Latest 2007-2008

= Good quality photos, bold = New Species
November 2008
11/17 Ash Meadows NWR, Nevada: A one day visit to Ash Meadows produced a total 8 new species.
11/2 Brigantine NWR, NJ: Took another unsuccesful shot at taking duck photos but on the way out I found a cooperative Bonaparte’s Gull.
October 2008
10/15 – 10/28 Vicksburg, Mississippi: A 3 week business trip in Mississippi allowed me to make a quick visit to Yazoo NWR and the Tensas River NWR in Louisiana.
10/12 Brigantine NWR, NJ: Peregrine Falcon in flight.
10/5 Brigantine NWR, NJ: Great Egrets in flight.
September 2008
9/14 Cape May, NJ: First visit of Higbee Beach for this year’s fall migration was disappointing until a Dickcissel flew in at around 9:00am. This has been a bird that has eluded me to this day so I was very happy. Later on I took a few shots of an Osprey with a BIG catch.
August 2008
8/31 Cape May, NJ: Reports of a Red-necked Stint (3rd record in NJ) seen most of the day on 8/30 made me choose Cape May over Brigantine NWR. I spent about 5 hours waiting for the Stint to show up at the same area he was seen the day before but the great anticipation of close to 40 birders turned into a big disappointment as the little guy must have headed back to Asia?
July 2008
07/21-31 Vicksburg, MS: Did not plan on doing any birding during this business trip but I was able to capture a new species using my phone camera – one of many Mississippi Kites flying aroung (still counts in my book :) ).
07/17-18 Las Vegas, NV: A quick visit to Henderson Bird Viewing Reserve and Mt. Charleston resulted in 12 new species.
07/3 Allentown, PA:
Despite my great fear of heights, I joined our WSB team head scout Bob at his place of employment (a 23 story building) to check up on a pair of Peregrine Falcons that have succesfuly raised 4 chicks.
June 2008
06/1 Brigantine NWR, NJ: Went to the refuge looking for and finding the 2nd year Glaucous Gull that has been around for a couple of weeks now.
May 2008
05/10 World Series of Birding, NJ: Our team was able to tally 176 birds and raise close to $2000 for the NJAS Conservation Fund. Click here for a detailed report.
April 2008
World Series of Birding, NJ: Once again I will be participating in the World Series of Birding with the team. I tend to sacrifice photo opportunities for a month leading to this event (held on May 10th) since I have to do a considerable amount of scouting, but I enjoy this event a great deal. In addition to some great birding our team gets to raise money for conservation. Here is a link to a page with news for this year’s team.
March 2008
3/16 Backyard Birding – Egg Harbor Township, NJ: I had a nice variety of migrants, wintering birds and year round residents visiting my bird feeders in the past couple of weeks: Pine Warbler male (heard his singing for the first time on March 6th), Chipping Sparrows (first seen on March 15th), Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (brief appearance on 3/16), Brown Creeper (brief appearance on 3/16), nesting pair of Bluebirds (part of wintering flock), lingering Dark-eyed Juncos, ever present Mourning Doves, Downy Woodpeckers , Hairy Woodpeckers , White-breasted Nuthatch, Red-breasted Nuthatch , Red-bellied Woodpecker , American Crows, Carolina Chickadees, Tufted Titmouse , House Finch and American Goldfinch. 60-80 Turkey and Black Vultures (they roost a few hundred feet away) put on a show every morning and evening as they fly from and to their roosting place.
February 2008
2/3 – 2/8 Costa Rica Revisited: I was lucky enough to go backto Costa Rica for 6 days with my family. I had a lot of fun and took many pics. A full report to follow soon but in the mean time I will post some of my favorite shots here: 

Reddish Egret , Tricolored Heron , Yellow-eared Toucanet.

