report - February March 27, 2008
- Birds Mentioned
Click Here for species
accounts for many of these birds
Eared Grebe ++
Mississippi Kite ++
+ (Details requested by New
Jersey Birds Records Committee)
++ (Details requested by Pennsylvania
Ornthological Records Committee)
+++ (Details requested by Delaware
Common Teal (Eurasian Green-winged Teal)
Lesser Black-backed Gull
Great Horned Owl
Northern Saw-whet Owl
Saltmarsh Sharp-tailed Sparrow
Hotline: Delaware Valley Rare Bird Alert
Email reports to:
Compilers: Steve Kacir, Mike
Lyman, and Tony Croasdale
- Delaware Valley Ornithological Club
Phone: (215) 240-7547
Welcome to the Delaware Valley Rare Bird Alert, a service
provided by the joint efforts of the Academy
of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia and the Delaware
Valley Ornithological Club (DVOC), covering the Delaware
Valley Regions of Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
I'm Steve Kacir
your guide for birding in the Greater Philadelphia Region. For March 27,
2008 we highlight reports of BREWER’S BLACKBIRDS in Salem County,
NJ; MISSISSIPPI KITE in Berks County, PA; BLACK-HEADED GULL & EARED
GREBE in Dauphin County, PA; LITTLE GULLS in Kent County, DE & Lancaster
County, PA; and EVENING GROSBEAKS & TRUMPETER SWAN in Monmouth County,
For New Jersey:
On March 22, Cape May Harbor had 70 RUDDY DUCKS, 75 BUFFLEHEADS, 150 RED-BREASTED
MERGANSERS, COMMON GOLDENEYE and RED-THROATED LOON. On March 21, five
RED-THROATED LOONS were offshore from The
Nature Conservancy Cape May Migratory Bird Refuge (The Meadows), and
a CATTLE EGRET was there on Sunday. Monday, 500 NORTHERN GANNETS were
offshore of the refuge, while the refuge itself had an AMERICAN BITTERN.
Six PIPING PLOVERS were found that day at the refuge and another was seen
on March 26. (Click
Here for pictures on Karl
and Judy Lukens's Website) On RED-THROATED LOONS, PECTORAL
SANDPIPER, 12 PURPLE SANDPIPERS, 200 BONAPARTE’S GULLS, RUSTY BLACKBIRDS
and AMERICAN PIPIT flew past Cape
May Point State Park on March 21. Three WHITE-WINGED SCOTERS were
at Cape May Point on March 26. That day, Sunset Lake in Wildwood had 37
HORNED GREBES. The Nature Conservancy property on Wilson St had nearly
50 EASTERN MEADOWLARKS on March 23. On March 26, The Villas WMA had 2
RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS (Click
Here for pictures on Karl
and Judy Lukens's Website), and a TRICOLORED HERON was at Reed’s
Beach. Three SHORT-EARED OWLS were at Jake’s Landing on March 21,
and two were there on March 26.
A RUFFED GROUSE was at Dividing Creek on March 25.
Edwin B Forsythe NWR
had an AMERICAN BITTERN.
Lighthouse State Park
continued to host PURPLE SANDPIPERS, 40 HARLEQUIN DUCKS, BLACK SCOTERS
and LONG-TAILED DUCKS.
Four EVENING GROSBEAKS were at the mulberry tree parking area near the
dam at Assunpink WMA on March 22-27. A COMMON TEAL (aka Eurasian Green-winged
Teal was at a little bridge on Imlaystown Rd on the way to Assunpink from
I-195. On March 21, an ICELAND GULL was at Point Pleasant Beach, and another
was at the Shark River Inlet jetty. That day, Lake Como had several CANVASBACKS.
The EURASIAN WIGEON was on Silver Lake in Belmar on March 22. South Amboy
had 2 ICELAND GULLS on March 25. A TUNDRA SWAN was on Natco Lake on March
22. A PIPING PLOVER was at Monmouth Beach on March 23, and over 10,000
NORTHERN GANNETS were offshore on the previous day. Sandy
Hook had a TUNDRA SWAN at the North Pond on March 24-25. On March
25 the Sandy Hook Migration Watch noted a WHITE-EYED VIREO.
A female and 2 male BREWER’S BLACKBIRDS were at the Freas Rd cow
pasture in Pennsville on March 20. A ROSS’S GOOSE was in the Featherbed
Lane SNOW GOOSE flock on March 22.
