Weekend at Cape May

I had to wait a year to take the advice in this past post of mine about going to a fine place to witness some raptors' Fall migration. So I and a friend spent the weekend in Cape May, New Jersey in the hopes of seeing huge amounts of Red-tailed Hawks, Bald Eagles, and Ospreys pass by/rest as they made their way south. 

Although calendar-wise we went at a great time, there were none of these birds to be seen en masse. We overheard one park guide tell a group that the winds that weekend, unfortunately, didn't make it conducive for migration. Our trip was a bust in that regard but the sights of other birds, the beautiful city and landscapes of Cape May, and the Atlantic Ocean well made up for it. 

Saturday sights:

Young Sharp-shinned Hawk:

Great Egret in the foreground (at the Cape May Bird Observatory):

Yellow-rumped Warbler:

A couple of Bottlenose Dolphins swimming parallel with the ocean shore:


The one on the right was most curious about me. It turned around and checked me out. I was taking these pictures while standing at the side of the road (a quiet residential road).

At a more secluded beach:

A Peregrine Falcon flew in our direction, looked curiously down at us, swooped around, then landed in a nearby tree:

Happy shake:

Trying to cough up a pellet:

Turkey Vulture:

A juvenile Red-tailed Hawk soared briefly across the way:

Belted Kingfisher:

We left the Peregrine still in its tree after hanging out with it for half an hour.


A flash of an Indigo Bunting (molting):

Dawn on Sunday:

Sunrise in the windows:

Fish Crow:

Back at the Cape May Bird Observatory:

Yellow-rumped Warbler:

Preening Swans:





Belted Kingfisher:

Double-crested Cormorant:

Sign along the refuge's dune trail: