Check out City Birder Tours, and Green-Wood sponsored tours on their calendar pages here.
Celebrate your inner nerd with my new t-shirt design! Available on my Spreadshirt shop in multiple colors and products.

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Upcoming Bird and Nature Trips

Below is a list of upcoming birding and nature trips by local birding/conservation groups for Saturday, January 25, 2020 to Sunday, January 26, 2020:

Bedford Audubon Society
Sunday, January 26, 2020, 10:00am - 12:00pm
Winter Tree Identification
Muscoot Farm, 51 NY-100, Katonah, NY 10536
Don’t judge a tree by its leaves!
There are lots of ways to identify trees, and you can learn all aboutthem by joining Naturalist Tait Johansson on a Nature Walk: Winter TreeIdentification at Muscoot Farm. Co-sponsored with Friends of Muscoot Farm. Tait will explain how to use a tree’s structure, bark, and other clues to ID it even after theleaves have fallen. Family friendly, but all children must beaccompanied by an adult.
Cost: Free.Level of difficulty: Easy. Dress warm.
Please register with Susanat info@bedfordaudubon.org or 914-302-9713.
See more details

**********

Brooklyn Bird Club
Saturday, January 25, 2020
Croton Point State Park, NY
Leader: Mike Yuan
Trip synopsis: Croton Point Park by public transportation. Participants will meet at Grand Central Terminal to take Metro North to Croton-Harmon station. After the walk, warm up at the Green Growler Taproom, adjacent to the train station, for beers and snacks before heading back.
Focus: winter resident eagles, raptors, waterfowl, open grassland and brush species
Metro-north train fare: round trip about $22.50
Registrar: Janet Schumacher email janets33@optonline.net
Registration Period: Jan 18th – Jan 23rd
Please review our trip guidelines here: http://brooklynbirdclub.org/information-registration

Saturday, January 25, 2020, 12:00pm - 2:00pm
Prospect Park: Birdwatching for Beginners
Leader: Cyrus Baty
Birdwatching for Beginners meets at the Prospect Park Audubon Center at The Boathouse at 12 noon. Bring binoculars if you have them; otherwise, binoculars are available for loan.

**********

Green-Wood Cemetery
Sunday, January 26, 2020, 7:15 am - 8:45 am
Birding in Peace
Before our gates open to the general public, birding expert Rob Jett leads these peaceful Sunday morning walking tours to discover the birds that make Green-Wood their home – some at least temporarily.

Just because it’s winter, doesn’t mean that there aren’t interesting birds to discover in Green-Wood. For some bird species that migrate south after the breeding season, Brooklyn is their Miami during the cold months. Spend the early morning exploring the cemetery, looking for overwintering waterfowl, nuthatches, woodpeckers, sparrows, finches and any half-hardy birds that decided to stick around. By February we’ll see some of the early north-bound birds beginning to trickle back into the area.

All walks are at a slow pace on easy to moderate terrain, but proper, close toed footwear is suggested.
$10 for members of Green-Wood and BHS / $15 for non-members
Click here for our inclement weather policy.


Green-Wood’s official birding checklist is available to pick up from the security guard at the main entrance on 25th Street or to print here. Comfortable footwear is recommended.

**********

Hudson River Audubon Society
Saturday, January 25, 2020
Pelham Bay Park
Meet at Pelham Bay Park at 8 AM; far left corner of the Orchard Beach parking lot.
Pelham Bay Park is known for its wintering owls, uch as Northern Saw-whet, Great Horned, and Long-eared. We will also search the woods and water for winter birds. American Wigeon, Bufflehead, Red-breasted Merganser should be in the bays.
http://www.hras.org/wtobird/pelhambay.html

Hudson River Audubon Society field trips are free. Non-members/ newcomers are welcome and are encouraged to join us as members ($20 introductory offer). Bring binoculars and field guides if you have them. Some are available for loan for those who need them. Dress appropriately for the weather. For more information call Michael Bochnik at (914) 237-9331

**********

Huntington-Oyster Bay Audubon Society
Sunday, January 26, 2020, 9:00am
Connetquot State Park and Bayard Cutting Arboretum
The Preserve is a winter waterfowl hang-out as well as many resident birds. Meet in the parking lot.
Registration: Call (631) 885-1881 to register.
Directions: From the west, get off Sunrise Highway at Oakdale-Bohemia Road, cross over Sunrise, head west and watch for the Park entrance on the right.

**********

Linnaean Society of New York
Saturday, January 25, 2020
Pelham Bay Park
Leader: Rob Jett
Registrar: Louise Fraza — louisefraza@yahoo.com or 212-534-6182
Registration opens: Monday, January 13
Ride: $15

**********

New York Botanical Garden (Bronx)
Saturdays -- 11:00 a.m.
Debbie Becker leads a free bird walk at the Garden every Saturday from 11am to 12:30pm beginning at the Reflecting Pool in the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Included in All-Garden Pass
Get Tickets

**********

New York City Audubon Society
Saturday, January 25, 2020, 9am – 11am
Randall's Island Winter Walk
Guide: Nadir Souirgi
Explore this lesser known spot in the East River, where recently restored freshwater wetlands and salt marsh provide habitat for many varieties of birds. We’ll look for rarities such as Common Goldeneye, Lesser Black-backed Gull, and Iceland Gull. Limited to 15. $36 (25)
Click here to register

Sunday, January 26, 2020, 9:30am – 11:00am
Forest Park Feeder Watch and Owl Prowl, Queens
Guide: Corey Finger
Explore the depths of the largest contiguous forest in Queens. Highlights include the feeding station at the famed Waterhole and a search for owls in the pine groves. Common feeder sightings include woodpeckers, Black-capped Chickadee, American Goldfinch, and usually at least one Brown Creeper. Past years have also seen Ruby-crowned Kinglet and Pine Warbler. On the owl prowl, look for sightings of Great Horned, Northern Saw-whet, or Long-eared Owl. Limited to 15. $36 (25) per walk
Click here to register

**********

New York City WILD!
Saturday, January 25, 2020, 11:30am
Winter Wonderland! Brooklyn: Coney Island Creek & Coney Island Beach

Sunday, January 26, 2020, 9:30am
Winter Wonderland & Bald Eagles! Croton-on-Hudson: Croton Point Park
For the FULL INFORMATION ABOUT EACH WALK click HERE to take you to the Eventbrite Profile page where you will find all details (scroll down to the thumbnails) for each of the outings and how to SIGN UP !

**********

Protectors of Pine Oak Woods
Saturday, January 25, 2020, 9:00am - 11:30am
East Shore Seawall Hike
Join us for the exploratory seaside journey in the footprint of the forthcoming East Shore Seawall, from Oakwood Beach Water Treatment Control Plant, through Oakwood, Cedar Grove, New Dorp and Miller Field Beach. What will stay? What is the new elevation? Will there be ramps and railings? How will beach ecology be affected? We will also check for migratory waterfowl and mammals visiting Staten Island for the winter.
Participants will meet at the corner of Mill Road and Tarlton Street in Oakwood.
For more information contact Jim Scarcella at 718-873-4291.

**********

Queens County Bird Club
Saturday, January 25, 2020, 7:45am – 4:30pm
Montauk
Leader: Ian Resnick (917) 626-9562
Where: Georges Lighthouse Cafe, 1999 Montauk Point State Pkwy, Montauk, NY 11954 (map)
Bring lunch.
We will bird until dusk, then go out to dinner with the group.
More Details

Trip Etiquette
Non members are welcome on our trips and we would appreciate a nominal $5 (or more!) voluntary donation for non-member participation. We prefer if you offer instead of being asked.
All persons (member or not) are required to offer contribution if they get a ride with another.
All persons are requested to Notify the leader at least 2 days in advance if they want to go on a trip.
Be on time. We depart promptly.


**********

South Shore Audubon Society
Sunday, January 26, 2020
Hempstead Lake State Park
From the Southern State Parkway, take Exit 18 (Eagle Avenue) south to Field 3 (use second park entrance and make an immediate left turn.)
Directions via Google Maps

Bird walks led by a member of SSAS are conducted nearly every Sunday morning from late August through early June. Walks are open to the public and are free of charge. We especially encourage youngsters to attend.
All walks start at 9:00 A.M.
There is no walk if it rains or snows or temperature is below 25°F.
For more information or in case of questionable weather conditions, please phone Joe at 516 467-9498.


**********

Urban Park Rangers
Sunday, January 26, 2020
Birding: Winter Waterfowl at West 90th Street and Central Park West
1:00 p.m.–2:30 p.m.
Join the Urban Park Rangers for a walk around the reservoir as we look for these cold hardy birds.
Free!

Birding: Winter Waterfowl at 155th Street and Baisley Boulevard (in Baisley Pond Park), Queens
1:00 p.m.–2:30 p.m.
Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle.
Free!
...Read more

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Treehugger Tuesday

From the website MNN:

Why the future of West Virginia's rare flying squirrel looks bright
Guest Columnist
January 21, 2020, 9:30 a.m.



The West Virginia northern flying squirrel was listed as an endangered species in 1985, but efforts to help the species rebound have been so successful that it has been delisted. (Photo: Barb Sargent/West Virginia DNR)

There's no better way to celebrate the squirrel, that tiny powerhouse of the forest, than with some good news about one of the more unique subspecies, the West Virginia northern flying squirrel.

The squirrel — called the Virginia northern flying squirrel or more commonly the West Virginia northern flying squirrel (WVNFS) — was listed as an endangered species in 1985. But restoration efforts have helped the species rebound, and in 2013 the West Virginia northern flying squirrel joined an exclusive group of success stories — species that have been taken off the endangered list.

Since then, restoration work has ramped up. Now a new report assessing the status of the squirrel in its first five years since coming off of the endangered species list indicates there are many reasons to be optimistic.

Read the entire article here

Friday, January 17, 2020

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, January 17, 2020:

-RBA
* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Jan. 17, 2020
* NYNY2001.17


BARNACLE GOOSE+
ATLANTIC PUFFIN+
PAINTED BUNTING+
YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD+

(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE
Canada Goose
EURASIAN WIGEON
KING EIDER
Common Eider
HARLEQUIN DUCK
Common Goldeneye
BARROW’S GOLDENEYE
NORTHERN FULMAR
Rough-legged Hawk
Common Gallinule
DOVEKIE
Razorbill
BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKE
BLACK-HEADED GULL
ICELAND GULL
Lesser Black-backed Gull
GLAUCOUS GULL
RED-HEADED WOODPECKER
Eastern Phoebe
Tree Swallow
Veery
Chipping Sparrow
Vesper Sparrow
Grasshopper Sparrow
Common Yellowthroat
Wilson’s Warbler

- Birds Mentioned

If followed by (+) please submit documentation of your report electronically and use the NYSARC online submission form found at http://www.nybirds.org/NYSARC/goodreport.htm

You can also send reports and digital image files via email to nysarc44nybirdsorg

If electronic submission is not possible, hardcopy reports and photos or sketches are welcome. Hardcopy documentation should be mailed to:

Gary Chapin - Secretary
NYS Avian Records Committee (NYSARC)
125 Pine Springs Drive
Ticonderoga, NY 12883

Hotline: New York City Area Rare Bird Alert
Number: (212) 979-3070

Compiler: Tom Burke
Coverage: New York City, Long Island, Westchester County

Transcriber: Gail Benson

[~BEGIN RBA TAPE~]

Greetings! This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, January 17, 2020 at 9:00 pm.

The highlights of today’s tape are PAINTED BUNTING, YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD, DOVEKIE plus a boat trip that also included ATLANTIC PUFFIN, NORTHERN FULMAR and BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKE, BARNACLE and GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE, BARROW’S GOLDENEYE, KING EIDER, HARLEQUIN DUCK and EURASIAN WIGEON, BLACK-HEADED, GLAUCOUS and ICELAND GULLS, RED-HEADED WOODPECKER, some lingering passerines and more.

Of the 2 female-plumaged PAINTED BUNTINGS recently in our area, the one at Brooklyn Bridge Park was seen as least to Tuesday around Pier 5, while the one at Jones Beach was still around the shrubbery by the playground just east of the Gatsby Restaurant and the West Bathhouse on Wednesday.

A female-type YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD reappeared Wednesday out in the Riverhead area, being seen in a large mixed Blackbird/Starling flock around the eastern section of Reeves Avenue east of Roanoke Avenue.

A DOVEKIE was seen inside Shinnecock Inlet last Sunday, with another reported Tuesday off Smith Point County Park in Shirley.

A fishing boat last Saturday out of Brielle, New Jersey, venturing into waters along the New York/New Jersey boundary, encountered hundreds of DOVEKIES as well as an ATLANTIC PUFFIN, some RAZORBILLS, 3 NORTHERN FULMARS and a few BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKES.

RAZORBILLS have been occurring along the Atlantic Coast from Breezy Point and Riis Park out to Shinnecock and other Eastern Long Island sites; 1 also appeared in Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn mid-week, with a couple off Rye Playland in Long Island Sound recently.

A BARNACLE GOOSE continues to roost on the pond at Belmont Lake State Park, and another has been traveling in the large flock of CANADA GEESE around the Riverhead sod fields, especially near Route 105 or off Doctors Path to the west. The fields near Osborne Avenue further west produced a GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE Tuesday, while another continues in the Rye area of Westchester, often on a pond off Bowman Avenue or on Playland Lake.

A drake BARROW’S GOLDENEYE remains in a COMMON GOLDENEYE flock off Crab Meadow Beach in Northport, the flock often off the western sector of the beach, and a female BARROW’S was spotted again Sunday in Montauk’s Fort Pond Bay.

A female KING EIDER was found Saturday in a COMMON EIDER flock in Shinnecock Inlet that was near the rocks off the parking lot on the East side of the inlet - it was still reported there Tuesday.

A drake HARLEQUIN DUCK also continues around the Shinnecock Inlet jetties, with others around Jones Inlet and off Orient Point, and an immature male was still at Sheepshead Bay today.

A drake EURASIAN WIGEON was still on the Centerport Mill Pond Wednesday.

Adult BLACK-HEADED GULLS as recently as Wednesday were noted at Brooklyn Bridge Park and at Sheepshead Bay as well as around the spit off the Coast Guard Station at Jones Beach West End.

A GLAUCOUS GULL was spotted off the West Pond at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge last Sunday, while ICELAND GULLS were noted at Sheepshead Bay, Floyd Bennett Field, Jacob Riis Park and out at Shinnecock Inlet.

Two LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS were at Coney Island Beach Sunday.

A ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK was still along Ocean Parkway near Tobay today.

A COMMON GALLINULE remains on Mill Pond off Merrick Road in Bellmore, and a RED-HEADED WOODPECKER was still at Central Park’s north end today.

A number of Passerines hanging out locally may be unfortunately in for a jolt with this upcoming storm; these include a VEERY and a COMMON YELLOWTHROAT in Bryant Park, a couple of VESPER SPARROWS on Randall’s Island, and a GRASSHOPPER SPARROW at Playland Park in Rye as well as a few EASTERN PHOEBES, TREE SWALLOWS, CHIPPING SPARROWS and the like. The WILSON’S WARBLER in Prospect Park was last reported last Sunday.

To phone in reports call Tom Burke at (914) 967-4922.

This service is sponsored by the Linnaean Society of New York and the National Audubon Society. Thank you for calling.

- End transcript
...Read more

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Treehugger Tuesday

From MNN.com:

Scientists discover 10 new birds
Ben Bolton
January 10, 2020, 1:06 p.m.

5 new species, 5 subspecies found on small islands in Indonesia.

Birds discovered during Indonesian trek.


The Togian jungle flycatcher is one of the new subspecies discovered during the island trek. (Photo: James Eaton/Birdtour Asia)

A group of scientists set out on a six-week expedition near Sulawesi, Indonesia, in hopes of learning more about the region's bird population. What they discovered was far more exciting — undiscovered bird species.

Frank E. Rheindt, a professor from the University of Singapore, led the team through three small islands. They trekked through miles of forest, identifying dozens of birds along the way.

Shortly into the trip, the group began to encounter birds they had never seen before. Over the six weeks, the scientists discovered five new songbird species and five new subspecies.

Rheindt and others published their findings in the journal Science to share the discoveries.

Read the entire article here

Monday, January 13, 2020

Upcoming Birding and Nature Trips

Below is a list of upcoming birding and nature trips by local birding/conservation groups for Saturday, January 18, 2020 to Sunday, January 19, 2020:

Brooklyn Bird Club
Saturday, January 18, 2020
Sandy Hook National Seashore, Atlantic Highlands, NJ
Leader: Tom Stephenson
Focus: Gulls and ducks, coastal passerines, open dunes species, winter woods
Car Fee: $25.00
Registrar: Peter Dorosh Prosbird@aol.com or Prosbird@gmail.com
Registration Period: Jan 11th – Jan 16th
Note: trip caps at 16 participants
Please review our trip guidelines here: http://brooklynbirdclub.org/information-registration

Saturday, January 19, 2020, 12:00pm - 2:00pm
Prospect Park: Birdwatching for Beginners
Leader: Cyrus Baty
Birdwatching for Beginners meets at the Prospect Park Audubon Center at The Boathouse at 12 noon. Bring binoculars if you have them; otherwise, binoculars are available for loan.

**********

Feminist Bird Club
Saturday, January 18, 2020
Central Park and Wild Bird Fund

All walks follow the ABA Code of Birding Ethics

**********

Gateway National Recreation Areas
Saturday, January 18, 2020, 11am — 2pm
A Winter Hike at Breezy Point
View Details

**********

Linnaean Society of New York
Saturday, January 18, 2020
Shawangunks Grassland
Leader: Richard ZainEldeen
Registrar: Deborra Mullins — deborramullins3@gmail.com or 212-239-1614
Registration opens: Monday, January 6
Ride: $40

**********

Littoral Society
Saturday, January 18, 2020, 11:00am to 2:00pm
"Good Times with Gordon" winter walk to Breezy Point
Join American Littoral Society naturalist Gordon Lam and NYC Botanist, Zihao Wang to the little known and now-deserted western tip of the Rockaway Peninsula for a lovely winter beach walk. Highlights will include seashells and other stranded critters, winter shore birds, the Breezy Point Jetty, and if we’re lucky – a Snowy Owl!

Participants will carpool from the Main Building at the entrance of Fort Tilden to the Fishermans Parking lot and walk to the tip of Breezy Point.
Dress very warmly, wear comfortable shoes and bring a pair of binoculars if you have them. We will cover about 1 1/2 - 2 miles along the beach. 
As always, NO REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED and the walk is FREE. We hope to see you all there!

In case of inclement weather or other concerns please check your email or call Gordon Lam at 646-673-5418 on the morning of the walk.



DIRECTIONS TO FORT TILDEN:
Subway & bus: Take the #2 or #5 train to Flatbush Ave. / Brooklyn College and then the Q-35 bus past Floyd Bennett Field and just over the Gil Hodges memorial Bridge. Ask the driver to let you off at Ft. Tilden. Check Saturday/Sunday train schedules ahead of time.

By car: From exit 11s on the Belt Parkway, head south and over the Marine Parkway Bridge (Gil Hodges Memorial). Stay on right and take the right ramp toward Breezy Point. Make a quick left into Fort Tilden at the first light. Go to end and park by Building One or at the nearby Post Chapel.


By Ferry: The current schedule of the NYC Ferry has an 8:30AM ferry leaving from Wall Street Pier 11 on the weekends that gets to Beach 108 by 9:24AM, and the shuttle on the weekends will leave you at the Jacob Riis Bathhouse by 9:45AM. You can then walk the short distance to Building 1 in Fort Tilden. Although you will be early, the next ferry would get you there too late.

**********

New York Botanical Garden (Bronx)
Saturdays -- 11:00 a.m.
Debbie Becker leads a free bird walk at the Garden every Saturday from 11am to 12:30pm beginning at the Reflecting Pool in the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Included in All-Garden Pass
Get Tickets

**********

New York City WILD!
Saturday, January 18, 2020, 9:30am
Winter Wonderland & Bald Eagles! Croton-on-Hudson: Croton Dam to Ossining

Sunday, January 19, 2020, 12:00noon
Winter Wonderland! Queens: Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge

For the FULL INFORMATION ABOUT EACH WALK click HERE to take you to the Eventbrite Profile page where you will find all details (scroll down to the thumbnails) for each of the outings and how to SIGN UP !

**********

South Shore Audubon Society
Sunday, January 19, 2020
Pelham Bay Park
Pelham Bay Park (where we hope to see owls): Wear hiking shoes — it’s a hilly forest walk to the bay. Take Throgs Neck Bridge to I-695 north to I-95 north. Take I-95 to exit #9, Hutchinson River Parkway north. Take first exit #5, Orchard Beach Rd., go past traffic circle, and continue on Orchard Beach Rd. to end. Turn left on Park Dr. Go past another traffic circle and enter parking lot through toll gates (free); meet at far left corner of parking lot (northeast corner). See www.mappery.com/Pelham-Bay-Park-NYC-Map or Google’s map of “Orchard Beach Parking Lot” for reference.
Directions via Google Maps

Bird walks led by a member of SSAS are conducted nearly every Sunday morning from late August through early June. Walks are open to the public and are free of charge. We especially encourage youngsters to attend.
All walks start at 9:00 A.M.
There is no walk if it rains or snows or temperature is below 25°F.
For more information or in case of questionable weather conditions, please phone Joe at 516 467-9498.


**********

Urban Park Rangers
Saturday, January 18, 2020
Birding: Raptor Watch at Arthur Kill Road and Brookfield Avenue (in Brookfield Park), Staten Island
11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
New York City is home to an amazing abundance of wildlife. Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle. Appropriate for all skill levels.
Free!
...Read more

Saturday, January 11, 2020

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, January 10, 2020:

-RBA
* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Jan. 10, 2020
* NYNY2001.10

- Birds Mentioned

BARNACLE GOOSE+
THICK-BILLED MURRE+
VARIED THRUSH+
PAINTED BUNTING+
(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE
Cackling Goose
Canada Goose
EURASIAN WIGEON
HARLEQUIN DUCK
Bufflehead
BARROW’S GOLDENEYE
Red-necked Grebe
Bald Eagle
Northern Goshawk
Rough-legged Hawk
Common Gallinule
Razorbill
BLACK-HEADED GULL
ICELAND GULL
Lesser Black-backed Gull
GLAUCOUS GULL
Snowy Owl
Northern Saw-whet Owl
Red-headed Woodpecker
Eastern Phoebe
Tree Swallow
House Wren
Snow Bunting
Vesper Sparrow
GRASSHOPPER SPARROW
Yellow-breasted Chat
Orange-crowned Warbler
Wilson's Warbler

If followed by (+) please submit documentation of your report electronically and use the NYSARC online submission form found at http://www.nybirds.org/NYSARC/goodreport.htm

You can also send reports and digital image files via email to nysarc44nybirdsorg

If electronic submission is not possible, hardcopy reports and photos or sketches are welcome. Hardcopy documentation should be mailed to:

Gary Chapin - Secretary
NYS Avian Records Committee (NYSARC)
125 Pine Springs Drive
Ticonderoga, NY 12883

Hotline: New York City Area Rare Bird Alert
Number: (212) 979-3070

Compiler: Tom Burke
Coverage: New York City, Long Island, Westchester County

Transcriber: Gail Benson

[~BEGIN RBA TAPE~]

Greetings! This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, January 10, 2020 at 9:00 pm.

The highlights of today’s tape are PAINTED BUNTING, VARIED THRUSH, BARNACLE and GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE, EURASIAN WIGEON, BARROW’S GOLDENEYE and HARLEQUIN DUCK, BLACK-HEADED, GLAUCOUS and ICELAND GULLS, GRASSHOPPER SPARROW, a belated THICK-BILLED MURRE and more.

Two lingering PAINTED BUNTINGS, both in female plumage though possibly immature males, were still present in our area today. One has been visiting Brooklyn Bridge Park, where some other highlights today featured a continuing adult BLACK-HEADED GULL and three ICELAND GULLS, two of them adults. The other BUNTING remains at Jones Beach State Park, often feeding along the edge of a small playground on the ocean side of the parking lot for the Gatsby Restaurant, which is next to the West Bathhouse just west of the Jones Beach water tower.

The VARIED THRUSH found December 29th in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park, delighting birders when visible near the Nethermead Bridge, has not been reported since Tuesday, though it might still remain in the area.

A BARNACLE GOOSE continues to roost on the lake at Belmont Lake State Park; it has been fairly consistently seen in the morning, though it might at times be hidden for a while and will periodically fly out with CANADAS to feed elsewhere.

A GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE remains in the Rye area, today appearing again on Playland Lake. CACKLING GEESE were reported from at least seven different locations this week, including Hendrickson Park in Valley Stream and at Belmont Lake.

A EURASIAN WIGEON continues on the Mill Pond in Centerport on the north side of Route 25A.

Two BARROW’S GOLDENEYES last Monday included a drake off Crab Meadow Beach in Northport and a female in Montauk’s Fort Pond Bay, both of these lingering birds, and on Tuesday another drake was spotted off Orchard Beach in Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx.

Last Sunday a young male HARLEQUIN DUCK was found in Brooklyn’s Sheepshead Bay, accompanying some BUFFLEHEAD off Emmons Avenue, and it was still present there today. Other HARLEQUINS include a few around the jetties on either side of Jones inlet, one at the Shinnecock inlet jetties, and at least four continuing at Orient Point.

Another adult BLACK-HEADED GULL remains at Jones Beach West End, usually on the east side of the spit off of the Coast Guard station or even further down towards the Meadowbrook Bridge.

A GLAUCOUS GULL was spotted Saturday near the Ponquogue Bridge at Shinnecock, and other ICELAND GULLS in the Brooklyn area were noted near the HARLEQUIN DUCK in Sheepshead Bay Sunday and at Bush Terminal Piers Park Monday.

A few LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS are scattered about.

A ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK was still in the Cedar Beach area Tuesday, with another off Hulse Landing Road in Calverton last Sunday.

A COMMON GALLINULE continues among the variety of birds using the Bellmore Mill Pond off Merrick Road today.

On Wednesday RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS were still at Central Park’s north end and Forest Park in Queens.

A few VESPER SPARROWS included one on Randall's Island Tuesday, and a GRASSHOPPER SPARROW continues by Playland Lake in Rye.

Birds at Breezy Point Tuesday included 9 RAZORBILLS, 2 RED-NECKED GREBES, a BALD EAGLE, 8 TREE SWALLOWS and 12 SNOW BUNTINGS.

The Prospect Park WILSON'S WARBLER was last reported Sunday, and several ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLERS were noted this week.

Two previously unreported Christmas Counts were Central Suffolk with 115 species on December 27th, featuring a THICK BILLED MURRE and 150 RAZORBILLS, 1 SNOWY and 6 NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWLS and a YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT, and Quogue Watermill with 109 species on December 15th, including EURASIAN WIGEON, NORTHERN GOSHAWK, SNOWY and NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWLS, EASTERN PHOEBE and HOUSE WREN.

To phone in reports call Tom Burke at (914) 967-4922.

This service is sponsored by the Linnaean Society of New York and the National Audubon Society. Thank you for calling.

- End transcript
...Read more

Tuesday, January 07, 2020

Treehugger Tuesday

I've been having a difficult time finding a positive piece to post. This article in Mother Nature Network was one of a very few:

Almost half of Denmark's electricity in 2019 came from wind power
Starre Vartan
January 3, 2020, 11:19 a.m.


Wind turbines and poppies on Bornholm Island, Denmark. (Photo: Milosz Maslanka/Shutterstock)

Denmark is only about half the size of South Carolina, but it produces more of its electricity from wind than any other country in the world. That's not because it's a particularly breezy country; it has pretty ordinary average wind speeds. The reason the Danes now get 47% of their electricity from wind, with more to come, comes down to a combination of history and policy.

First, the history: Paul la Cour was a scientist and inventor who experimented with and engineered early wind power machines at the start of the 20th century. So it's not surprising that Denmark invested in building wind power early, beginning at a national level in the 1970s. In the 1980s, due to a strong grassroots movement opposing nuclear power plants, Denmark ramped up production before many other countries were even considering it.

Denmark has also had significant government support for wind-energy projects, as well as support from the country's technology-focused universities. Even back in 2002, the country was taking climate change warnings seriously, aiming to cut fossil-fuel emissions by 20 percent, which they did via renewable energy investment and implementation.

Some of the world's largest companies in the sector — including Vestas, which builds turbines, and Orsted, which specializes in offshore wind projects — are Danish, so the country has an impact beyond its borders.

The outsized impact of Denmark's wind-energy business is important because it's a small country, so while an almost 50% rate of electricity from wind is admirable, it's also minor in terms of overall planetary impact.

While Denmark gets half its electricity needs covered from 5,758 megawatts (MW) of capacity, Spain’s 23,000 MW covers just 18 percent of its electricity supply as it's a much bigger country. China is the leader in wind energy at 221,000 MW, and the U.S. is second in the world at about 96,000 MW.

Denmark's long support of wind-energy technology and pro-wind policies have proven this approach can work to decarbonize the economy, even on a bigger scale. At the end of 2019, lawmakers in Denmark set a new goal: increasing the share of electricity sourced from renewable power to 100%.

The country aims to source 100% of its power from renewable sources by 2030.

Monday, January 06, 2020

Upcoming Birding and Nature Trips

Below is a list of upcoming birding and nature trips by local birding/conservation groups for Saturday, January 11, 2020 to Sunday, January 12, 2020:

Bedford Audubon Society
January 11, 2020, 8:00am - 12:00pm
Greenwich Point Park
7 Tods Driftway, Old Greenwich, CT 06870
Start the new year right by getting outside to experience life… and nature!
It might be cold, but you’re sure to enjoy our popular Field Trip to Greenwich Point Park with Naturalist Tait Johansson. Last year, our large group saw a couple of owls, including a Great Horned that was sleeping atop a large evergreen. Plus, we’re likely to see Brant, Long-tailed Ducks, scoters, goldeneyes, loons, and other waterbirds, some interesting songbirds, and more!

Depart Bylane at 7am or meet there in the lot on the right after the gatehouse at 8am.
Cost: Free. Level of difficulty: Easy. Dress warmly!
Please register with Susan at info@bedfordaudubon.org or 914-302-9713.
See more details

**********

Brooklyn Bird Club
Saturday, January 11, 2020, 8:30am - 12:00pm
Coney Island, Brooklyn
Meet 8:30am inside the Dunkin Donuts on the corner of Surf Ave and Stillwell Ave (train entrance)
Leader: Linda Ewing
Focus: Sea &, bay water ducks and other waterfowl; beach species
Registrar (for weather alerts): Adelia Harrison email honeywood5@yahoo.com
Registration Period: Jan 4th – Jan 9th
Note: please submit your cell phone numbers upon registration.
Please review our trip guidelines here: http://brooklynbirdclub.org/information-registration

Saturday, January 11, 2020, 12:00pm - 2:00pm
Prospect Park: Birdwatching for Beginners
Leader: Cyrus Baty
Birdwatching for Beginners meets at the Prospect Park Audubon Center at The Boathouse at 12 noon. Bring binoculars if you have them; otherwise, binoculars are available for loan.

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Gateway National Parks
Sunday, January 12, 2020, 10am — 11:30am
Winter Nature Hike
View Details

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Great South Bay Audubon Society
Saturday, January 11, 2020, 8:00am
Birding & Breakfast, Connetquot River SPP
Leader(s): Edith & Bob Wilson, Helga Merryman, Ken Thompson, Jack Carlson
Continental breakfast. Reservations required - Fill out the form on our programs page to register.
Registration fee $4. plus $8 parking fee per car - unless you have yearly Empire pass.
(Nature walks will be cancelled if it is raining or snowing.)

**********

Linnaean Society of New York
Sunday, January 12, 2020
Croton Point Park
Leader: Richard ZainEldeen
Registrar: Miriam Rakowski — miriamrakowski@hotmail.com or 212-749-7376
Registration opens: Monday, December 30, 2020
Public transportation

**********

New York City Audubon
Friday, January 10 – Sunday, January 12, 2020
American Littoral Society: Montauk Winter Weekend - Seals, Surf, and Seabirds
Guide: Don Riepe with American Littoral Society
Spend a weekend at the luxurious Manor House during the peak winter birding time at Montauk Point. See seals, scoters, loons, eiders, razorbill, and much more. Includes 2 nights lodging, 5 meals, 5 guided field trips, 2 evening programs, and free pickup at the LIRR station in Montauk.
For reservations and details, contact Don Riepe at 718-474-0896 or don@littoralsociety.org. $425 ($150 single supplement)

Saturday, January 11, 2020, 9am – 6pm
Winter Birding on the South Shore of Long Island
Guide: Gabriel Willow
Winter in New York brings the excitement of possibility: Will Snowy Owls appear in the dunes? Will Harlequin Ducks move westward from Cape Cod and Montauk and appear in closer waters? Will irruptive northern finches and Bohemian Waxwings move south from Canada? All of these species and more are possible on Long Island in the winter, along with more expected species such as loons, grebes, scaup, eider, Northern Harriers, and Purple Sandpipers. Transport by passenger van included. Limited to 12. $102 (72) per trip
Click here to register

Sunday, January 12, 2020, 8am – 1pm
Winter Birds of DeKorte Park, NJ
Guide: Tod Winston
Come explore the gardens and impoundments of this lovely nearby park in search of wintering waterfowl, raptors, and songbirds. We'll bring our own lunches to eat at the visitor center that looks out over the marsh. Transport by passenger van included. Limited to 12. $97 (68)
Click here to register

Sunday, January 12, 2020, 9:00am – 10:30am
A Morning Bird Walk in Central Park
Guides: Jeff Ward
Spend a leisurely morning searching Central Park's best birding spots for winter residents and surprises. Limited to 15 per walk. $36 (25)
Click here to register

Sunday, January 12, 2020, 9:30am – 11:00am
Forest Park Feeder Watch and Owl Prowl, Queens
Guide: Corey Finger
Explore the depths of the largest contiguous forest in Queens. Highlights include the feeding station at the famed Waterhole and a search for owls in the pine groves. Common feeder sightings include woodpeckers, Black-capped Chickadee, American Goldfinch, and usually at least one Brown Creeper. Past years have also seen Ruby-crowned Kinglet and Pine Warbler. On the owl prowl, look for sightings of Great Horned, Northern Saw-whet, or Long-eared Owl. Limited to 15. $36 (25) per walk
Click here to register

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New York Botanical Garden (Bronx)
Saturdays -- 11:00 a.m.
Debbie Becker leads a free bird walk at the Garden every Saturday from 11am to 12:30pm beginning at the Reflecting Pool in the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Included in All-Garden Pass
Get Tickets

**********

Queens County Bird Club
Saturday, January 11, 2020, 7:45am – 12:00pm
Breezy Point
Leader: Eric Miller
Meet: Fishing Parking Lot, 2 Rockaway Point Blvd, Breezy Point, NY 11697(map)
More Details»

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South Shore Audubon Society
Sunday, January 12, 2020
Massapequa Preserve
From Sunrise Highway, turn north onto Broadway, Massapequa. Travel under the Long Island Rail Road overpass, then make the first right onto Veterans Boulevard (headed east). Go past the Massapequa train station and into the parking lot at the east end of the station. The preserve is directly east of the parking lot.
Directions via Google Maps

Bird walks led by a member of SSAS are conducted nearly every Sunday morning from late August through early June. Walks are open to the public and are free of charge. We especially encourage youngsters to attend.
All walks start at 9:00 A.M.
There is no walk if it rains or snows or temperature is below 25°F.
For more information or in case of questionable weather conditions, please phone Joe at 516 467-9498.


**********

Urban Park Rangers
Saturday, January 11, 2020
Birding: Bald Eagle Watch at Henshaw Street and Dyckman Street (in Inwood Hill Park), Manhattan
9:00 a.m.–10:30 a.m.
New York City is home to an amazing abundance of wildlife. Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle. All skill levels are welcomed.
Free!

Sunday, January 12, 2020
Winter Birding at Perkins Visitors Center (in Wave Hill), Bronx
9:30 a.m.–10:30 a.m.
Explore Wave Hill’s tranquil gardens and woodlands with naturalist Gabriel Willow to observe birds in their winter habitats.

Birding: Winter Birds at Canarsie Park House (in Canarsie Park), Brooklyn
11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
New York City is home to an amazing abundance of wildlife. Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle. All skill levels are welcome.
Free!

Birding: Winter Waterfowl at Comfort station (in Willowbrook Park), Staten Island
11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
New York City is home to an amazing abundance of wildlife. Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle. Appropriate for all skill levels.
Free!
...Read more

Thursday, January 02, 2020

Birding in Peace 2019

Here's a short slideshow video of some of my Green-Wood Cemetery "Birding in Peace" walks species from 2019. We observed a total of 153 species on our walks in 2019.

Most photos are courtesy of Evan Rabeck, but there are also a few from Jim Demers and Michael Yuan.



Here's a list of the species in the video.

1) Black-capped Chickadee21) Black-throated Blue Warbler41) Northern Flicker61) Ruby-crowned Kinglet
2) Blue Jay22) Common Yellowthroat42) Eastern Kingbird62) Grasshopper Sparrow
3) Canada Geese23) Ovenbird43) Forster’s Tern63) House Wren
4) Tufted Titmouse24) Rose-breasted Grosbeak44) Great Crested Flycatcher64) Blue-headed Vireo
5) White-breasted Nuthatch25) White-throated Sparrow45) Monk Parakeet65) Swamp Sparrow
6) Downy Woodpecker26) Wood Thrush46) Belted Kingfisher66) Carolina Wren
7) American Woodcock27) Yellow Warbler47) Great Egret67) Eastern Bluebird
8) Yellow-bellied Sapsucker28) Yellow-rumped Warbler48) Prothonotary Warbler68) Dark-eyed Junco
9) Red-breasted Nuthatch29) Eastern Whip-poor-will49) Red-eyed Vireo69) Eastern Towhee
10) Eastern Phoebe30) Gray Catbird50) Great Blue Heron70) Northern Mockingbird
11) Ring-necked Duck31) Osprey51) Cape May Warbler71) Merlin
12) Brown Creeper32) Magnolia Warbler52) Nashville Warbler72) female Hooded Merganser
13) Pine Warbler33) American Redstart53) Red-tailed Hawk73) Bald Eagle
14) Brown Thrasher34) Red-winged Blackbird54) Common Nighthawk74) House Finch
15) Blue-gray Gnatcatcher35) Common Raven55) Winter Wren75) Mourning Dove
16) White-eyed Vireo36) Turkey Vulture56) Palm Warbler76) American Robin
17) Common Grackle37) Scarlet Tanager57) Yellow-billed Cuckoo77) Cooper’s Hawk
18) Blue Grosbeak38) Green Heron58) American Kestrel78) Red-bellied Woodpecker
19) Baltimore Oriole39) Black-crowned Night-Heron59) Field Sparrow79) Opossum
20) Black-and-white Warbler40) American Robin (fledgling)60) Golden-crowned Kinglet

Friday, December 20, 2019

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, December 20, 2019:

-RBA
* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Dec. 19, 2019
* NYNY1912.19

- Birds Mentioned

BARNACLE GOOSE+
COMMON MURRE+
THICK-BILLED MURRE+
YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD+
(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE
Brant
EURASIAN WIGEON
KING EIDER
HARLEQUIN DUCK
Red-necked Grebe
American Oystercatcher
Long-billed Dowitcher
American Woodcock
Wilson’s Snipe
Razorbill
Iceland Gull
Lesser Black-backed Gull
Black Skimmer
Northern Gannet
GOLDEN EAGLE
Northern Goshawk
Red-tailed Hawk
Rough-legged Hawk
RED-HEADED WOODPECKER
Eastern Phoebe
NORTHERN SHRIKE
House Wren
Marsh Wren
European Starling
LAPLAND LONGSPUR
Vesper Sparrow
Lincoln’s Sparrow
YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT
Eastern Meadowlark
Baltimore Oriole
Red-winged Blackbird
Brown-headed Cowbird
Common Grackle
Ovenbird
Black-and-white Warbler
Orange-crowned Warbler
Nashville Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
American Redstart
Wilson’s Warbler

If electronic submission is not possible, hardcopy reports and photos or sketches are welcome. Hardcopy documentation should be mailed to:

Gary Chapin - Secretary
NYS Avian Records Committee (NYSARC)
125 Pine Springs Drive
Ticonderoga, NY 12883

Hotline: New York City Area Rare Bird Alert
Number: (212) 979-3070

Compiler: Tom Burke
Coverage: New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
Transcriber: Gail Benson

[~BEGIN RBA TAPE~]

Greetings! This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, December 19, 2019 at 9:00 pm.

The highlights of today’s tape are COMMON and THICK-BILLED MURRES, YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD, BARNACLE and GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE, EURASIAN WIGEON, HARLEQUIN DUCK and KING EIDER, GOLDEN EAGLE, NORTHERN SHRIKE, RED-HEADED WOODPECKER, LAPLAND LONGSPUR, YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT and more.

Fortunately for the Captree Christmas Bird Count last Sunday, the weather conditions prompted a nice flight of large alcids offshore during the early morning; counters at Robert Moses State Park were treated to over 630 RAZORBILLS and were able to also identify single COMMON and THICK-BILLED MURRES as the birds moved westward just offshore.

Out in the Calverton area the female-type YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD was still around to last Sunday, at least, in a large flock of RED-WINGED BLACKBIRDS, COMMON GRACKLES, BROWN-HEADED COWBIRDS and EUROPEAN STARLINGS – the flock was usually found off Sound Avenue near the Lewin Farm, located at 812 Sound Avenue.

The BARNACLE GOOSE roosting at Belmont Lake State Park was noted there as recently as Wednesday, while a GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE in lower Westchester was on its Rye Brook Pond recently but also visited Playland Lake in Rye yesterday.

A EURASIAN WIGEON appeared on Cooper’s Neck Pond in Southampton Sunday and Monday, and another was spotted Wednesday in Cold Spring Harbor north of Route 25.

Three HARLEQUIN DUCKS were still off Orient Point Wednesday, and a drake was seen at Shinnecock Inlet Sunday.

Unusual was a female KING EIDER on Sterling Lake in Orange County’s Sterling Forest State Park last weekend.

An immature GOLDEN EAGLE was seen being mobbed by RED-TAILED HAWKS over the Riverhead sod fields near Sound Avenue and Northville Turnpike last Sunday.

The adult NORTHERN SHRIKE at Heckscher State Park was seen last Saturday but did not appear for the Christmas Count Sunday.

An immature RED-HEADED WOODPECKER was still in Central Park’s north end Wednesday, and an adult found Monday at Pelham Bay Park was still at Hunter’s Island Wednesday.

An immature ICELAND GULL and a LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL were spotted along the East River Monday off 51st Street in Manhattan, and a RED-NECKED GREBE was off Breezy Point Wednesday.

A YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT was spotted in Prospect Park Sunday, while another was still at Marshlands Conservancy in Rye Wednesday.

Last Sunday the Brooklyn Christmas Count recorded a nice 129 species , with their highlights including ICELAND and LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS, BLACK SKIMMER, 11 AMERICAN WOODCOCKS, NORTHERN GOSHAWK, EASTERN PHOEBE, HOUSE WREN, LAPLAND LONGSPUR, LINCOLN’S and VESPER SPARROWS, BALTIMORE ORIOLE, and, among the WARBLERS, OVENBIRD, BLACK-AND-WHITE, ORANGE-CROWNED, NASHVILLE, and WILSON’S.

The Captree Count Sunday netted 127 species; besides the alcids and BARNACLE GOOSE noted above, other notables featured LONG-BILLED DOWITCHER, ICELAND GULL, the ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK recently along Ocean Parkway, EASTERN PHOEBE, MARSH WREN, AMERICAN REDSTART, COMMON YELLOWTHROAT, 2 ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLERS and 3 EASTERN MEADOWLARKS.

The Queens Count on Sunday totaled 118 species including AMERICAN OYSTERCATCHER, 5 WILSON’S SNIPES, 12 RAZORBILLS and HOUSE WREN. Unfortunately, the prior week’s Ash-throated Flycatcher was last seen on Friday the 13th and did not make the Count.

The Greenwich-Stamford Count, including parts of Westchester County, recorded 106 species Sunday, including 2 GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE, ICELAND and LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS, NORTHERN GANNET, 10 RAZORBILLS, EASTERN PHOEBE and HOUSE WREN, while among the Rockland Count’s 87 species Sunday were BRANT and a RED-HEADED WOODPECKER.

To phone in reports please call Tom Burke at (914) 967-4922 and leave a message.

This service is sponsored by the Linnaean Society of New York and the National Audubon Society. Thank you for calling.

- End transcript
...Read more

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Upcoming Birding and Nature Trips

Below is a list of upcoming birding and nature trips by local birding/conservation groups for Saturday, December 21, 2019 to Sunday, December 22, 2019:

Feminist Bird Club
Saturday, December 21, 2019
Prospect Park

All walks follow the ABA Code of Birding Ethics

**********

Gateway National Recreation Areas
Saturday, December 21, 2019, 3:30pm — 5:00pm
Jr. Ranger Owl Prowl
View Details

**********

New York Botanical Garden (Bronx)
Saturdays -- 11:00 a.m.
Debbie Becker leads a free bird walk at the Garden every Saturday from 11am to 12:30pm beginning at the Reflecting Pool in the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Included in All-Garden Pass
Get Tickets

**********

South Shore Audubon Society
Sunday, December 22, 2019
Jones Beach Coast Guard Station Parking Area
From the Wantagh State Parkway, travel south. Upon entering Jones Beach State Park, exit at Bay Drive and continue west. Turn right (north) at entrance for Coast Guard Station and West End Boat Basin; turn right again for parking.
Directions via Google Maps

Bird walks led by a member of SSAS are conducted nearly every Sunday morning from late August through early June. Walks are open to the public and are free of charge. We especially encourage youngsters to attend.
All walks start at 9:00 A.M.
There is no walk if it rains or snows or temperature is below 25°F.
For more information or in case of questionable weather conditions, please phone Joe at 516 467-9498.


**********

Urban Park Rangers
Saturday, December 21, 2019
New York City Naturalist Club: Bald Eagle Watch at Henshaw Street and Dyckman Street (in Inwood Hill Park), Manhattan
9:00 a.m.–10:30 a.m.
Winter is a great time to spot bald eagles. Our park rangers will guide you to the best viewing spots.
Free!

Winter Solstice Walk at Conference House Museum (in Conference House Park), Staten Island
12:00 p.m.–2:00 p.m.
Join NYC Parks arborists for a Winter Solstice Walk at New York's southernmost park. Explore and learn about the unique trees, natural habitats, and shoreline found within the park.
Free!
...Read more

Saturday, December 07, 2019

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, December 6, 2019:

- RBA
* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Dec. 6, 2019
* NYNY1912.06

- Birds mentioned
BROWN PELICAN+
BARNACLE GOOSE+
ASH-THROATED FLYCATCHER+
(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Red-necked Grebe
Razorbill
Iceland Gull
Lesser Black-backed Gull
EURASIAN WIGEON
HARLEQUIN DUCK
GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE
Cackling Goose
SANDHILL CRANE
American Woodcock
ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK
Red-headed Woodpecker
Baltimore Oriole
LAPLAND LONGSPUR
Lincoln's Sparrow
Nashville Warbler
Orange-crowned Warbler
Black-throated Blue Warbler
YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT
Wilson's Warbler
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Wood Thrush
Veery

- Transcript

If followed by (+) please submit documentation of your report electronically and use the NYSARC online submission form found at http://www.nybirds.org/NYSARC/goodreport.htm

You can also send reports and digital image files via email to nysarc44 (at)nybirds{dot}org.

If electronic submission is not possible, hardcopy reports and photos or sketches are welcome. Hardcopy documentation should be mailed to:

Gary Chapin - Secretary
NYS Avian Records Committee (NYSARC)
125 Pine Springs Drive
Ticonderoga, NY 12883

Hotline: New York City Area Rare Bird Alert
Number: (212) 979-3070

Compiler: Tom Burke
Coverage: New York City, Long Island, Westchester County

Transcriber: Ben Cacace

BEGIN TAPE

Greetings. This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, December 6th 2019 at 9pm. The highlights of today's tape are BROWN PELICAN, SANDHILL CRANE, ASH-THROATED FLYCATCHER, BARNACLE GOOSE, GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, EURASIAN WIGEON, HARLEQUIN DUCK, ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK, LAPLAND LONGSPUR, YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT and more.

Interestingly BROWN PELICANS continue locally. In Brooklyn an immature BROWN PELICAN was spotted last Saturday from Manhattan Beach Park and then on Sunday in the Narrows north of the Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge. Out in the Montauk area there have apparently been 3 young BROWN PELICANS recently. Due to deteriorating weather conditions, especially as regards to the continuing well being of these pelicans, local rehabilitators captured single pelicans on Tuesday and Wednesday. These banded birds, as it turns out, were both from Beacon Island in North Carolina's Ocracoke Inlet. A third immature pelican has so far apparently eluded capture near Lake Montauk.

Yesterday morning a SANDHILL CRANE was spotted at Mill Pond Park in Bellmore the bird seen flying off with a Great Blue Heron. This park has also recently hosted a COMMON GALLINULE at least to last Saturday and a YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT still present today in the southwest portion of the park.

Two sightings of ASH-THROATED FLYCATCHER last weekend involved one Saturday in the Riverhead area along Doctor's Path near Reeves Avenue and one Sunday at Conference House Park at the southern tip of Staten Island. Neither was reported thereafter.

Last Sunday's storm finally produced some rarer geese locally preceded on Saturday by thousands of SNOW GEESE moving overhead in large skeins. On Tuesday a BARNACLE GOOSE was spotted with Canada's on Belmont Lake State Park in Babylon and was there Wednesday as well. When not roosting here the BARNACLE historically has joined other geese feeding on golf courses or at St. Charles Cemetery to the west. Also on Tuesday a GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE was spotted on a pond off Bowman Avenue in Rye Brook this an historic site for this bird. Also present today these geese are usually off feeding on local golf courses. Another adult WHITE-FRONTED visited Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx yesterday and today in the Thomas Pelham Marsh area. Out at Schmidt's farm in Melville an adult GREATER WHITE-FRONTED and 2 accompanying apparent Canada X WHITE-FRONTED hybrids, presumably this adults offspring, had been present there for a few days. This site is east of Pine Lawn Road. Several CACKLING GEESE were reported this week.