On March 24, the National Park overlook had 15 CANVASBACKS, and the dredge
spoils area had 7 FOX SPARROWS. An AMERICAN BITTERN was at Wiggins Pond
East Brunswick’s 2 TRUMPETER SWANS returned on March 25.
The Pole Farm at Mercer County Park Northwest had 2 COMMON RAVENS on March
21, and 4 SHORT-EARED OWLS on March 24.
NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWLS were noted over the weekend.
Two REDHEADS were on Merrill Creek
Reservoir March 22-23, and a COMMON LOON was there on March 23. A
PINE WARBLER was at Merrill Creek on March 25.
Bucktoe Preserve had RUSTY BLACKBIRDS on March 25. GLOSSY IBISES were
at Augustine Beach through the week. A PURPLE FINCH visited a feeder in
Hockessin. Russell Peterson Marsh had 5 WILSON’S SNIPES on March
25. A BARRED OWL was found along Creek Rd at White
Clay Creek State Park on March 25. On March 26, three LITTLE BLUE
HERONS and a GLOSSY IBIS flew to the Pea Patch Island heronry, and a RED-THROATED
LOON and BONAPARTE’S GULL were seen from the end of Clinton St.
A KING RAIL called from the Thousand
that day, and a YELLOW-BILLED CUCKOO was at Grier’s Pond on March
Two LITTLE GULLS were in a BONAPARTE’S GULL flock bayside at Ted
Harvey Wildlife Area on March 20, and a EURASIAN WIGEON was at the
south end of the south impoundment on March 22. On March 21, a LITTLE
GULL and 2 LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS were on the beach at Kitts
Hummock; another LITTLE GULL was seen there on March 26. A possible
first cycle LITTLE GULL was at Tilcon Pond on March 21. On March 22, three
RUSTY BLACKBIRDS and 12 WILSON’S SNIPES were seen from Kitts Hummock
Rd. A BONAPARTE’S GULL, GLOSSY IBIS and CANVASBACK were in the area
of Mallard Lodge on March 21. A ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK flew by Woodland Beach
on March 20. Woodland Beach WA had 5 PECTORAL SANDPIPERS on March 25 and
an AMERICAN BITTERN & WILSON’S SNIPES on March 26. That day,
Slaughter Beach had 7 AMERICAN AVOCETS. WILD TURKEYS were in a field along
Route 1 between Little Heaven and St Jones on March 25. A PALM WARBLER
was at Port
Mahon Road on March 21. Bombay Hook NWR had AMERICAN PIPITS on March
21, and COMMON GOLDENEYE and LINCOLN’S SPARROW were there over the
weekend. Other recent sightings from Bombay
Hook NWR included HORNED GREBE, TUNDRA SWAN, CANVASBACK, SURF SCOTER,
AMERICAN WOODCOCK, BARRED OWL and SALTMARSH SHARP-TAILED SPARROW. On March
25, Bombay Hook’s Shearness Pool had 6 PIED-BILLED GREBES and many
MERLINS flew by the Cape
Henlopen State Park Hawk Watch this week. BROWN-HEADED NUTHATCHES
were behind the Cape Henlopen Nature Center. On March 23, a MERLIN was
seen from the entrance road to Prime
Hook NWR. The GREAT HORNED OWL nesting on an osprey platform at Prime
Hook NWR’s Fowler
Beach was seen on March 21. On March 23, Fowler Beach had RUSTY BLACKBIRDS
at Fowler Beach Rd, ICELAND GULL at the beach, and PIPING PLOVER and 2
AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVERS at the sod banks. That day, the flats north of
Evans Ave in Slaughter Beach had 8 PIPING PLOVERS, and 75 AMERICAN AVOCETS
were feeding in the bay. The Deep Branch Rd RED-HEADED WOODPECKER was
seen on March 23 & 25.
John Heinz NWR at Tinicum
had PINE WARBLER, PALM WARBLER, 8 CANVASBACKS, HORNED GREBE and MERLIN
on March 23. AMERICAN WOODCOCKS were noted at the refuge on March 22.
A SHORT-EARED OWL patrolled fields next to Struble
Lakeon March 22. Longwood Gardens had a PILEATED WOODPECKER on March
Creek State Park had a RED-BREASTED MERGANSER on March 24. Two BLACK
SWANS were seen from the Struble Trail in Downingtown.
