[CT Birds] Watch Out For Cave Swallows

Alexander Burdo alexanderburdo at mac.com
Sun Oct 25 07:39:50 EDT 2009


It's getting to be that time of year again. Time for Cave Swallows to  
ride the winds and make another appearance in CT! Here is a report I  
got off NJ Birds-Sandy Hook is pretty close to CT! Check those flocks  
of Tree Swallows! And not just for Cave but also for Violet-Green  
(recent CT report), or the much, much rarer Brown-chested Martin.  
Also, closely examine any Cliffs that still may be around. Remember  
that Cliffs have the bright white forehead and darker throat whereas  
the Caves have a darker forehead and a paler throat and cheeks.  
However the Mexican subspecies of Cliff (not sure if it has occurred  
in CT????) has a dark forehead but also has dark cheeks. Sibley gives  
a great comparison in his field guide. Consult it if you are unsure.  
Good Luck!

This afternoon (24 Oct)�I found a Cave Swallow at Sandy Hook.� The  
bird was
with a flock of 20-30 Tree Swallows and a single Barn Swallow at the  
end.� The flock took turns feeding over the dunes and the salt pond  
at the end
of the fisherman's trail.

A quick perusal of the Voice of New Jersey Audubon archives turned up an
arrival date of 26 Oct�for Cave Swallow in New Jersey, so today's  
record may be
a new early arrival by the species.� You can access the VONJA  
archives at:

Other birds at the hook today included a subadult male Common Eider  
off the
point, hundreds of gannets feeding and migrating offshore, my first  
Gulls (2) of the fall, and a dozen Royal Terns.

A juvenile Northern Goshawk was found yesterday (23 Oct) by SHBO  
Naturalist Tom Boyle near north pond.

Good Birding,

Scott Barnes
Senior Naturalist
Sandy Hook Bird Observatory
New Jersey Audubon

Alex Burdo

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