Bird Cape May Fall Festival

Tree Swallows, fall migrants foraging over Cape May Point State Park, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson.

Tree Swallows, fall migrants foraging over Cape May Point State Park, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. Photos may not be used without written permission. Please respect the wishes of all the photographers.

The beautiful fall weekend was in late October and the Cape May Fall Birding Festival hosted by the Cape May Bird Observatory (fondly know as CMBO) and The New Jersey Audubon Society was taking place in Cape May New Jersey. Hundreds of birders and nature enthusiasts of all stripes migrated to Cape May Island to partake in a wealth of bird related activities.

Early morning birders hit the morning flight at the Higbee Dike or combed the many trails at Higbee Beach State Park or Rea Farms to witness migrants dropping out of the dawn sky and dodging hawks to seek shelter in the fields and woods.

Cape May Morning Flight Dike at Higbee Beach where birders gather as the sun peaks over the horizon that begins the spectacular fall songbird migration. Cape May Fall Birding Festival, Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area, West Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Cape May Morning Flight Dike at Higbee Beach where birders gather as the sun peaks over the horizon that begins the spectacular fall songbird migration. Cape May Fall Birding Festival, Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area, West Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

There was so much to do and see in a weekend.

Palm Warbler, fall migrant, foraging on sand beach with goldenrod, Cape May Point, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson.

Palm Warbler, fall migrant, foraging on sand beach with goldenrod, Cape May Point, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson.

Others gathered on the lower morning flight platform at Higbee Beach State Park

Cape May Morning Flight Platform & Dike at Higbee Beach birders gather as the sun peaks over the horizon that begins the spectacular fall songbird migration. Cape May Fall Birding Festival, Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area, West Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Cape May Morning Flight Platform & Dike at Higbee Beach birders gather as the sun peaks over the horizon that begins the spectacular fall songbird migration. Cape May Fall Birding Festival, Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area, West Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Many birders hit the paths through the meadows and the woods as the migration spectacle unfolded. In a small clearing, along a path near the upper Higbee Beach parking lot, 6 species of sparrows were seen in one small opening in less than 10 minutes.

Cape May Fall Birding Festival had dozens of walks with expert leaders ongoing in Field #1 at the Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area, West Cape May, NJ.

Cape May Fall Birding Festival had dozens of walks with expert leaders ongoing in Field #1 at the Higbee Beach Wildlife Management Area, West Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

It was like sparrow whack-a-mole, one species would pop up and disappear, to be replaced by another one or two, with no two of the same species in sight at the same time. There were warblers, vireos, grosbeaks, and thrushes and more surprises to find too.

Bell's Vireo, vagrant, fall, Higbee Beach SP, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson.

Bell’s Vireo, vagrant, fall, Higbee Beach SP, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Information on the Cape May Fall Festival was available on line, in the New Jersey Travel Booth on the Garden State and at the registration table in the Grand Hotel.

Cape May Autumn Birding Festival Brochure at Visitor's Information Center, Garden State Parkway, New Jersey. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

Cape May Autumn Birding Festival Brochure at Visitor’s Information Center, Garden State Parkway, New Jersey. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

L. to R. David La Puma, CMBO Director; Deborah Shaw, Admin Director, NJ Audubon. Checking in registrants for the Cape May Fall Birding Festival at the Cape May Grand Hotel, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

L. to R. David La Puma, CMBO Director; Deborah Shaw, Admin Director, NJ Audubon. Checking in registrants for the Cape May Fall Birding Festival at the Cape May Grand Hotel, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A Boat-tailed Grackle displays for the visitors passing by on there way to Cape May.

Boat-tailed Grackle, male display in the rain, fall, off Ocean Drive, Wildwood, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Boat-tailed Grackle, male display in the rain, fall, off Ocean Drive, Wildwood, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Hawk watchers were drawn to the platform at Cape May Point state park.

Cape May Fall Birding Festival Cameron Cox, Official Hawk Counter at Cape May Point Hawkwatch platform, Cape May Point State Park, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson.

Cape May Fall Birding Festival Cameron Cox, Official Hawk Counter at Cape May Point Hawk watch platform, Cape May Point State Park, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson.

Expert guides lead groups and help with bird ID pointers and where to look for them.

