Date: 1/1/19 7:35 pm
From: William Hohenstein via VA-bird <va-bird...>
Subject: [VA-bird] Chincoteague and Cape Charles CBC -- Bar Tailed Godwit and Ipswich Sparrows
Hi folks, Sorry about the long post... Several interesting things to
cover.... and two flickr albums linked.

I spent the post-Christmas through New Year's day at Chincoteague and
participated in two CBCs (Chincoteague and Cape Charles).

For those headed down -- the Chincoteague Refuge is open but facilities are
closed. Park Police still patrol and the automatic gate on the Wildlife
Loop still functions.

Main highlights:

A Bar Tailed Godwit was seen on 12/31 and 1/1. In the flats of Tom's Cove
South of the South lot and behind the South Lot. I observed it on four
separate occasions. This morning a couple had brought their Labrador
Retriever out to the beach and it was running wild South of the lots,
chasing shorebirds including the godwit -- not great. I'm hoping the Park
Police gave them a good talking to....

Despite this, the godwit was found later feeding carefree with some
willets. One thing to note, I did not see the Bar Tailed associating
with the Marbled Godwits -- rather each time I saw it, it was with willets
or dunlin. Also, I never saw it in Swan's Cove - only in Tom's Cove.
Photos and videos of the godwit are here:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/73831614@N00/albums/72157705230723354

Ipswich Sparrows: My son Tyler and I spent some time looking for Ipswich
Savannah Sparrows. There is a banding project underway. on 12/31 and 1/1
we found 9 including 7 (possibly 8) banded ones behind the south parking
lot. Interestingly, I did not see any Ipswich during the CBC in the dunes
further up the beach. Virtually all of the ones we found were in the areas
behind the South lot.
Photos and videos here:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/73831614@N00/albums/72157677214295238

The Chincoteague CBC was held on 12/29. I covered section 3b between the
C Dike and North Wash Flats. I managed to see 62 species including Merlin,
Common Goldeneye, and BW Teal. Lots and lots of Yellow Rumped Warblers. I
ended up walking the length (35,470 steps -- quite a day. My penance for
missing the DC CBC -- Sorry Larry).

I had the pleasure to join Teta Kain the next day to cover the South
Townsend Section of the Cape Charles CBC. I woke up early and traveled the
70 miles down to Stingrays before sunup. Teta and I found 50 species in
our little slice of heaven. I owe Teta our tally sheet but gave my only
copy to Harry Armstead. I'll track it down for you.
Highlights included Hermit Thrush, Tree Swallow, an Orange Crowned Warbler
and Western Sandpiper.

That is all for now.. Happy New Year.

Bill
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