World Series Warm-ups

higbeepath

May is my favorite month for birdwatching, though late April can be almost as good. The weather is warming, nature is in bloom, and songbirds are migrating north to their breeding grounds, many of them through our area. Plus, we have the World Series of Birding coming up on May 15th, when Ellen and I will be out all day counting species and raising money for conservation, so every walk at this time of year is a sort of warm-up for that.

Friday morning the weather was perfect for a walk at Higbee Beach WMA in Cape May, and that’s where I went for about two hours before going to the Cape May Bird Observatory for my weekly volunteer time behind the desk there. The paths at Higbee, and some of the fields, have just been mown, making for easy walking, and less worries about ticks. Plenty of mosquitos, though!

springleaves

The trees are blossoming, and the leaves have that bright yellow-green color you only see this time of year, when they aren’t other spring colors like cream, salmon or peach. There were plenty of birds to see, including some hard to find ones at Higbee like Red-Headed Woodpecker, Hooded Warbler, Blue-Winged Warbler and Northern Waterthrush.

orchardoriole

Didn’t get any pictures of those, but this one of a male Orchard Oriole isn’t too bad. His mate, dressed in yellows and greens. was in the same tree, but more elusive. There were bright orange and black Baltimore Orioles in the same area, too. Lots of good birds, one of the best Higbee walks I’ve had in a few years.

hawkfeather

Didn’t see any hawks, but one of them dropped this large feather, so they’re around, too.

Saturday morning was also fine weather, and Ellen and I went over to Belleplain State Forest for about two hours. It was full of birders in groups of all sizes, enjoying things like Summer Tanagers, Worm-Eating Warblers and Hooded Warblers, plus many more. May Day lived up to its promise this year.

black_throated_green_warbler

We had good birds in our yard when we got home too, like Black-Throated Green Warblers (as above) and Ovenbirds. Later in the day our local Great Crested Flycatcher pair arrived and started calling their excited calls, and the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are back at our feeders, having arrived during the past week. So, things are humming, and May is as exciting a time for birdwatching as ever!

3 thoughts on “World Series Warm-ups

  1. Wren

    Must remember to look for “my” orchard oriole….

    Thanks for taking us on your walk, Todd!

    Good luck and have fun with the WSB.

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