Sparrows and other field notes, Oct. 18, 2014

White-crowned Sparrow, Troy Meadows, NJ, Oct. 18, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

White-crowned Sparrow, Troy Meadows, NJ, Oct. 18, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Sparrows dominate the southwestern portion of Troy Meadows as of this morning from Smith Ditch on Troy Road to the Patriots Path parking lot on South Beverwyck Road. This is a relatively small sampling of the meadows. The number of sparrows throughout the entirety of Troy Meadows right now must be staggering.

Swamp Sparrow, Troy Meadows, NJ, Oct. 18, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Swamp Sparrow, Troy Meadows, NJ, Oct. 18, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

The gas line was recently mowed making for easier walking and observation of field-edge habitat. The following numbers are on the short end as there are many more birds in the area but only my two eyes to view them: 34 Yellow-rumped Warblers, 8 Eastern Towhees, 12 Field Sparrows, 20 Savannah Sparrows, 75 Song Sparrows, 1 Lincoln’s Sparrow, 50 Swamp Sparrows (w-a-y undercounted), 125 White-throated Sparrows and 2 White-crowned Sparrows. Red-shouldered Hawk, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Common Yellowthroat, Palm Warbler and Indigo Bunting are some of the other species present.

Field Sparrow, Troy Meadows, NJ, Oct. 18, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Field Sparrow, Troy Meadows, NJ, Oct. 18, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Wildlife Preserves, the owner of Troy Meadows, is undertaking a Phragmites eradication project at Troy Meadows. It is not known for how long this will be taking place or what effect it will have on the birds and birding the area. Further information regarding this will appear in this space.


Glenhurst Meadows had 4 Common Ravens, Nashville Warbler, 2 Eastern Meadowlarks, 3 Purple Finches and 4 Pine Siskins among other typical species (Jeff Ellerbusch).


Chuck Smith at Lincoln Park Gravel Pits, Oct. 12:
Swarms of Palm and Yellow-rumped warblers were everywhere. Lots of White-throated , Song, and Swamp Sparrows, a single White-crowned and a hand full of Savannah Sparrows, 3 Wilson’s Snipe and 20+ Wood Ducks. The highlight was a Peregrine Falcon and a Merlin perched on the back side of the island in the back lake. They would occasionally fly around harassing nearby crows and then return to their perch. Also 3 Coopers Hawks, an adult Bald Eagle and a few Red-tailed Hawks.


A pair of Blue-winged Teal are present during Oct. 13-17 at the back pond of Ann Van Middlesworth Park, Hillsborough Twp. (Vicki Schwartz).


Northwest winds tonight should help move the remaining songbirds in the migration pipeline into our area.

Northwest winds from 15-20 MPH during the day on Sunday could make for an interesting raptor day, as well.


eBird checklists and other data can be viewed at the following links:
Morris
Somerset

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149 Raptors at Chimney Rock, Martinsville, NJ, Oct. 17, 2014

Chimney Rock
Martinsville, NJ, USA
Daily Raptor Counts : 10/17/2014

Species Day’s Count Month Total Season Total
BV 0 0 0
TV 0 0 0
OS 16 95 329
BE 4 33 141
NH 2 25 57
SS 67 455 1175
CH 8 43 115
NG 0 0 0
RS 1 20 33
BW 0 184 6469
RT 0 0 0
RL 0 0 0
GE 0 4 5
AK 39 194 744
ML 11 66 190
PG 0 0 3
UI 1 6 25
Total 149 1125 9286
Hours 10.2 127.9 382.9

John Kee

Daily Totals
Bird Checklist Query
2014 Summary (standard)
Species Checklist for Oct 17, 2014
Hourly Stats Report

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28 Raptors at Wildcat Ridge, Hibernia, NJ, Oct. 17, 2014

Wildcat Ridge
Hibernia, New Jersey, USA

Daily Raptor Counts: Oct 17, 2014
Species Day’s Count Month Total Season Total
Black Vulture 0 0 0
Turkey Vulture 0 0 0
Osprey 0 8 71
Bald Eagle 0 11 58
Northern Harrier 0 3 16
Sharp-shinned Hawk 19 124 290
Cooper’s Hawk 4 37 107
Northern Goshawk 0 1 1
Red-shouldered Hawk 1 1 5
Broad-winged Hawk 0 2 6465
Red-tailed Hawk 2 8 17
Golden Eagle 0 0 0
American Kestrel 2 39 75
Merlin 0 2 7
Peregrine Falcon 0 2 4
Unknown Raptor 0 1 16
Total: 28 239 7132


Observation start time: 08:30:00
Observation end time: 15:00:00
Total observation time: 6.5 hours
Official Counter Kevin McCarthy
Observers:


Visitors:
13

Weather:
Temp: 55 – 66 degrees F. Visibility 5 miles with haze increasing to 8. Clouds 0 – 45%. Wind from West, shifting to South and back to West at 2 – 8 mph. Brief gusts up to 15 mph.

