UPCOMING FIELD TRIPS
Sunday, April 30, 10:00 am
Saturday, May 13, 8:15 am
Thursday, June 22, 6:00 pm
Thursday, July 20, 6:00 pm
Thursday, August 24, 6:00 pm
Join Monmouth County Audubon and learn about the shorebird program at Seven Presidents Park on April 30
The Monmouth County Audubon Society will host a walk at Seven Presidents Park on Sunday, April 30 at 10:00 am for a look at nesting shorebirds and the role of the shorebird monitor program in their protection.
Seven Presidents Park, one of the jewels in the crown of the Monmouth County Park System, is a waterfront preserve that features a wide, white-sand beach, extensive dunes, and children’s activity area. This park is a great birding destination at any season, with sea birds and ducks off the ocean in the winter, and shorebirds in the spring and summer. The park plays host to many of the area’s nesting Threatened and Endangered shorebirds, such as Piping Plover, Least Tern, American Oystercatcher, and others. We will bird around the park, and we will also discuss the role of the shorebird monitor in conservation and protection efforts and how people can join the volunteer ranks of the shorebird monitors. The morning promises to be interesting and fun.
Anyone interested in participating in the event can meet at 10:00 am in the north parking lot (corner of Ocean Avenue North and Atlantic Avenue) outside the Skateplex.
Participants should dress appropriately for cold temperatures, which can be common along the coast at this time of year. Binoculars are essential, and a field guide is helpful. Pets are not permitted.
Audubon Society plans Allaire State Park field trip for May 13
What is “warbler neck?”
The answer to this question and many others will be revealed when the Monmouth County Audubon Society hosts their annual field trip to Allaire State Park, Wall Township, on Saturday, May 13.
“At this time of year, bird plumage is at its brightest and songs are loudest,” says Dena Temple, trip leader. “To hear birdsong echoing through the woods is a delight. Anyone interesting in learning how to identify spring migrants by song is in for a real treat. We are never disappointed at Allaire.” She adds, “And yes, you’ll definitely find out what ‘warbler neck’ is.”
While most of a bird’s year is spent trying to be invisible to predators, things change in the spring. The priority for birds in the spring is breeding, and birds have a variety of ways to attract a mate. For one, most birds molt into their beautiful, colorful breeding plumage, to make them more attractive to the opposite sex. In addition, birds sing – loudly and often – in an effort to establish a territory and attract a mate. Once summer is underway, a bird’s priorities shift to nesting and raising young. Their feathers revert to the duller “basic plumage,” and they sing much less.
The migration season brings a great variety of birds through our area, and Allaire State Park is what birders refer to as a “migrant trap,” an oasis of woodland habitat surrounded by suburbs. This acts as a magnet for birds passing through, which are drawn to the plentiful food (mostly insects) and native plant cover. The diversity of the habitat and the rich feeding grounds are especially attractive to wood-warblers. “We may see and hear 15 species of warblers, several species of flycatchers, Scarlet Tanagers, and maybe Rose-breasted Grosbeak,” adds Michael Casper, co-leader and past president of the organization.
Anyone interested in participating in the event can meet at 8:15 a.m. in the main parking lot by the historic village. Follow the Garden State Parkway to Exit 98, then follow the brown signs for Allaire State Park. The walk through the park will end before noon.The walk will take place light rain or shine. If the weather is doubtful participants can check the organization’s website, www.monmouthaudubon.org, for any last-minute changes.
About our field trips
MCAS field trips are open to both members and non-members of the Monmouth County Audubon Society, and admission is always free. (Some trips occasionally require admission fees to parks, or special fares. These will be noted.) Advance registration is not required. Participants should bring binoculars and field guides and should dress appropriately for the weather, including clothing suitable for rain if the forecast is questionable. Pets are not permitted. Why?
In case of inclement weather...
We try to run our field trips even if there are showers predicted. However, in the event of severe weather that would affect the safety of the group and restrict travel, trips are occasionally postponed or cancelled. The decision on whether or not to hold a field trip will be made by 6:00 pm the night before. In the event of a cancelled or postponed event, we will post a notice on this page as well as our Facebook page. Please check back if there are any questions.
©2000-2017 Monmouth County Audubon Society