Cape May Rare Bird Alert - 9/14/2006
You have reached the Cape May Birding Hotline, a service of New Jersey Audubon Society's Cape May Bird Observatory. This week's message was prepared on Thursday September 14. Highlights this week include sightings of WHITE-WINGED DOVE, SANDHILL CRANE, LARK SPARROW, WESTERN KINGBIRD, UPLAND SANDPIPER, BAIRD'S SANDPIPER, and LESSER BLACK- BACKED GULL.

A WHITE-WINGED DOVE was seen from the Hawkwatch at Cape May Point State Park on Sept. 12th. A DICKCISSEL was seen regularly from the platform that day as well, associating with the resident group of House Sparrows. Another DICKCISSEL was at Hidden Valley on the 12th. The LARK SPARROW was seen again this week from the Hawkwatch, with reports through at least Sept. 11th. A SALTMARSH SHARP-TAILED SPARROW was in the dunes adjacent to Bunker Pond on the 12th.

A SANDHILL CRANE was seen flying north over Reed's Beach Rd. on Sept. 10th, and one flew over the Hawkwatch on the 11th.

A WESTERN KINGBIRD was reported from Higbee on Sept. 9th.

An UPLAND SANDPIPER was in atypical brushy habitat at Higbee on Sept. 10th.

A BAIRD'S SANDPIPER was reported from the South Cape May Meadows on the 9th. One or more SORA and a COMMON MOORHEN have been seen repeatedly here during the last week. Two WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPERS were on the beach here on the 12th.

An adult LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL was on the beach at the State Park on Sept. 11th, and 3 LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS were at Stone Harbor Point on the 12th.

At least on PARASITIC JAEGER was seen in the rips off Cape May Point on Sept. 12th.

Three BLACK TERNS were seen at Cape May Point on the 14th; variable numbers of these birds continue to be seen daily, sometimes at rest on the beach or at Bunker Pond, and sometimes offshore working the rips..

Two YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRDS were at Brigantine NWR on Sept. 9th.

Top day from the Cape May Hawkwatch during the last week was Sept. 10th, when 301 AMERICAN KESTRELS and 130 MERLINS were among the 776 birds tallied.

A RED-HEADED WOODPECKER was seen from the Hawkwatch on the 10th.

A great variety of migrant songbirds continue to be seen at the classic sites around Cape May, including scarcer species such as CONNECTICUT WARBLER, MOURNING WARBLER, PHILADELPHIA VIREO, GOLDEN- WINGED WARBLER, WORM-EATING WARBLER, CLAY-COLORED SPARROW, PINE WARBLER, and YELLOW-BELLIED FLYCATCHER. Since these migrants move in and out of Cape May almost every day, it's hard to track down an individual bird from this list. To seek these species we advise visiting Higbee, Hidden Valley, the Beanery, Cape May Point State Park, and anyplace where a bit of habitat exists in southern Cape May County.


Note that closures are planned during the next few weeks at The Nature Conservancy's Cape May Migratory Bird Refuge (aka South Cape May Meadows) for resource management work. Date of the initial closure is uncertain - likely between Sept. 15 and 19 - and duration of the closure is expected to be about one week.

CMBO's bookstore hours are as follows: Northwood Center on East Lake Drive in Cape May Point has returned to a 7 day a week schedule, open 9-4:30. The Center for Research and Education on Route 47 in Goshen is open 7 days a week, 9-4:30.

The Cape May Birding Hotline is a service of the New Jersey Audubon Society's Cape May Bird Observatory and details sightings from Cape May, Cumberland, and Atlantic Counties. Updates are made weekly. Please report sightings of rare or unusual birds to CMBO at 609-884-2736. Sponsorship for this hotline comes from the support of CMBO members and business members, and should you not be a member, we cordially invite you to join. Individual membership is $35 per year; $45 for families. You can call either center to become a member or visit. Become a member in person and you'll receive a FREE copy of BIRDS OF NEW JERSEY (in addition to member discount in the stores).

Good Birding!

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