a southern immigrant, is also underway with individuals being seen all over the peninsula. A garden in Goshen had 50 Silver-spotted Skippers on August 24 along with one or two Clouded Skippers. Observers should be looking for Sleepy Orange, a very unusual southern immigrant. A few have been tentatively identified this past week. An Ocola Skipper was reported near Leesburg on the 25th. A Fiery Skipper was near Heislerville, Cumberland County on the 21st.

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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