E-mail reports: sightings (at) njaudubon.org
Compilers: Pete Bacinski and Scott Barnes
This is Scott Barnes with the Voice of New Jersey Audubon for Thursday September 13, 2012 with reports of ELEGANT TERN, CRESTED CARACARA, SANDWICH TERN, CONNECTICUT WARBLER, CLAY-COLORED SPARROW, seasonal and local reports of interest.
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A CRESTED CARACARA was discovered Sept 8 and still present Sept 13 at the Old Grover Farm in West Windsor Twp, Mercer County. Look for the bird in the fields or perched in a large dead tree or telephone poles on the farm, which is on the north side of Village Road East just west of the Congregation Beth Chaim Synagogue. The bird seems most reliable very early and late in the day, but has been seen at other times. Do NOT drive or walk up the private farm road.
The ELEGANT TERN continues at Sandy Hook through Sep 13. From parking area K take the fisherman's trail north until you hit the open beach. Head towards the right and look for the bird at the tidal cut and the higher dunes/beach beyond it. The bird often roosts with the Common Tern flock around the BLACK SKIMMER colony. DO NOT trespass into the fenced-off skimmer colony! Alternately, birders may access the false hook area (tip where the skimmer colony is) by parking in Lot J, walking northeast to the open beach, and heading north to the tip. This is a longer walk but does allow one to reach the false hook without potentially crossing the shallow cove during high tide.
More birds noted this week around the tidal cut/false hook area at the north end of Sandy Hook included 2 AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVERS, MARBLED GODWIT Sep 8, 5+ BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPERS, 2 BAIRD'S SANDPIPERS, SANDWICH TERN Sep 8, 30+ BLACK TERNS, and 70+ BLACK SKIMMERS.
Other sightings at Sandy Hook this week included PHILADELPHIA VIREO, CONNECTICUT WARBLER near the mortar battery, and YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT, all Sep 9; and a LARK SPARROW was found at K-lot Sep 9-10. A CLAY-COLORED SPARROW was found along the fisherman's trail Sep 9. An excellent passerine fallout occurred Sep 10 with 2 YELLOW-BELLIED FLYCATCHERS, CLIFF SWALLOW, 23 species of warbler including 2 CONNECTICUT WARBLERS, WORM-EATING WARBLER, BAY-BREASTED WARBLER, BLACKBURNIAN WARBLER, WILSON'S WARBLER, and CANADA WARBLER; CLAY-COLORED SPARROW along Raccoon Alley, DICKCISSEL near k-lot, and 6+ PURPLE FINCHES.
Forsythe (Brigantine) NWR had 2 AMERICAN AVOCETS and a MARBLED GODWIT Sep 8. Ten SORAS were detected in the west pool Sep 13.
Eight AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVERS were tallied at the sod fields along Half Acre Rd in Cranbury Twp Sep 7. Three BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPERS were there Sep 9.
Single BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPERS were noted in a sod field at the intersection of Sharon Road and Rte 539 south of Hightstown Sep 9 and along Herbert Rd Sep 10. An AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVER was noted at nearby Sharon Station Road Sep 7.
"Grasspipers" noted this week at the Selody Sod Farm off Skillman Rd in Montgomery Twp were 3 BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPERS Sep 9 and 6 AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVERS and BAIRD'S SANDPIPER Sep 10.
A CONNECTICUT WARBLER was detected at Mountain Lakes Nature Preserve in Princeton Sep 7.
A VIRGINIA RAIL was walking around in plain sight in the parking lot at Rosedale Lake Sep 7.
Chimney Rock Hawk Watch recorded 1,833 BROAD-WINGED HAWKS Sep 11. An all-time high day count of 32 BALD EAGLES was tallied Sep 9. Songbirds noted there this week included BLACK-BILLED CUCKOO, multiple PHILADELPHIA VIREOS, YELLOW-BELLIED FLYCATCHER, GOLDEN-WINGED WARBLER, TENNESSEE WARBLER, HOODED WARBLER, YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT, and 3 PURPLE FINCHES.
Bee Meadow Park in Hanover hosted a CONNECTICUT WARBLER and LINCOLN'S SPARROW Sep 13.
Raccoon Ridge tallied 264 BROAD-WINGED HAWKS Sep 10. You can learn more about this site at http://ebird.org/content/nj/news/fall-hawk-watching-at-raccoon-ridge
A CONNECTICUT WARBLER was found at DeKorte Environment Center in Lyndhurst Sep 9 and the TRICOLORED HERON was seen again Sep 12. Liberty State Park had a CONNECTICUT WARBLER Sep 10 and a TRICOLORED HERON Sep 9.
A CONNECTICUT WARBLER was seen at the Allendale Celery Farm Sep 11.
The Voice of New Jersey Audubon is a weekly report on birding in NJ. To report birds please email sightings AT njaudubon.org.
* Please submit reports of Review List Species (photos, field sketches, and/or written documentation) to the NJ Bird Records Committee at report AT njbrc.net or 14 Crown Dr, Warren NJ 07059.
Good Birding and thanks for reporting.