Raptor Observations:
One male Kestrel remained in the old cedar tree area for an hour.

Non-raptor Observations:

 


Report submitted by Kevin McCarthy ()
Wildcat Ridge information may be found at: http://www.njfishandwildlife.com/wldcthwk.htm

 

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23 Raptors at Chimney Rock, Martinsville, NJ, Oct. 16, 2014

Chimney Rock
Martinsville, NJ, USA
Daily Raptor Counts : 10/16/2014

Species Day’s Count Month Total Season Total
BV 0 0 0
TV 0 0 0
OS 5 76 310
BE 0 28 136
NH 0 22 54
SS 13 378 1098
CH 0 34 106
NG 0 0 0
RS 0 19 32
BW 0 184 6469
RT 0 0 0
RL 0 0 0
GE 0 4 5
AK 2 152 702
ML 3 52 176
PG 0 0 3
UI 0 5 24
Total 23 954 9115
Hours 5.8 110.8 365.8

Notes : WSW wind after the rain.

John Kee

Daily Totals
Bird Checklist Query
2014 Summary (standard)
Species Checklist for Oct 14, 2014
Hourly Stats Report

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72 Species at Big Sit at Great Swamp NWR, Oct. 12, 2014

Pre-dawn, Great Swamp NWR, NJ, Oct. 12, 2014 (iPhone photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Pre-dawn, Great Swamp NWR, NJ, Oct. 12, 2014 (iPhone photo by Jonathan Klizas)

The Swamp Sitters and the Friends of the Great Swamp held their annual Big Sit at the overlook on Pleasant Plains Road in the Great Swamp NWR on Sunday, October 12.

From Karen English:
Our final tally was 72 species over the 16 hours. Posted on eBird and on the Birders Digest web site. The afternoon was very quiet for birds but a steady stream of visitors kept us awake. The clear blue sky made it difficult to pick up on any high flyers. We were unable to woo those White-crowned Sparrows to come down the road. Simon found a Blue-headed Vireo late in the day and our last flyover was a Merlin.

Cheerio
Karen

Species:
Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)
Wood Duck (Aix sponsa)
American Black Duck (Anas rubripes)
Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos)
Green-winged Teal (Anas crecca)
Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus)
American Bittern (Botaurus lentiginosus)
Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)
Great Egret (Ardea alba)
Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus)
Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura)
Osprey (Pandion haliaetus)
Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus)
Sharp-shinned Hawk (Accipiter striatus)
Cooper’s Hawk (Accipiter cooperii)
Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)
Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus)
Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)
Sora (Porzana carolina)
Wilson’s Snipe (Gallinago delicata)
American Woodcock (Scolopax minor)
Herring Gull (Larus argentatus)
Mourning Dove (Zenaida macroura)
Eastern Screech-Owl (Megascops asio)
Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus)
Barred Owl (Strix varia)
Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (Melanerpes carolinus)
Downy Woodpecker (Picoides pubescens)
Hairy Woodpecker (Picoides villosus)
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)
American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
Merlin (Falco columbarius)
Eastern Phoebe (Sayornis phoebe)
Blue-headed Vireo (Vireo solitarius)
Blue Jay (Cyanocitta cristata)
American Crow (Corvus brachyrhynchos)
Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)
Tufted Titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor)
White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis)
House Wren (Troglodytes aedon)
Winter Wren (Troglodytes hiemalis)
Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa)
Ruby-crowned Kinglet (Regulus calendula)
Eastern Bluebird (Sialia sialis)
Swainson’s Thrush (Catharus ustulatus)
Hermit Thrush (Catharus guttatus)
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)
Gray Catbird (Dumetella carolinensis)
European Starling (Sturnus vulgaris)
American Pipit (Anthus rubescens)
Cedar Waxwing (Bombycilla cedrorum)
Common Yellowthroat (Geothlypis trichas)
Palm Warbler (Setophaga palmarum)
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) (Setophaga coronata coronata)
Eastern Towhee (Pipilo erythrophthalmus)
Field Sparrow (Spizella pusilla)
Vesper Sparrow (Pooecetes gramineus)
Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)
Lincoln’s Sparrow (Melospiza lincolnii)
Swamp Sparrow (Melospiza georgiana)
White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis)
Dark-eyed Junco (Junco hyemalis)
Northern Cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis)
Red-winged Blackbird (Agelaius phoeniceus)
Eastern Meadowlark (Sturnella magna)
Rusty Blackbird (Euphagus carolinus)
Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula)
House Finch (Haemorhous mexicanus)
Purple Finch (Haemorhous purpureus)
Pine Siskin (Spinus pinus)
American Goldfinch (Spinus tristis)