A EURASIAN WIGEON was spotted Saturday at a traditional spot along Deep Hole Creek off New Suffolk Avenue in Mattituck and a HARLEQUIN DUCK was back off Shell Beach on Shelter Island as of Monday.

An ICELAND GULL on Staten Island Saturday was followed on Sunday by one at Battery Park on Manhattan and Brooklyn sightings at Coney Island Creek and Brooklyn Army Terminal Pier 4. Two LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS were at Robert Moses State Park Monday when a RAZORBILL was also spotted offshore there. Single RED-NECKED GREBES were noted Saturday off Coney Island Creek and Plumb Beach in Brooklyn and off Staten Island was one seen Sunday off Battery Park.

This Thursday a light phased ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK was photographed along Ocean Parkway just east of Zach's Bay. An influx of AMERICAN WOODCOCK has taken place recently due to the latest weather events. A RED-HEADED WOODPECKER was still in Central Park's north end today and a LAPLAND LONGSPUR was reported last Saturday near Icehouse Pond in the town of Montauk.

With Christmas Counts coming up rather soon more interest is turning to some lingering passerines these including recent VEERY and WOOD THRUSH, BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHER, LINCOLN'S SPARROW, BALTIMORE ORIOLE and various warblers including ORANGE-CROWNED, NASHVILLE, BLACK-THROATED BLUE and WILSON'S.

To phone in reports call Tom Burke at (914) 967-4922.

This service is sponsored by the Linnaean Society of New York and the National Audubon Society. Thank you for calling.

- End transcript
...Read more

Wednesday, December 04, 2019

Upcoming Birding and Nature Trips

Below is a list of upcoming birding and nature trips by local birding/conservation groups for Saturday, December 7, 2019 to Sunday, December 8, 2019:

Bedford Audubon Society
Saturday, December 7, 2019, 8:00am - 12:30pm
Read Sanctuary/Marshlands Conservancy
How would you like to polish your birdwatching skills with birds thatactually cooperate?
If this sounds good,then you won’t want to miss our Field Trip to ReadSanctuary/Marshlands Conservancy. We’re sure to see waterfowl which often stayput and allow for sustained observation. This is a favorite birding trip amongmembers – main targets are waterfowl and loons on the Sound, Great Horned Owls,and lingering songbirds.
Depart Bylane at 7:15am or meet us at the boathouse on Playland Lake at 8:00am.
Cost: Free
Level of difficulty: Easy-Moderate
Please register with Susan at info@bedfordaudubon.org or 914-302-9713.
See more details

**********

Brooklyn Bird Club
Saturday, December 7, 2019
Waterfowl and Waterways of Southern Nassau County
Leader: Peter Dorosh
Focus: Ducks, geese and seabirds
Car fee: $20.00
Registrar: Peter Dorosh Prosbird@aol.com (or backup Prosbird@gmail.com)
Registration Period: Nov 30th Dec 5th
Please review our trip guidelines here: http://brooklynbirdclub.org/information-registration

Saturday, December 7, 2019, 12:00pm - 2:00pm
Prospect Park: Birdwatching for Beginners
Leader: Cyrus Baty
Birdwatching for Beginners meets at the Prospect Park Audubon Center at The Boathouse at 12 noon. Bring binoculars if you have them; otherwise, binoculars are available for loan.

**********

Gateway National Recreation Areas
Saturday, December 7, 2019, 10:00am - 11:30am
Late Fall Nature Hike - Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge
Where do they go? Have you ever won-dered where all the animals go in the win-ter? Search for cardinals, yellow-rumped warblers, white-throated sparrows, and more. Learn about the birds that make their winter home here and the techniques they use to survive the cold.
View Details

**********

Great South Bay Audubon Society
Saturday, December 7, 2019, 9:00am
Montauk
Leader(s): Bob Grover (516-318-8536) Ken Thompson (631-612-8028)
Meet at Lighthouse parking lot. Latecomers can still join in the vicinity of the restaurant overlook.
Directions: Route 27 to 27A to end.
(Nature walks will be cancelled if it is raining or snowing.)

**********

Green-Wood Cemetery
Sunday, December 8, 7:15 am - 8:45 am
Birding in Peace
Before our gates open to the general public, birding expert Rob Jett leads these peaceful Sunday morning walking tours to discover the birds that make Green-Wood their home – some at least temporarily.

Just because it’s winter, doesn’t mean that there aren’t interesting birds to discover in Green-Wood. For some bird species that migrate south after the breeding season, Brooklyn is their Miami during the cold months. Spend the early morning exploring the cemetery, looking for overwintering waterfowl, nuthatches, woodpeckers, sparrows, finches and any half-hardy birds that decided to stick around. By February we’ll see some of the early north-bound birds beginning to trickle back into the area.

All walks are at a slow pace on easy to moderate terrain, but proper, close toed footwear is suggested.
$10 for members of Green-Wood and BHS / $15 for non-members
Click here for our inclement weather policy.


Green-Wood’s official birding checklist is available to pick up from the security guard at the main entrance on 25th Street or to print here. Comfortable footwear is recommended.

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Hudson River Audubon Society
Saturday, December 7, 2019
Westchester Winter Waterfowl Potpouri
Meet at 8 AM at Five-Island Park in New Rochelle. Then work our way north to other productive Westchester waterfowl locations. Look for arriving winter ducks. Gadwalls, northern shovelers, canvasback, wigeon, ring necks, scaups, mergansers, long tailed, goldeneye, bufflehead, ruddy ducks and grebes.

Hudson River Audubon Society field trips are free. Non-members/ newcomers are welcome and are encouraged to join us as members ($20 introductory offer). Bring binoculars and field guides if you have them. Some are available for loan for those who need them. Dress appropriately for the weather. For more information call Michael Bochnik at (914) 237-9331

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Linnaean Society of New York
Saturday, December 7, 2019
Rye Playland & Environs
Leader: Tom Burke
Registrar: Louise Fraza — louisefraza@yahoo.com or 212-534-6182
Registration opens: Monday, November 25
Ride: $20

Sunday, December 8, 2019
Jones Beach and Point Lookout
Leader: Richard ZainEldeen
Registrar: Kathleen Howley — kathleenhowley@gmail.com or 212-877-3170
Registration opens: Monday, November 25
Ride: $20

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New York Botanical Garden (Bronx)
Saturdays -- 11:00 a.m.
Debbie Becker leads a free bird walk at the Garden every Saturday from 11am to 12:30pm beginning at the Reflecting Pool in the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Included in All-Garden Pass
Get Tickets

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New York City Audubon Society
Saturday, December 7, 2019, 8am – 3pm
The Freshwater Ponds of Long Island's South Shore, NY
Guide: Tod Winston
Visit up to seven South Shore freshwater ponds that provide refuge to a surprising variety of wintering waterfowl—and great viewing opportunities to birders. Possible sightings include Hooded Mergansers, Green-winged Teals, Ring-necked Ducks, Northern Pintails, and Redheads. We’ll also make a short stop or two by the bay to look for loons, grebes, and sea ducks. Transport by passenger van included. Limited to 12. $100 (70) per trip
Click here to register

Sunday, December 8, 2019, 8am – 3pm
Birding Gems of Staten Island: Freshkills Park
Guide: Cliff Hagen
Come with NYC Audubon for a special opportunity to see Freshkills Park, in transition from what was once the world’s largest landfill into an expansive park. Currently closed to the general public, the Park is home to rolling grasslands, tidal marshes, successional woodlands and a freshwater pond system that host an array of breeding birds, butterflies, mammals, frogs, and turtles. Each autumn, migrant species abound as they travel along the Atlantic Flyway. Sparrows, Osprey, a collection of waterfowl, and lingering warblers seek refuge in the park. Overhead, raptors soar along the terminal moraine as they make their way south for the impending winter. Late-blooming flowers attract an assortment of butterflies and dragonflies. Transport by passenger van from Staten Island St. George Terminal included. Limited to 12 per walk. $57 (40) per walk
Click here to register

Sunday, December 8, 2019, 9:00am – 10:30am
Pelham Bay Park Bird Walks
Guide: NYC Audubon with Pelham Bay Park
September 8: Meets at Rodman’s Neck Parking Lot
September 15-December 8: Meet at Orchard Beach Parking Lot
Join us to explore some of the best birding NYC has to offer. Come discover Pelham Bay Park's diverse habitat that attracts a variety of fall migrants. No registration necessary. No limit. Free

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North Fork Audubon Society
Saturday, December 7, 2019 8:00am
Dune Road Open!
Since we couldn't do Dune Road last month due to storm damage, let's give a try in December.
Should see ducks, winter shorebirds and other good stuff!
Meet at the Riverhead Staples parking lot at 8 am. We'll carpool from there.