L. Dale Rosselet, Vice President of Education, NJ Audubon; talking hawks with Cape May Fall Festival participants at the Cape May Hawk Platform, Cape May Point State Park, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson.

L. Dale Rosselet, Vice President of Education, NJ Audubon; talking hawks with Cape May Fall Birding Festival participants at the Cape May Hawk Platform, Cape May Point State Park, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson.

Later in the day the Cape May Lighthouse Hawk watch platform produced a steady stream of raptors and other assorted birds throughout the days. Many birders stopped at the platform at least once during there visit and if you were patient, you could meet every birder in Cape May sometime during the weekend.

Cooper's Hawk juv, fall migrant over Cape May Hawk Watch platform, Cape May Point S.P., West Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson.

Cooper’s Hawk juv, fall migrant over Cape May Hawk Watch platform, Cape May Point S.P., West Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Optic experts were on hand to give field demo’s and show how to use a scope with a DSLR.

Clay Taylor, Swarovski Optik North America & CMFBF Exhibitor at Cape May Hawk Watch Platform, Cape May Point State Park, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

Clay Taylor, Swarovski Optik North America & CMFBF Exhibitor at Cape May Hawk Watch Platform, Cape May Point State Park, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson.

If you dallied long enough on the platform you might run into tour operators and genuine birding celebrities.

L to R. Kevin Laughlin and Greg Miller, Wildside Nature Tours & CMFBF Exhibitor at Cape May Point Hawk Watch Platform, Cape May Point State Park, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson.

L to R. Kevin Laughlin and Greg Miller, Wildside Nature Tours & CMFBF Trade Show Exhibitor at Cape May Point Hawk Watch Platform, Cape May Point State Park, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson. All Rights Reserved

And a legend.

L. To R. Pete Dunne; Kojo Baidoo, Points out a Hawk to Pete Dunne while birdwatching at the Famous Cape May Point Hawk Watch Platform, Cape May Point State Park, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

L. To R. Pete Dunne, Author, Ambassador to Birds; Kojo Baidoo, Points out a Hawk to Pete Dunne while birdwatching at the Famous Cape May Point Hawk Watch Platform, Cape May Point State Park, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hawk banding demo under the pavilion next to the Cape May Point Hawk watch. Makes you wonder why anyone has a problem telling the large Cooper Hawk from the smaller Sharp-Shinned.

Hawkwatch Demonstration at Cape May Point Pavilion. for the Cape May Fall Festival 2015. Cape May Point State Park, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

Hawk watch Demonstration at Cape May Point Pavilion. for the Cape May Fall Festival 2015. Cape May Point State Park, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

There were organized activities for most birding areas at various times during the day, and many took advantage of them. Independent parties also were encouraged to visit various areas and detailed maps and guides were provided by CMBO/NJAudubon and at the Convention Center.

Monarch butterfly, fall migrants Cape May Point State Park, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson.

Monarch butterfly, fall migrants Cape May Point State Park, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson.

Butterfly watchers would visit meadows and parks to seek the many species, all would notice the numerous monarchs and dragonflies also on migration.

Cape May Fall Birding Festival L. to R. Kevin Karlson Photographer; Dale Rosselet, VP Education, NJ Audubon; David Lindo, Urban Birder; Vanessa Palacios. Cape May Hawk Watch Platform, Cape May Point State Park, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson

Cape May Fall Birding Festival L. to R. Kevin Karlson Photographer; Dale Rosselet, VP Education, NJ Audubon; David Lindo, Urban Birder; Vanessa Palacios. Cape May Hawk Watch Platform, Cape May Point State Park, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

And famous authors became bird guides once they were in the field.

Peter Dunne, Author, Ambassador to Birds leads a walk through the Cape May Meadows on the dunes looking towards Cape May Lighthouse. ©Townsend P. Dickinson.

Peter Dunne, Author, Ambassador to Birds leads a walk through the Cape May Meadows on the dunes looking towards Cape May Lighthouse. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

The number of organized bird adventures being offered throughout the weekend sometimes attracted a crowd of participants. One could walk the Meadows with Pete Dunn or do the Beanery or simply gaze out into Delaware Bay or the Atlantic for terns and all manner of migrating water birds by the thousands.

