11/6/2010: Morning flight, Cape May nJ

One of the great migration shows is the Morning Flight at Higbee Beach, in Cape May NJ. Most mornings during fall migration the birds wake up in Cape May after a 24 hour rest and a good stoking among the fall seed heads of the point and fly north…yes, north…up the shore of Deleware Bay, presumably looking for a narrower stretch of open water to cross. This northward flow along the shore concentrates the birds something wonderful. Thousands of some species pass every day. For many years now CMBO and ZEISS have put counters on the dyke at Higbee to count the passing birds, beginning a hour before sunrise and ending two hours after. These days here is also an observation tower below the dyke and, on weekends, an interpretive naturalist there to tell folks what is going on.

A week ago today was one of those high days when Cape May was alive with birds. The best migration day, some said, since 1999. Before dawn the dyke at Higbee was populated with birders waiting for the show, cars were parked all up and down the road, and it was standing room only on the observation tower. 

This is a three exposure HDR, with some extra processing in Lightroom to bring up the foreground. Canon SX20IS.


3 Responses to “11/6/2010: Morning flight, Cape May nJ”

  1. 1 Wendy Hollands
    11/06/2010 at 5:57 pm

    this is an awesome shot, so interesting!! Thanks for the info I would love to go and witness so many birds!! Thanks for sharing!

  2. 11/06/2010 at 6:18 pm

    The first time I saw a hummingbird up close and not in rapid flight, I was so excited. And then it died in front of me. Do you think that bird was dying? It looks like it is laboring to breathe.

  3. 3 singraham
    11/06/2010 at 8:41 pm

    It got up and moved pretty briskly (for a Woodcock) around to the backside of the lattice work when the wind got to strong, so I suspect it was going to be fine.

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