Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Here They Come!

To quote Tom Petty - "The way-ay-ting is the hardest part".  Well, the waiting seems to be over.  Warblers are finally moving through our little part of the world.  This morning, I saw 7 Blackpoll Warblers at Lemon Hill.  That is more than I have seen in total all of my years of birding.  Plus, Connie and I had a singing Blackpoll at Pennypack Trust last night. And that needs to be added to the Blackpoll warbler from Higbee beach on Saturday. 

We met several birders who said that this is unusual.  One guy told us that he lives in Allentown area and they call the Blackpoll warbler "the kiss of death" because they are the last warblers to migrate. When you see Blackpolls, then migration is over.  Well, not this year.  It seems that they are coming through earlier than usual.

Along with the Blackpolls, Barbara and I had the first Black-throated Blue warblers, Parulas, plenty of Yellow-rumps, a lingering Palm, and a beautiful male Cape May warbler this morning.

Get your binoculars and get out there!

Did I mention that we entered the World Series of Birding?  Seems like we should have entered a regional competition and won it in order to be eligible for the "big day".  But, no.  We just signed up.  Any schmuck can enter apparently.  We decided to limit our day's effort to just Cape May, Cumberland and Atlantic counties in order to cut down the driving.  We made an initial site survey last Saturday to test the driving and I now think that it is possible for us to get 100+ species in one day effort by concentrating on the following Hotspots:
  • Turkey Point - Glades
  • Heislerville WMA
  • Stimpson's Beach
  • Jake's Landing Road
  • Reed's Beach
  • Belleplain State Park
  • Villas WMA
  • Cape May Point State Park - Hawk Watch and trails
  • The Meadows - Nature Conservancy
  • Concrete Ship
  • Higbee Beach
  • Rhea Farm (Beanery)
  • Nummy Island

It seems like alot, but some of these sites are concentrated in Cape May and do not require alot of driving.  Stay tuned.
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