Saturday, November 15, 2008

Veteran's Day at Bombay Hook and Surrounding Areas

I played hookie on Veteran's Day and took Connie down to Bombay Hook NWR in Delaware. It's been a few years since we were there last. The weather was perfect. Big blue sky, not too cold. We made great time from our house in Abington down to Smyrna exit of Rt 1.

Our first stop was Woodland Beach off of Rt 9. There are a few entrances. We pulled into the southern most entrance and were greeted by an 8 point buck running through the field. We saw some birds in the mud flat there that looked like shorebirds from a distance. They turned out to be Horned Larks! 5 of them scurrying through the mud field. We got great looks.

We got into Bombay Hook just at 8:00 AM. The office was officially closed due to Veteran's Day, but there were a few volunteers that let us in for maps and such. Outside of the office we immediately saw what we came for - thousands of Snow Geese swirling around the beautiful blue sky. Wow!

On the wildlife drive we pulled off to scan the agriculture fields for anything interesting. We found American Pipits right at Tour 2 sign. Life bird for both of us. We have probably driven past Pipits a hundred times and never bothered to look at them before. However, I checked the Delaware RBA before our trip and read that Pipits had been seen. So, thanks to Andy Ednie for continuing to post to Virtual Birder.

Other notable birds seen at Bombay Hook - Green Wing Teal, American Avocet, Pintails, Dunlin, Semi-palmated Plovers, Greater Yellowlegs and 4 Harriers.

We drove south on Rt 9 to explore 2 sites that are regularly mentioned on the Delaware RBA that we have never been to - Port Mahon Rd and Little Creek. Thank goodness for eBird's Google Maps integration. It makes finding these sites so easy. We saw 5 Black Crowned Night Herons at Little Creek. It looks like they are building a serious levee there that will eventually allow you to walk all the way out into the marsh.

Anyway, it was a really nice day and we were home before supper.
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