Forster's Terns in flight over Atlantic Ocean, fall, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson

Forster’s Terns in flight over Atlantic Ocean, fall, Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

Some would scan the ocean and bay rips to glimpse a jaeger among the terns and gulls. Southbound streams of migrant ducks, cormorants, terns and gannets were noted over the Atlantic by diligent sea watchers. One could go on a sea watching boat trip or take a tour through the marshes on a shallow water vessel guided by expert leaders.

The beauty of Cape May is that one could hit key areas, known to insiders as the Platform, Lilly Pond, Bunker Pond, The Meadows, Hidden Valley Ranch, Higbee Beach area, Rea Farms, Avalon Sea Watch, Poverty Beach, Sunset Beach and other beaches, each with a different cast of avian characters and do them well all in a single long weekend.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, fall migrant, foraging on tree at CMBO , West Cape May, NJ . ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All rights Reserved.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, fall migrant, foraging on tree at CMBO , West Cape May, NJ . ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All rights Reserved.

Sapsucker Right over the entrance door to the CMBO building near Lily Lake.

Triangle Park, retired life guard saving boat as planter, with Monarch in flight, site of Monarch Butterfly banding stations, West Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Triangle Park, retired life guard saving boat as planter, with Monarch in flight, site of Monarch Butterfly banding stations, West Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

A walk along the quiet streets of West Cape May might turn up a migrant or fifty especially if you run across a “magic tree”. You might even see a  migrant Monarch or a Dragonfly.

Cape May Warbler, Dendroica tigrina, female, fall migrant, foraging in "magic tree" West Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Cape May Warbler, Dendroica tigrina, female, fall migrant, foraging in “magic tree” West Cape May, NJ. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

The Cape May Convention Center, re-opened after an extensive rebuild, had numerous birding related exhibitors showing off their wares and promoting their causes. Optics, Travel and Tour Operators, and Conservation organizations, with others filled the hall and attracted a steady stream of visitors who jammed the isles looking at exhibits and talking to people at the displays and networking.

L. to R. Victor Emanuel, Barry Lyons, Louise Zemaitis & Michael O'Brien of VENT & CMFBF Exhibitors, Cape May Fall Birding Festival Trade Show, Convention Hall, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

L. to R. Victor Emanuel, Barry Lyons, Louise Zemaitis & Michael O’Brien of VENT & CMFBF Exhibitors, Cape May Fall Birding Festival Trade Show, Convention Hall, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

You could meet tour operators and dream of far off places.

Glenn Davis at CMBO Booth, at the Cape May Fall Birding Festival 2015 Trade Show, Convention Hall, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Dickinson/KymryGroup All Rights Reserved.

Glenn Davis at CMBO Booth, at the Cape May Fall Birding Festival 2015 Trade Show, Convention Hall, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup All Rights Reserved.

You could try out optics and get practical advice from seasoned field ornithologists.

Jonathan Wood, The Raptor Project entertains packed house & marks the return of THE BIRD SHOW at Cape May Fall Festival 2015 Trade Show, Convention Hall, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Jonathan Wood, The Raptor Project entertains packed house & marks the return of THE BIRD SHOW at Cape May Fall Festival 2015 Trade Show, Convention Hall, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

There seemed to be something for everyone, the hawk presentation was a big draw for young birders.

L. to R. Kojo Baidoo, Young Birder; Diane Louie, NJ Audubon Board Member; Kwamena Baidoo. Enjoying Cape May Fall Festival & Trade Show, Convention Hall, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

L. to R. Kojo Baidoo, Young Birder; Diane Louie, NJ Audubon Board Member; Kwamena Baidoo. Enjoying Cape May Fall Festival & Trade Show 2015, Convention Hall, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

At Congress Hall, there were bird and nature related crafts for sale, a silent action art work in a beautiful light and airy space adjacent to the exhibit hall.

CMBO Cape May Fall Festival Trade Show & Silent Auction. Convention Hall, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

CMBO Cape May Fall Festival Trade Show & Silent Auction. Convention Hall, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

A recognition of outstanding services.