Picture by Rosann Grose
A SHORT-EARED OWL flew by the Church Rd area of Green
Lane ParkPark on March 21. A WILSON’S SNIPE was near Molasses
Creek off Church Rd on March 22; an AMERICAN WOODCOCK called from that
area the night before. On March 22, Green Lane’s Walt Rd area had
BALD EAGLE, COMMON LOON, CANVASBACK and RED-BREASTED MERGANSER. On March
20, HORNED GREBES and LONG-TAILED DUCKS were seen there.
Creek Park had a HORNED GREBE and 300 TREE SWALLOWS on March 20. Bradford
Dam had RUSTY BLACKBIRDS on March 22. GREAT CORMORANTS were on a channel
marker across from Torresdale Manor on March 21. A PINE WARBLER and 15
RUSTY BLACKBIRDS were at Silver
Lake Nature Center on March 26. On March 22, Churchville
Nature Center (see
also)had HORNED GREBE, ICELAND GULL, LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS; the
YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT was at the Kelly Tract that day. An AMERICAN WOODCOCK
and 2 VESPER SPARROWS were at the edge of a field near the Covered Bridge
parking lot on Swamp Rd at Tyler
State Park on March 24. Peace
had HORNED GREBE, RED-BREASTED MERGANSER and hundreds of flyby SNOW GEESE
through March 22, and two CANVASBACKS were there on March 22. On March
State Park had 270 LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS but only 50-60 on March
26, when Lake Nockamixon had 17 HORNED GREBES. Up to 4 ICELAND GULLS were
seen at Nockamixon through the week.
Green Pond had over 100 LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS through the week, with
a high count of 301 on March 26 when 3 ICELAND GULLS were also found there.
On March 22, a HORNED GREBE was at the Gremar Rd retention pond, and they
were seen at Christian Springs and Nazareth Quarry on March 23. The Koch
property had WILSON’S SNIPES and displaying AMERICAN WOODCOCKS.
On March 23, a CANVASBACK was at the Albert Rd Ponds, and 8 REDHEADS were
at PP&L Martins Creek Preserve. That day, 2 COMMON GOLDENEYES were
at the Portland Foot Bridge, and 2 BONAPARTE’S GULLS loafed on the
Martins Creek Quarry. SORAS were found at School Rd and East Bangor Dam
on March 23. Two LONG-EARED OWLS were at a pine stand in Lower Mount Bethel.
On March 23, a SHORT-EARED OWL patrolled the Richmond Rd LTS Development
Site, and NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWLS called from National Park Drive. Tekening
Nature Trail had a PINE WARBLER. On March 24, over 50 AMERICAN PIPITS
were along Hillside Rd in East Allen Twp.
Up to 20 COMMON REDPOLLS continued to visit feeders in McAdoo.
had an ICELAND GULL, LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL, REDHEAD and 28 RED-BREASTED
MERGANSERS on March 22. A MISSISSIPPI KITE flew past Hawk Mountain Sanctuary
on March 26.
Creek WMA had BALD EAGLES, TUNDRA SWANS, 3 REDHEADS and 4 CANVASBACKS
on March 21. HORNED GREBES were noted at Middle Creek on March 21 &
26. On March 22, Octoraro
Reservoir had RED-BREASTED MERGANSER, 4 CANVASBACKS; and a COMMON
TEAL (aka Eurasian Green-winged Teal) was at the Mount Eden Rd area. On
March 22, four LITTLE GULLS were with over 400 BONAPARTE’S GULLS
at the Susquehanna River between Long Level and Wrightsville, and 2 LITTLE
GULLS flew over the Route 462 bridge. That day, a LONG-TAILED DUCK and
over 50 HORNED GREBES were at Long Level. Over 500 BONAPARTE’S GULLS
were at the Conowingo Pond area of the Susquehanna River on March 22.
On March 24, the Conejohela
Flats had 5 LITTLE GULLS, 60 BONAPARTE’S GULLS, LESSER BLACK-BACKED
GULL, GLAUCOUS GULL, 6 TUNDRA SWANS and 2 CANVASBACKS.
A WESTERN/CLARK’S GREBE was near the causeway at Lake Pymatuning
in Crawford County on March 23. The breeding-plumaged BLACK-HEADED GULL
was seen on March 25-26. It was reported from just below the boat launch
in Marysville and just upriver from the north end of North Main St. On
March 26, an EARED GREBE was seen on the Susquehanna from West Fairview,
A breeding-plumaged EARED GREBE was on the north side of the Point Lookout
State Park causeway in St Mary’s County on March 24. Another EARED
GREBE was on the bay north of 32nd St at Ocean City, Worcester County
on March 22. On March 25, the WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILL returned to the feeders
it had previously visited in Silver Spring, Montgomery County. The bird
can be seen from the Sligo Creek Pkwy: Look north towards the hill at
the wooden deck with hanging feeders at the three sewer caps on the north
side of the parkway.
