Cape May Rare Bird Alert - 9/2/2005

You have reached the Cape May Birding Hotline, a service of New Jersey Audubon Societys Cape May Bird Observatory. This message was prepared on Friday, September 2. This weeks sightings include:

At Cape May Point, today, an excellent autumn fallout involving hundreds of NORTHERN ORIOLES, CEDAR WAXWINGS and EASTERN KINGBIRDS as well good numbers of SCARLET TANAGERS, vireos, and assorted warbler species were visible from the Higbee Beach Dikes. Not accounted among the birds engaged in reorienting flight were impressive numbers of VEERIES. Less commonly seen species recorded from the dike include: DICKCISSEL and WARBLING VIREO.

The Dike Count, sponsored by Zeiss Optics, will have seasonal interpreters on hand, at the tower, every day through the fall. Flights begin at sunrise, peak half an hour after sunrise, and continue until 9 or 10 a.m.

The Cape May Hawk Watch is also open for business. Sponsored by Leica, situated atop the wildlife viewing platform at Cape May Point State Park, the count is conducted from sunrise till late afternoon. The seasons inaugural count tallied 12 species of raptors (including vultures). AMERICAN KESTRELS dominated, but multiple BALD EAGLES were tallied (including four individual birds at once), as well as MERLIN, SHARP-SHINNED HAWK, and respectable numbers of N. HARRIERS.

In the vicinity of Cape May Point, SANDWICH and multiple BLACK TERNS continue to be seen. One CORYS SHEARWATER was seen from the beach, August 31, as well as two PARASITIC JAEGERS. A third winter LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL has been frequenting the beach between the State Park and the Meadows. Between one and three BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPERS have also been seen on this stretch (most often at the ponds on the north side of the dunes). The KING EIDER continues to be seen in the vicinity of the Concrete Ship as well as GREAT CORMORANT.

Stone Harbor Point still hosts large numbers of roosting shorebirds including this week 500-600 RED KNOT, 9 MARBLED GODWIT and 12 PIPING PLOVER (high tide is best). A sizable number of PURPLE MARTINS are still being seen over Cape May. The Johnson Sod farms collection of shorebirds includes a dozen or so BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPER, a dozen AMERICAN GOLDEN PLOVER, 4-6 UPLAND SANDPIPER, as well as assorted other dry-land, shorebird species. Birders should note that this is private property. Do not trespass, do not park so as to inconvenience workers or traffic.

The gardens at the Goshen Center continue to host large number of RUBY-THROATED HUMMINGBIRDS. The Cape May Bird Observatory Northwood Center in Cape May Point and Center for Research & Education in Goshen will be open every day September through early November, 9:00 to 4:30.

The Cape May Birding Hotline is a service of the Cape May Bird Observatory. For more current information and details relating to these sightings and others stop by the Northwood Center in Cape May Point or the Center for Research and Education in Goshen and check the bird sighting sheets. You can also pick up a birding map, checklists, and information relating to our programs and events (daily walks and workshops), as well as registration information for the annual Cape May Autumn Weekend / THE Bird Show (slated for October 27-29). For additional information call 609-884-2736 or 609-861-0700. Thanks for calling and GOOD BIRDING!

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