R. Gretchen Whitman, NJ Audubon Sanctuary Director, Nature Center of Cape May NJ Audubon with kids from New Jersey Center for the Book at the Cape May Fall Birding Festival Trade Show, Convention Hall, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

R. Gretchen Whitman, NJ Audubon Sanctuary Director, Nature Center of Cape May NJ Audubon with kids from New Jersey Center for the Book at the Cape May Fall Birding Festival Trade Show, Convention Hall, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

New Jersey Audubon and CMBO out did it’s self for this three day festival; the evening programs of book signing & sales, networking & cocktails, and the Keynotes alone were worth the price of admissions. The overall organization was excellent, and the camaraderie was infectious.

L. to R. Jeff Bouton, Marketing Manager, Leica Sport Optics USA & CMFF Exhibitor; Lillian Armstrong, Special Events Coordinator, CMBO; David La Puma, CMBO Director. Cape May Fall Birding Festival Trade Show Convention Hall, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

L. to R. Jeff Bouton, Marketing Manager, Leica Sport Optics USA & CMFBF Trade Show Exhibitor; Lillian Armstrong, Special Events Coordinator, CMBO; David La Puma, CMBO Director. 2015 Cape May Fall Birding Festival Trade Show Convention Hall, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

There was so much to do and see in a weekend starting off with The Woedoggies, performed at the Rusty Nail for CMBO’s Cape May Fall Birding Festival Kickoff Party, in Cape May, NJ.

L.toR. Rudy Dauth, Wylie Shipman, Peter Riley of The Woedoggies, performing at the Rusty Nail for CMBO's Cape May Fall Birding Festival Kickoff Party, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

L.to R. Rudy Dauth, Wylie Shipman, Peter Riley of The Woedoggies, performing at the Rusty Nail for CMBO’s Cape May Fall Birding Festival 2015 Kickoff Party, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Books were for sale and one could meet the authors and get their books signed.

L. to R. Authors David Lindo & Michael O'Brien at the Cape May Fall Birding Festival 2015 Book signing evening, Grand Hotel, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup All Rights Reserved.

L. to R. Authors David Lindo & Michael O’Brien at the Cape May Fall Birding Festival 2015 Book signing evening, Grand Hotel, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup All Rights Reserved.

Meet famous authors.

Cape May Fall Festival Book Signings & Sales Event 2015 at the Grand Hotel, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

Cape May Fall Festival Book Signings & Sales Event 2015 at the Grand Hotel, Cape May, NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

Get more books.

L. to R. Clay and Pat Sutton, at the Cape May Fall Festival 2015 Book Signing Event, Grand Hotel, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson /KymryGroup. All Rights Reserved.

L. to R. Clay and Pat Sutton, at the Cape May Fall Festival 2015 Book Signing Event, Grand Hotel, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson /KymryGroup. All Rights Reserved.

More famous authors

L. to R. Co-Authors Kevin Karlson & Dale Rosselet at Cape May Fall Festival 2015 Book Signing Event, Grand Hotel, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup All Rights Reserved.

L. to R. Co-Authors Kevin Karlson & Dale Rosselet at the Cape May Fall Festival 2015 Book Signing Event, Grand Hotel, Cape May NJ. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/KymryGroup All Rights Reserved.

There were plenty of non-bird things to do in Cape May too. It would be impossible to ignore the beautiful beaches, Cape May Point lighthouse, stroll the boardwalk, bycle rides and the famous victorian architecture, after all Cape May Island is the oldest seashore resort in the country; and there multiple eateries with good food at all price points.

The Cape May Fall Festival was truly a memorable happening. It was not just the birds, it was the gathering of a large, diverse group of people sharing their interest in all things bird and nature, in a very nice place, at the perfect time of year. Do yourself a favor and and don’t miss the next Cape May Fall Festival. The birding and scenery wasn’t bad either.

Cape May Lighthouse, fall with gulls in surf after sunset, from Beach Avenue, Cape May, NJ ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Cape May Lighthouse, fall with gulls in surf after sunset, from Beach Avenue, Cape May, NJ ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

SCOOPS™ BONUS  interviews at the Trade show for the 2015 Cape May Fall Festival at Convention Hall.

What in world are you hanging around for? Get off your branch and fly right down and click on this link here  Cape May Fall Festival! and sign up for this years 2016 that marks the 40th Anniversary of the Cape May Bird Observatory, the Cape May Hawk watch, and the 70th Anniversary of the New Jersey Audubon Annual Fall Meeting – a three day event from October 21st to the 23rd 2016.

