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Οκτώβριος 15, 2021

Updates from Turkey Point Morning Flight Count – 10/05/2021

Observations from counter Daniel Irons - View updates on MBP's Special Projects' blog webiste!


A good cold front moved through our area on September 28th making for strong, diverse flights the following few days.

Northern Flicker © Daniel Irons

The 29th gave us our first real taste of late fall warblers with the first push of Yellow-rumped warblers, 78 were counted that morning.

Yellow-rumped Warbler © Daniel Irons

There was also a noticeable increase in Blackpoll Warblers with 106 counted. While Blackpolls continue to move in numbers throughout October, their peak flight window in MD is Late September and early October. The peak count so far at Turkey Point occurred on September 30th with 110 counted. The season total is currently 1,122.

Blackpoll Warbler © Daniel Irons

The 29th also brought peak flights of Tennessee and Nashville Warblers. 27 Tennessees were counted, the season total for this species is now at 168.

Tennessee Warbler © Daniel Irons

10 Nashville Warblers were also tallied on the 29th, the season total is now 50.

Nashville Warbler © Daniel Irons

Black-throated Green Warblers peaked the following day with 17 tallied on the 30th.

Black-throated Green © Daniel Irons

This Western Kingbird was another highlight from the 29th. While an annual stray to the east, they are quite rare away from the immediate coast.

Western Kingbird © Daniel Irons

Good numbers of woodpeckers are now passing over Turkey Point on a daily basis. Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers are steadily moving south into our area, the first arrived on September 20th and the peak count so far this season was 9 on October 1st.

Yellow-bellied Sapsucker © Daniel Irons

Blue Jays are on the move this time of year as well with big flocks circling over Turkey Point on an almost daily basis. The peak Blue Jay flight so far this season was 397 counted on September 25th.

Blue Jay © Daniel Irons

Hawk migration has really picked up at Turkey Point over the last couple weeks with the cooler temps and some northerly winds. On September 30th 106 Sharp-shinned Hawks were counted flying south over the point.

Sharp-shinned Hawk © Daniel Irons

On the 30th we also saw the season's peak flight of Broad-winged Hawks with 101 counted throughout the morning.

Broad-winged Hawk © Daniel Irons

A variety of other raptors are moving through too as we approach the peak season for raptor migration. Good numbers of American Kestrels, Merlins, Peregrine Falcons and Northern Harriers are streaming past.

Northern Harrier © Daniel Irons

Lately we’ve been stuck in a couple weeks of dull weather with no significant cold fronts. However, it hasn’t been all bad since we had some interesting flights and cool weather-related birds from the point including a flock of 33 American Golden Plovers on October 9th. This Sunday the tables should turn with the big cold front forecasted to blast through Saturday. Sunday morning should be a good one, can’t wait!

Thanks for reading!

Daniel

Visit MBP's Turkey Point Bird Count project page for more information and view updates on MBP's Special Projects' blog website.

Αναρτήθηκε στις Οκτώβριος 15, 2021 1206 ΠΜ από jacquelinepalacios jacquelinepalacios | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Σεπτέμβριος 26, 2021

Updates from Turkey Point Morning Flight Count - 9/19/2021

Observations from counter Daniel Irons - View updates on MBP's Special Projects' blog webiste!


It was a great two weeks at Turkey Point with several highlights and some solid flights.

Cape May Warbler © Daniel Irons

Temps are finally cooling down and leaves are starting to change; it’s really starting to feel like fall at the point. Several late-season species are arriving as well, this makes me look forward to what’s to come in October.

September 7th brought a nice diverse flight after a small cold front the previous evening. A fair push of Northern Parulas and American Redstarts was noted with 49 Parulas and 39 Redstarts counted. The highlight of the morning was the season’s first Connecticut Warbler.

Connecticut Warbler © Daniel Irons

The 8th also brought a fair diverse flight including our first Summer Tanager. The highlight of the morning was the season’s only Golden-winged Warbler.

