Weekly Bird Report

OHFalcon72 goo.gl/3DNltw / goo.gl/cefU8

For a few glorious days last week, we had spring. Or was it summer? It felt like we went from March to August in one day. Such is Cape Cod in spring. But with the warm weather came the long awaited fallout of May migrants—the warblers, tanagers, grosbeaks, and even shorebirds that we only get for a few weeks each May.

Maark Faherty

As the dust continues to settle after Mass Audubon’s statewide fundraiser and epic birding blitz known as Bird-a-thon, we team captains are tallying the results to submit to headquarters. At stake is the vaunted Brewster Cup, awarded to the sanctuary reporting the most species in the 24-hours of Bird-a-thon.

Courtesy Elora Grahame

It’s almost mid-May, which means two things – songbird migration is nearing its most colorful apex, and Mass Audubon’s Bird-a-thon is almost here.  It’s not a coincidence that these two things, well, coincide.

Timor Nagy goo.gl/BxM9mu / goo.gl/uk4xos

The snowbirds are back. No, not your neighbors—they won’t be back from Florida until June. I’m talking about the flood of migrant and locally nesting birds that are returning daily from southern wintering grounds. If you’re an aficionado of bird migration, this is the golden hour. 

Keenan Yakola

I talk a lot on the Bird Report about relatively obscure seabirds that you can see if you trudge your way out to Race Point, a potentially four mile round trip in soft sand. Perhaps you don’t find the prospect of jaegers, alcids, and shearwaters enticing enough to make the trip. 

Mark Faherty

In last week’s report I griped about our typically cold and wet spring weather here on the Cape and Islands. I submit that it was a direct result of this griping that we then enjoyed nearly a week of atypically warm, sunny early spring weather. You’re welcome.

Laura Gooch goo.gl/jSp3Gw / goo.gl/lrxVf4

April is the month on the Cape and Islands where spring starts to tease us. While we get some token 50 degree days, we’re forced to chuckle at the reports of 70 or even 80 degree weather from the Boston news stations – those mainlanders know a different kind of spring than we do. Their trees leaf out weeks earlier than ours, which are held back by the cold, wet embrace of the ocean water surrounding us. 

Mark Faherty

A few weeks ago I got a call to fill in for a colleague leading a Mass Audubon birding cruise on the Peruvian Amazon leaving on March 24. The prospect was daunting – the field guide to the birds of Peru has the heft of an unabridged dictionary, and I had just a week to prepare. At around 1800 species, Peru is neck and neck with Columbia for most bird species of any country in the world. 

Mark Faherty

We should all be jealous of ospreys. They’re way better at fishing than we are. They spend their winters on sun-drenched lagoons in Venezuela and they visit Cuba annually without violating US law. 

Jim Kelly bit.ly/2nPwRbZ / bit.ly/1mhaR6e

When I was a weird little birder kid growing up in the wilds of Brockton, the Common Raven was an almost mythical bird to me. They lived in wilderness areas, like the big woods of northern Maine, where I assumed they soared around over densely forested hills looking for deer carcasses or whatever it was they ate. Or maybe they only hung around haunted houses and dark castles where they kept company with murderous madmen.

Pages