Monday, May 2, 2016

Ocean City Welcome Center 4/30--Baltimore Oriole

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron
Black-crowned Night-Heron
After a couple of more stops on the Delaware Bay shore, the trip officially ended. But we had heard that the heron rookery that sits below the Ocean City Welcome Center was showing good numbers of Yellow-crowned Night-Herons, and since Bob had never been there before and since it was (more or less) on the way back home, we drove over the causeway to take a look. It did not disappoint. Because the Welcome Center (which is elaborate, but not yet open) sits on the causeway, you look down on the rookery and can easily see the night-herons (mostly yellow-crowns, but there were at least two black-crowns) sitting on their nests. Bob & I thought 15 YCNH was a conservative number. It was still flagged by eBird, which shows how unusual this rookery is in NJ.

There are steps down to a walkway that runs along the marsh and we went down there to get a different view. While we were walking there, Bob & I spotted a big yellow bird, too big to be a warbler. It took only a moment for us to both realize that it was a female Baltimore Oriole. I'm counting that as my FOY because the look was superior to kind of hearing the oriole at Belleplain.

We were looking for Clapper Rails but only heard them. Same with Willets. But for just that little stop we listed 15 species and it was an entertaining way to end the day's birding. Now, if only this spot's White Ibis from last year would show up again.
Brant  4
Great Egret  2
Black-crowned Night-Heron  2
Yellow-crowned Night-Heron  15     
Glossy Ibis  7
Osprey  2
Clapper Rail  2     Heard
Willet  2     Heard
Laughing Gull  5
Herring Gull  10
American Robin  1
Song Sparrow  1     Heard
Red-winged Blackbird  2
Boat-tailed Grackle  20
Baltimore Oriole  1     in low cedars

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