Birds in Delaware
Rare Bird Alerts - February 28, 2014
To Report: Andy Ednie 302-792-9591 (VOICE)
Compiler/Transcriber: Andy Ednie (email@example.com)
Coverage: Delaware, Delmarva Peninsula, nearby Delaware Valley, Southern New Jersey, Maryland
On the last day of February, for Friday, the 28th, this is Birdline Delaware. The Birdline comes to you from the Delaware Museum of Natural History in Greenville. The unofficial Delaware annual list jumped to 185 species.
New this week was a BARNACLE GOOSE, among the flock of CANADA GEESE at Walker's School Road near the intersection with Route 9. This is located on the south side of Blackbird Creek, between Taylor's Bridge and Flemings Landing in southern New Castle County. The bird was seen on Saturday but has not been located. Flocks of SNOW GEESE in the area produced a single ROSS'S GOOSE. Watch for flocks of Canada Geese to look for the Barnacle. The previous reported SANDHILL CRANES at Port Penn were also not relocated.
The previous reported YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRDS continue be seen at the cornfield at the intersection of School Bell Road and Route 40 in Bear. The YELLOW-HEADS are in a large flock of other blackbirds flying between the woods and the field, best viewed from the parking lot of Union United Methodist Church on School Bell Road (Map). Hawks were seen hunting over the field including COOPER'S, SHARP-SHINNED, RED-SHOULDERED, NORTHERN HARRIER, and PEREGRINE FALCON. Another YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD was seen coming to a feeder near Newark while a third bird was reported along Rt. 299 near Rt. 1 between Middletown and Odessa.
A CLAY-COLORED SPARROW was reported at Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge. That bird was a private property along Cods Road. Also seen there was an EASTERN PHOEBE. A CACKLING GOOSE was reported at Oyster Rock Road. Also seen there were KILLDEER, 5 CLAPPER RAILS, and EASTERN MEADOWLARK. SHORT-EARED OWL was seen flying at dusk at Oyster's Rock. 15 GREATER YELLOWLEGS were reported at the headquarters area at Prime Hook along with 2 BONAPARTE'S GULLS. Waterfowl seen included LESSER SCAUP, BUFFLEHEAD and the MERGANSER trifecta, HOODED, COMMON, and RED-BREASTED along with PIED-BILLED GREBE. Fowler's Beach still has BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER along with SURF SCOTER, RED-BREASTED MERGANSER and RED-THROATED LOON.
Signs of spring are beginning to arrive in Delaware. New this this week was a drake BLUE-WINGED TEAL among 200 GREEN-WINGED TEAL at Cods Road in Prime Hook. An AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHER was seen at The Point in Cape Henlopen State Park. TREE SWALLOWS were reported at Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge, Prime Hook, and Stave's Landing near Odessa. RUSTY BLACKBIRDS were reported at Prime Hook, Indian River Inlet, and Brandywine Creek State Park. Those birds arrived one week before the blitz. AMERICAN WOODCOCK were reported doing courtship display at Bear Swamp in Bombay Hook, along the road to Smyrna, and Dover Air Force Base. Large numbers of TUNDRA SWAN and SNOW GEESE were seen flying over New Castle County last weekend.
Leftovers from last winter include a SNOWY OWL at Cape Henlopen State Park. That bird was seen by the Walking Dunes. Two RED-NECKED GREBES with HORNED and PIED BILLED GREBE continue to be seen at Burton's Island Causeway, at the North Marina near Indian River Inlet. COMMON GOLDENEYE, BRANT, and 2 BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT HERONS were also reported at the Causeway. A raft of CANVASBACKS off Woodland Beach included 12 REDHEADS.
A large number of sea ducks continue be seen at Indian River Inlet. This includes 200 LONG-TAILED DUCK, plus over 1000 SURF, BLACK, and a single WHITE-WINGED SCOTER. NORTHERN GANNET and both RED-THROATED and COMMON LOONS were reported offshore. BONAPARTE'S and a LESSER BLACK BACKED GULL were also found. PURPLE SANDPIPER and RUDDY TURNSTONE were seen walking on the jetty. Eight SNOW BUNTINGS were found at the South Campground area and 3 "SHARP-TAILED TYPE" SPARROWS were found in the marsh.
BLACK-HEADED GULL continues to be seen at Wolfe Point Sewage Treatment Plant near Midway. A large number of over 200 CANVASBACK continues to be seen at Silver Lake in Rehoboth Beach. Other birds reported on Silver Lake included LESSER SCAUP, NORTHERN SHOVELER, and RUDDY DUCK.
