Voice of New Jersey Audubon - 12/22/2005
This is Scott Barnes with the Voice of New Jersey Audubon Society for Thursday December 22, 2005 with reports of BARROW'S GOLDENEYE, EARED GREBE, YELLOW RAIL, THICK-BILLED MURRE, THAYER'S GULL, KING EIDER, seasonal and local reports of interest, CBC results, and announcements.

An EARED GREBE was found at Lakes Bay near Atlantic City Dec 17-19, where 1-2 individuals have been recorded in recent winters. From the intersection of Rte 9 and Rtes 40/322, go east on Rtes 40/322 about a mile to Cordova Ave and turn right. Drive a short distance on Cordova to the bay; look for the birds here (DeLorme P. 71, G-16). They have also been noted from nearby Genoa Ave.

The BLACK GUILLEMOT was still present at Barnegat Light State Park Dec 20, near the bulkhead just outside the entrance to the park. Also at Barnegat Light that day were 15 COMMON EIDERS and 30 HARLEQUIN DUCKS. On the north side of Barnegat Inlet an exceptional count of 132 COMMON EIDERS and 3 KING EIDERS was made from Island Beach State Park Dec 18.

A female BARROW'S GOLDENEYE has returned to Sandy Hook's Spermaceti Cove Dec 17; best viewed from the end of the service road west of F- lot. Also among the 112 species recorded on the Sandy Hook CBC were 8 REDHEADS and an AMERICAN BITTERN in Spermaceti Cove, an immature male COMMON EIDER at the ferry dock (located the next day w/ scoters off C-lot), and RUSTY BLACKBIRD. A drake EURASIAN WIGEON was found in Spermaceti Cove Dec 18 and a RAZORBILL was off C-lot the same day. A free detailed birding map of Sandy Hook is available at SHBO; check the sightings log there for daily reports.

An apparent second-winter THAYER'S GULL has been sighted again at Spruce Run Reservoir Dec 19. From Van Syckles Rd make the first left after passing the tollbooths, drive for approximately one mile to the boat launch and gravel parking lot. The bird has been seen between 7:30-8:00 am and again around 3 pm. Other birds noted at Spruce Run recently include RED-SHOULDERED HAWK, 2 LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS, a first-year ICELAND GULL, and 30 HORNED LARKS. Fifteen LESSER BLACK- BACKED GULLS were tallied there Dec 18.

A YELLOW RAIL, SNOWY OWL, and THICK-BILLED MURRE were highlights on the Cape May CBC; call the CMBO Hotline for details.

The Lakehurst CBC recorded 105 species Dec 17 including 4 RAZORBILLS at Manasquan Inlet and a drake EURASIAN WIGEON at Little Silver Lake in Point Pleasant Beach (still present Dec 20). Other noteworthy count birds included CACKLING GOOSE, SPOTTED SANDPIPER, and BLACK- LEGGED KITTIWAKE. Also on the North Shore this week were 3 REDHEADS on Little Silver Lake, a COMMON EIDER off Risden Beach in Point Pleasant, LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL at Sylvan Lake in Bradley Beach, and 3 RAZORBILLS off the Allenhurst jetties Dec 19.

The Oceanville CBC recorded 120+ species including COMMON EIDER, the aforementioned EARED GREBE, 6 ROUGH-LEGGED HAWKS, 226 AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHERS, 29 WILLETS, 37 MARBLED GODWITS, and 3 LONG-EARED OWLS. To view the godwits and other shorebirds at Brigantine Island, take Rt. 30 east into Atlantic City and follow the signs for Brigantine Island. The birds were seen on the mudflats west of Atlantic-Brigantine Drive (Rte 87) shortly after crossing the Absecon Channel Bridge. There are two one-block long side streets on the western side of the road that offer the best viewing. The best times are a few hours before or after high tide. The birds are also sometimes found east of the bridge. To reach that location cross the bridge over Absecon Channel and go a half-mile to the first traffic light. Turn right and go one block to Lagoon Drive. Turn right on Lagoon and follow it until it ends at a sandy road. Park here and walk out to the beach (DeLorme P. 85, B-23 and 23).

Birds noted along Money Island Rd in Salem County Dec 18 were NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWL, ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER, and 5 COMMON YELLOWTHROATS.

The Verga RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRD was seen tanking up on fluid and presumably departing on Dec 17.

The Princeton CBC tallied 90 species including GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE and REDHEAD at Aqueduct Pond (Mapleton Rd and US Rte 1), CACKLING GOOSE, TUNDRA SWAN, GREAT CORMORANT along the Millstone River in Kingston, BARRED OWL, and 5 PILEATED WOODPECKERS.

The Sussex CBC recorded 89 species Dec 18 including REDHEAD at Kittatinny Valley SP, VIRGINIA RAIL, LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL and ICELAND GULL at Culver's Lake, RED-HEADED WOODPECKER, and LONG-EARED OWL.

The RED-HEADED WOODPECKER remained this week at Garret Mountain, viewed near the horse stables on the upper road.

A GOLDEN EAGLE was reported at Overpeck Creek Park Dec 22.

The Lower Hudson CBC tallied 83 species including ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK, BARN OWL, 2 LONG-EARED OWLS, and 16 FOX SPARROWS.


The December 30 Pelagic Christmas Bird Count is full; to sign on the waiting last please call See Life Paulagics at 215-234-6805 or see their website at http://www.paulagics.com for more information.

The Voice of New Jersey Audubon is a weekly report on birding in New Jersey. To report birds please call 732-872-2500. Observers are requested to submit documentation (photos, field sketches, written descriptions) of Review List species to the New Jersey Bird Records Committee at 91 Sycamore Lane, Skillman NJ 08558. Thanks for calling and reporting.

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