Birds of Glenhurst Meadows, Aug. 16, 2014

Glenhurst Meadows is getting into southward-bound-migration shape as evidenced by the eBird report by Jeff Ellerbusch reproduced, in part, below:

Killdeer – 4
Spotted Sandpiper – 2
Solitary Sandpiper – 1
Greater Yellowlegs – 2
Lesser Yellowlegs – 2
Least Sandpiper – 5

2 Red-headed Woodpeckers are in the area. A Least Flycatcher was seen.

13 warbler species are tallied: Ovenbird, Northern Waterthrush, Blue-winged and Black-and-white Warblers, Mourning Warbler (photographed by Harvey Tomlinson and viewable on his Flickr page, here. Other warblers: Common Yellowthroat, American Redstart, Blackburnian, Yellow, Chestnut-sided, Prairie and Canada Warblers. A female Golden-winged Warbler was spotted by Harvey Tomlinson.


Parsippany Night-Herons

Jefferson Road Pond, Parsippany is quiet of late but the Night-Herons continue sporadically. 5 Black-crowned Night-Herons and 1 Yellow-crowned Night-Heron were eBirded by Julie Buechner on August 14. They are apparently using the island and other nearby locations for roosting.

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Chimney Swifts of Raritan and other field notes, Aug. 15, 2014

Chimney Swifts of Raritan

From Pete Bacinski:
“Sandra Escala and I have been monitoring an old industrial chimney on Orlando Drive in Raritan about a mile west of Route 206. Last night we estimated about 1,000 Chimney Swifts there at dusk entering the chimney. There is ample parking there. Two years ago, I estimated 5,000 birds. The colony grows as more birds join it as they move south.”

[Editor's note: the building is near the bridge over River Road and is thought to be property of Duke Farms. Pete will have an article regarding Chimney Swifts and this location in NJ.com in the next few days].


And then there were six…

Little Blue Herons, Melanie Lane, Hanover Twp., NJ, Aug. 15, 2014 (photo by Chuck Hantis)

Little Blue Herons, Melanie Lane, Hanover Twp., NJ, Aug. 15, 2014 (photo by Chuck Hantis)

They gather on the snag in the waning light. 6 Little Blue Herons, the high count so far, were seen and photographed at Melanie Lane Wetlands by Chuck Hantis after 6 p.m. this evening. The regular pair of Great Egrets continue as well. The Snowy Egret of a few days ago has not been seen since.


Whip-poor-will in Great Swamp NWR

From Terry Carruthers:
“An Eastern Whip-poor-will just passed east along Whitebridge Rd, near the old cement plant. It was 8:30 pm and the bird was calling actively. A Barred Owl was also calling nearby.”


American Redstart, Griggstown Grasslands, NJ, Aug. 15, 2015 (photo by Chris Duffek)

American Redstart, Griggstown Grasslands, NJ, Aug. 15, 2015 (photo by Chris Duffek)

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Bird Notes, Aug. 14, 2014

The Little Blue Herons of Morris County continue today. One was at the Lincoln Park Gravel Pits along with a handful of Least Sandpipers, Killdeer, Green and Great Blue Herons, and only 1 Great Egret (Roger Johnson, J. Klizas).

Only one Little Blue Heron was found at Melanie Lane Wetlands early this afternoon where there were 5 yesterday (see that post here). Yesterday’s Snowy Egret was not seen today. A Lesser Yellowlegs, a few Killdeer and Least Sandpipers and the regular 2 Great Egrets, Great Blue Herons and Green Herons were present (J. Klizas).

The herons and egrets can hide in the west end of the marsh. Later in the day at 7 p.m., Chuck Hantis had a group of four Little Blue Herons appear. See the photo below.

Little Blue Herons, Melanie Lane, Hanover Twp., NJ, Aug. 14, 2014 (photo by Chuck Hantis)

Little Blue Herons, Melanie Lane, Hanover Twp., NJ, Aug. 14, 2014 (photo by Chuck Hantis)


2 Semipalmated Plovers are at Finderne Wetlands but viewed from the small park on Duke Parkway (see map). Spotted and Least Sandpipers are also at Finderne (Jeff Ellerbusch)

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Snowy Egret and 5 Little Blue Herons in Hanover Twp., Aug. 13, 2014

Little Blue Herons (LBHE) continue to be an interesting story this summer. Two more juveniles were at the Lincoln Park Gravel Pits on Aug. 11 along with 6 Great Blue Herons, 11 Great Egrets, 3 Green Herons, 21 Killdeer and 17 Least Sandpipers.

This afternoon, two juvenile LBHEs continued at Melanie Lane Wetlands. Suddenly, a number of white birds flushed from the western end of the marsh revealing 5(!) juvenile Little Blue Herons, a Snowy Egret and two Great Egrets. 4 LBHEs were seen here on July 27 (Tim Vogel). They can easily hide among the tall vegetation on the west side of the marsh.

