This is the Voice of New Jersey Audubon, for Wednesday, May 15, 1991, at 1 PM, with a special edition for the annual New Jersey Audubon World Series of Birding, May 18, the "mother of all birding days".
At the top of the tape this week are MISSISSIPPI KITE, BLACK-NECKED STILT, WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, LITTLE GULL, HENSLOW'S SPARROW, Big Day birds like JUNCO, GOSHAWK, RED-THROATED LOON, GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLET, DICKCISSEL, etc; Big Day Traffic problems; local reports of interest; and two announcements about the World Series: first, there is NO press conference on Friday at Brigantine Refuge; and second, preregistration is required for the brunch in Cape May on Sunday.
Now the birds. A MISSISSIPPI KITE flew over the Rutgers Ecological Preserve at the Livingston Campus, north side of Route 18, on May 13 during the final exam in Field Ornithology -- if that isn't a first, it should be.
Four BLACK-NECKED STILTS were at Brigantine N.W.R. on Sunday, May 12, not seen since, but a STILT SANDPIPER was there on May 14. A WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE was found May 14 on a pond near Pittstown. From Interstate 78 take Rt. 513 south to Pittstown, and at the sharp right angle stay on 513 a couple of miles to Whitehall road. Turn right on Whitehall, and follow it to a farm with a pond on the right. The pond is past the barn. The bird is described by the finders as a "good looking bird of the Greenland race, not a barnyard fowl."
One imm. LITTLE GULL was at the Salem Nuclear Plant on May 8. A singing HENSLOW's SPARROW was at Featherbed Lane, Sharptown, on May 8, along with BOBOLINK and GRASSHOPPER SPARROW. A DICKCISSEL was a flyover at Oberly Rd., Alpha, on May 12. A N. GOSHAWK was over Lake Okatunk near the School of Conservation in Stokes State Forest during the week. Other birds in Stokes this week were: a JUNCO on Sunrise Mountain, an OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER off the Sunrise Mt. Road, at the lookout; note that the Sunrise Mt. Road is now one way only, enter at the Culver Lake end from Rt. 206. Also in Sussex County an ALDER FLYCATCHER was at the Flatbrook Wildlife Management Area near the intersection of Rts. 615 and 640 on May 10.
At Merrill Creek Reservoir in Warren County, both COMMON LOON and RED-THROATED LOON were present this week, and nearby at the intersection of Fox Farm and Ridgeline Roads, a GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLET was in the spruce grove during the week. AMERICAN BITTERN was in the Great Swamp this week, exact location not reported. A BALD EAGLE was sighted between Bedminster and Oldwick on Lamington Rd this week. OLIVE-SIDED and WILLOW FLYCATCHERS are in at Black River in Chester. Also there, SORA and VIRGINIA RAILS. Nearby, a GRASSHOPPER SPARROW is on Fox Chase Road in Chester.
UPLAND SANDPIPERS are being reported from Orchard Rd. in Linvale, and on Featherbed Lane in Sharptown; so far, no reports from Hillsboro in Somerset County. PIED-BILLED GREBES have been reported from Echo Lake in Cranford, from Bunker Pond in Cape May, from the Hackensack Meadowlands, and from Manasquan Reservoir at the fishermen's parking lot on Georgia Tavern Rd, where there have also been HOODED MERGANSER and KINGFISHER. Johnson Park in New Brunswick on Rt. 18 had 5 ORCHARD ORIOLES May 8. Echo Lake, Lenape, and Nomahegan Parks in Cranford had 21 warblers May 11, and also BLACK-BILLED CUCKOO and SWAINSONS THRUSH. NJAS' Scherman-Hoffman Sanctuary in Bernardsville had 20 warblers on May 15, Sandy Hook on May 13 had 20 warblers among 110 species, and also ten shorebirds including OYSTERCATCHER. Rahway River Park had 7 species of warblers May 8 but no RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS.
Two pitfalls to watch out for on Big Day on Saturday May 18: Allaire State Park is having a flea market; there WILL BE a traffic jam on Rt. 524 outside the park from 6 AM to 9 AM. Also note that the Haleyville Rd in Cumberland County has a bridge out; don't use the Haleyville Road to get to Turkey Point. Good luck on the Birdathon and drive safely.
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.