Driving around the bogs we didn't see much in the water except for a fairly large flock of Ring-necked Ducks. Our car kept flushing chickadees, Song Sparrows and a few grackles as we drove along the dikes.
We explored farther west in the county, going to historic Mt. Holly, passing historic Smithville on the way. I think all the "historic" towns down here mean that it was never worth the effort to tear down the old buildings. Walking around the little village streets we saw and heard the expected birds, but what wasn't expected was the Black Vulture I saw flying over West Monroe Street.
As we were driving along I noticed Rancocas Road and the stream that runs through Mt. Holly is Rancocas Creek, so I was curious if we were anywhere near Rancocas State Park, a place we'd only birded once about 3 years ago. I have fond memories of a beaver and Wilson's Snipe we saw there that time. We were very close. 6 minutes away close.
We drove over there and immediately heard a Carolina Wren in the parking lot. Near the nature center I saw a large bird swooping agilely between the trees. A flash of red on the breast, white near the legs. Its call was "kik-kik-kik-kik" A Cooper's Hawk. I wish we could have found it once it landed high in the trees, but I had enough field marks, behavior and call to be confident of the I-D.
The most interesting thing about the park was not birds but frogs. As we got closer to the creek, we heard this amazing cacophony, like a thousand house builders banging nails on a roof. At first we thought it was a huge flock of ducks, but the water was empty and then Shari saw frogs popping their heads out of the mud. The noise was constant--I was surprised, because the only comparable sound I've heard was by Spring Peepers in the Berkshires--but at night, not during the day. I have no idea what sort of frog lives in Rancocas Creek and I'm glad that we don't live near a stream.
On the way home, just as we turned off Rt. 70 onto Pleasant Valley Road, we saw 2 Wild Turkeys walking into the woods.
Combined list for the day tallies 29 species: