Monday, May 31, 2010

May 31 - Blue Chip Farm and High Point

I awoke early this morning and quickly decided to head north into Ulster County, New York to look for Upland Sandpiper at Blue Chip Farms. I arrived at 7 a.m and shortly after found the sandpiper. A little bit later a second sandpiper was seen. The last time I saw this species was in the fall of 2007, so it was very nice to see again, particularly since this bird's population in the northeast continues to drop.

After that, and being concerned about getting stuck in holiday traffic, I left here just after 8 and headed southwest to hit the High Point State Park. Once in the park I drove the Ridge Road loop and then took Sawmill Road to its junction with Deckertown Pike. Here in the boggy area on the corner I found both Willow and Alder Flycatchers. Driving back toward Route 23 I came across a Cerulean Warbler whose azure colors are always a treat. Next I stopped at Cat Swamp and saw some breeding Brown Creepers and heard them sing as well.


Overall a very good morning of birding.

Friday, May 28, 2010

May 23 - New York Warblers

The specialty bird of Doodletown is the breath-taking Cerulean Warbler:

Also seen was the handsome Worm-Eating Warbler:

Next we headed to Sterling Forest for looks at the quickly declining Golden-winged Warbler:

May 29 - Belleplain & Heislerville

Out today with guys that force me listen hard in order to understand my native English...a visiting UK birder in Simon K., and a now resident Scotsman in Bill E.
We took the long ride down to the Delaware Bayshore areas in hopes of some uncommon shorebirds & the breeding specialties of Belleplain Forest. While we did not encounter any rarities at Heiserville we did enjoy the shorebirds, including a breeding plumaged White-Rumped Sandpiper.

At Belleplain we saw some life birds for Simon in the Acadian Flycatcher, Blue Grosbeak and Summer Tanager.


May 22 - Kentucky & Prothonotary warblers

Early this morning Bill E. and I took a trip to help Simon K. get a life bird in the Kentucky Warbler. After some patience we were rewarded with fine looks at this stunning bird.


Also seen in the area today were Chimney Swift, Pewee, Great-Crested Flycatcher, Veery, Wood Thrush and the warblers of Chestnut-Sided, Black-and-White, Redstart, Ovenbird & Common Yellowthroat. Scarlet Tanager & Rose-Breasted Grosbeak also were seen.

Afterward, we ventured to Lord Stirling Park, which is adjacent to the Great Swamp NWR. Here we were able to see 3 of the Prothonotary Warbler. The last time I saw this species was back in 2008, so it was nice to see the beautiful "Golden Swamp-Warbler" once again.


Other birds seen in this area were Ruby-Throated Hummingbird, Willow Flycatcher, Cedar Waxwing, Blue-Winged Warbler, Northern Waterthrush and Baltimore Oriole.

Monday, May 17, 2010

May 16 - Mourning Warbler at Garret Mountain

Another visit to this hotspot in search of, and successful in finding the Mourning Warbler:


Also seen here today were warblers of Blue-Winged, Northern Parula, Yellow, Chestnut-Sided, Magnolia, BT Blue, BT Green, Blackburnian, Bay-Breasted, Black-and-White, Redstart, Ovenbird, Northern Waterthrush, Common Yellowthroat, Wilson's and Canada.

May 15 - Rare Godwit at Brigantine

Monday, May 10, 2010

May 8 - Garret Mountain

Today I birded with Bill E. and new friend Simon K. and together we had great views of many warbler species today as well as many other species. On the day I recorded 20 warbler species with highlights being Cape May, Bay-Breasted, Wilson's along with Tennessee, NAshville, Parula, Yellow, Chestnut-Sided, Magnolia, BT Blue, Yellow Rumped, BT Green, Blackburnian, Prairie, Blackpoll, Black-and-White, Redstart, Ovenbird, Northern Waterthrush & Common Yellowthroat.

Flycatchers seen were a pair of Olive-Sided, Eastern Wood-Pewee, Least, and Great-Crested.
Thrushes were represented by Robin, Veery, Wood, Swainson's and Gray-Cheeked.

We also got partial & briefs views of a Great-Horned Owl that was being harassed by a mob of crows.

Overall a smashing day even with the short rain showers.

May 7 - Celery Farm

After work tonight I visited the Celery Farm in Allendale, NJ for a try at some marsh birds. While
I did not have any luck with them, among the swallows here I was able to see Tree, Rough-winged, Barn, and Bank.

As dusk approached Rob F. and I were able to see at least a half-dozen Common Nighthawks enjoying the airborne insects over the pond.

Monday, May 03, 2010

May 2 - Garret Mountain morning

I spent just a few hours here today and picked up some new birds for the year. Both species of cuckoo, Yellow-Billed & Black-Billed were seen. Flycatchers of Great-Created and Least put in appearances. My first Magnolia Warbler of the year was seen, as was Swainson's Thush.

May 1 - Sandy Hook

After a fantastic day at Garret yesterday I chose to do some beach birding with friends Rob F. and Kevin R. at Sandy Hook today. We had very good results although we missed some of the more sought-after species.
Overall I had 16 species of warblers. As a group we also got to see the Hook specialty of Piping Plover, as well as an early Semi-Palmated Plover, both Yellowlegs, Least Sandpiper, Snipe, and Oystercatcher.