Please register for this trip by calling or texting Tom at 631 275-3202 or email tdamiani3@optimum.net. There is a $4 suggested donation for nonmembers

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Protectors of Pine Oak Woods
Saturday, December 7, 2019, 9:00am-11:00am
Fort Wadsworth
The Lower New York Bay and its surrounding waterways are quickly being recognized for their importance to wintering waterfowl, particularly sea ducks. As climate changes, these species may spend their winter months in the area, in larger numbers than they ever have before. Join us for a walk at Fort Wadsworth where we will look for waterfowl, gannets, and other winter specialties.
Warm clothes and gloves highly recommended as we will mostly be at a coastal locality where the wind chill can be significant.
Meet at the National Park Service Visitor Center at 220 New York Ave.
For more information email Jose Ramirez-Garofalo at jose.ramirez.garofalo@gmail.com.

Sunday, December 8, 2019, 1:00pm-3:00pm
Seaside Wildlife Nature Park
Though only 21 acres in size, the Seaside Wildlife Nature Park includes a natural beach, an open field, playgrounds and an overall relaxing environment for humans and wildlife. The walk is scheduled for an incoming tide, so participants will be able to sample the fish and invertebrate life as well as observe the potential for expansion during this hour-long stroll.
Meet at the park entrance at the end of Nelson Avenue.
For more information phone Clay Wollney at (718) 869-6327.

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Queens County Bird Club
Saturday, December 7, 2019, 7:30am – 4:30pm
Montauk
Leader: Arie Gilbert (917) 693-7178
Where: Georges Lighthouse Cafe, 1999 Montauk Point State Pkwy, Montauk, NY 11954 (map)
We will start the trip viewing from the back of the restaurant specified by the map. If you have a scope, it will be useful here. Razorbills and gannets are possible here, and you will definitely see Common Eider and scoters.
We will proceed to various birding spots in the Montauk area.
We usually end the trip with a visit to the Shinnecock Inlet and dinner at a restaurant near there.
Bring lunch.

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South Shore Audubon Society
Sunday, December 8, 2019
Norman J. Levy Park and Preserve
From the Meadowbrook Parkway, use the Merrick Road M9 east exit. Enter the Department of Sanitation entrance immediately on right (if you’re driving west on Merrick Road, make a U-turn after Central Boulevard and before the Meadowbrook Parkway). Look for signs to Levy Park and Preserve parking lot.
Directions via Google Maps

Bird walks led by a member of SSAS are conducted nearly every Sunday morning from late August through early June. Walks are open to the public and are free of charge. We especially encourage youngsters to attend.
All walks start at 9:00 A.M.
There is no walk if it rains or snows or temperature is below 25°F.
For more information or in case of questionable weather conditions, please phone Joe at 516 467-9498.


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Urban Park Rangers
Sunday, December 8, 2019
Bald Eagle Watch at Palisade Avenue and Spaulding Lane (in Riverdale Park), Bronx
1:00 p.m.–2:30 p.m.
New York City is home to an amazing abundance of wildlife. Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle.
Free!
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Saturday, November 30, 2019

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, November 29, 2019:

- RBA
* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Nov. 29, 2019
* NYNY1911.29

- Birds mentioned
THAYER'S GULL+
BROWN PELICAN+
GOLDEN-CROWNED SPARROW+
(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Red-necked Grebe
BLACK GUILLEMOT
ICELAND GULL
Lesser Black-backed Gull
GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE
TUNDRA SWAN
RED-HEADED WOODPECKER
WESTERN KINGBIRD
LAPLAND LONGSPUR
Vesper Sparrow
Lincoln's Sparrow
NORTHERN SHRIKE
White-eyed Vireo
Nashville Warbler
Black-throated Green Warbler
Ovenbird
YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT
Wilson's Warbler

Escaped: Emperor Goose

- Transcript

If followed by (+) please submit documentation of your report electronically and use the NYSARC online submission form found at http://www.nybirds.org/NYSARC/goodreport.htm

You can also send reports and digital image files via email to nysarc44 (at)nybirds{dot}org.

If electronic submission is not possible, hardcopy reports and photos or sketches are welcome. Hardcopy documentation should be mailed to:

Gary Chapin - Secretary
NYS Avian Records Committee (NYSARC)
125 Pine Springs Drive
Ticonderoga, NY 12883

Hotline: New York City Area Rare Bird Alert
Number: (212) 979-3070

Compiler: Tom Burke
Coverage: New York City, Long Island, Westchester County

Transcriber: Ben Cacace

BEGIN TAPE

Greetings. This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, November 29th 2019 at 9pm. The highlights of today's tape are GOLDEN-CROWNED SPARROW, BLACK GUILLEMOT, BROWN PELICAN, WESTERN KINGBIRD, NORTHERN SHRIKE, GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, TUNDRA SWAN, ICELAND GULL, RED-HEADED WOODPECKER, LAPLAND LONGSPUR, YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT and more.

We've received no reports of the GOLDEN-CROWNED SPARROW visiting Brookside Park in Sayville since last Monday. This park is at 59 Brook Street across from Sayville High School and the feeders are behind the park building where the GOLDEN-CROWNED and accompanying White-throated Sparrows were seen most consistently. It still might be fruitful checking there for this bird.

Last Saturday morning a winter plumaged BLACK GUILLEMOT flew into Shinnecock Inlet and then floated back out again. Unfortunately the only time it was seen.

The immature BROWN PELICAN was still present Wednesday around the inlet to Montauk Harbor often sitting along the west side of the inlet or on sand beaches just inside the inlet.

Also in the Montauk area a NORTHERN SHRIKE was seen this morning at the Theodore Roosevelt County Park on the north side of Route 27 just west of the Deep Hollow Dude Ranch.

The WESTERN KINGBIRD at Jones Beach West End was last reported last Saturday near the Coast Guard Station.

Three TUNDRA SWANS, 2 adults and a young bird, were first spotted last Saturday on the East Pond at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge and were still present today around the mid point of the pond. An immature GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE was found in a Canada Goose flock Tuesday in Dix Hills the flock frequenting a field at Half Hollow Hills High School West near the intersection of Wolf's Hill Road and Melrose Road. Vagrant geese, except for a few Cackling types have been scarce so far this fall. Though an escaped EMPEROR GOOSE in White Plains recently has raised hopes that more vagrants are on the way perhaps to be pushed down by the upcoming storm.

Last Saturday single ICELAND GULLS were at Playland Park in Rye and along the northeastern shore of Staten Island with 2 at Shinnecock Inlet Sunday when 7 LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS were also present along the Shinnecock beaches. Two LESSER BLACK-BACKEDS were also at Smith Point County Park Monday with another on with Central Park Reservoir Wednesday. A possible THAYER'S ICELAND GULL at Argyle Lake in Babylon last Saturday unfortunately got away before all salient field marks could be documented.

During the week COMMON GALLINULES were present at Mill Pond Park in Bellmore through today and on Lotus Lake in Sayville at least to Monday and a RED-NECKED GREBE was seen off Mount Loretto Unique Area on Staten Island Sunday.

An immature RED-HEADED WOODPECKER found Saturday in Central Park's north end was still present yesterday and an adult was spotted at Pelham Bay Park's Hunter Island on Tuesday.

A group of 9 LAPLAND LONGSPURS were identified Wednesday as they flew around the Riverhead sod fields off Route 105 just below Sound Avenue.

The YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT was present yesterday and today at Mill Pond in Bellmore and another continues at Marshlands Conservancy in Rye.

A VESPER SPARROW was still at the recently opened Shirley Chisholm State Park in Brooklyn last Saturday and other interesting late species have featured WHITE-EYED VIREO, LINCOLN'S SPARROW and various warblers including OVENBIRD, NASHVILLE, BLACK-THROATED GREEN and a WILSON'S lingering in Prospect Park.

To phone in reports call Tom Burke at (914) 967-4922.

This service is sponsored by the Linnaean Society of New York and the National Audubon Society. Thank you for calling.

- End transcript
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Exploring urban nature, birds, birdwatching, birding, hummingbirds, butterflies, dragonflies, bees, hawks, raptors, wildflowers, trees, mushrooms, environment, binoculars, spotting scope