Jim Wright, who maintains this blog for the Meadowlands Commission, also writes a column for the South Bergenite on the second and fourth Thursdays of the month. His latest is on this year’s bumper crop of Black Skimmers.
Now is the time of year to see an amazing bird called the black skimmer in the Meadowlands, and this is a year when they seem to be incredibly plentiful.
Considering that these large black-and-white shorebirds are an endangered species in New Jersey, the frequent sightings being reported across the Meadowlands are all the more impressive.
Last week alone, these birds were seen fishing in DeKorte Park and the Clay Avenue Wetlands in Lyndhurst, in Mill Creek Marsh in Secaucus, and along the Hackensack River from Carlstadt to Kearny.
But these guys, with their bright red and black bills, don’t fish like most other avian anglers. Herons and egrets, for example, wade in the water and grab fish with their pointy bills. Belted kingfishers hover, then crash into the water to seize their prey. Ospreys hover as well, then dive into the water and grab the fish with their talons.
Black skimmers, on the other hand, live up to their name. They skim. Continue reading