Shore birds

I love my annual beach vacations and I always look forward to seeing shore birds that I don’t see at home.  I’m in New Jersey this week, and the salt marshes near us are home to many birds.  I believe one of the largest Laughing Gull populations in the world is located here.  There are a ton of laughing gulls on the beach.  I love the solid black hoods they have during breeding season.




There are also a lot of Black Skimmers on the beach.  I love watching them fish.   Here’s one that flew right over me with a fish he just caught.




About a mile away from where we are, there is a protected area of the beach set aside for beach nesters–specifically, Black Skimmers, Least Terns, and Piping Plovers.  We stopped by last evening to see if we could see any nesters (from outside the ropes protecting the area), but we did not see any.

There are a number of birds feeding babies right off our deck.  A mama House Sparrow was feeding four fledglings–here is one of the babies.




There was also a mama robin collecting bugs and worms, but I never saw the babies.




We expected rain almost all day today–but the sun is shining right now and it looks like the storms might hold off until the evening.  Time to go enjoy the beach!

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7 Responses to Shore birds

  1. Jim says:

    Enjoy! Thanks for the pictures.

  2. Hi Carol, it looks like the rain has stopped and you’re enjoying some beach time! I love the laughing gull…what a striking bird. (Are you sure that second picture isn’t a tern though? I’m definitely not a shorebird expert, but those long tail feathers usually make me think of a tern rather than a skimmer.) Enjoy the rest of your wonderful vacation!

  3. neihtn2012 says:

    Great capture of the black skimmer! I’ve watched them but have yet to see one catch anything.

  4. I was wondering the same as Kim above. Maybe a Forester’s? I do not have a lot of experience with them, so I could be wrong. Regardless, that is so neat that you got it with its catch. Great job.

    We are finally able to use our front door again. The Barn Swallows have left. I found them last evening and again this morning. So cute. 🙂

    • I believe you are correct with Forster’s Tern. Nice you can use your door again, although it’s always a little sad when they leave the nest. Have a great day!

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