Birding Cape May Point – August 7, 2021

Leaders: Kathy Horn, Roger Horn

Temp: 75° F

Winds: SE 7 mph

Weather Conditions:  cloudy

The calls of Forster, Common and Least Terns are frequent and familiar sounds throughout the summer at the State Park. But today, as we approached the lookout on Al’s Pond, we heard a different tern. Wheeling and calling over the pond were two Gull-billed Terns. With their gull-like bills and smooth gray backs, they are an uncommon sight in the park. Monotypic in their genus, Gelochelidon, Gull-billed are less dependent on fish in their diet, eating insects, crabs, and other terrestrial and aquatic prey.

Green Herons were also putting on a show, both in-flight and as they foraged on pond edges. We also had multiple Solitary Sandpipers on our walk, more evidence of the accelerating migration.

56 species

Species Count
Mute Swan 94
Gadwall 6
Mallard 80
American Black Duck 3
Wild Turkey 4
Mourning Dove 5
Yellow-billed Cuckoo 1
Ruby-throated Hummingbird 5
American Oystercatcher 2
Semipalmated Plover 1
Killdeer 2
Sanderling 12
Least Sandpiper 7
Semipalmated Sandpiper 3
Solitary Sandpiper 4
Lesser Yellowlegs 3
Laughing Gull 15
Herring Gull (American) 2
Great Black-backed Gull 22
Least Tern 52
Gull-billed Tern 2
Common Tern 4
Forster’s Tern 11
Royal Tern 2
Black Skimmer 1
Brown Pelican (Atlantic) 3
Great Egret 9
Snowy Egret 2
Green Heron 3
Glossy Ibis 1
Black Vulture 2
Osprey (carolinensis) 2
Northern Flicker (Yellow-shafted) 1
Great Crested Flycatcher 1
White-eyed Vireo 1
American Crow 1
Carolina Chickadee 2
Tufted Titmouse 2
Purple Martin 20
Tree Swallow 6
Barn Swallow (American) 1
Carolina Wren (Northern) 7
Gray Catbird 2
Brown Thrasher 1
Northern Mockingbird 2
American Robin 2
Cedar Waxwing 2
House Finch 7
American Goldfinch 4
Field Sparrow 5
Orchard Oriole 2
Red-winged Blackbird (Red-winged) 9
Common Yellowthroat (trichas Group) 5
Northern Cardinal 8
Blue Grosbeak 2
Indigo Bunting 4