Thursday, September 18, 2014

Eno's Pond 9/18--Blackburnian Warbler

A detour led me to a year bird today. I started out for Great Bay Blvd on Rt 539, probably the most ill-fated road around here. The road seems to be closed at least once a week due to a traffic accident--bad drivers and dump trucks don't mix.

Today's "detour" route took me east, then north, then west and back to where I started. In order to go south toward Tuckerton, I had to take Lacey Road which, if I drive it almost to its end, dumps me off at Eno's Pond, so I decided to go there first, figuring the woods might have some migrants.

The pond and inlet weren't as busy as I'd hoped, though the continuing hen Hooded Merganser was a nice find. There were warblers and woodpeckers scattered through the woods along with a Red-breasted Nuthatch, but the warblers weren't anything "exciting" until I returned to the first viewing platform. There was one oak tree in the sun that was particularly busy with birds flying in and out; again, mostly common species, but there was one warbler that was different--a deep orange-yellow throat and yellow surrounding a dark cheek patch--Blackburnian Warbler, probably a female, or else a male molting. Not only is Blackburnian a year bird, it is also an Ocean County lifer.
25 species
Canada Goose  18
Mallard  12
Hooded Merganser  1    
Great Blue Heron  1
Snowy Egret  1
Belted Kingfisher  1
Red-bellied Woodpecker  2
Downy Woodpecker  1     Heard
Northern Flicker  1
Blue Jay  5
American Crow  1     Heard
Tree Swallow  1
Carolina Chickadee  1
Tufted Titmouse  2
Red-breasted Nuthatch  1
White-breasted Nuthatch  1
Carolina Wren  3     Heard
Gray Catbird  5
Northern Waterthrush  1
Black-and-white Warbler  4
Common Yellowthroat  1
American Redstart  2
Blackburnian Warbler  1
Pine Warbler  5
Northern Cardinal  2     First platform

As long as I was "in the neighborhood," I decided to give the impoundments down in Barnegat a try. On Sunday, two American Avocets were in among the yellowlegs, but we were going to a hawk watch up in Somerset County, so I hoped that they would stick around. But on Monday morning, they were absent. Then on Monday afternoon I saw that they'd been observed again. I rushed down there only to come up empty again. And again today. I would really like to have avocets on my county list. 

I did hear a Fish Crow while I was there--the first one this month which seems odd. And I did see a drake Northern Shoveler, which tells me "winter icumen in."
13 species
Canada Goose  8
Mute Swan  4     Seen from cut on Bayshore
American Black Duck  4
Mallard  1
Northern Shoveler  1     Seen from cut on Bayshore
Double-crested Cormorant  5
Great Egret  2
Snowy Egret  28
Tricolored Heron  1
Greater Yellowlegs  10
Lesser Yellowlegs
Laughing Gull  2
Fish Crow  1     Heard, Bayshore 

Finally, I made it down Route 9 to Great Bay Blvd, about 2 1/2 hours later than I'd planned. Tide was low, yet aside from 16 Black-bellied Plovers, I saw no shorebirds. Good numbers for waders (wish I knew which night-herons I was inadvertently flushing) and 5 Yellow Warblers were a tiny bit surprising--they must be moving. 
29 species
Double-crested Cormorant  115
Great Blue Heron  1
Great Egret  50
Snowy Egret  40
Tricolored Heron  2
Turkey Vulture  5
Osprey  10
Black-bellied Plover  16
Laughing Gull  75
Herring Gull  50
Great Black-backed Gull  40
Caspian Tern  3
Forster's Tern  10
Royal Tern  1
Mourning Dove  2
Belted Kingfisher  3
Northern Flicker  1
Gray Catbird  2
European Starling  150
Common Yellowthroat  1
Yellow Warbler
Savannah Sparrow  1
Saltmarsh Sparrow  1
Seaside Sparrow  1
Song Sparrow  6
Northern Cardinal  1     before 5th bridge
Red-winged Blackbird  1     Before 4th bridge
Common Grackle  2
Boat-tailed Grackle  10

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