Check out the eatery’s in Cape May NJ ~ Click here on BirdFoodForPeople™

Looking for coverage for your next event, please contact KymryGroupMedia

Golden-crowned Kinglet, fall migrant, foraging in Pine near Cape May Hawk Watch Platform, Cape May State Park, West Cape May, NJ.©Townsend P. Dickinson.

Golden-crowned Kinglet, fall migrant, foraging in Pine near Cape May Hawk Watch Platform, Cape May State Park, West Cape May, NJ.©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved.

Posted in Bird Cape May Fall Festival, Birding News, Cape May NJ, Conservation, KymryGroup™, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Great White Pelican at Ding Darling

Great White Pelican, J.N Ding Darling NWR. February 28 - March 1, 2016. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican, J.N Ding Darling NWR. February 28 – March 1, 2016. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission. Photo may not be used without written permission.

We planned our Sanibel visit for weeks. The day we arrived an absolutely off the wall visitor from Africa also dropped in. A Great White Pelican, a denizen of the old world, with a range centered on Africa was found roosting amongst a flock of American White Pelicans in the J. N. Ding Darling National Wildlife Refuge. Local residents and bird experts Lillian and Don Stokes alerted us to this bird after it was conclusively identified by Judith Davis, a  long time birder and roving naturalist for J. N. Ding Darling NWR.

Great White Pelican, J.N Ding Darling NWR.©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

Great White Pelican, J.N Ding Darling NWR. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

This is not an easy bird to miss. It weighs approximately over 30 pounds, for reference, the Brown Pelican average weight is 8.2 pounds and the American White Pelican weighs in around 16.5 pounds. While the Great White Pelican does superficially resemble the American White Pelican, there were a number of key differences. This Great White Pelican, likely a breeding condition female, had an overall pinkish cast. The bill was multi-colored with yellow, blue and red , there was a yellowish wash on the breast and massive legs were pinkish. Most notable was a pronounced bulbous protrusion between the upper bill and crown, and the soft tissue color around the eye was large and orange.

Great White Pelican, (probable female in breeding plumage, extralimital), with American Pelican in back, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel Island, Florida. ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

Great White Pelican, (probable female in breeding plumage, extralimital), with American Pelican in back, J.N. Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel Island, Florida. ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

This was the first recorded sighting of the species in North America. It was not known how the bird got to Sanibel, speculation ranged from escaped bird from zoo or collection, ship assisted ocean transit, hurricane driven, or simply a hop across the South Atlantic like the Cattle Egret before it. The bird had no leg bands. The wing feathers were not cut. The bird was capable of feeding in the wild, sustained flight, and was able to socialize with the American White Pelicans. There were, at last report, no records of errant GWP’s from North American Zoos and other collections of exotic waterfowl.

Great White Pelican on left (from Africa) with American White Pelicans, one doing head toss, pouch display, roosting, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel, Florida. ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican on loft (from Africa) doing head toss, pouch display with American White Pelicans, roosting, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel, Florida.©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican on left (from Africa) doing head toss, pouch display with American White Pelicans, roosting, J.N. Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel, Florida.©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican on loft (from Africa) doing head toss, pouch display with American White Pelicans, roosting, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel, Florida.©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican on left (from Africa) doing head toss, pouch display with American White Pelicans, roosting, J.N. Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel, Florida.©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Is this a good species? Time and the official ornithological reviews will tell. The bird was well seen by hundreds of birders over the course of three days. It flew off mid-day on the third day and has not been seen anywhere by anyone on the public record since then. The question of legitimacy of the species as a countable bird in North America rests with the Florida Ornithological Society report and subsequent review of their findings by the American Birding Association, ABA.

Great White Pelican on left flaps wings (from Africa) with American White Pelicans, roosting, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel, Florida. ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican on right flaps wings (from Africa) with American White Pelicans, roosting, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel, Florida ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican, (probable female in breeding plumage), extralimital, with American Pelicans, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel Island, Florida. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican, (probable female in breeding plumage), extralimital, with American White Pelicans, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel Island, Florida February 28 -March 1, 2016. ©Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican, (probable female in breeding plumage), extralimital, roosting with American Pelicans, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel Island, Florida. ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican, (probable female in breeding plumage), extralimital, roosting with American Pelicans, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel Island, Florida February 28 – March 1, 2016. ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Certainly anyone who saw the bird will not soon forget it, and it sure looked and acted like a wild bird. The greatest mystery is how a 22 pound white bird with a wingspan approaching a California Condor can fly away on clear day and simply vanish. Perhaps the bird joined migrating American White Pelicans that were beginning to move north at the time, or perhaps a future search of museum and institutional records will find the specimen of the first Great White Pelican to reach North America. In the old days many a bird was collected for museum records or to control the spread of disease, I personally hope that this is not the case, however if there is a specimen, blood or tissue studies could be used to conclusively determine the origin of the bird.

