Final results aren’t in, but this is what I remember after a weekend of binge birding. My recommendation is to fill out the bingo card as you go along, not after!
The official results aren’t in yet. I think we were at 55 species when we tallied around 2:30. We then went off to look for a Robin. (Which we failed at.)
There were no surprising finds at Liberty State Park, which is… surprising.
Toward the afternoon we located the Greater (and Lesser) Scaup. They seem to always sleep in the same area. I don’t know if it’s their annual Christmas nap or their annual charity; either way, it works.
We had a quick detour to go see a lost civilization. This castle is actually carved into the rock on site.
The interior of Liberty State Park, “Area X”, is off-limits to most birders, but we have a permit and permission allowing us access. There have been rumors of owls lurking here for years, but no evidence since I joined this CBC-team. Dipped both years now.
As a post-industrial forest, there are some unexplainable sights. Such as this table. Why?
We did a tally and realized we were missing some incredibly common birds: Common Grackle, Red-winged Blackbird, White-throated Sparrow, American Robin. Seriously who goes birding and misses *all* of those species? It’s like we weren’t even birding or something, but from the photo, we were quite determined to find a robin as evidenced by our use of this climbing contraption.
As we returned to the cars, lo and behold we had a Kestrel in a tree (but not a partridge, and no pears, either), and then a Merlin flew by in the background.
We cut out an hour early (shush) and went down the road 10 minutes to where there were reports of a Snowy Owl. Turns out there may be as many as three. We waiting about 45 minutes, and just after the sun set we saw one flying low over the Bayonne Public Golf Course. So that’s why it’s in a blue circle, not a yellow. Cause it doesn’t quite count.
Next week, I’ll be heading out to Boonton for round 2, so stay tuned!