And so it begins!

One of four Hooded Warblers singing on the Cold Spring Trail this morning.

Things have started to happen, Fall migration has begun! Yesterday while sitting on the dock at the lake, two adult Herring Gulls flew past, spiraled upward and headed south over the ridge toward the Bashakill. I don’t think we have any records for Herring Gull in July, but there they were. This morning, I stopped at Apollo Plaza on my way to the landfill. I was thinking I might yet get a photo of the Spotted Sandpiper chicks that have eluded me all season, but no luck. What I did find was another fall migrant. A worn adult LEAST SANDPIPER was among the Killdeer at the pond. We do get them as early as the first week of July, but not too often. Also, I don’t know if anyone has noticed, but Baltimore Orioles have vanished in the night. I haven’t had one in nearly ten days, and if you review the reports, there is one here and there. They will increase again as the season progresses and more northerly birds move south. Besides that, I hiked into the Neversink Gorge this morning from the Cold Spring Road Access. It was a beautiful hike with lots of birds. Most of them are feeding young, perhaps their second clutch. I was pleased to find four singing male HOODED WARBLERS here. This has always been a good spot for them, and it continues to be. It is going to be interesting to see how migration progresses this fall. It seems to me that the birds have once again had an excellent breeding season and many species are done already. If that is the case, I wonder if we’ll see some species, like shorebirds, earlier than normal. We’ll have to just wait and see.

The first southbound migrant shorebird in the county this fall, a Least Sandpiper.

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