Golden-winged Warbler © Daniel Irons

A strong cold front on the 9th sent temps into the 50s and set up a strong flight on the morning of September 10th. The stiff northwest winds brought in a strong push of Cape May Warblers. It was the most abundant species at the Point all morning. 273 Cape Mays were counted flying by the Point, a new high count for the state of MD. So far in the month of September, we’ve counted 711 Cape May Warblers bringing our season total to 813.

Cape May Warbler © Daniel Irons

The following day provided another good flight that included 45 Cape May Warblers and the second Olive-sided Flycatcher of the season.

Olive-sided Flycatcher © Daniel Irons

September 14th brought our first Red-breasted Nuthatch of the season. A total of 11 have been counted at the Point. This species will likely push south in small numbers this fall and winter, but nowhere near in the numbers they did last year.

Red-breasted Nuthatch © Daniel Irons

September 19th was another solid morning with a few notable counts of warblers and the season’s first Philadelphia Vireo. The first influx of Blackpoll Warblers was noted with 13 counted. Northern Parulas also showed well with 40 counted. Parula numbers have picked up in the last two weeks as we are now in the peak window for them moving south through our area. We’ve counted 504 Northern Parulas so far this season, 458 of those have been in September.

Northern Parula © Daniel Irons

We also saw a noticeable increase in Northern flickers on the 19th with 23 counted. Numbers of Flickers should pick up as we get closer to their peak flight season in early October.

Northern Flicker © Daniel Irons

Red-headed Woodpeckers are also currently moving through our area and Turkey Point is a great spot to see them in active migration. Since the first arrived at the point on Aug 31st, 36 have been counted.

Red-headed Woodpecker © Daniel Irons

The next couple weeks look promising with lots of northerly winds and a few strong cold fronts. With October just around the corner, many of the late-season migrants and some winter residents should be showing up.

Thanks for reading!

Daniel

Visit MBP's Turkey Point Bird Count project page for more information and view updates on MBP's Special Projects' blog website.

Αναρτήθηκε στις Σεπτέμβριος 26, 2021 0629 ΜΜ από jacquelinepalacios jacquelinepalacios | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Σεπτέμβριος 09, 2021

Updates from Turkey Point Morning Flight Count - 9/05/2021

Observations from counter Daniel Irons


With early September upon us, peak warbler migration is in full swing at Turkey Point.

Eastern Kingbird © Daniel Irons

Since the beginning of the month there’s been a few solid cold fronts, plenty of favorable winds, and some good flights. Before we take a look at the first week in September, it’s worth looking back at a few notables from the last week of August.

The last week in August was mostly hot and humid with light winds primarily from the south. A few days with light north winds produced some sparse, diverse flights, and several new arrivals for the fall. August 24th was a perfect example of that with 13 species of warblers counted including the season’s first Black-throated Green and Black-throated Blue Warblers.

Black-throated Blue Warbler © Daniel Irons

Additionally, two Yellow-rumped Warblers were noted. It is not usual for Yellow-rumps to move through until late September, but a small number of worn and molting adults trickle through starting in late August.

Yellow-rumped Warbler © Daniel Irons

It turns out Turkey Point isn’t just good for bird migration, but also dragonfly migration. The numbers of dragonflies flying by the Point picked up in late August and have continued into September. Both Wandering and Spot-winged Gliders are on the move along with Common Green Darners and Black Saddlebags. On August 27th there was a notable push of Spot-winged Gliders with 46 counted in a morning. To date, we’ve counted a total of 60 Spot-winged Gliders, 47 Wandering Gliders, 102 Common Green Darners, and 55 Black saddlebags.

Spot-winged Glider © Daniel Irons

Wandering Glider © Daniel Irons

Black Saddlebags © Daniel Irons

September kicked off with a strong cold front following the passage of tropical storm Ida. September 1st and 2nd were slow since it took a couple days for the rain and remnants of Ida to clear north of here. But once it did, the floodgates opened and we had a strong flight on the 3rd. Over 1,000 individuals of 63 species were counted in active migration, 18 of those species being warblers. 25 Tennessee Warblers, 73 Cape May Warblers, 13 Bay-breasted Warblers, and 28 Blackburnian Warblers were the notable counts for the morning.

