This morning the regular group got together after several weeks apart due to the Holidays, New Year etc. We took a ride just over the border into Pennsylvania, near Tinicum, to try for a rare bluebird of the Western US.
After a short wait, Bill spotted our target of the Mountain Bluebird. I had last seen this species over 7 years ago during my trip to Colorado in 2008.
We then visited nearby Peace Valley Park and saw some good birds in Bald Eagles, Lesser Black-Backed Gulls, Brown Creeper etc. Then we headed back toward New Jersey...
The next stop was the Monroe Township Park where Greater White-Fronted Goose and Barnacle Goose had been reported earlier in the morning. We arrived at that area and found lots of activity and dog-walking which meant the geese had flown away to the many nearby farms of corn-stubble.
As luck would have it, we stopped at a field that had several hundred geese present. Again Bill was the first to see the Barnacle Goose, along with two other geese that had silvery backs and may be hybrids of Canada and Barnacle. We enjoyed the Barnacle Goose for some time before heading toward home once again.
credit: Bill Elrick (NYNJBirdingguide.com)
Since we had a little time left in our day, we stopped at the Hatfield Swamp to try for the long-staying Painted Bunting. We were about to give up when the bird flew into the ad-hoc feeder that had been setup, and again Bill was the first to see the bird. We enjoyed this immature male bird from just 10 yards away !
Dave Blinder found this bird on December 18th.