Our Latest Column: Spring Arrivals

Yellow-headed Blackbird 1Jim Wright, who keeps this blog for the NJMC, also writes a twice-monthly column for the South Bergenite. His latest is on the amazing recent bird activity in this region. Here it is:

Don’t just sit there! Grab a pair of binoculars, go outside, and check out the amazing bird activity in the Meadowlands.

From a Snowy Owl in Carlstadt to Snowy Egrets in Lyndhurst, the Meadowlands has been home to some amazing birds in recent weeks.  A Glossy Ibis in North Arlington and a Yellow-headed  Blackbird in Secaucus are two more examples of the diverse and stunningly beautiful array of birds that have been spotted.

And although you may not be able to see some of these winged wonders anymore — the Snowy Owl and Yellow-Headed Blackbird have likely continued on their travels — there are more and more birds arriving in the region and plenty of chances to see them on a free guided walk in the next week or two. (More on that later).

NCMC Naturalist Mike Newhouse points to two reasons why now is such a great time of year to go birding in the Meadowlands.    

“Every time you go out you have the chance to see birds for the first time of the year as they are returning from their wintering grounds,” Mike says. “Another reason is that you may see something unexpected. Spring migration gives us the opportunity to see rare birds that are not commonly found in this area.”

According to Newhouse, the best place to look for birds around here this time of year is DeKorte Park in Lyndhurst. “The varying water levels in our tidal impoundments and the upland habitat along the Kingsland Overlook Trail give everyone the opportunity to see many different species, including waterfowl, shorebirds, wading birds and songbirds.”

A great way to see these birds — especially if you are a novice — is on a free guided walk sponsored by the Bergen County Audubon Society and the Meadowlands Commission.

And the good news is that we have three free walks in the next 11 days.

On Sunday, May 4, we are offering two walks at scenic and under-appreciated Losen Slote Creek Park in Little Ferry. We’ll have our eyes peeled for warblers and other spring beauties. The two-hour walks begin at 8 a.m. and 10 a.m.

On Sunday, May 11, we will be going on our fifth annual Ridgefield Mother’s Day Walk. The two-hour event begins at 10 a.m. at the Ridgefield Nature Center in Ridgefield and features a walk around the 5.4-acre natural area (once the home of the Great Bear Bottled Water Co.), and a visit to Skeetkill Creek Marsh in Ridgefield, with a stop to see Monk Parakeets on the way.

Check meadowblog.net for last-minute weather updates. To register for any or all of the walks, contact Don Torino of the BCAS at greatauk4@aol.com or 201-230-4983.

Want to see some great birds nearby? What are you waiting for?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *