A nesting pair of Common Nighthawks was discovered recently at an undisclosed location in the Meadowlands.
These birds are a species of special concern in New Jersey.
We believe this might be the first record of a nesting pair in the district in decades.
(We also are amazed by how big the eye is — appropriate for a bird that loves the twilight.)
More on Common Nighthawks here.
A post from two years ago, including a photo of a nighthawk in flight, is here.
We counted seven species of butterflies at DeKorte yesterday, including Red Admiral (above), Black Swallowtail, Silver-spotted Skipper, Summer Azure and our first Monarch (left). (Plus Orange Sulfurs and Cabbage Whites.)
The now-blooming Butterfly Bushes were the big attraction.
One note: Although we usually think of primetime for butterflies as mid-morning to mid-afternoon, we had a Red Admiral before 7:30 a.m. on Tuesday (on a Hydrangea. no less), and we had Summer Azure, Black Swallowtail and Monarch after 5:20 p.m. yesterday.
More on Red Admirals here.
Kristin (Mylecraine) Munafo of New Jersey Audubon writes:
NJA is currently recruiting volunteers for Harbor Heron surveys coordinated through its Citizen Science Program.
The survey will take place from mid-June until mid-October at sites in the Hackensack Meadowlands, Raritan Bay, and surrounding wetlands.
Specifically we are looking at the abundance and distribution of herons, egrets, and ibises that nest on small islands of the Greater NY/NJ Harbor in mixed wading bird colonies, locally known as Harbor Herons. The Harbor Herons have been a flagship for biodiversity in the Harbor Bight region since they started nesting here in the 1950s.
The Citizen Science Program is a collaborative effort of NJA, the NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife's Endangered and Nongame Species Program (ENSP), and the NJ Meadowlands Commission.
This year we are continuing the survey that we initiated in 2008 to improve our understanding of the Harbor Herons and their use of foraging habitat in the NY/NJ Harbor.
DeKorte Park is open from 8 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. all three days of the Fourth of July weekend.
The Meadowlands Environment Center (where the Flyway Gallery and restrooms are) is closed on Monday, July 4.
The McDowell Observatory is closed the night of July 4.
Tom Yezerski, author of the new children's book "Meadwolands," gave a terrific talk and slide show at the Meadowlands Environment Center on Saturday. (Above, he is talking about his interest in art as a child, with a photo of a young Tom on the screen.)
The link to a nifty new story on Tom in the Hoboken edition of Patch.com is here.
Congrats to all who said "Marsh Wren."
More on Marsh Wren nest-building here.
Another Marsh Wren (below)popped up 20 yards down the trail that day.
Jeff Page did a neat story yesterday for The Record on the N.J. Meadowlands Commission pontoon boat rides.
Link is here.
(By the way, we are having a special bird-watching cruise on Tuesday, July 19, at 10 a.m.)
Downloadable form, with schedule and more info, is here:
Download Pontoon Registration
Do we have a great summer of events planned for you — everything from twice-monthly nature walks to the 2nd Annual Butterfly Festival (Sunday, July 24) to a Shorebird Day with noted nature photographer Kevin Karlson (Saturday, August 20). All but one of the seven events are free.
The full list of events, sponsored by the New Jersey Meadowlands Commission and Bergen County Audubon Society, follows.
Save the dates now. (Don't miss out!)
This bird was in the middle of building a nest along the Marsh Discovery Trail in late May.
What species is it?
Dave Rotondi reports:
"I had a visitor as I was working outside on a home improvement project yesterday [Sunday] afternoon."
(Note: The turkey may not be totally wild. It is using the sidewalk.)