In case you haven't heard, an immature Ivory Gull was found in Cape May, NJ on Friday. This is the 5th record of this species for NJ - 1940, 1955, and 2 in 1986. So, as you can imagine, the NJ birding scene and much of the mid-Atlantic is buzzing about the bird. As you may recall, I saw my first Ivory Gull in Piermont, NY in 2007. That didn't stop me from going to see this one in my own state. So, down I headed the 2+ hour drive very early on Sunday. I got to the marina that it favors and only had to wait 15 minutes or so before the gorgeous white creature appeared. I was joined by friends from VA and NJ and we spent a long while photographing and observing the bird. It was insanely accommodating, doing circuits over the crowd of birders, perching close by for photos, and picking from the water. It was nuts. Here are some photos.
|Cape May Ivory Gull Photos - Nov. 29, 2009|
Oh and did I mention it was a spectacularly sunny and warm day for late November? After viewing the gull, we hit some of the other Cape May hotspots. We got word of a Selasphorus hummingbird at a local feeder which we got to see. We also saw Eurasian Wigeon, Common Eiders, a few lingering Baltimore Orioles, a Bald Eagle or three, and a few lovely Red-shouldered Hawks. We struck out on the Swainson's Hawk that's been down there for nearly a month. All in all, it was a great day to be out. The gull is still being seen as of today. So if you didn't see one of the Massachusetts birds last year, you get a second shot. Although not an adult, this bird is still a beauty and it's a chance to see a bird that is not only rare in the US, but becoming more rare globally.