Fall Migrants at the Rea Farm/Cape May Point SP – September 18, 2021

Leaders: Kathy Horn, Roger Horn, Bernie Hodgdon

Temp: 75° F

Winds:  NNW 11 mph

Weather Conditions:  sunny

Due to some maintenance issues at the Beanery this week, we took our walk at the State Park. Ducks that spend the winter with us are starting to return from their breeding grounds. Many duck species will stay the entire winter, but Blue-winged Teal migrate through on their way to southern US coastal states and now is the peak time to see them here in Cape May. A beautiful duck with their large black bill arced in white, we saw several in flight, showing their baby-blue speculum, as well as some feeding in the ponds. A Merlin went streaking by and we realized it was chasing something. That something turned out to be a bat.  The Merlin dove on it repeatedly and it seemed the bat was going to successfully evade capture. But the two disappeared out of sight behind the bunker and when the merlin re-appeared, it was clutching something small in its claws, presumably the bat. Unfortunately, none of us caught this Nat Geo moment on camera!

51 species

Canada Goose3
Mute Swan32
Blue-winged Teal12
American Wigeon6
Wild Turkey5
Mourning Dove2
Ruby-throated Hummingbird1
Greater Yellowlegs1
Laughing Gull10
Herring Gull (American)8
Lesser Black-backed Gull2
Great Black-backed Gull36
Caspian Tern2
Royal Tern10
Great Blue Heron (Great Blue)1
Great Egret1
Turkey Vulture1
Northern Harrier1
Sharp-shinned Hawk1
Cooper’s Hawk1
Red-bellied Woodpecker1
Northern Flicker (Yellow-shafted)1
Eastern Wood-Pewee1
White-eyed Vireo1
Red-eyed Vireo3
Blue Jay4
American Crow5
Carolina Chickadee2
Tree Swallow180
House Wren (Northern)1
Carolina Wren (Northern)5
European Starling1
Gray Catbird8
Brown Thrasher1
Northern Mockingbird2
Swainson’s Thrush1
American Robin3
American Goldfinch1
Red-winged Blackbird (Red-winged)71
Common Yellowthroat3
American Redstart4
Magnolia Warbler1
Yellow Warbler (Northern)4
Palm Warbler (Western)1
Northern Cardinal4
Indigo Bunting1
New Jersey Audubon