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83 Raptors at Chimney Rock, Martinsville, NJ, Oct. 14, 2014

Chimney Rock
Martinsville, NJ, USA
Daily Raptor Counts : 10/14/2014

Species Day’s Count Month Total Season Total
BV 0 0 0
TV 0 0 0
OS 5 71 305
BE 1 28 136
NH 5 22 54
SS 41 365 1085
CH 8 34 106
NG 0 0 0
RS 7 19 32
BW 2 184 6469
RT 0 0 0
RL 0 0 0
GE 0 4 5
AK 7 150 700
ML 7 49 173
PG 0 0 3
UI 0 5 24
Total 83 931 9092
Hours 7.0 105.0 360.0

Notes : Surprising number of raptors given the South wind. Monarch
butterflies still coming through with 17 on the day. Also had a
Mourning Cloak. The resident adult Peregrines were actively
harassing the juvenile.

John Kee

Daily Totals
Bird Checklist Query
2014 Summary (standard)
Species Checklist for Oct 14, 2014
Hourly Stats Report

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21 Raptors at Wildcat Ridge, Hibernia, NJ, Oct. 13, 2014

Wildcat Ridge
Hibernia, New Jersey, USA

Daily Raptor Counts: Oct 13, 2014
Species Day’s Count Month Total Season Total
Black Vulture 0 0 0
Turkey Vulture 0 0 0
Osprey 0 8 71
Bald Eagle 1 11 58
Northern Harrier 2 3 16
Sharp-shinned Hawk 15 105 271
Cooper’s Hawk 1 33 103
Northern Goshawk 0 1 1
Red-shouldered Hawk 0 0 4
Broad-winged Hawk 0 2 6465
Red-tailed Hawk 0 6 15
Golden Eagle 0 0 0
American Kestrel 1 37 73
Merlin 1 2 7
Peregrine Falcon 0 2 4
Unknown Raptor 0 1 16
Total: 21 211 7104


Observation start time: 08:00:00
Observation end time: 14:00:00
Total observation time: 6 hours
Official Counter Frank Budney
Observers: Fred V.

 

Visitors:
Visitors = 2

Weather:
Overcast with 100% cloud cover and misty haze at 5 miles. Temperature range, 51º F to 60º F. Wind, SE 5 mph and variable. Visibility, 7 miles.

Raptor Observations:
NH was first bird at 0951 in front of ledge just above tree top level. A BE arrived over Parsippany Water Tower with a TV at 1027. Lots of SS throughout the day and naked eye visible. Final bird , AK, arrived at 1400.

Non-raptor Observations:
American Crow, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Tufted Titmouse, Black-capped Chickadee, White-breasted Nuthatch, and 3 large flocks of Blue Jays with 10 to 15 individuals each flying low toward the SW.


Report submitted by Frank Budney
Wildcat Ridge information may be found at: http://www.njfishandwildlife.com/wldcthwk.htm

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Sunday Bird Notes, Oct. 12, 2014

Vesper Sparrow

Vesper Sparrow, Troy Meadows, NJ, Oct. 12, 2014 (Chris Thomas)

Three Vesper Sparrows are the highlight of a late afternoon visit to Troy Meadows (Chris Thomas). The Vesper Sparrows were at the end of Troy Meadows Road.


A Big Sit was held today at the Overlook on Pleasant Plains Road, Great Swamp NWR and sponsored by the Friends of the Great Swamp. A final roundup will be posted when available. Early morning observations were Sora, American Bittern, Great Horned Owl, Barred Owl, Eastern Screech-Owl, Swainson’s Thrushes, Hermit Thrush, Purple Finches, Pine Siskins, American Pipits, Vesper Sparrow, Bald Eagle, Rusty Blackbirds, Wilson’s Snipe, American Woodcock, Lincoln’s Sparrow, etc.


The juvenile Great Cormorant found yesterday at Mt. Hope Lake (Mill Pond) continues today (Alan Boyd, Tom Halliwell). Waterfowl at the lake includes 3 Gadwall, 6 American Wigeon, 4 Am. Black Duck, 17 Northern Shoveler, 5 Green-winged Teal, 40 Ring-necked Duck, 250 Ruddy Duck, 5 Pied-billed Grebe, along with 30 Double-crested Cormorants, 1 Great Cormorant, 1 Great Egret, 2 Bald Eagles and 11 American Coot.


eBird checklists and other data can be viewed at the following links:
Morris
Somerset

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60 Raptors at Wildcat Ridge, Hibernia, NJ, Oct. 12, 2014