Here is one of the 28 Blackburnian Warblers that zipped by the Point on September 3rd.

Blackburnian Warbler © Daniel Irons

The number of Cape May Warblers during this fall, in general, has been pretty impressive, especially for this early in the season. To date, we’ve counted 295 flying past Turkey Point.

Cape May Warbler © Daniel Irons

Bay-breasted Warblers also made their first showing of the fall at the Point on the 3rd.

Bay-breasted Warbler © Daniel Irons

The colder temps and northerly winds got some raptors moving in on the last week as well. Broad-winged Hawks, American Kestrels, and Merlins have all been making appearances at the Point.

Broad-winged Hawk © Daniel Irons

It’s looking like another great week coming up with cooler temps and some northerly winds. A good cold front is scheduled to pass through on Thursday, so Friday morning should be another strong flight at the Point.

Come Visit Us!

Daniel

Visit MBP's Turkey Point Bird Count project page for more information.

Αναρτήθηκε στις Σεπτέμβριος 09, 2021 0249 ΠΜ από jacquelinepalacios jacquelinepalacios | 2σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Αύγουστος 26, 2021

Updates from Turkey Point Morning Flight Count - 8/22/2021

Observations from counter Daniel Irons


This past week was relatively slow compared to earlier weeks in August, but there were still some solid days with a few new arrivals.

American Redstart © Daniel Irons

Temps were warm with winds primarily out of the southeast and southwest, with the exception of Friday and Saturday when a small cold front moved through the area followed by northeast winds.

Cape May Warblers continue to move through the area in good numbers with 16 counted over the week, typically there aren’t too many around in mid-August.

Cape May Warbler © Daniel Irons

The first Blue-winged Warbler was noted on the 16th with a total of three counted throughout the week.

Blue-winged Warbler © Daniel Irons

Numbers of Blue-gray Gnatcatchers are increasing at the Point. 98 were tallied on the 18th, a new peak count for the season.

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher © Daniel Irons

Bank Swallows appear to be moving in good numbers. 303 were counted heading south from the Point this week.

Bank Swallows © Daniel Irons

Winds shifted northerly late Thursday and a slight cold front passed early Friday with heavy rain following through the day. There was a slight pulse of migrants trying to move Friday morning but the rain shut down most of the activity. The rain cleared late Friday and that along with the light northeast winds triggered a nice push overnight into Saturday morning.

11 species of warblers were counted Saturday morning including the season’s first Magnolia Warblers.

Magnolia Warblers © Daniel Irons

Next week looks hot and humid, but with light winds mostly out of the north. That should bring some new migrants into the area, plus if the pattern holds there might be a small cold front late in the week.

Thanks for reading!

Daniel

Visit MBP's Turkey Point Bird Count project page for more information.

Αναρτήθηκε στις Αύγουστος 26, 2021 1026 ΜΜ από jacquelinepalacios jacquelinepalacios | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Αύγουστος 23, 2021

Updates from Turkey Point Morning Flight Count - 8/15/2021

Observations from counter Daniel Irons


The first couple weeks of the Turkey Point Count are off to a good start.

Juvenile Eastern Bluebird © Daniel Irons

The first week of August was cool with primarily light northerly and southerly winds. There was a steady trickle of migrants moving through including many Orchard Orioles, Yellow Warblers, American Redstarts, and a few Northern and Louisiana Waterthrushes.

Orchard Orioles made a strong showing in the first week of the count, with 106 counted between August 1st and 7th. Highlights included two Worm-eating Warblers, an early Tennessee Warbler, Yellow-throated Warbler, and on August 3rd was the first Prothonotary Warbler of the season.

Orchard Oriole © Daniel Irons

Temps heated up into the 90s during the second week of August with light winds primarily from the south and east. Usually, these conditions are not the best for fall migrants, but Turkey Point seems to be surprisingly productive on hot sticky days with light easterly winds that push migrants against the edge of the Bay.

Prothonotary Warbler © Daniel Irons

August 9th brought a nice push of migrants off a night with light easterlies. On this day, the season’s first Dickcissel and Least Flycatcher were noted along with another Tennessee Warbler. Based on this early movement of Tennessee’s locally and north of here in southern Canada, it's looking to be a big fall for the species.

August 10th was another productive morning with light south winds. 15 Yellow Warblers were tallied along with 3 Black Terns flying south over the bay. Chimney Swifts made a particularly strong showing with 417 counted during the morning. All were departing south over the bay from the point into a light headwind.

Chimney Swift © Daniel Irons

August 13th brought a nice mix of warblers set up by light northwest winds. 11 species of warblers were counted that morning with highlights including the season’s first Blackburnian and Cape May Warblers.

Blackburnian Warbler © Daniel Irons

After a week of hot temps and southerly winds, a small cold front on August 14th was a welcome sight. The following morning produced a noticeable uptick in Blue-gray Gnatcatchers (67) and American Redstarts (27). Other goodies from the morning included Dickcissel, the season’s first Chestnut-sided Warbler, and an Olive-sided Flycatcher. Two more Cape May Warblers were also noted. It’s early for Cape Mays locally, with several moving through the locally and loads on the move to the north it’s likely to be a good fall for them.

Cape May Warbler © Daniel Irons

It’s getting to be that time of the year when every day brings new arrivals to the area, especially with a nice cold front. The weather in the coming week doesn’t look promising with hot temps and southerly winds, we will have to wait and see what happens.

Thanks for reading!

Daniel

Visit MBP's Turkey Point Bird Count project page for more information.

Αναρτήθηκε στις Αύγουστος 23, 2021 0945 ΜΜ από jacquelinepalacios jacquelinepalacios | 1 σχόλιο | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Αύγουστος 03, 2021

New favorite Maryland cockroach species?

Who else will formally update their "Favorite Maryland cockroach species" as they view this new species for Maryland Biodiversity Project?

Katja Schulz expertly documented our first record of Pale-bordered Field Cockroach (Pseudomops septentrionalis) at MBP. It is a native species that appears to reach the northern end of its range in our area.

Photo courtesy of (c) Katja Schulz, some rights reserved (CC BY). More at Maryland Biodiversity Project:
https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/view/21834

Bill

Αναρτήθηκε στις Αύγουστος 03, 2021 0152 ΜΜ από billhubick billhubick | 3σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Ιούνιος 21, 2021

Northern Snakehead protecting its young

Here is one of the reasons the Northern Snakehead has been so successful in expanding its range in our region. Shown here is a parent actively protecting its recently hatched larvae in Montgomery Co., Maryland. Photo courtesy of MBP contributor and iNaturalist user @drennack.

"Female snakeheads average about 40,000 eggs but can release up to 100,000 eggs and can spawn multiple times per year. Newly hatched larvae are protected by one or both parents until they reach the juvenile stage. Sexual maturity is reached in two years when the total body length is about 12 inches." (MD DNR)

"In 2002, a reproducing population of northern snakeheads was discovered in a pond in Crofton, Maryland. The snakeheads were exterminated and subsequently assigned injurious wildlife status under the Federal Lacey Act which prohibits import and interstate transport. A mid-Atlantic Aquatic Nuisance Species council was formed and a management plan for northern snakeheads was drafted. Despite intense media and political attention, increased awareness did not serve to prevent further introductions. In 2004, northern snakeheads were found in the Potomac River near the nation's capitol and have since established a reproducing population." (MD DNR)

The species continues to expand in our area.

Northern Snakehead at Maryland Biodiversity Project:
https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/view/275

Bill

Αναρτήθηκε στις Ιούνιος 21, 2021 0111 ΜΜ από billhubick billhubick | 0σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Ιούνιος 16, 2021

Mississippi Kites are nesting in Maryland!

After years of steadily mounting evidence, we have very clear nesting confirmation this year in Rockville, Montgomery Co., Maryland. (Other nesting locations are likely.) Here's a photo of a Mississippi Kite on its nest in Montgomery Co., Maryland courtesy of Tim Frye via iNaturalist. (c) Tim Frye, some rights reserved.

