Observation start time: 11:00:00
Observation end time: 19:30:00
Total observation time: 8.5 hours
Official Counter: Larry Lewis
DELAWARE NATURE SOCIETY’S SOUTHERN CHESTER COUNTY KITE & SHOREBIRD WATCH AT
BUCKTOE CREEK PRESERVE
Visitors (20): Jerry Jeffers (plus 2), Susan Jeffers, Mike Defina, Chad
Hutchinson, Anne Oldach, Margretta Brokaw, Poly Brokaw, Dennis Davis, Sue
McLaughlin, Howard Campbell, Fran DeMillion, Patricia Jacobs, Deb
Kirchdoerfer, Elaine Kirk, Cindy Wilson, Laura Barnes, Jim Balint.
Thanks everyone, for coming to beautiful Bucktoe Creek Preserve Kite &
----“Raptors” seen, but deemed not to be migrating: 4-Red-tailed Hawk, and
numerous Black (10) and Turkey Vultures (30).
----“BUCKTOE BIRD BLOG” (BBB) - (Comments on the events & “feel” of the day
– read on, if you dare) We see birds, many of them hawks; encounter other
wildlife; discuss plants; while striving to laugh and have FUN with it all!
Notes on the raptors will be here, other birds and wildlife we notice or
discuss, and humorous (I hope) stories and anecdotes. This isn’t brain
surgery. Trust me, I know about that. I’ve already been “dead” once (it’s
overrated). So, you WILL have to forgive me, but I AM going to have the
ultimate fun with what remains of this life!
TODAY’S ‘BBB:’ ---“Darkness Descends”---
“The Early Bird Blog’s” daily word is “beacon.” Play along with me…how
would you define it? Let’s see how close you are. For my part, I always
confuse this word in what’s left of my mind, with “beckon.” But that’s a
story for another day. I finally settled upon it meaning a light directing
a course; as in a lighthouse. But how close was I? “One-Look” - my source
for all my words - says it means a fire or light set up in prominent
position as a warning, signal, guide, or celebration. This noun has
English roots. How close were you to the exact phrasing of the definition?
We love words…do you? Choose the right one, use it in the right way and
it can say so much for you. While certainly if you don’t, it can cause so
much harm. Feel free to suggest your favorite.
“The Watch” day: June 6 – Our final day began with hope, but the realism
that we had simply missed the bulk of Kites and shorebirds this season,
moved incipiently into my thoughts. Dennis jokingly suggested that the
bonfire, once ignited, might act as a beckon for the shorebirds. I wish,
but they gave us “the slip” this day and much of this year’s watch.
Chad & Mike arrived, this time packing “Coastal Evacuation“ beer, a Cape
may IPA, claiming it was for shorebird evacuation, not a prediction of
intensely bad weather coming our way that would cause such an evacuation.
Seriously, who names these beers!?!? Nice touch, guys! I think we need to
open our own brewery. I would love the job of naming them. Now, who could
we get for quality control? Any ideas, MIKE? Taste tester, CHAD??
Sue arrived with crackers and cheese (see how I changed that up on you –
not the reverse – I’m all about keeping if fresh, my friends). Thanks Sue,
it was delicious. You know, I believe I’ve heard it said somewhere that
gifts of food and beverages are not only welcomed, but to be encouraged
here at Bucktoe. I’m not sure, though. I’ll look into it and get back to
Our bonfire was fantastic with many keeping company within its warm glow.
I beckoned several people over for pictures around the fire pit. Greg
manned the grill and dispersed hot dogs. Many brought food and drink,
there was a sparkling, bubbly, adult beverage of some sort floating around,
brought by Elaine. There were pizzas, crackers, cheeses, wine, and other
edibles and drinkables scattered about. And to all those bringing food and
drink, I must “admonish” you that offerings of food and drink are not only
welcomed, but to be encouraged here at beautiful Bucktoe Creek Preserve. I
won’t be back on site until mid-August for the beginning of the Nighthawk
Watch and the Hawk Watch which follows, so hold your offerings until then.
That is, unless you come on one of my other walks or trips I’ll be
scheduling. Then, by all means, feel free to “offer!” Thanks, guys – you
Better birds among our 54 species were: Great Blue Heron, Yellow-breasted
Chat, and Blue Grosbeaks.
Thanks for your comments about ‘the Blog,’ Jerry & Patricia.
Now, a brief “Watch Recap:” What a strange year it was. In many ways very
disappointing, but as I am want to say, there is no great or good year,
without poor or bad years providing contrast. Well, this was a “contrast
year.” We set lows for Mississippi Kites, with only two – although they
were fantastic looks. And the shorebirds only showed up on four evenings –
this year many were very late in the evening and distant, going
unidentified. I believe most left later in the day on one of the VERY MANY
bad weather days we had, passing overhead unobserved after darkness had
We missed identifying Ruddy Turnstones and Red Knots for the first time
since beginning this event. We did see Dunlin, Black-bellied Plovers,
Sanderlings, and record numbers of Whimbrels came by – approx.. 630, though
a bit early for our official “Whimbrel Day.” We did get an Olive-sided
Flycatcher for our event, as we always do. As for Kites and Shorebirds,
we’ll “hit it” better next year – I mean, now that we HAVE CONTRAST!
----My thanks to Delaware Nature Society, and especially, to the Brokaws,
for their incredible support and gracious generosity in opening their
property to the public for this watch, and oh, so very much more!
----ADDITIONAL BIRD HIGHLIGHTS: Shorebirds: none.
3-Great Blue Heron, 2-Willow Flycatcher, 2-Yellow-breasted Chat, 2-Blue
----OTHER WILDLIFE NOTED: Butterflies (4): Cabbage White, Eastern Tiger
Swallowtail, Eastern Tailed Blue, Variegated Fritillary. Dragonflies (1):
Green Darner. Reptiles & Amphibians (0). Mammals (0).
----EBNT’s “Walk with Nature” ™ Program Daily Tally with our Fitbits:
This is a stationary watch, but if I stay stationary too long, I might tend
to “bulk up.” Besides, I am ever so fortunate to be walking unaided, at
all! Therefore, I keep moving (if you’ve been here, then you know that I
pace endlessly….) - my Fitbit thanks me and its part of my “Walk with
Nature” program. So, below are MY results at the watch for the day. Your
totals could all be zero, if you choose to sit and relax. You are
certainly welcome to take it easy….I simply choose not to, affording me a
panoramic view of our entire sky and a bit of exercise. So come join our
“Walk with Nature!” ™ Anyway, just for fun, here are my numbers at the site
for today (join me, if you wish): Miles: 8.2; Steps: 19,228; Floors: 26.
----“SEASON’S BIRD SPECIES LIST” – we at Bucktoe are not just a Kite &
Shorebird watch, but conduct a migration tally from the site. We include
it here, from time to time (about once a week), to let you know what else
we’re seeing here at the Bucktoe Watch. Our tally board, on site, will
feature an approximation (very rough, best “guestimate,” – searching for
Kites and migrating shorebirds, must remain our primary focus) for totals
of each species seen for “The Watch” year.
TOTAL SPECIES – Identified from watch site: today: 54; this season: 90
NEW SPECIES ADDED TODAY TO THIS YEAR’S “WATCH SPECIES LIST (0):” none.
It's all over for this season, folks. Come join us for the Nighthawk Watch
beginning on August 23, followed by the Bucktoe Hawk Watch beginning Sept.
1, running thru November 30.
This report is being sent individually to participants and people deemed to
be interested parties. If you wish off the list, kindly notify me and you
will be removed. However, this one mailing list is how I notify every one
of our events, our walk schedule, tours and rare birds.
The Kite & Shorebird Watch at Bucktoe Creek Preserve is sponsored by
Delaware Nature Society (DNS) and the Brokaw family. Please contact us at
<earlybirdtours...> with questions or comments.
Report submitted by Larry Lewis (<earlybirdtours...>)
High open meadow near Red Clay Creek
Directions to site:
From Kennett Square, PA (in southern Chester County):
Take Union Street south out of town. This becomes Kaolin Road. Make a right
onto Hillendale Road. Proceed about 1.5 miles to Sharp Road and make a
left. At the second hilltop on Sharp Road, the entrance is on the left
across from Candlewyck development. (432 Sharp Rd.) Upon entering driveway,
make a right on gravel road opposite first driveway you see on left. Follow
gravel road (and the "Hawk Watch" signs for about 1/2 mile to the pavilion
on the left and the parking area in the grass to the right.