Wildcat Ridge
Hibernia, New Jersey, USA

Daily Raptor Counts: Oct 12, 2014
Species Day’s Count Month Total Season Total
Black Vulture 0 0 0
Turkey Vulture 0 0 0
Osprey 5 8 71
Bald Eagle 3 10 57
Northern Harrier 1 1 14
Sharp-shinned Hawk 23 90 256
Cooper’s Hawk 18 32 102
Northern Goshawk 0 1 1
Red-shouldered Hawk 0 0 4
Broad-winged Hawk 0 2 6465
Red-tailed Hawk 3 6 15
Golden Eagle 0 0 0
American Kestrel 4 36 72
Merlin 1 1 6
Peregrine Falcon 2 2 4
Unknown Raptor 0 1 16
Total: 60 190 7083


Observation start time: 08:00:00
Observation end time: 17:30:00
Total observation time: 9.5 hours
Official Counter Tom Gorman
Observers: Harold L., Mary C., Nora O., Mike L.

 

Visitors:
169, including Barbara & Jim, Mary and Gary who were very helpful in pulling raptors from a total blue sky. We thank all of the visitors who were all quite helpful in finding raptors today.

Weather:
Initial 30% light cloud cover that changed to 0% coverage by 1030 hrs and remained same throughout the day. Winds 0-3 MPH from s/se with a temp range of 41F-54F. Visibility in early morning hours ~10 miles and increased to 30 by days end.

Raptor Observations:
Majority of raptors were at high and distant elevations with a handful of exceptions being much closer. The 1st bird of the day was an imm. Bald Eagle @ 0832 hours but remained to the left and north of the watch, not to be seen again. 2 Adult Bald Eagles (1423 hrs) passed at ridge level in front of the watch, soared and did aerial battles when a 3rd adult Bald Eagle joined the other pair @ 1426 hrs. The aerial show went to a higher elevation and lasted for about 15 minutes when the first pair split off and went south. Ten minutes later the third adult also went south and out of sight. The accipiters all followed the same flight path through out the day. The Red-tailed hawks were at very high elevation and were non-stop south. All Osprey were mid elevation except for the last one at day’s end came down into the valley below. The Kestrels were all overhead and just above treetop level. At 1625 hours a visitor spotted what turned out to be a Peregrine Falcon speeding south over the “Guns of Navarone” condos. Prior to the end of the watch @ approx 1815 hours another Peregrine Falcon came down into the valley in front of the Pillar Drive ball fields. It appeared to be landing for the night.

Non-raptor Observations:
Normal TV’s and BV’s and local adult and imm. Red-tailed hawks treated the visitors to lengthy aerobatics above us. Monarchs: 37 Skeins of Canada Geese: 26 w/an average of 70+ members each. At 1620 hours another skein of 9 Geese were observed and seen immediately to be Snow Geese, which are a bit early in arriving. DC Cormorants: 7 Other regular locals: Raven, B.C. Chickadees, Blue Jays,N. Cardinal and T.Titmouse.

Predictions:
Overnight to be in the 50’s with partly cloudy and temps in 60’s….chance of showers late day.

 


Report submitted by Fred Vanderburgh
Wildcat Ridge information may be found at: http://www.njfishandwildlife.com/wldcthwk.htm

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Big Songbird Flight, 88 Raptors at Chimney Rock, Martinsville, NJ, Oct. 12, 2014

Chimney Rock
Martinsville, NJ, USA
Daily Raptor Counts : 10/12/2014

Species Day’s Count Month Total Season Total
BV 0 0 0
TV 0 0 0
OS 1 66 300
BE 7 27 135
NH 2 17 49
SS 39 322 1042
CH 14 26 98
NG 0 0 0
RS 4 12 25
BW 13 182 6467
RT 0 0 0
RL 0 0 0
GE 0 4 5
AK 7 143 693
ML 1 42 166
PG 0 0 3
UI 0 5 24
Total 88 846 9007
Hours 9.5 91.0 346.0

Notes : Good raptor flight on variable winds. 7 Bald Eagles. Spectacular songbird migration this morning with 16 warbler species including 1st of season Connecticut Warbler. This many warblers may be unprecedented for this late date. 1st of season Hermit Thrush, Pine Siskins and Black Duck. In the mix were 10 Red-breasted Nuthatches, 10 Eastern Towhees, 12 Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers, 10 Swamp Sparrows, Winter Wren, Indigo Bunting and Scarlet Tanager. This is truly an amazing list for Chimney Rock on October 12th. There were lines of migrant Flickers and Blue Jays and also 40+ Chimney Swifts.

John Kee

Daily Totals
Bird Checklist Query
2014 Summary (standard)
Species Checklist for Oct 12, 2014
Hourly Stats Report

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