Both the migrants and I are saying "rain, rain, go away." The
front I mentioned last week took its time moving across the country,
and much of the southern US had several days of rain. Numbers of individual
migrants were not high, but a good diversity of different species showed
up in many places. Black-and-white Warblers, Northern Parulas, Yellow-throated
Warblers, and 4 species of vireos (red-eyed, white-eyed, blue-headed,
and yellow-throated) were all seen in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi,
Alabama, and Florida. Other new arrivals along the Gulf Coast included
Blue-gray Gnatcatchers, Louisiana Waterthrushes, Hooded Warblers, and
Those birds were confined to the Gulf Coast with all the rain, although
a few species managed to move north. Here in Chattanooga, we had our
first Northern Rough-winged Swallows, and Chimney Swifts were reported
elsewhere. Ruby-throated Hummingbirds and Blue-headed Vireos arrived
in the Carolinas, and some Tree Swallows made it as far as New Jersey.
While most migrants were grounded in the east, they had good weather
out west, and birders were rewarded for it. There were reports of the
first Western Kingbirds, Scott's Orioles, and Vermillion Flycatchers
in New Mexico, while birders in Tucson, Arizona saw Yellow, Lucy's, Black-throated-gray,
and Orange-crowned Warblers. California also did well, with birders from
San Diego to Sacramento seeing Western Kingbirds, Black-throated-gray
Warblers, Wilson's Warblers, and lots of Bullock's Orioles.
What to Expect This Week
So will birders in the eastern US do better this week? You should all
be getting good at this by now! Here's the weather map:
With that cold front gone, there will be another
day or two of north winds. That will keep birds grounded a little
mid-week, however, winds will shift around from the south, allowing
all those birds to head north. The second part
of the week should be good for birdwatching in the Midwest and East,
but not for long.
Another cold front is moving in from the Rockies,
and that will bring more rain and north winds by the end of the week
or weekend. That will ground birds again.
the West right now, a high-pressure area is bringing north
winds to west Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona. That
will slow migrants arriving from the tropics. In another day or two,
that system will have moved east, allowing more birds to come in,
and letting birds already there to head farther north.
It looks like migration is well underway, with lots more to come. Get
out there and enjoy it!
Chickamauga Creek Conservancy