Most of the time Wood Storks are reported as flyovers down in Cape May (there was a report just last week; who knows, it might be this bird), so one just feeding in a relatively small body of water was just too hard to resist, especially when I got an early A.M. text from Bob Auster who'd detoured on his way to work to get the bird. So, after I got rid of the sprinkler repairman this morning, I packed some water and an energy bar and drove up to the Hook. The trudge through the sand was as unpleasant as it always is, but, I was propelled forward when I met a birder coming out who confirmed that the stork was still present.
|Not far from Raritan Bay|
After about a half hour of observation, I started walking back. The eclipse, which didn't interest me much, was starting. Someone offered me glasses to look at it on my way to the parking lot, but I have enough trouble with my eyes without taking glasses from strangers. At the parking lot a couple of guys had set up a telescope and were projecting the eclipse onto a piece of cardboard. It was about 30% when I got there. That was neat and now I can say I saw the eclipse of 2017. By the time the eclipse was at its maximum in NJ, 75%, I was stuck in traffic in Long Branch.
But seeing my first New Jersey Wood Stork (unpredictable) was much more interesting than seeing a very predictable celestial event.