Great White Pelican, (probable female in breeding plumage), extralimital, Flying off for the last time since Feb 28 after three day at J.N Ding Darling NWR on March 1, 2016. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Great White Pelican, (probable female in breeding plumage), extralimital, Flying off for the last time on March 1 , 2016 after three days at J.N Ding Darling NWR from 9am February 28 to 10am March 1, 2016. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Additional Interview with Judith Davis talking about the Great White Pelican on BirdCallsRadio Click Here: BirdCallsRadio: Judith Davis, Great White Pelican

A group of Florida birders and others gathered for a quick pose to celebrate seeing the Great White Pelican, (probable female in breeding plumage), extralimital, roosting with American Pelicans, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel Island, Florida. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

A group of wonderful Florida birders and others gathered for a quick pose to celebrate seeing the Great White Pelican, (probable female in breeding plumage), extralimital, roosting with American Pelicans, Ding Darling NWR, Sanibel Island, Florida. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved. Photo may not be used without written permission.

Posted in Birding News, Conservation, Environmental, Global Birding, Great White Pelican, Kymry Blog | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bird Food For People™ ~ Gilligan’s Restaurant

Gillian's Restaurant and Bar Historic Lewes, Delaware. Crab Cake with caesar salad & dressing, . ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

Gillian’s Restaurant and Bar Historic Lewes, Delaware. Crab Cake with caesar salad & dressing, . ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

In Historic Lewes, Delware Gillian’s Restaurant and Bar has a Crab Cake that is truly one of the best crab cakes I have ever had right inline with Old Salty’s. I choose to have mine on a bed with a caesar salad & dressing, the real McCoy of course.

Townsend went for the Crab Cake with mashed potatoes with fresh asparagus.

Crab Cake with mashed potatoes with fresh asparagusGillian's Restaurant and Bar ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

Crab Cake with mashed potatoes and fresh asparagus. Gillian’s Restaurant and Bar, Historic Lewes, Delaware. ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

Chef AJ doesn’t use any filler and it’s HUGE! We ate every scrap and refrained from licking the plate.  

134 Market Street  Lewes, DE 19958 

302-644-7230 / FAX 644-7233

OPEN TUESDAY-SUNDAY 11:00 AM – 1:00 AM

 

Posted in Bird food for people™, KymryGroup™, Travel | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

We Remember Noble Proctor

Noble Proctor, in the field having just observed a rare Northern Wheatear, late summer Allen's Meadow, Wilton, Connecticut. ©Townsend P. Dickinson All Rights Reserved.

Noble Proctor, in the field having just observed a rare Northern Wheatear, late summer Allen’s Meadow, Wilton, Connecticut.  ©Townsend P. Dickinson  All Rights Reserved. 

