This is the Voice of New Jersey Audubon for Tuesday, Feb. 4, 1992 at 5:15 pm, with reports of SNOWY OWL, GYRFALCON, BREWER'S BLACKBIRD, BLACK-HEADED GULL, DICKCISSEL, NORTHERN SHRIKE, RAZORBILL, RED-NECKED GREBE, EURASIAN WIGEON, EARED GREBE, LESSER BLACK-BACKED and ICELAND GULLS, LARK SPARROW, CLAY-COLORED SPARROW, CHIPPING SPARROW, TURKEY, and local reports.
Two SNOWY OWLS were reported at Liberty State Park in Jersey City, at Caven Pier, on Jan. 30, one on the barge and at the same time one on the Army Corps facility nearby. At least one was on the barge to the left of the Pier on Feb. 4. Also at Liberty State Park Feb. 2 were EURASIAN WIGEON on the north side in the marsh, and EARED GREBE on the south side. Another SNOWY OWL was in Moorestown on Feb. 2 in the fields off Hartford Rd. near the RCA plant.
The GYRFALCON in the Hackensack Meadowlands was seen by 2 observers in Kearny on Feb. 2, and a bird believed to be the Gyr was photographed on Feb. 4 at the side of the road on the Rt. 3 ramp to the New Jersey Turnpike. Caution: there are also two PEREGRINES in the Hackensack Meadowlands area this winter. The GYR is a dark bird.
A LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL was also at the Hackensack Meadows on Feb. 2 and 4, and an ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER previously reported near the Environmental Center resurfaced on Feb. 4 on the south dike of the shorebird pool 300 feet east of the parking lot at the Environment Center. Also in the area, an AMERICAN BITTERN.
In Salem County, a YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD was on Stow Neck Rd. near Canton last week, and this week up to 30 BREWER'S BLACKBIRDS continued to appear on Apple Blossom Farm on Ft. Elfsborg Rd. in Salem off and on. Reach it from Rt. 49 (Main St.) in Salem via Chestnut St., left on S. Featherbed Lane, and right on Ft. Elfsborg Rd. to Apple Blossom Farm. Afternoon is best. BREWER'S have also been seen in Sharptown, on Featherbed Lane (not the same), in the Upland Sandpiper area, with the Bramah Bulls, also late in the afternoon. The DICKCISSEL continues in Salem around the corner from Apple Blossom Farm on Money Island Rd., feeding with the chickens. Look for it among the House Sparrows. The BLACK-HEADED GULL was seen several times this week on Artificial Island at the Salem Nuclear Power plant.
NORTHERN SHRIKES this week were seen at Paulins Kill, and at Great Swamp, on Feb. 1; another was at Barber Pond in Wayne on Feb. 2, same place one was spotted last year; yet another NORTHERN SHRIKE was seen along the Delaware River at Worthington State Park Campground headquarters off Old Mine Rd. on Feb. 1, near the feeder. Also near the feeder in the conifers, one YELLOW-BELLIED SAPSUCKER and one RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET. At least ten BALD EAGLES were on the River Feb. 1, including at least 4 adults. Another adult was at Swartswood Lake the same day.
The Assunpink NORTHERN SHRIKE was not reported this week but is probably still in the area. The LARK SPARROW was seen several times this week on Nurko Rd., and photographed by several people. Also reported on Nurko Rd. this week, both CHIPPING SPARROWS and CLAY-COLORED SPARROWS, in the large flock of WHITE-CROWNED and other sparrows. Reach it from Rt. 539 south of Hightstown, east (left) on the Windsor-Perrineville Rd., right on Imlaystown Rd., left at the 90-degree turn onto Nurko Rd. Go about 100 yards and start looking.
Both the adult and imm. RAZORBILLS continue at Manasquan Inlet almost daily. A RED-NECKED GREBE was there on Jan. 30. A LESSER-BLACK-BACKED GULL is off-and-on at the brick gates between Spring Lake and Belmar on the beach. ICELAND and LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS were at or near Johnson Park off Rt. 18 in Highland Park on Feb. 2. A flock of 25 WILD TURKEYS were on Rt. 94 north of Blairstown in a cornfield behind the Newton Trust building on the west side of the road. From the shoulder you can see through the fence of the cornfield and into the woods.
An ICELAND GULL was on Olden Pond in North Haledon off High Mountain Rd. about 3 miles from the NJ Audubon Headquarters this week. The Allendale Celery Farm, off Allendale Ave. and Franklin Turnpike in Allendale, Bergen County, has four to six VIRGINIA RAILS wintering at the north end near ?Pink Potty Bridge. Also there, a SCREECH OWL in a Wood Duck box in the northeast corner and also an AM. BITTERN near the bridge. PEREGRINES were reported this week at Lenape Park, in Cranford, and also at Sandy Hook, which also had CATBIRD. A GOLDEN EAGLE was in Canton on Feb. 1, and a GOSHAWK was on Featherbed Lane, Sharptown, also Feb. 1. The TURKEY VULTURE roost in Bernardsville has recently moved into Region 2 near the corner of Whitehead Rd. and Washington Valley Rd. RUSTY BLACKBIRDS were reported this week at Assunpink at the horse farm. ROUGH-LEGGED HAWKS were reported this week in the Hackensack Meadows, also in Freehold. SHORT-EARED OWLS were reported from Mad Horse Creek in Salem on the Nuke Rd., and also on and off at Alpha, Warren Cty., on Oberly Rd.
The Voice of NJ Audubon [(908) 766-2661] is a regular weekly report on birding in New Jersey. The tape is changed regularly on Wednesdays, more often when necessary. [Compiled by R. Kane, NJ Audubon; transcribed for National Birding Hotline Cooperative by L. Larson, llarson@ pucc.princeton.edu.] To report birds to the tape, call (908) 766-5787, or fax (908) 766-7775. For updates between tapes call the NJ Audubon Bird Mailbox, (201) 983-9152. Good birding, and thank you for calling.