December 2007
12/23 Cape May, NJ: I started the year with a new Goose species in Cape May (Great White-fronted) and it looks like I’m going to end it with a Barnacle Goose.
12/1 Egg Harbor Twp: A little backyard birding yielded photos of a Sharp-shinned Hawk and a White-breasted Nuthatch .
November 2007
11/12 Las Vegas, Nevada: I was able to spend a day looking for photo ops in Las Vegas in a recent business trip. A visit at Sunset Park, Henderson Bird Viewing Preserve, Corn Creek and the loop at Mt. Charlston yiended a number of new species (Abert’s Towhee, Burrowing Owl,Cinnamon Teal, Crissal Thrasher,
Gambel’s Quail, Greater Roadrunner,Red Crossbill, Ross’s Goose, Say’s Phoebe, Verdin,Western Scrub-Jay) as well as photos of some old friends (American Pipit, Common Moorhen,Eared Grebe, Western Bluebird, White-crowned Sparrow).
October 2007
10/14 Brigantine NWR: Big migration this weekend but I only recorded good photos of the more common Lesser Yellowlegs and Double-crested Cormorant .
10/7 Brigantine NWR: Managed a few good flight photos of Northern Harrier and Caspian Tern.
September 2007
9/16 Cape May, NJ: Had a WSB reunion of sorts as I got to bird with Jonathan and his friend Mick. Reports of a cold front and NW winds resulted in high expectations for Sunday morning. However, winds shifted to NE during the night
and most birds migrated through the mainland. Started off in Cape May where we had some close looks at a Cape May Warbler.
9/16 Brigantine NWR, NJ: We spent the afternoon birding Brigantine where we had Hudsonian Godwit and Yellow-headed Blackbird which are two new species for me.
9/9 Cape May, NJ: Hopes of finding the reported Say’s Phoebe, Lesser black-backed Gull and Western Sandipers (all new species for me) gave me enough of an insentive to head down to the Meadoes in Caope May instead of Brigantine NWR.
Not much luck with any of the target birds although I got some looks and photos of up to 8 Buff-breasted Sandpipers.
9/1 Cape May, NJ: Although there were not many birds around, I was lucky enough to see and photograph a Golden-winged Warbler (poor photo) as well as a Blue-winged Warbler, Least Flycatcher, Yellow-breasted Chat and a Red-breasted Nuthatch.
August 2007
8/19 Palmyra, NJ: Hoping for some close encounters with the resident Warbling Vireos but I could only manage this distant photo.
July 2007
7/29 Brigantine NWR : Another great find at Brigantine NWR; The second state record of a Roseate Spoonbill. The bird stayed in the area long enough for me to be able to get a few shots.
7/22 Brooklyn NYC : After hearing reports of Western-Reef Heron sitings in NYC, I decided to make the 2 1/2 hour trip in hopes of landing this rare bird (1st in NY state, 2nd or 3rd in the Eastern US). I arrived at the reported site at around 2:00pm (not easy to find) and was able to spot the bird in the distance thanks to some help from a few fellow birders that were already there (folks from PA, upstate NY and NJ). The bird was hiding behind some rusted metal structure from 2:00pm through 6:00pm and it only made itself visible for a couple of minutes. As I was getting ready to head back home it flew right to where I was at, allowing me to take a couple of fairly close flight shots. It kept on going but I was happy as had added a nice bird to my photo list.
May 2007
May 12 WSB : Here is a report on the World Series of Birding. The team recorded 156 birds and raise over $2,000 for the New Jersey Audubon Society Conservation Fund and over $500 for the Lehigh Gap Nature Center.
April 2007
4/29 Millville WMA : Stumbled upon my first Black-billed Cuckoo as I was scouting for the WSB.
4/22 Moores Beach : Osprey flying away with a BIG catch and enjoying some Sashimi…
4/14 Brigantine NWR : Three dozen Double-crested Cormorants going fishing at close quarters.
March 2007
3/31 Brigantine NWR : Changing of the guard at the refuge as wintering birds are moving out and breeding birds are moving in…
February 2007
2/25 Dividing Creek : I picked the wrong day to hunt down Wild Turkeys in Southern New Jersey. Although I was able to find a group of 30 or so, the cloudy and windy day did not help with the quality of the pictures I took..
2/18 Cape May : Reports of a Barnacle Goose brought me down to Cape May once again. No luck with the goose but I was able to take some good pics of Redheads (mating and portraits). I left at around noon to go home to watch my favorite soccer team loose at home 4-1 and found out later that the goose showed up a little after noon!! 

Hope it is still there this coming weekend…

2/10 Cape May : This was one of a few outings this year that worked as planned. I went down to Cape May in search of American Woodcock knowing that there is a limited amount of real estate they can work with due to the frozen grounds. The first couple of hours were not successful but as it got warmer (30F), I was able to find 4 of them in a small area having good success finding worms. Here are some portrait photos and some photos of them feeding .
2/2-2/5 Brigantine NWR : I was able to get close to a pair of Common Mergansers (uncommon at the refuge). The female was looking for love, but the
male did not seem to be inerested (photo #43369). Also took photos of Hooded Mergansers (female shad two huge ticks on its neck) and Rick-necked Ducks .
January 2007
1/27 Brigantine NWR : Much milder weather today with temps getting up to the 50s. A quick trip to the refuge gave me a chance to get up close to a Ruddy Duck .
1/26 : A cold front that produced temps in the single digits last night killed off my chances of taking any pics of the Western Tanager (the bird was found dead by a fellow birder).
1/25 Cape May : Sometimes I wonder what am I thinking; Reports of a Western Tanager a few miles north prompted me to head south to Cape May instead!!
Took some photos of Killdeer (there were at least 16-24 of them feeding in a big field) and I hope the Tanager sticks around for a couple more days
so that I do not regret my trip selection yet again.
1/21 Sandy Hook : More bird chasing today; Reports of a Long-billed Murrelet sighting – a first for the state of NJ and a bird that is seen in Eastern US every few years or so, prompted me to make the 1.5 hour trip to Sandy Hook. I joined some 40 other birders searching for this little guy to no avail. I took photos of these
Scaup so that I would not feel that I came back empty handed!
1/18 Barnegat Light : Reports of a Band-tailed Pigeon in Cape May (someone’s backyard) were tempting but I decided to delay my trip to Cape May by a couple of days and head to Bargegat for Eiders. Needless to say, I found no Eiders and only managed a few good pics of a Dunlin. BTW the BT Pigeon was in Cape May in the morning of the the 18th but has not been seen since!!
1/14 Cape May : Started off the year with a new species, a Greater White-fronted Goose. Also took photos of a Red-breasted Merganser and a Bald Eagle who flew by looking for breakfast.
1/7-1/11 Cancun, Mexico : No pictures from this family vacation as I did not bring my heavy duty photo equipment with me (I wish I kept the 80-400 lens!!). The few minutes I spent looking at birds around the resort we stayed, I saw many Great-tailed Grackles, a Palm Warbler, Brown Pelicans, Magnificent Frigatbirds,
Laughing Gulls, Caspian or Royal Terns, a Rudy Turnstone, a couple of Ospreys and a dark Buteo (Zone-tailed Hawk?).

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