A WESTERN GREBE was seen from Staten Island, Richmond County through March
26. The GREBE has been seen from the Mt Loretto area, Wolfe’s Pond
Park, the Lemon Creek Bridge, Lemon Creek Park and the Lemon Creek Pier.
This may be the same grebe that had been seen at Sandy Hook. A WESTERN
TANAGER was in Central Park, New York County March 26-27.
*** ANNOUNCEMENTS ***
On March 29, Frank
Windfelder will lead a DVOC field trip to Southwest New Jersey’s
Pedricktown and Mannington Marsh areas. The trip will meet at 6:15AM at
Center Square Rd for American Woodcocks, but an alternate meeting place
is at the Pedricktown Rd Causeway at 7:30AM. Target species include Ross’s
Goose, Common Teal, Eurasian Wigeon, Rusty Blackbird, Brewer’s Blackbird,
Yellow-headed Blackbird, Ruff, Cackling Goose and Sandhill Crane. Please
contact Frank Windfelder if you plan on attending. Directions and a map
detailing the meeting locations along with contact information for the
trip leader are on the DVOC website: http://www.dvoc.org
The next meeting of the DVOC is on Thursday April 3
at 7:30pm at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, when David
Errol Pattemore will present “On the Brink: Conservation of Endemic
New Zealand Birds.” Colin Campbell will present an Ornithological
Study entitled “New North American Birds - Expert Predictions and
Actuality.” The meeting after that will be on April 17, featuring
a program by Frank Windfelder and Yoav Chudnoff. Details are on the website,
and guests are always welcome.
See Life Paulagics is running a pelagic trip out
of Lewes, DE on April 5 and another out of Cape May, NJ on April 13. These
trips hope to take advantage of the schools of baitfish that attract high
counts of Northern Gannets and Gulls, which, in turn, could attract the
attention of Great Skua. Additional target birds include Northern Fulmar,
Common Murre, Razorbill, Red Phalarope, Sooty Shearwater and Jaegers.
For more information, call 215-234-6805 or visit them on the web at http://www.paulagics.com
The second Delaware Breeding Bird Atlas kicks off this
year. Please consider taking part in this massive citizen science project
to study the map the distribution of birds breeding in Delaware and compare
the data with that gathered by the first Delaware Breeding Bird Atlas
from 20 years ago. For more information contact the BBA Coordinator, Anthony
Gonzon at Anthony.Gonzon@state.de.us or (302)-653-2880.
More information is available at: http://www.fw.delaware.gov/BBA
A hybrid LESSER BLACK-BACKED X HERRING GULL hatched
and was banded this past summer at Appledore Island in Maine. The bird
has a large white-on-green “N02” band on the left leg, and
a silver ring on the right. If you see this bird, please contact Bill
Etter or email us at
and we will forward the sightings to the interested parties. For photos
of this gull, visit http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v230/billetter/Apple/
The Delaware Valley Rare Bird Alert is a weekly report
on birding in the Delaware Valley Region including
Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey. To report birds or significant
upcoming birding events and planned pelagic trips, please email
. This is Steve Kacir, good
birding to you all and thanks for calling, surfing and reporting.
On this page....
Field Checklist (A handy pocket list for your daily adventures.
Available to everyone courtesy of the DVOC)
Valley Birding Checklist (A major publication covering status and
distribution of Delaware Valley birds. Available to everyone courtesy
of the DVOC)
Guidelines for Submission
- Good concentrations (e.g. 8 sp. of shorebirds at Green Lane)
- High numbers (e.g. 2,000 Common Mergansers at Peace Valley)
- Early/late occurrences (1st Indigo Bunting, lingering Phoebe)
- Unusual breeders
- BRIEF report on out of area mega rarities(e.g. Red-footed Falcon or
even a stint in MA)
- Announcements (DVOC meetings and field trips, Academy events, CBC
dates and pelagics!)
is the Delaware Valley?
The Delaware Valley is the name given
to the region that lays on either side of the Delaware River, centered
on Philadelphia. This consists of southeastern Pennsylvania, central
and southern New Jersey and the state of Delaware.
The following counties fall within our boundaries.
(Click on a county name for information specific to the county)
Cape May County