Other than a successful breeding year in the region, there is no attempt in this space to explain the unprecedented influx of LBHEs in Morris and Somerset Counties this summer.

Melanie Lane also has 3 Green Herons, 3 Killdeer, 1 Greater Yellowlegs, 9 Least Sandpipers and 1 Pectoral Sandpiper.

Snowy Egret is a rare species in both Morris and Somerset Counties with few records over the years. This is the second Snowy Egret for Morris in 2014. The first was on May 1. Somerset also has one record for 2014 seen on private property on April 29.

Snowy Egret, Melanie Lane, Hanover Twp., NJ, Aug. 13, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Snowy Egret, Melanie Lane, Hanover Twp., NJ, Aug. 13, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

At sunset, all 5 Little Blue Herons assembled on and around the tree in the photo below. Soon thereafter, the two Great Egrets attempted to take over the tree causing the LBHEs and 1 Great Egret to fly westward towards an unknown nocturnal roost.

5 Little Blue Herons, Melanie Lane, Hanover Twp., NJ, Aug. 13, 2014 (photo by J. Klizas)

5 Little Blue Herons, Melanie Lane, Hanover Twp., NJ, Aug. 13, 2014 (photo by J. Klizas)

On Aug. 11, Chuck Hantis photographed some of the Little Blue Herons of Melanie Lane Wetlands as shown below. Click on the photo for a larger image.

Little Blue Heron, Melanie Lane, Hanover, NJ, Aug. 11, 2014 (Photo by Chuck Hantis)

Little Blue Heron, Melanie Lane, Hanover, NJ, Aug. 11, 2014 (Photo by Chuck Hantis)

Little Blue Heron, Melanie Lane, Hanover, NJ, Aug. 11, 2014 (Photo by Chuck Hantis)

Little Blue Heron, Melanie Lane, Hanover, NJ, Aug. 11, 2014 (Photo by Chuck Hantis)


The little known Fish Tract in Florham Park had 2 Great Egrets, 1 each of Killdeer, Spotted and Solitary Sandpipers, and 7 Least Sandpipers.


Today’s storm passage did not produce any remarkable fallout birds. An Osprey was at Boonton Reservoir. Many of the Double-crested Cormorants were loafing on the east shore, not on the island as usual. An adult Bald Eagle perched on the island may have something to do with that.


The Daily Planets

If you are awake an hour or more before sunrise for the next few mornings (sunrise is approximately 6:07 a.m.), look towards the east for Jupiter and Venus, our sky’s two brightest planets, as they engage in the closest planet-to-planet conjunction of 2014. Their closest convergence will be August 18.

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Little Blue Herons, Aug. 10, 2014

Little Blue Heron, Melanie Lane Wetlands, NJ, Aug. 10, 2014 (ID photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Little Blue Heron, Melanie Lane Wetlands, NJ, Aug. 10, 2014 (ID photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Little Blue Heron sightings are at higher than usual numbers in Morris and Somerset Counties in 2014. 2 Little Blue Herons continue at Melanie Lane Wetlands as of today. They are joined by a Great Egret, 3 Green Herons, 4 Killdeer, a Spotted Sandpiper, 2 Greater Yellowlegs and 8 Least Sandpipers.

Green Heron, Melanie Lane Wetlands, NJ, Aug. 10, 2014 (ID photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Green Heron, Melanie Lane Wetlands, NJ, Aug. 10, 2014 (ID photo by Jonathan Klizas)

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Birding week in review, Aug. 2, 2014

mocosocoBirds will return on a regular and timely schedule after the next weekend.

Morris County:

From Tim Vogel, July 27
Jefferson Rd. , Pond Parsippany
Great Blue Heron 1
Great Egret 1 on lawn
Green Heron 1
Black crowned Night-Heron 1- spillway
Yellow crowned Night-Heron 1 – juvenile – southeast corner in dead tree
DC Cormorant 1

Melanie Lane, Whippany
Great Blue Heron – 3
Great Egret – 4
Little Blue Heron 4 – all juveniles
Green Heron – 4
Greater Yellowlegs – 6
Also Killdeer, Willow Flycatcher, Tree Swallows, and a Monarch butterfly

Tim Vogel, Denville


Somerset County:

On July 29, 2 Little Blue Herons and 1 Cattle Egret were at Negri-Nepote Grasslands (photographed and eBirded by Kirsten Abildskov – also eBirded by Kathleen and Jackie La Corte). There are no reports since.

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Little Blue Heron in Morris County, July 24, 2014

Little Blue Heron, Lincoln Park, NJ, July 24, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Little Blue Heron, Lincoln Park, NJ, July 24, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

A juvenile Little Blue Heron joined the 21 Great Blue Herons, 5 Green Herons and 17 Great Egrets at the Lincoln Park Gravel Pits this morning. The throng was at the southern end of the main lake. The photo above is from a distance and heavily cropped.

It was mentioned in an earlier post on July 13 how the invasive Water Chestnut (allegedly Trapa natans) is blanketing most of the lake and will cover it entirely in the next year or two. Interestingly, numerous Wood Ducks, especially ducklings, are using the vegetation mat for cover and Cedar Waxwings and Red-winged Blackbirds are standing on the mat hawking insects.

This space has previously stated the following and will say it again: there is no easy way to visit the Lincoln Park Gravel Pits. Street parking is all that is available. The legal entry is from the northwest end where there is a very small, easy to miss trail on Lincoln Park Rd. near Kamm St. slightly west of the Knights of Columbus facility. You can find a vague trail that eventually traverses a berm separating the swim club from the rest of the pits. People use this area for fishing. A hunting club is leasing the rest of the property, so this author is told. In other words, you are on your own if you wish to explore the property further .


An adult male Blue Grosbeak made an appearance in Hillsborough today at Hillsborough Road near the Rt. 206 bypass (Frank Sencher, Jr.).

 

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Wednesday Bird Notes, July 23, 2014

Parsippany’s Yellow-crowned Night-Heron is seen sporadically lately. It is probably in the dense foliage of the island at Jefferson Road Pond if it is not in the two bridges area of the south end of the pond. Chuck Hantis caught it taking a dip on July 20 in the following photos.

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, Parsippany, NJ, July 20, 2014 (photo by Chuck Hantis)

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, Parsippany, NJ, July 20, 2014 (photo by Chuck Hantis)

(Click on the photo for a larger image.)

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, Parsippany, NJ, July 20, 2014 (photo by Chuck Hantis)

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron, Parsippany, NJ, July 20, 2014 (photo by Chuck Hantis)


Bird reports are slowing down as we get deeper into summer. mocosocoBirds posts will be sporadic for the next few weeks.

Two White-eyed Vireos are summering in the Washington Valley section of Morris Township. This is a trend for the past few years. One is at the Moody Farm along the asphalt trail. The second is along the Patriots Path section of Whitehead Road.

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Sunday Bird Notes, July 20, 2014

Congratulations to neighboring Hunterdon County for hosting a European Golden-Plover the past two days.


The number of birds in the non-public areas of Duke Farms in Hillsborough Township shows what happens when habitat is administered in a proper fashion. Field surveys this weekend tallied 40+ Grasshopper Sparrows, 250+ Bobolinks and ~30 Eastern Meadowlarks. For some diversity, throw in Blue Grosbeaks and American Kestrels.


The Dickcissels of Negri-Nepote Native Grassland Preserve are reported throughout the weekend (m.obs.).


Summer is slowly transitioning into the next season. 200 Double-crested Cormorants and 123 Ring-billed Gulls along with 145 Canada Geese, 16 Great Blue Herons and 5 Great Egrets were at Boonton Reservoir this afternoon. The majority of the Cormorants are on the south side of the island. 435 were counted on July 17, 2013 at the reservoir, the highest count for Morris County. That task was made easy because most of the Cormorants were floating in two distinct rafts with the remainder loafing on the island.


The Yellow-crowned Night-Heron was seen at Jefferson Road Pond, Parsippany on July 19 (Tom Gorman). This is the first report of the YCNH in Parsippany since July 6.

2 Black-crowned Night-Herons continue at Green Brook Park on the North Plainfield side as they have in varying numbers through the spring and summer (Walter Blenderman).


Perhaps it is the low point of a cycle but butterflies are low in numbers in the mocosocoBirds area according to many observers. The following Pipevine Swallowtail was found at Willowwood Arboretum in Chester Township this week.

Pipevine Swallowtail (Battus philenor), Willowwood Arboretum, NJ, July 17, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

Pipevine Swallowtail (Battus philenor), Willowwood Arboretum, NJ, July 17, 2014 (photo by Jonathan Klizas)

(Click on the photo for a larger image.)

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Franklin Twp. Cliff Swallows update, July 15, 2014

The June 17 mocosocoBirds post describes the lack of Cliff Swallows at the formerly productive site on the I-287 bridge on the D&R Towpath along Easton Avenue in Franklin Township. The post mentions that a second nesting location on another I-287 bridge along Weston Canal Road had yet to be surveyed. That changed yesterday.

Jeff Ellerbusch visited the Weston Canal site on July 14 and found a total of 24 nests, 23 on the east side of the bridge and 1 on the west. Of these, 21 on the east side are active; the rest are not. The tally of Cliff Swallows is 35. Apparently, the Cliff Swallows abandoned the Easton Avenue site.


The Dickcissels of Negri-Nepote Native Grassland Preserve are reported daily. 2 individuals were seen and listed on eBird today (Jeff Dale).


3 adult Black-crowned Night-Herons were at Jefferson Road Pond
in Parsippany, July 14 (Julie Buechner). The Yellow-crowned Night-Heron is not reported since July 6.

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