Dr. David Aborn
A couple of back-to-back storm systems produced more fallouts over
the past week, especially over Easter weekend. Bird watchers along
the Texas coast went out immediately after storms passed by on
April 12th. The storms hit right around the time many migrants
were arriving from the tropics, so the people were rewarded with
many migrants that were forced to land. Cerulean Warblers, Indigo
Buntings, and Painted Buntings were particularly numerous. The
hawk watching station in Corpus Christi I mentioned last week reported
11,000 Broad-winged Hawks, 1,000 Turkey Vultures, and 1,000 Mississippi
Kites! Hawk watchers reported that the day was long, but fun.
Birding, Thanks to the Weather!
Numbers were good elsewhere along the Gulf Coast. One person spent
an entire day walking a 7-mile trail in Louisiana and counted 290
White-eyed Vireos, 280 Prothonotary Warblers, 250 Red-eyed Vireos,
250 Common Yellowthroats, and 170 Hooded Warblers!!! Birders along
the Alabama coast reported hundreds of Scarlet Tanagers, and 21
species of warblers.
There was enough of a break between storm systems to allow migrants
to make some progress north before being grounded again. Washington,
DC reported Northern Parulas, Black-and-white Warblers, Ovenbirds,
Common Yellowthroats, and Louisiana Waterthrushes. Pennsylvania
recorded its first Blue-headed Vireos, Blue-gray Gnatcatchers,
and Yellow-throated Warblers of the season.
By the beginning of this week, the Easter system had moved far
enough east to allow birds to move. People in Missouri reported
their first White-eyed Vireos and Ruby-throated Hummingbirds, Iowa
had Yellow-throated Warblers and Black-and-white Warblers, and
the swallows have made it to Minnesota.
Like the previous week, the western states have had a consistent
movement of birds through the region. The most numerous species
reported was Orange-crowned Warbler, but New Mexico, Arizona, and
California all reported decent numbers of Western Kingbirds, Lucy's
Warblers, and Wilson's Warblers. Black-headed Grosbeaks have also
started showing up in California.