Monday, April 7, 2014

Whitesbog 4/7--Northern Rough-winged Swallow, Barn Swallow

I was just starting out at Whitesbog this morning when I had the great good fortune of seeing my friend Greg pull into the parking lot--a happy coincidence. Greg has sharp eyes and sharper ears, so more than a few of our birds today I owe to him.

We walked a long circuit out on the bogs. It started out well--a Bald Eagle flew overhead, then a Red-tailed Hawk (juvenile) flew across the bogs and landed in a tree where it was immediately harassed by crows and blackbirds. The first bog had many Tree Swallows swooping over it--gnats were plentiful this morning despite the chill and overcast. Among the blue-backed swallows we picked out a couple of brown ones--Northern Rough-winged Swallows.

All the Tundra Swans seemed to be gone (the ones in Crestwood Village flew off this weekend) until we crossed over the double-laned road into Ocean County where we encountered a single swan on the bog.  It's silly; on eBird I had to call up the rarities to list it--had I just entered a Whitesbog list it would still be an "expected" bird. But I was making the distinction because in a bare tree of roosting Tree Swallows Greg picked out a single Barn Swallow--my first for Ocean County this year. Greg also found my O.C. FOY Field Sparrow when we made our way all the way back to the Upper Reservoir.

As we were walking and birding out by the reservoir, Greg turned left onto a road I'd never been on. I had a fair idea of where it might lead but wasn't sure. I assumed Greg had been on the road before--he hadn't. However, it did lead more or less where I suspected, so we didn't inadvertently wander over onto Ft Dix, where the rifle fire was heavy today.

For our approximately 4 mile journey 'round the bogs we had 37 species--pretty good for a raw spring morning.
Canada Goose   10
Tundra Swan   1
Wood Duck   2
American Black Duck   5
Mallard   7
Ring-necked Duck   4
Great Blue Heron   1
Great Egret   2
Turkey Vulture   2
Bald Eagle   1
Red-tailed Hawk   1
Killdeer   1
Mourning Dove   1
Red-bellied Woodpecker   1
Northern Flicker   2
Eastern Phoebe   4
American Crow   1
Fish Crow   10
Northern Rough-winged Swallow   2
Tree Swallow   125
Barn Swallow   1
Carolina Chickadee   1
Tufted Titmouse   2
Golden-crowned Kinglet   1
American Robin   1
European Starling   5
Palm Warbler   1
Pine Warbler   15
Yellow-rumped Warbler   3
Chipping Sparrow   1
Field Sparrow   1
Savannah Sparrow   1
Song Sparrow   7
White-throated Sparrow   2
Northern Cardinal   1
Red-winged Blackbird   75
Common Grackle   10

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