Tuesday, September 15, 2015

IBSP 9/15--Dickcissel

Dumb luck. That's all it was.
I went to Island Beach SP this morning, hoping for a warbler fall out along Reed's Road. There was some decent activity, but nothing like I was hoping for. Of course, I got there late--7:30. A couple of of more determined Ocean County birders were there at dawn and they had a Connecticut Warbler and a Cape May Warbler, both of which would be great county birds for me. 

So after finding my few warbler species and a couple of other goodies in the maritime forest, I headed south, intending to walk the Spizzle Creek trail. When I pulled into nearby lot A20 a bird flew in front of the car and landed in a tree to the left. My snap reaction was mockingbird, because I see mockingbirds in that lot frequently, but when it landed it obviously wasn't that. I didn't know what it was and since it was cooperatively posing, I took some photographs. It then flew off and I couldn't find it again. I pondered. It looked like a Dickcissel to me in shape, size, and bill, but the coloring wasn't right. Of course, I don't know Dickcissels' various plumages well enough to say it wasn't a Dickcissel either. I thought maybe Vesper Sparrow because of the eye ring, but I knew that was all wrong. Weird Field Sparrow? I pondered all along Spizzle Creek and at the Winter Anchorage (where I saw 3 Marbled Godwits, still hanging out on the sand bar), and all along the 1 1/2 mile walk to the jetty along the beach (where I saw a couple of hundred Sanderlings with a few turnstones and plovers mixed in.) 

By the time I got back to the car, I'd pretty much landed on Dickcissel as the only possible bird--eye ring, tinge of yellow, brownish face, big finch-like bill. When I got home, I sent out the photos to a few friends and they confirmed my i.d. So: Year bird PCounty bird lifer P.

Dickcissel profile
Other interesting birds along the way:
Scarlet Tanager (non-breeding plumage) grove north of Reed's Road
Great Crested Flycatcher, Spizzle Creek
Ruddy Turnstone on the jetty while I was eating lunch
Osprey leftovers, Spizzle Creek
I think I had 56 species for my four stops: Reed's Road, Spizzle Creek, the Winter Anchorage, and the long walk south to the jetty.
Double-crested Cormorant    38
Brown Pelican    14
Great Blue Heron    3
Great Egret    27
Snowy Egret    2
Little Blue Heron    2
Osprey    19
American Oystercatcher    2
Black-bellied Plover    50
Semipalmated Plover    6
Willet    3
Marbled Godwit    3
Ruddy Turnstone    4
Sanderling    225
Laughing Gull    75
Ring-billed Gull    2
Herring Gull    115
Great Black-backed Gull    50
Caspian Tern    14
Forster's Tern    102
Royal Tern    19
Mourning Dove    2
Belted Kingfisher    2
Red-bellied Woodpecker    1
Downy Woodpecker    2
Northern Flicker    4
Peregrine Falcon    1
Great Crested Flycatcher    1
White-eyed Vireo    4
Red-eyed Vireo    1
Blue Jay    5
American Crow    2
Tree Swallow    28
Barn Swallow    1
Carolina Chickadee    12
Tufted Titmouse    1
House Wren    1
American Robin    1
Gray Catbird    15
Brown Thrasher    3
Cedar Waxwing    1
Ovenbird    1
Northern Waterthrush    1
Black-and-white Warbler    1
Common Yellowthroat    6
American Redstart    5
Yellow Warbler    1
Palm Warbler    1
Black-throated Green Warbler    1
Song Sparrow    1
Eastern Towhee    1
Scarlet Tanager    1
Dickcissel    1
Common Grackle    1
House Finch    5
American Goldfinch    1

No comments:

Post a Comment