Sunday, May 28, 2017

Waretown 5/28--Mississippi Kite

Mississippi Kite, high over Waretown
For the 3rd year running, the Mississippi Kites have returned to an obscure corner of Waretown. I stopped there this morning, intending to give myself only 15 minutes to find the bird because I figured I'd eventually find it sometime this year and I don't really like stalking a bird in a private neighborhood. I arrived to find a cohort of photographers, mostly it turned out from north Jersey, sitting on on a low stone fence, staring glumly at this perch:
Where we all wished it would be.

While the kite had been seen earlier in the day, it hadn't perched on the dead tree at the corner of Elizabeth and Walker. They'd only managed flight shots. I was the only "birder" there. I was playing a different game--I just want to see the bird.

At the 14 minute mark I was just about to go (listening to the photographers gripe about how birders don't understand photography was a bit grating; by the way, we understand, we just don't care), when Pete pulled up and I chatted with him for a while. He was going to drive down the block where he'd had luck yesterday spotting the bird overhead. Again, I was just about to leave when the bird flew overhead. Much commotion and clicking and whirring. I saw the bird well (much, much better than the photo above shows) seeing the gray coloration of the bird and it's narrow wings with white patches. I was saying goodbye to the group as they were dithering about whether they should stay and wait for better pictures or just use what they'd managed over the last few hours of intermittent waiting. One seemed surprised that I, having seen the bird enough to identify it, was going. "You know," I said, "it isn't a job."

I'm happy to have the bird on the list. I'm almost as happy that I don't have to go there anymore and feel like a voyeur.

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