Date: 9/15/20 2:55 am From: Andrew Baksh <birdingdude...> Subject: [nysbirds-l] Jamaica Bay East Pond Report 9-14-20
Shorebird numbers have dipped on the East Pond. Today, the peep numbers were definitely much lower than in previous visits. I could not pull out any Westerns from South to North but came across several large billed SESAs that presented a good study sample.
As expected, the peep numbers were dominated by Semipalmated Sandpipers with a handful of Least Sandpipers.
Stilt Sandpipers were again favoring the Northend with a total of 11 counted. Lesser Yellowlegs continue in very good numbers, mostly juveniles, with most of them up North as well. I picked up my first juvenile White-rumped Sandpiper of the season, counting 3 in total; the other 2 were adults.
Duckage numbers have exploded on the pond with an incredible number of Blue-winged Teals (BWTE), Green-winged Teals and Northern Shovelers. For example, I counted just under a hundred BWTEs prior to the Raunt and did rough estimates for the rest of the schelp, ending up with nearly 300 in total. Many of the Blue-winged Teals were stacked up against the Phragmites on the west side of the pond with many Green-winged Teals, whose numbers have also increased.
Of the duck species, Northern Shovelers were the ones that saw a massive jump. I roughly estimated about 600 on the pond and I was being conservative.
Of the duckage, the highlight was a drake Eurasian Wigeon in eclipse plumage. Observed first in Sora corner on the south end and then again midway up the pond.
The two juvenile Peregrine Falcons continue to wreak havoc on the pond. Many of the shorebirds have adapted the strategy of retreating into the Phragmites but the Peregrines are unto to that and they team up to flush and pick off the ones that fall into the trap.
They execute the plan as, one bird would make a sudden dive near where they suspect birds might have retreated. Those who held their nerve stayed but there are always a few that panic and take to the skies. That is where the other rascal comes in, swooping in for the kill. Thankfully they missed the few times I watched them.
One other item of note on the pond. I felt the water level was higher than it was last Monday. I did not think we had that much rain and I am wondering about back flow especially with the North winds yesterday. It’s something I will look into as I continue to push for a working solution to the drainage issues we have had with the East Pond.
I hope everyone stays safe and enjoying the fall birds as best as you can given the circumstances. Remember to check in on each other from time to time.
"I prefer to be true to myself, even at the hazard of incurring the ridicule of others, rather than to be false, and to incur my own abhorrence." ~ Frederick Douglass
風 Swift as the wind
林 Quiet as the forest
火 Conquer like the fire
山 Steady as the mountain
Sun Tzu The Art of War
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