Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge East Pond Shorebird Report 7-21-2013

RUFF on the right with Greater Yellowlegs
This report covers Sunday July 21st 2013 when I recorded the highest number of shorebird species to date for the East Pond with 17 in total.  The highlights of that day was the continuing RUFF and the Adult BAIRD's SANDPIPER in transition plumage.  Both these birds have not been seen since Sunday and at the end of the report I will add some notes on the changes that have occurred with the volume of birds from Sunday.  Here are the shorebird numbers as recorded on Sunday.  Note: these counts cover the entire pond often birding from South to North and back or vice versa.

Black-Belied Plover: 2
Semipalmated Plover: 14
Killdeer: 1
American Oystercatcher: 26
Spotted Sandpiper: 3
Greater Yellowlegs: 23
Lesser Yellowlegs: 59
Semipalmated Sandpiper: 1500
Western Sandpiper: 2
Least Sandpiper: 20
White-rumped Sandpiper: 1
BAIRD's SANDPIPER: 1 (molting adult - RARE for our area)
Pectoral Sandpiper: 2
Dunlin: 1
Stilt Sandpiper: 54
RUFF: 1 (Continuing bird - RARE for our area)
Short-billed Dowitcher: 1000

Pectoral Sandpiper
As of today, the shorebird numbers were still decent but there has been a noticeable exodus of birds as well as arrivals.  Birds such as the RUFF, BAIRD's and the 4 PECTORALS have not been seen since Sunday and have presumably moved on.  The Short-billed numbers continue to decrease but the Semipalmated Sandpipers have bumped back up.  A lone WESTERN WILLET that dropped in briefly on the pond on Tuesday July 23rd was new, adding to the diversity.  Juvenile SPOTTED SANDPIPERS are the only juvenile shorebirds on the pond at the moment, which is right on par with the schedule for juvenile arrivals.  As always, dress properly with knee high boots to bird the pondMake sure you have sun screen, water and insect repellent if you plan on being out on the pond for while.  Keep checking the blog for updates on shorebird movement at Jamaica Bay.

Stilt Sandpiper playing "Leap Frog"
FYI...Don't just look at the shorebirds, there are other interesting birds on the pond such as a drake eclipse Blue-winged Teal; worth a look at if you are on the pond and happen to scan the waterfowl. The young Least and Forster's Terns are also nice to look at.

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