Noble S. Proctor Ph.D., 73, of Branford, CT, died on May 28. He was born April 10, 1942 in Derby, CT to Alfred Proctor and Ruth Baldwin Proctor. He grew up in Ansonia where he roamed the valley, initiating his lifelong love for natural history. He attended Ansonia High School and upon graduation, entered the U.S. Army. After his Army years and before starting college, he was employed by Yale University to collect materials for Protein & DNA studies for taxonomy of bird classification. He received his B.A & M.S. at Southern Connecticut State University and his Ph.D. at the University of Connecticut. He was a professor of biology for 34 years at SCSU, teaching courses in ornithology, botany, and biogeography. He was also a wildlife photographer and has written & co-authored 10 books on birds and wildlife. For over 40 years, he led wildlife tours throughout the world, visiting 90 countries. 23 safaris to East Africa; 22 springs were spent in Costa Rica and 23 trips were made to Alaska where, for 14 years in a row, he spent up to five weeks on Attu Island in search for birds that wandered to U.S. shores from Siberia. He was among a group of scientists conducting avian field research in the Soviet Union for the U.S. Forest Service and spoke at the United Nations concerning the state of the environment on a world wide scale along with Jane Goodall. An ornithologist all of his life, he amassed a lifelong birding list of over 6,000 species worldwide, 814 species in North America and his most prized list of finding 512 species of North American bird nests. Noble worked with his close friend, artist, author, photographer Roger Tory Peterson during his revision of the Eastern Field Guide to Birds. He was among the founding members establishing the Roger Tory Peterson Institute for Natural History in Jamestown, NY. His organizational memberships include; the American Ornithologists Union, The American Birding Society, CT Botanical Society, CT Butter Fly Association, and member of the New Haven Bird Club for 46 years. His many awards include; Outstanding Professor of the Year (SCSU), Connecticut Environmentalist Award, Outstanding Conservationist Award from the CT Botanical Society, CT Ornithological Association Mabel Osgood Wright Award in 2002 and in 2013 the American Birding Association’s Roger Tory Peterson Award.

He is survived by his wife Carolyn George Proctor of 43 years, his sons Adam Proctor (Courtney) of Nebraska, Eric Proctor (Amy) of New Hampshire, and his grandchildren Braxton and Alexis Proctor. He is also survived by his dear friend and longtime field companion Margaret Ardwin, his brother Alfred Proctor Jr., his many loving members of the George family and nieces and nephews.

A memorial gathering in remembrance honoring Noble S. Proctor will be held on Tuesday June 9th from 6:30-9:00pm in the third floor auditorium of the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History (170 Whitney Ave., New Haven, CT).  Directions  and  Parking is available in the museum lot. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Roger Tory Peterson Institute (311 Curtis St., Jamestown NY 14701). Cards of condolences can also be sent to his wife Carolyn and sons Adam and Eric and their families at 43 Church St, Branford CT 06405.

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Happy Easter 2015

Happy Easter to all our Family and Friends!

Mardi & Townsend Dickinson

Cottontail Rabbit, juvenile, residental backyard. @Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved. wwwkymrygroup.com

Cottontail Rabbit, juvenile, residental backyard. @Townsend P. Dickinson. All Rights Reserved. wwwkymrygroup.com

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Bird Food For People™ ~ Kozy Corners Restaurant

Yes, You guess it this is another great place NW Ohio to stop in before the day begins or ends with birdwatching, photography or just plan need some good family cooked food.

Kozy Corners Family Restaurant. Oak Harbor, OH. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

Kozy Corners Family Restaurant. Oak Harbor, OH. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

To top it off  this place has become more famous since President Obama stopped in on July 5, 2012 for a hamburger, fries, iced tea and strawberry pie.

 

Kozy Corners Family Restaurant. Oak Harbor, OH. ©Mardi Welch Dickinson/ KymryGroup™ All Rights Reserved.

 Click on Directions AND additional Bird Food For People™ eateries

 

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Roland Clement Remembered

newhavenregister_clementroland_20150322.jpgx

CLEMENT, ROLAND C. Roland C. Clement, 102, died in his Hamden, CT home on March 21, 2015. Loving father of Charles (wife, Rosa), Connie, Alison Lawrence (husband, John Lawrence); grandfather of Vanessa (partner, John Rooks), Lorena, Bronwyn; great grandfather of Nelson & Regina; brother of Gerard; uncle to nieces & nephews. Predeceased by beloved wife, Muriel (nee Crowly), parents Germain & Angelina (nee Desjardins) Clément, and five siblings.

Roland became hooked on birds as a boy upon seeing a warbler eye-to-eye. Best known as VP & ecologist at National Audubon Society, Roland was a champion to curtail use of DDT & pesticides & innovate endangered bird conservation.

Roland was a fellow at Yale, a catalyst in founding the Environmental Defense Fund & chaired numerous advisory committees & organizations, including Norwalk’s Planning & Zoning Commission, Connecticut Audubon & the first environmental advisory committee to the Army Corps of Engineers.