This rare but increasing spring migrant is now expected on favorable raptor migration days late April and May. As it increased as a breeder in the northeastern U.S., it became clear that nesting in Maryland was all but certain. They have a special affinity for hunting dragonflies on the wing and are certainly benefiting regionally from the periodical cicada (Magicicada) emergence.

And let's always remember why abundant insect biomass and biodiversity are important to MIKIs (great banding code) and other birds. Their incredible migrations require huge amounts of fuel and summer food supplies to fly from distant wintering grounds. That's why MBP is kicking off more targeted data collection efforts such as the Turkey Point Bird Count and new Summer Nocturnal Insect Surveys. We need a LOT more data to ensure we can protect the world's biodiversity and great natural spectacles.

And where will these Mississippi Kites go after breeding in Rockville or Oklahoma or Georgia? Why, all the way to central South America! Switch this eBird map filter from year-round to June-July and then to December-February to see reports focused around Paraguay and northern Argentina.

Amazing! Neotropical migrants aren't OUR birds that "fly south for the winter." They're tropical birds that visit for a bountiful breeding season, and that bounty is, for most species, insects! Let's ensure these epic migrations remain worth their while! Birds need biodiversity.

Thankfully, all insect eaters are pretty much covered every 17 years thanks to our region's Magicicada emergence and overwhelming protein extravaganza.

Here's to everyone having any easy summer after this last year!

More at Maryland Biodiversity Project:
https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/view/1002

Bill

Αναρτήθηκε στις Ιούνιος 16, 2021 1249 ΜΜ από billhubick billhubick | 2σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Ιούνιος 09, 2021

Flypoison and MBP tags

Flypoison (Amianthium muscitoxicum) is a beautiful native plant species that is ranked "S2" (state rare) in Maryland. This means there are less than 20 known extant populations in the state. Like many of our rare and striking native plant species, damage by White-tailed Deer browse is a primary challenge to conservation.

MBP coordinates with Maryland DNR's Natural Heritage Program (NHP) to keep our MBP tags in sync with updates. We also share data to assist with their reviews and plans. In some cases the MBP community has discovered enough new populations to downgrade listing, allowing the program to free up resources for higher conservation priorities!

You can see tags like S1, S2, S3, Threatened, Endangered, Non-native, Invasive, Exotic, and many others next to the species name. You can also click the tags to view a checklist of other species with that tag.

Flypoison at Maryland Biodiversity Project:
https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/view/1776

Beautiful photos courtesy of Jim Brighton (above, with surrounding habitat in Frederick Co., Maryland) and Bonnie Ott (below, with dark background, in Howard Co., Maryland).

Bill

Αναρτήθηκε στις Ιούνιος 09, 2021 0109 ΜΜ από billhubick billhubick | 2σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο

Ιούνιος 08, 2021

What are those white patches?

What are those white patches? Are they another fungal pathogen attacking these lovely insects? Nope! This time, it's a feature, not a bug (um, on the bug).

This is a female Broad-headed Sharpshooter (Oncometopia orbona) and those white patches are brochosomes. These waxy patches contain proteins and can be applied to their eggs to prevent them from drying out. Many leafhoppers also "wax" their "integument" (i.e., skin, exoskeleton) to retain that fancy, polished sharpshooter look (and very useful water resistance)! Amazing!

On brochosomes at Wikipedia: "After each molt, most leafhopper species release droplets of the brochosome-containing fluid through the anus and actively spread them over the newly formed integument.[11][12][13] This behavior is called anointing.[12]" (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brochosome)

On integument at Wikipedia: "In arthropods, the integument, or external "skin", consists of a single layer of epithelial ectoderm from which arises the cuticle,[3] an outer covering of chitin the rigidity of which varies as per its chemical composition.It is present in ovule and also work in it with nucelleus." (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Integument)

Photo courtesy of Judy Gallagher. More at Maryland Biodiversity Project: https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/view/10381

Αναρτήθηκε στις Ιούνιος 08, 2021 0719 ΜΜ από billhubick billhubick | 2σχόλια | Αφήστε ένα σχόλιο