My friends and I took the 2-hour drive down to Edwin B. Forsythe NWR today. This place is known locally as Brigantine, although it is not nearby Brigantine Island.
Our expectations were measured because of the reports that the water-level in the impoundments is quite high, all due to the federal officials testing the strength of the berms that were rebuilt after Superstorm Sandy.
The impoundments did not offer any good birds, so the birdwatching was done by looking at the tidal channels which are outside of the Wildlife Drive. Nevertheless, there were nice looking birds to see...starting with adult Blue Grosbeaks along the road to the Gull Pond Tower. It was a pleasure to see several Whimbrels, although I prefer calling them by their previous name of Hudsonian Curlew.
We saw several species of terns (Forsters, Caspian, Gull-Billed, Least, and a single Royal).
There were many Short-Billed Dowitchers and Semi-Palmated Sandpipers, with a few Least Sandpipers mixed in. We did not spot a Western Sandpiper today, although some have been recently reported.
We did get good looks at Seaside Sparrows, and a couple of the Saltmarsh Sparrows. A Little Blue Heron was seen too.
Overall an average day at Brigantine. The next few weeks should bring in some rarities, and these will be followed by large numbers of the common species. Until next time !