Nice Fallouts for Peak Week in the South
It was a good week to peak! The end of April is the peak of spring migration
in the southern US, and the cold front that moved across the country at
the end of last week produced some very nice fallouts. On Dauphin Island,
Alabama, birders reported hundreds of Scarlet Tanagers, thrushes, and Orchard
Orioles. In Louisiana, 26 species of warblers were seen, along with many
thrushes. At Fort Desoto Park in Florida, there was no shortage of Rose-breasted
Grosbeaks, Yellow-billed Cuckoos, and Baltimore Orioles, and over 50 Blackpoll
Warblers were seen! Here in Tennessee, people across the state have been
reporting anywhere from 16 to 21 species of warblers, including the first
Cape May, Bay-breasted, Chestnut-sided, Magnolia, and Golden-winged Warblers.
At my study site, a lot of Gray Catbirds arrived, and I heard my first
Swainson's Thrush and Blackpoll warblers of the year. Not to outdone, birders
in the Show-Me State (Missouri) showed everyone what a great place it can
be for birds by tallying 31 species of warblers in the Saint Louis area
on Monday (4/28)!
After the Cold: Shifting Winds Helped Migrants Northward
The cold weather did not last too long. By the beginning of the week, winds
were shifting to the south, allowing many of those grounded migrants to
take off again. Yesterday and today, I have seen or received reports of
many Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, thrushes, and catbirds in Wisconsin, and
many warblers in Iowa. New Jersey had its first Worm-eating Warblers, Blue-winged
Warblers, Yellow Warblers, and Prairie Warblers, while Veerys, Yellow Warblers,
and Least Flycatchers made it up to Vermont.
Slow But Steady in the West
The western US seems to have missed out on all the action. I received reports
of steady migration, but no big numbers. Western Kingbirds and other assorted
flycatchers seemed to make up the bulk of what was seen, although parts
of Arizona had 8 species of warblers.
What to Expect This Week
This week does not look like a good one for fallouts, but it should
still be good. Take a look at the weather map:
A warm front is moving across the country. This means
good southerly winds that will allow birds to continue moving north
in good numbers.
By the end of the week, another cold front will be
making its way across the US, but it is not a strong one. It will
still slow birds down, but we probably won't anything like what people
saw this past week.
While it may be the peak of migration across part of the
country, there is still a lot more to come, so don't let it pass you
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