The fishing pier at Cape Henlopen State Park had 10 HORNED GREBES. Also seen were GREATER SCAUP, SURF SCOTER, BUFFLEHEAD, RUDDY DUCK, and COMMON LOON. BROWN-HEADED NUTHATCHES were seen in the woods behind the bathhouse. Lots of scoters can also be seen from the Cape May-Lewes Ferry; also GREATER SCAUP, RED-BREASTED MERGANSER, BUFFLEHEAD, and BONAPARTE'S GULL.
Three PURPLE SANDPIPERS were reported at the jetty at Mispillion Inlet. Depending on which side of the rocks they were seen this could be a good county record. Also reported were 4 BRANT, GREATER SCAUP, BUFFLEHEAD and BOAT-TAILED GRACKLE. A MERLIN was also seen flying through. A EURASIAN WIGEON along with another BLACK-HEADED GULL was reported at Big Stone Beach. Milford Neck Wildlife Area has a good numbers of waterfowl returning including SHOVELER, GREEN-WINGED TEAL, and PINTAIL.
A flock of 40 AMERICAN AVOCETS was found at the Ted Harvey Wildlife Conservation Area, Logan Lane Tract near Kitts Hummock. Also reported was 4 REDHEAD with GADWALL, AMERICAN WIGEON, NORTHERN PINTAIL, and GREEN WINGED TEAL. AMERICAN BITTERN and 2 CLAPPER RAILS were reported in the marsh along with 4 SHORT-EARED OWLS. A VIRGINIA RAIL was seen walking along the road at Port Mahon. A WILD TURKEY was seen walking along the roadside in downtown Dover near Delaware State University.
More SHORT-EARED OWLS were seen out at Bombay Hook, at the southeast corner of Raymond Pool. BARN OWL was also reported flying around the maintenance sheds. 14 WOOD DUCKS were found at the refuge this week along with thousands of NORTHERN PINTAIL, plus GADWALL, TUNDRA SWAN, RING-NECKED DUCK, BUFFLEHEAD, and HOODED and COMMON MERGANSER. PIED-BILLED GREBE, AMERICAN COOT, and AMERICAN BITTERN were all seen at Shearness Pool. LESSER YELLOWLEGS were reported along with SNIPE and KILLDEER. NORTHERN BOBWHITE was reported by Bear Swamp. SPARROWS seen included AMERICAN TREE, FOX, WHITE-CROWNED, and FIELD.
Rare gulls are still continuing to turn-up at the Peninsula Recycling Center near the Port of Wilmington off of I-495 over the Christiana River (Map). Reported there this week included 3 immature ICELAND GULLS plus LESSER BLACK-BACKED and GLAUCOUS GULL. KILLDEER was reported at the Peterson Urban Wildlife Refuge in Wilmington along with NORTHERN PINTAIL and COMMON MERGANSERS on the Christiana River. BALD EAGLE was also seen along the Christiana River.
A RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH was reported at Woodland Park near Prices Corner along with EASTERN TOWHEE. Nine AMERICAN TREE SPARROWS were found at Brandywine Creek State Park on Saturday. Also seen there was WINTER WREN and COMMON MERGANSER. A BALD EAGLE was seen flying over the nature center. HOODED and COMMON MERGANSERS were seen on the Red Clay Creek near Ashland Nature Center. YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER was also seen there as a first signs of spring.
MUTE and TUNDRA SWAN were seen together on the Canal Pond at Delaware City. Also reported there was a flock of over 250 AMERICAN COOT. AMERICAN WIGEON, GADWALL and GREEN-WINGED TEAL were also reported there along with RING-NECKED DUCK. The only wading bird found on the census at Delaware City was GREAT BLUE HERON on Wednesday, however nesting activity is getting started. Several BALD EAGLES were seen along the river, including one bird on nest at Pea Patch Island.
Thanks to everybody that contributed to this week's bird line including, Rich Clifton, Richard Julian, Damon Orsetti, Brian Henderson, Anne Bekker, Amy O'Neil, Derek Stoner, Joe Sebastiani, Anthony Gonzon, Chris Bennett, Chuck Brandt, Mark Garland, David Beattie, Mike Hallworth, Neil Rothschild, Ed Huestis, Rachael Shapiro, Don Freiday, Samuel Perloff, Marc Ribando, Andrew Leidig, Brian Quindlen, Art Draglis, Sue Gruver, Sharon Lynn, Alan Kneidel, Tim Schreckengost, Frank Rohrbacher, Joe Russell and Maurice Barnhill. If you want to report a sighting, call 302-792-9591 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Until next week, good birding!
Birdline Delaware is posted on the Delaware Audubon web site as a public service. It is neither created nor sponsored by the Delaware Audubon Society.