This is Scott Barnes with the Voice of New Jersey Audubon Society for
Thursday December 20, 2007 with reports of BARNACLE GOOSE, BLACK
BRANT, ASH-THROATED FLYCATCHER, WESTERN KINGBIRD, NORTHERN SHRIKE,
TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE, PAINTED BUNTING, COMMON REDPOLL, seasonal and
local reports of interest, and announcements.
An ASH-THROATED FLYCATCHER was observed at Island Beach State Park
Dec 18. The bird was seen opposite the park headquarters building on
the north side of the access road to the dump. The PAINTED BUNTING
was visiting the nature center's feeders there Dec 14.
The Sandy Hook CBC recorded an all-time high of 114 species including
2 GREAT EGRETS, a SHORT-EARED OWL near north beach pavilion, WESTERN
KINGBIRD along the fisherman's trail (still present there Dec 17), 2
NORTHERN SHRIKES including one near north pond, the long-staying
TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE around the maintenance buildings at the east end
of Randolph Dr, a LINCOLN'S SPARROW in Belford, and a BALTIMORE
ORIOLE at Huber Woods. Other birds noted at the hook this week
included 3 LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS and 3 COMMON REDPOLLS Dec 18 and
a flock of 8-10 RED CROSSBILLS were adjacent to the boy scout camp
parking lot Dec 19. A free, detailed birding map of Sandy Hook is
available at SHBO; check the sightings log there for daily bird reports.
A BLACK BRANT was photographed at Griffin Street Park in Monmouth
Beach Dec 16.
Two WESTERN KINGBIRDS found during November at Thompson Park in
Lincroft reappeared Dec 18-19. The birds have moved to a different
location in the park. To reach the spot park at Marlu Lake, walk over
the dam and follow the trail as it heads southwest. Cross a large
field and continue past an old farmhouse/driveway; the birds have
been seen in the sapling tulip poplar stands south of the farmhouse
and closer to Swimming River Reservoir. A SHORT-EARED OWL continued
at the park this week; look for the bird in the fields along the
gravel road to Marlu Lake.
The Oceanville CBC Dec 15 recorded approximately 133 species
including 10 COMMON EIDERS, 5 ROUGH-LEGGED HAWKS around Mott's Creek
and Leed's Point, 2 VIRGINIA RAILS, 265 AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHERS,
double-digit numbers of MARBLED GODWITS and WESTERN WILLETS (the
latter three at the south end of Brigantine Island), an AMERICAN
BITTERN and 7 SHORT-EARED OWLS at Mott's Creek, LONG-EARED OWL,
EASTERN PHOEBE, and a WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILL along Jen's Trail at
In the Salem County, NJ section of the Middletown, DE CBC Dec 16 were
LESSER YELLOWLEGS, BARN OWL, LONG-EARED OWL, 2 COMMON YELLOWTHROATS
at Money Island Road, a LINCOLN'S SPARROW at Hancock's Bridge.
Highlights at the Great Swamp NWR this week were up to 3 ROUGH-LEGGED
HAWKS and 2 NORTHERN SHRIKES along Pleasant Plains Road; one of the
Northern Shrikes was seen again Dec 17 & 19 in the field to the left
at the left-hand turn on Pleasant Plains Rd or by the ditch at the
end of the road. A SHORT-EARED OWL was a fly-by at the heron rookery
overlook Dec 18. The Great Swamp CBC Dec 15 recorded an excellent 91
species including a CACKLING GOOSE in Cranford, ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK,
MERLIN, 2 RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS at the heronry overlook on Pleasant
Plains Rd, the 2 NORTHERN SHRIKES, HORNED LARKS, and AMERICAN PIPITS
in several locations.
A BARNACLE GOOSE (origin undetermined) was found in Califon along the
South Branch of the Raritan River opposite the church Dec 16 & 18th
and was recorded on the Northwest Hunterdon CBC. That count tallied
97 species including GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, ICELAND GULL, and
GLAUCOUS GULL at Round Valley Reservoir. Also present in Hunterdon
County this week was a CACKLING GOOSE at Assiscong Marsh Dec 18; an
ICELAND GULL and 2 LAPLAND LONGSPURS at Spruce Run Reservoir Dec
15-16; and a flyover WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILL at Amwell Lake Dec 18.
In Sussex County 4 ROUGH-LEGGED HAWKS were detected at Wallkill River
NWR Dec 15 and 5 RUFFED GROUSE were found in High Point State Park
Dec 18. The Layton NORTHERN SHRIKE was seen again Dec 15: look for
the bird near the intersection of Rtes 615 & 540 in Flatbrook-Roy WMA
(DeLorme P 18, I-10). At the Sussex County Landfill in Lafayette 2
immature ICELAND GULLS and an adult LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL were
found Dec 19. Birders MUST check in with the receptionist at the
landfill (second floor of the administration building) before
birding. From the administration building just off Rte 94, walk back
up the road towards Rte 94 and go left up on the hill by the water
tank. View the gulls from here. DO NOT walk around any other sections
of the landfill.
Birds noted at Liberty State Park this week included RED-SHOULDERED
HAWK, ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK, and 70 SNOW BUNTINGS, all Dec 17. The NJ
portion of the Lower Hudson CBC recorded 82 species including 127
CANVASBACKS, 41 BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERONS, LONG-BILLED DOWITCHER,
BARN OWL, 33 AMERICAN PIPITS, PALM WARBLER, 30 COMMON REDPOLLS, and
PINE SISKIN. A SNOWY EGRET was "count week" there.
A COMMON REDPOLL has been visiting feeders at Lorrimer Nature Center
in Franklin Lakes this week. Also there sporadically are PURPLE FINCH
and PINE SISKIN.
Birds noted at the Allendale Celery Farm Dec 19 included 2 RUSTY
BLACKBIRDS, PURPLE FINCH, and a small flock of flyover COMMON REDPOLLS.
A pelagic Christmas Bird Count is scheduled for Jan 4; this eight-
hour trip will seek pelagic species including Northern Fulmar,
Razorbill, white-winged gulls, and possible Dovekie, Atlantic Puffin,
and Black-legged Kittiwake. For more information or to register
contact See Life Paulagics at 215-234-6805 or http://www.paulagics.com
The Voice of New Jersey Audubon Society is a weekly report on birding
in New Jersey. To report birds please call 732-872-2500. Reports of
Review List Species (photos, field sketches, and/or written
documentation) go to the New Jersey Bird Records Committee at 91
Sycamore Lane, Skillman NJ 08558. Thanks for calling and reporting.