Blog content courtesy of Vern Laux
This time of year is invigorating and energizing. The birding, the weather, the sunrises and sunsets, all are just over the top. For natural history and nature lovers it does not get better than this. For those of us interested in birds on the Cape and Islands this is as good as it gets. The upcoming weeks promise to be full of birds as the rapidly decreasing photoperiod kicks migratory species into high gear in their need to head south.
This past week was a good one for bird migration. The birds have had clear flying weather and favorable winds and many have just kept on going south without stopping. We need bad weather to ground them or make them stop as they overfly during the night. The biggest migration events occur after long periods of bad weather. Lots of precipitation and wind tends to hinder and bottle up the bird migration. Then when a clearing cold front arrives, all the birds that wanted to leave but could not move at the same time. There is some interesting upcoming weather and time will tell what it brings to the coast.
It seems that later in the season there is even more potential for finding rare and unusual species. Birds, those that are really lost, way off course or far from their respective species ranges, get even further away as the season progresses. So even though it is time to start wearing hats, gloves and coats, it doesn’t mean that the birding is flat. This is an exciting time of year that often produces exceptional birds. This past week there were several clear cold nights with light northwest winds. These are the optimum conditions for birders and beg for one to crawl out of bed in the dark and head to a favorite location at sunrise. It was just so several mornings last week and birds were abundant.
The best weekend of the year for “Birding” on Nantucket is coming up. The Nantucket Birding Festival starts on Oct. 17 and runs thru noon on Oct. 20. This great little festival highlights the beauty and bird life of this island 30 miles out to sea. It has quickly become a great little festival. There is still time to sign up and attend. Check out this link: http://www.llnf.org/assets/files/2013NantucketBirdingFestival.pdf
Click here for an audio link follow-up to the First Annual Nantucket Birding Festival in 2011!