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DVOC Field Trip Report
by Lynn Jackson

Saturday April 21, 2012 - Coastal Delaware: South to North

A joint WAS/DVOC Field Trip

Normally we run this trip from north to south but this year we decided to try a different direction from south to north and boy did that turn out to be a good decision. We began the day at Prime Hook surrounded by singing Ovenbirds, Pine, Yellow-rumped and Yellow-throated Warblers and we got great looks at all of them. It was the start of a gorgeous day with some great birds. The woods also held Wood Duck, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Great-crested Flycatcher and Red-bellied Woodpeckers although we dipped out on the pair of Pileated Woodpeckers generally in the area. One really nice find was a small patch of lovely Lady Slipper Orchids alongside the trail.

After a couple of hours we moved over to the Visitors Center and walked the Dike and Boardwalk Trails. There we added some more nice birds: Common Yellowthroats, Field Sparrows, a singing White-eyed Vireo. Taking advantage of the picnic tables we enjoyed a lovely lunch while watching the Purple Martin colony before beginning our drive north.

We stopped along the coast at Fowler’s Beach and Mispillion Light where we had numerous DC Cormorants, Osprey, Dunlin, both Yellowlegs, Oystercatchers, Black Skimmers, Forster’s Terns, Ruddy Turnstones, Sanderling and retuurning Willets.

Finally reaching Bombay Hook around 3PM we began the loop around, finding en route a lovely red phased Eastern Screech-Owl, tons of American Avocets, Black-necked Stilts, Black-bellied Plovers, Blue-winged Teal and No. Shovelers, over 30 Black-crowned Night-herons, Bald Eagle, a Wilson’s Snipe hiding in plain sight, Seaside Sparrow, 2 fly-over Glossy Ibis, calling Clapper Rails and Marsh Wren.

In addition to about 83 species of birds, we also had 7 species of butterflies including Black Swallowtail, Pearl Crescent and Juvenal’s Duskywing.

It was a fun day.

~Lynn Jackson

Photos by Lynn Jackson