Tuesday, August 24, 2010

A rainy day report

Philadelphia Vireo -- Central Park 9/16/09
photo by Lloyd Spitalnik http://www.lloydspitalnikphotos.com

Tom Fiore's report of yesterday's Central Park birds, from the NYSbirds listserv:

Monday, 23 August, 2010 - Central Park, Manhattan, N.Y. City

Despite a lot of (needed) rain and low clouds, wind, & nicely cooler temperature through most of the day, there were breaks in the weather and a good number of birds about in some areas of the park that I visited today. My highlight was a good look at a brightly-plumaged PHILADELPHIA Vireo in the maintenance meadow area of the Ramble, mid-day & also later.

At least a dozen warbler species were around even in such less-than-ideal viewing conditions and among them was my first sighting of the fall season of a Blackpoll Warbler, which along with the several Magnolia Warblers having been found in the past few days & a number of other signals, a good sign that a big move could be on for land bird migration, if not all migrants in general, with the weather changes that are in store.

In the Ramble, the areas that have been a bit quiet so far this month had a bit of activity, and there again was a fair amount of activity in trees near the reservoir, especially in the area next to the bridle path at the NW side of the reservoir, as well as in some places closer to the west side of the park. A high number of Spotted Sandpipers, perhaps not quite an all-time high number but at least 20 in the park today, along with a couple of Solitary Sandpipers are further indications of movement.

Other species seen included a few Veery, a Wood Thrush, a Rose-breasted Grosbeak or two, and the warblers again including a number of Canada and also one Wilson's Warbler - with these more boreal-breeding species, there's likely a lot more to come thru on the very next cool front or change to any favorable weather overnight. Indeed even this Mon. night there are some signs of modest migration on the coast and perhaps more to the "inland".

My wanderings were relatively brief on this wet day, and there may well have been a fair bit more migrant activity than I actually came across. Some of the warblers and other migrants being seen in the city parks just lately have also been reported from well south, to as far as north Florida, where a number of them do not breed: it is migration time...