Last winter there was a Barnacle Goose in Califon, NJ about 45 minutes from me. The same Barnacle Goose appeared again this fall. For no reason whatsoever, I never went and saw the goose last winter or this fall. Between these seasons, the NJ Bird Records Committee voted to add Barnacle Goose to the state checklist. So, today I finally got around to searching for the Califon Barnacle Goose. It had last been seen on Xmas. After getting slightly lost, I checked its usual hangout - a wide area of the Raritan River. This area was mostly frozen. Being rather rural, this area has about 1000 fields where geese could be, so I went exploring. Luck was with me and I found a large flock of geese hanging out in an apple orchard. Sure enough, there in the front was the Barnacle Goose. A real beauty! It was a bit too far for good photos unfortunately, but it was a nice treat.
Here's the uncropped photo:
I did some additional birding at some reservoirs. The highlights were a Glaucous Gull and Lesser Black-backed Gull at Spruce Run. Can you pick out the Lesser Black-backed Gull?