[CT Birds] Willet migration just a few days earlier than last year?

Thomas Robben robben99 at gmail.com
Sat Apr 14 23:23:04 EDT 2012

It is 11pm and now exactly one week since my 4/7 Willet post (below), and
the ONLY new (presumably eastern) willets reported on the birding lists
north of Delaware are the two reported today by Paul Wolter at Branford CT
at Stony Creek Trolley Trail.  This is THREE DAYS earlier than last year's
CT arrival, which was also reported in Branford on this CTbirds list.

So far this year NO eastern willets have been reported this Spring on the
coastal birding lists in NJ, NY, RI, MA, NH, ME.  Congrats to Paul for
finding these first two willets in CT today. Spring is marching north!

Tom Robben
Glastonbury CT

On Sat, Apr 7, 2012 at 10:17 PM, Thomas Robben <robben99 at gmail.com> wrote:

> To CT Migration Watchers,
> How do Willet migrations compare between 2012 and 2011? How much earlier
> is this year's Spring migration up the East Coast of the USA, compared with
> last year? Willets are very visible easy-to-identify birds for measuring
> the advance of Spring up the East Coast.
> 2011:
> As you can see by the 2011 email below, last year Willets were first
> reported in the DE, NJ, CT region in mid-April (between April 14th and
> 17th).
> 2012:
> This year, as of April 7th (and I looked at every state list from Georgia
> up to NewFoundland) the FOY reports seem to be about ONE WEEK earlier than
> last year.  Here is a summary of all the Willet reports I could find so
> far, listed from north down to south….
> NovaScotia had 2 fly-by Willets on April 3rd (no photographs, but Willets
> are rarely misidentified in flight)! No other Canadian maritime province
> has reported any Willets so far…..
> http://www.birdingonthe.net/mailinglists/NTNS.html#1333489211
> This Canadian report is an outlier from the rest of the pattern emerging
> below…
> In the USA (Georgia thru Maine) the only FOY willets reported in the last
> week were the following (none reported yet from NJ up thru Maine, as far as
> I can tell)…
> Delaware had 6 willets at GordonsPond on March 24-25, one at BombayHook on
> April 5th, and 5 at DuPontNatureCenter on April 6th.
> Maryland had one willet at Elliott Island on April 7th.
> Virginia had one willet MetompkinIsland on April 1st, several at
> Chincoteague on April 2nd, one at Bethel Beach on April 3rd, and 650! at
> Oyster Harbor on April 4th (
> http://www.birdingonthe.net/mailinglists/VABD.html#1333684216).
> The Carolinas had 16 willets at Kiawah on April 5th.
> Georgia had 8 willets at Jekyll Island on April 4th, 2012.
> -------------------------------------------------------------
> Keep your eyes open for Willets on the CT coast. Lets see if they arrive
> here earlier than last year! It seems likely they will arrive in the next
> few days, about a week ahead of least year.
> Tom Robben
> Glastonbury CT
> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
> From: Thomas Robben <robben99 at gmail.com>
> Date: Mon, Apr 18, 2011 at 7:18 AM
> Subject: Willets FOY arrivals
> To: ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org
> Willets are a good indicator of Spring marching up the Atlantic coast.
> Here are the FOY first-of-year birds for several NE locations, as per
> careful searching of the various online state bird lists over the past
> month......
> April 17....in Branford, Connecticut.
> April 15....in Brigantine, Absecon, NJ.
> April 14....in Cape May, NJ.
> April 15....in Mispillion River Inlet, Delaware.
> Thank you
> Tom Robben
> Glastonbury CT

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