The family expresses deep appreciation to the staff of Larson Place & Vitas Hospice. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to an environmental or world changing charity of your choice 

*Nearby friends are invited to come to a Celebration of life for Roland C. Clement to be held  at Atria Larson Place, in the Quinnipiac Room, 1450 Whitney Av, Hamden, CT 06517  on Tuesday, March 24, at 4 p.m. http://www.atriaseniorliving.com/retirement-communities/atria-larson-place-hamden-ct/

Friends who are further afield, please send Connie Clement and family with reminiscences  by email to share at this event or afterwards. clementonwards@rogers.com

A Note below from Roland’s Daughter, Connie.

It is with great sadness that I write to inform you that my loving father, Roland, passed away last evening March at the age of 102 in his Hamden home. Roland died comfortably with daughters Alison and myself and granddaughters Vanessa and Bronwyn with him this week. He benefited from 4 days of superb hospice care. Please share this news and the invitation with others you think would appreciate knowing. (Because our celebration /memorial is taking place so quickly, we hope you will help spread the news.)  Roland’s daughter, Connie Clement

Additional detailed information about the late Mr. Roland C. Clement and the exstordinary life and legacy he did to improve the natural world.
http://collections.conncoll.edu/clement/

Here are several Newspapers of ROLAND C. CLEMENT Obituary.

New Haven Register: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nhregister/obituary.aspx?n=roland-c-clement&pid=174460131

The Hour Newspaper: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/thehour/obituary.aspx?n=roland-clement&pid=174461292

 

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Oppose State Lands Giveaway – State Parks at Risk!

 

Audubon Connecticut

Contacts: Sandy Breslin sbreslin@audubon.org  203/804-0488, Patrick Comins pcomins@audubon.org 860/977-4469

Oppose State Lands Giveaway – State Parks at Risk!

State lawmakers have released the Annual Conveyance Bill (House Bill 6998) and – once again – they are proposing to transfer portions of our State Parks and Wildlife Management Areas to municipal and private uses.  The process will kick off with a public hearing before the Government Administration and Elections Committee (GAE) this Monday (3/16) starting at 1 PM.  

WE NEED YOUR HELP OPPOSING THE BAD PROVISIONS OF THIS BILL!  

Since the Haddam Land Swap, Audubon Connecticut has been working with partners at the CT Land Conservation Council, CT Forest and Park Association, Rivers Alliance, Sierra Club and The Nature Conservancy to strengthen protections for state conservation lands. We’ve made progress with successful passage of Public Acts 12-152 in 2012 and 14-169 last year, but this year with the state facing deep budget cuts, lawmakers are proposing some shocking giveaways of state conservation land including portions of Silver Sands State Park, Centennial Watershed Forest State Park, as well as two parcels for the benefit of private sand and gravel mining!

PLEASE TAKE A MOMENT TO SIGN OUR PETITION AND SEND A BRIEF MESSAGE TO MEMBERS OF THE GAE COMMITTEE OPPOSING THIS BILL!

Sign the Petition opposing this Bill: https://works.audubon.org/petition/speak-out-against-give-away-state-lands-silver-sands-and-centennial-forest-parks-risk

Here is some additional information:

Alert sent by CT Forest and Park Association: http://campaign.r20.constantcontact.com/render?ca=cfd5efff-399b-4e87-8cbd-e1eb89201505&c=84a974c0-33fc-11e3-9f13-d4ae52754b78&ch=85afc130-33fc-11e3-a0a0-d4ae52754b78

Alert sent by Rivers Alliance with more detail on all sections of the bill: http://us7.campaign-archive1.com/ u=820426c5ff0b6a2ae445c28ee&id=1487e96a93&e=fc52d1efae

Audubon will send an alert on Monday with a link that will allow you to email directly to your local lawmakers – they are the most important people who need to hear from you on this issue!

In the meantime, please submit a short statement to the GAE Committee on or before Monday (3/16) OPPOSING all transfers of state conservation land without appropriate review of their ecological value and an evaluation of alternatives, but especially the proposals for Silver Sands (Section 3), the Centennial Watershed Forest (Section 8), and mining in Killingly/Plainfield and Canterbury/Brooklyn (Sections 15, 16). The address is   GAEtestimony@cga.ct.gov

Audubon Connecticut, the state office of the National Audubon Society with over 10,000 members in the state, works to protect birds, other wildlife, and their habitats through education, research, conservation, and legislative advocacy.

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