Daily Archives: September 15, 2010

Banded “Harbor Heron”: What to Look For

Liz with banded SNEG on Hoffman-1

A follower of this blog has asked us to post a photo of a  band on a Snowy Egret, so everyone will know what to look for. (Thanks, Mike, and thanks for the photo, NYC Audubon!)

This photo was taken of a young Snowy Egret on Hoffman Island (hence the blue band) earlier this summer. Egrets tagged on South Brother Island have yellow bands.IMG_5113

  Hoffman Island is a small artificial island off Staten Island, roughly 18 miles south of Mill Creek Marsh, where a banded Snowy Egret was seen Monday morning. Photo of Hoffman is on right.



Map of “Harbor Heron” Sighting

Mill Creek Map

Mary Jo Marino, the "Harbor Herons" volunteer was spotted the banded Snowy Egret, was nice enough to show on a map where she saw the bird.

She adds: "The bird was in the North Impoundment. I first sighted him near the foot bridge. He then flew to the area east of Least Tern Island, and then later over near the border between North Impoundment and South Impoundment.

"This bird was banded on Hoffman Island. The theory is that most of these birds forage in Raritan Bay area. However, here's this young guy out in Secaucus,  the area that's supposed to be frequented by the birds from North and South Brother Islands. Go figure." (Thanks, Mary Jo!)

Scroll down for earlier post.

Next Tuesday’s Walk + Bird Banding: Harrier Meadow


Harrier Meadow is the site of next Tuesday's free nature walk,  run by the Meadowlands Commission and the Bergen County Audubon Society.

The walk begins at 10 a.m. at Harrier and — if weather permits — includes a free bird-banding demo by NJMC Naturalist Mike Newhouse.

You'll need a sign a standard liability release to go into Harrier Meadow, which is usually closed to the public. Download it here:  Download HARRIER Release.

Full details follow. 

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Another “Harbor Heron” Sighting

Kate Ruskin of the New Jersey Audubon Society reports that a banded Harbor Heron was spotted in the Meadowlands on Monday:

One of our NJAS volunteers, Mary Jo Marino, spotted a banded Snowy Egret in Mill Creek Marsh [Monday] morning.  She spotted an individual with a blue band that read "2D" and after a volley of emails in a matter of hours (thanks Mary Jo for the prompt notification!), Susan Elbin of NYCA reports the following:

"SNEG tagged '2D' was banded on Hoffman Island on 8 June 2010.  The bird was banded as a pre-fledgling, so it's a young of the year.  According to Mary Jo, 2D spent quite a while foraging in OWA [open water above the knee]."

This is the second sighting of a SNEG banded on Hoffman in the Meadowlands this season.  Also keep an eye out for yellow  bands, which mark birds tagged on South Brother Island. (Thanks, Kate, Mary Jo and Susan!)

Note: We checked for the bird on our lunch hour Tuesday, when we took the photo above. We did not see the bird despite looking in several of the impoundments.

For future reference, we are posting a downloadable map of Mill Creek Marsh. If you see a great bird, like Kevin Bolton's American Golden Plover or Mary Jo's banded SNEG, you can download the map, denote digitally where you saw the bird, and then e-mail us here — we'll post it on the blog so others know where to start looking for it.

Download it here:

Click here and then click "save image as"

Previous posts on the Harbor Herons Project are here.