Many observers from near and far are enjoying Morris Township’s Black-headed Grosbeak today. Once again, our deepest thanks to Andy Boulcott and his family for their generosity and graciousness in accommodating all those wishing to view their star yardbird.
Remember, if you go, please follow these directions. Park on the road. Do not block the driveway. Walk up the cobblestone-like driveway. The small tree with the feeder that the BHGR frequents is at the end of the driveway. The Black-headed Grosbeak (BHGR) is easily viewable from there. Be kind; be respectful. There is no need to wander on their property.
How rare is this fellow? It is only the third New Jersey record in the 21st century and those may have been one-day wonders.
Most New Jersey records are from wintertime. Only two records are of long staying individuals that stretched into April.
Maplewood, Essex Co. 4 Feb – 9 Apr, 1960
Gloucester County 10 Feb – 14 Apr, 1965
The Morris Twp. BHGR is the latest spring record for New Jersey known of so far and the first April record in 54 years.
Even more revealing of the magnitude of this rarity is the following eBird range map showing the current status of Black-headed Grosbeaks in much of North America. Yes, that one pinpoint on the right coast is the only current record east of the Mississippi River. Why this bird is here is anyone’s guess.
Following is the distribution map of Black-headed Grosbeak courtesy of Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology’s