[CT Birds] Lighthouse Point Park - CAVE SWALLOW(s)

Steve Mayo and Rebecca Horowitz rsdmayo at sbcglobal.net
Sun Nov 20 18:03:39 EST 2016

There were 2 Sharpies and a Gray Ghost (adult male N Harrier) on strong west winds (10-15 mph, frequent gusts to 25 mph) today.  That was it for raptors.  

Highlight was a single CAVE SWALLOW 15 feet off the deck at the hawk watch (9:05 am), and the swallow lingered in the Park for a few moments.  A second distant swallow over the lighthouse around 12:45 pm, was probably also a Cave.  The following is the entire tally for 830 am to 1:10 pm.  It's getting late in November, but typical mornings can yield hundreds, thousands, or tens of thousands, of migrants.  

2 CAVE SWALLOW, 6 Euro Starling, 26 Mo Dove, 8 Rock Pigeon, 30 Cedar waxwing, 1 Com Loon (off Beach), 20 RB Gull 15 Herring Gull, 3 GBB Gull, 1 Car Wren (in nearby woods).  So, today's migrants were only the swallows and waxwings.  

We're frequently asked "When does the LPP Hawk Watch start?"  Or, "When does it end?"  Full coverage runs at least Labor Day through Thanksgiving.  But volunteers, even as early as mid-August, try to get down there on certain days, after a passing cold front, in search of moving orioles, kingbirds and other neotropical migrants.  In the first week of December, (bitter) cold fronts are also sought after, because they may yield a significant flight of Red-tailed Hawks.  

LPP is always a brief stop on the New Haven Christmas Bird Count route, and it is typically very quiet.  What a difference a week or two, makes in the distribution of CT birds.  Today's howling winds made it feel like CBC time.  

Steve MayoBethany

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