Great Day at Jamaica Bay!

The White-rumped Sandpiper, shown here with a Semipalmated Sandpiper.

The White-rumped Sandpiper, shown here with a Semipalmated Sandpiper.


This morning I just had to get out and do something different. Last night I had read Andrew Baksh’s report from Jamaica Bay. I thought I might be able to pick up a couple of new year birds there, so I headed down in spite of a forecast of rain. The rain didn’t happen and I had a great day! There was an abundance of bird life there today. Huge numbers of ducks, waders and cormorants! I started at the south end of the east pond. I immediately came upon a few groups of shorebirds among huge flocks of ducks. Semipalmated and Black-bellied Plovers, Semipalmated and Least Sandpipers and Dunlin were all seen. As I made my way up the west side of the pond, I came upon a juvenile WESTERN SANDPIPER! I was able to get a few shots of the bird and then moved on. I was searching the many ducks for a drake Eurasian Wigeon that had been reported. Moving further along, more Dunlin were foraging when I noticed a different bird among them. It was a gorgeous juvenile WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPER! This was one of my main target birds! Fortunately, it was cooperative for photos. Moving farther up the pond, I scanned countless ducks. Green-winged Teal, Northern Shovelers, Mallards and Black Ducks all numbered in the hundreds! Blue-winged Teal were seen, about 20 of them. Ruddy Ducks and American Coot had been reported in very high numbers yesterday, but on 23 and 11 respectively were there today. I saw 6 Great Blue Herons, 20 Great Egrets and over 100 Snowy Egrets! A lone Merlin kept things jumping from time to time. I never found the Eurasian Wigeon, so I don’t think it was there today as I really scanned everything well. I only had a dozen American Wigeon, so perhaps wigeon in general had moved out. Other good finds included a Pectoral Sandpiper and two Caspian Terns! Great Day of Birding!
Three immature Long-billed Dowitchers.

Three immature Long-billed Dowitchers.


A juvenile Western Sandpiper is always a nice find!

A juvenile Western Sandpiper is always a nice find!


A closer shot of the White-rumped Sandpiper! I had forgotten how beautiful these juvenile birds are.

A closer shot of the White-rumped Sandpiper! I had forgotten how beautiful these juvenile birds are.

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5 Responses to Great Day at Jamaica Bay!

  1. Excellent day for you, John. You took the chance and it paid off. Great to see a White-rumped Sandpiper, nice job with the photos.

  2. Thanks Matt! I think I’ll head out locally tomorrow to see if we might have gotten some of your plovers here in Sullivan. It might be worth another look at Citgo Pond too. I went there yesterday, Leasts, Pecs and Lesser Yellowlegs.

  3. Kathleen Ashman says:

    Happy to hear you had such a fruitful day, John! Such beautiful birds. I always enjoy seeing your photos and reading about your adventures.

  4. Thanks Kathy! I see you had a pretty good day as well, glad you got to see all of those plovers! Always nice to hear from you, John

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