Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Shelter Cove Park 3/16--Wilson's Snipe

Wilson's Snipes
After lunch, having some time to kill before I had to pick up Shari at the bus station, I drove over to Shelter Cove Park in Toms River, a little park on the bay that I don't go to very often. I'd seen a few interesting listings recently and it has the bay, marshes, woods, and in the spring, the playing fields are flooded, so I figured there would be enough there to keep me interested.

The bay was fairly empty, the woods & marshes had nothing, but there were two Killdeer in the back of the parking lot. After walking around for a while, I decided to check out the flooded fields and immediately I saw two unusual shorebirds. My first reaction was that they weren't woodcocks. I ran back to the car, drove across the parking lot, set up the scope, and, as I had suspected, found my first Wilson's Snipes of the year. I didn't want to get too close to them and flush them away, but I was able to get within about 100 feet of the birds. I have a friend who lives nearby that I knew would love to see these birds. Unfortunately, his number wasn't in my cell phone. Sometimes, not having 21st century mobile technology really bites me.

I emailed him as soon as I got home and he was able to get over there, finding the birds in a different field. They were lifers for him, so I was really pleased.

I used the snipes as Bird of the Day, since I can go long periods of times without ever seeing one (I only saw them twice last year) and I figured that I can always make a trek out to Barnegat to use the Piping Plover when I need one.

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