And Now for Something Completely Different

A magpie swoops a cyclist                                                                                                                                                            Photograph: Fairfax Media via Getty Images

Beware the swooping magpie. Read more here.

Alas, not a joke.

You can read Swooping Magpie safety tips here.

A Quick Visit to Hawk Mountain

I have loved Hawk Mountain for a long time and it always feels like home when I return -- even if I picked a dreary afternoon with no hawks aloft while I was there. 

Still, the views and history and the memories were terrific.

Jewelweed abounded because the deer population is kept under control and they also have deer exclosusres.


More about Martin Johnson Heade

IMG_4051 (2)On Monday, I asked readers' help in identifying the hummingbirds in Martin Johnson Heade painting at the Yale Gallery of Art.

I thought the painting was great but was disappointed that the accompanying description did not mention what species of Brazilian hummingbird was depicted.

Pat Price wrote:

"The hummingbird I think is a Sappho Comet. See: 'An Eye For Art-Studying Nature - Martin Johnson Heade.' Thanks for this. I like Johnson's paintings. There's something about his marshes..."

So I looked up "An Eye For Art-Studying Nature - Martin Johnson Heade." Turns out you can download the segment here. It also includes John James Audubon. Doesn't get much better than that. (Thanks, Pat!)

IMG_4051 (1)

Dowitcher still at CF as of 7 a.m.

The first recorded Long-billed Dowitcher at the Celery Farm is stlil here, though even farther away from the Warden's Watch. (It was spotted by Fred Weber yesterday afternoon.)

Even with a scope, it is a distant look. When I saw it, it was on the right side of the lake just before the mouth of the big ditch.

It was too far away to take a decent shot with my camera, with a 400mm lens.

If you look for it, a scope is a good idea.

How now, brown Dow?

Long-billed Dowitcher at CF w/pic

IMG_1400The pic is no bargain, but you can see the LB Dowitcher for I.D. purposes. Found by Fred Weber. (Thanks, Fred!)

Last time I saw a Dowitcher at the CF was when the Purple Gallinule was here, but those were Short-billed.

(According to eBird, some guy named Rob Fanning saw 50 Short-billed Dowitchers at the CF on May 22, 2002.

Also according to eBird, it is a new sighting for the CF -- the 256th species, but the number looks a bit squishy.

More about Long-billed Dowitchers here.

The compete eBird CF list here, theoretically.

(sorry for earlier typos -- typing as fast as I could.)

Will post again tomorrow if I see it in the early a.m.

Can You Help I.D. This Bird Song?

Valerie Knipping writes:

Could you please help me identify this singer?

On Sunday I was at the North Beach at Sandy Hook. In the shrubbery near the exit to the parking lot I heard the singer.

The bird would sing 5 to7 repetitions then a 2 second pause then would continue this pattern for about a minute with a long pause and then begin the set again.

It would sing at the top of a cedar tree moving from the spread out cedars amongst the shrubs and plants from time to time.

Once I saw it fly but due to sun glare and a quick flight best I could see what appeared to be a somewhat dark bird smallish size sparrow perhaps but looked like longer wings.

Download Mystery singer

Thanks for any suggestions or answers.


Meadowlands BirdFest Is Saturday

The annual Meadowlands Birding Festival is Saturday, Sept. 14 from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. -- with a dawn walk in legendary Harrier Meadow.
The event features bird walks and talks, raptor visits, children's activities, and pontoon boat tours.
Most of the events are free.
Highlights include a keynote talk by renowned author Sharon Stiteler "The Bird Chick" and a live raptor demonstration.
The event is sponsored by the New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority and the Bergen County Audubon Society
Get more info and register is here.

2020 Celery Farm Calendars Are Here!

The 2020 Celery Farm calendars are here, featuring beautiful color images taken you-know-where.

Yes, that's one of Allendale's famous Red-shouldered Hawks on the cover. (Photo by Darlene Lembo.)

As always, the calendar is packed with holidays and locally important dates.

As a special bonus, calendar creator Carol Flanagan has added another day to the calendar, Feb. 29! I can't guarantee that all other 2020 calendars have this feature, so best buy one of Fyke's.  (Thanks, Carol!)

The calendars sell for $15 (U.S.) and are available at Wild Birds Unlimited on Route 17 South in Paramus and the Lee Memorial Library on Crescent Avenue in Allendale.  (Thank you, Lee Memorial Library and Wild Birds Unlimited!)

The calendars will also be available at Fyke's monthly meetings (the next one is Friday, Sept. 27; not to be missed).

Holiday Observers 100th-Anniversary Video

AHO Centennial Parade from Catfishjohn on Vimeo.

John Pastore created this video of Saturday's Holiday Observers parade and celebration in Allendale.

It was a terrific community event. 

The historic Fell House was part of the parade, with historic John Fell himself waving to parade-goers as part of his reelection campaign for Continental Congress. (Photos below by Sally Wiegand.)


Monday Morning Mystery 090919

IMG_4051 (2)While visiting the Yale Gallery of Art recently, I came across this painting by one of my favorite artists, Martin Johnson Heade.

I thought the painting was great but was disappointed that the accompanying description did not mention what species of Brazilian hummingbird was depicted.

Any suggestions?

IMG_4051 (1) IMG_4050