A day like today is why we do what we do.
Was it a short time ago, birders were bemoaning the scant migration of 2013 and wondering if winter would ever release its hold on us? Last night’s migration flight was non-existent but at this time of year, birds are moving no matter what the radar says. There are too many FOY (first-of-year) species today in the mocosocoBirds region to list them all. Some of the highlights are below.
A Glossy Ibis hid well in the southwest portion of the Melanie Lane Wetlands today giving two observers a view as it jumped to an even more hidden location. 2 Lesser Yelowlegs and 1 Greater Yellowlegs were on the east shore while ~20 Wilson’s Snipe favored the south end. The photo of the Greater Yellowlegs and one of the Lesser Yellowlegs has them at attention because a female Merlin was cruising over the marsh. Notice the blur of Green-winged Teal in the background as the falcon spooked them. 3 Great Egrets, a Green Heron, 2 Great Blue Herons, 2 Warbling Vireos and Orchard Oriole are some of the other highlights today at Melanie Lane.
At least 7 Cliff Swallows returned to the Rt. 202 bridge at Boonton Reservoir. Assuming they nest, this will be the 2nd known year they are at this location.
The Tourne in Boonton/Denville Townships had Morris County’s 1st Ovenbird of 2013.
The first Great Crested Flycatcher of 2013 in Morris County was at Troy Meadows .
From Ken Hart:
Leaving my house early yesterday and today, I heard my first Ovenbird of the year both days, getting a glimpse of it today. This was on my property at Black River Road in Long Valley.
Margo D. Beller reports an American Redstart from the Great Swamp.
11 species of warblers were at Lord Stirling Park today. 2013’s first Prothonotary Warbler in the region was found along the Passaic River between the beaver dam and the East Observation Tower (Jeff Ellerbusch, Zach Batren). Remarkably, 2012’s first regional Prothonotary Warbler was on the same date by Jeff. Some of the highlights:
Winter Wren – singing
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher – 27
Ruby-crowned Kinglet – 15
Ovenbird – 2
Northern Parula – 1
Black-and-white Warbler – 2
Common Yellowthroat – 3
Yellow Warbler – 22
Palm Warbler (Western) – 1
Palm Warbler (Yellow) – 30
Pine Warbler – 7
Yellow-rumped Warbler – 350
Black-throated Green Warbler – 1
Rose-breasted Grosbeak – 2