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This is the Voice of New Jersey Audubon for Wednesday, April 17, at noon, with reports of RUFF, RED-NECKED GREBE flight, CASPIAN TERN, AMERICAN BITTERN, seasonal arrivals, local reports of interest and an important conservation alert on Endangered Species reauthorization.

A black-and-cinnamon RUFF was on the flats at the Rt. 540 causeway at Mannington Marsh, April 12 and 14. A REEVE was on the Pedricktown Causeway April 14. Mannington Marsh also had 2 RED-NECKED GREBES, and several CASPIAN TERNS April 14.

RED-NECKED GREBES staged a good flight this week. In addition to the Mannington birds, several were on the Maurice River in Cumberland Co., others were on East Creek Pond (Rt. 47, Cape May Co.); several were on Lake Musconnetcong, April 14; and 18 were on Culver's Lake, Rt. 206, Sussex Co., April 16 - along with OLDSQUAW, WHITE-WINGED SCOTER, and BONAPARTE'S GULLS.

OLDSQUAWS were reported at several other inland locations April 15: White's Lake in Andover Apr. 13, a pond in Lambertville, and also L. Musconnetcong.

An AMERICAN BITTERN was in Great Swamp April 15, at the "long blind," and two PECTORAL SANDPIPERS were in the grass at the Woodland Rd. access. BLUE-WINGED TEAL and GREEN-WINGED TEAL, HOODED MERGANSER, RING-NECKED DUCKS, BARN SWALLOW, RUSTY BLACKBIRD, PALM WARBLER, HERMIT THRUSH, KINGLET, AMERICAN KESTREL, and COOPER'S HAWKS were seen around the refuge the same day.

The first BROADWINGED HAWKS were at Chimney Rock April 11, and at Boontoon Hawkwatch April 13. An AMERICAN BITTERN was at Morris Ave. and Rt. 22 on April 17.

Moving this week were: BARN SWALLOW, ROUGH-WINGED SWALLOW, CHIMNEY SWIFT, PALM WARBLER, RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET, HERMIT THRUSH, FLICKER, PURPLE FINCH, CHIPPING SPARROW, RUSTY BLACKBIRD, JUNCO and WHITE-THROATED SPARROW. Scarce were MYRTLE WARBLER and GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLET; BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHER has been non-existent so far. An early CHESTNUT-SIDED WARBLER was in Cape May this week, and also in Cape May, a very early ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK and a very late FOX SPARROW at the same feeder the same day-- typical of the odd combinations of early and late birds this spring.

CONSERVATION ALERT on Endangered Species Act re-authorization: Please correspond with NJ Rep. Jim Saxton, and with your own House member, and ask them to support strengthening the Endangered Species Act, along the lines of the recently drafted ENDANGERED NATURAL HERITAGE ACT (ENHA). This is an alternative ESA re-authorization, that comes from members of the National Endangered Species Coalition. It has no sponsor yet. Its provisions are much better than the bills already introduced in Congress. Some of its provisions include: establishing a scientific commission to identify species at risk; timely listing of species; increase in plant protection; designated Critical Habitat in the recovery plan for a species; deadlines for recovery plans; peer review of habitat conservation plans.

[tape became inaudible here. I'm sure it would go on to give the House Switchboard number, (202) 224-3121.]

The Voice of NJ Audubon is a regular weekly report on birding in New Jersey. The tape usually changes Wednesday, more often if necessary. To report birds, please call Tuesday at 908-766-5787 or fax 908-766-7775. Good birding and thank you for calling. [Compiled by R. Kane, NJ Audubon; transcribed for National Birding Hotline Cooperative by L. Larson, llarson@ pucc.princeton.edu.]

 
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