Bird count updates from Daniel Irons 2021 Special Projects Turkey Point Bird Count 2021

Updates from Turkey Point Morning Flight Count – 9/19/2021

Observations from counter Daniel Irons

It was a great two weeks at Turkey Point with several highlights and some solid flights.

Cape May Warbler © Daniel Irons

Temps are finally cooling down and leaves are starting to change; it’s really starting to feel like fall at the point. Several late-season species are arriving as well, this makes me look forward to what’s to come in October.

September 7th brought a nice diverse flight after a small cold front the previous evening. A fair push of Northern Parulas and American Redstarts was noted with 49 Parulas and 39 Redstarts counted. The highlight of the morning was the season’s first Connecticut Warbler.

Connecticut Warbler © Daniel Irons

The 8th also brought a fair diverse flight including our first Summer Tanager. The highlight of the morning was the season’s only Golden-winged Warbler.

Golden-winged Warbler © Daniel Irons

A strong cold front on the 9th sent temps into the 50s and set up a strong flight on the morning of September 10th. The stiff northwest winds brought in a strong push of Cape May Warblers. It was the most abundant species at the Point all morning. 273 Cape Mays were counted flying by the Point, a new high count for the state of MD. So far in the month of September, we’ve counted 711 Cape May Warblers bringing our season total to 813.

Cape May Warbler © Daniel Irons

The following day provided another good flight that included 45 Cape May Warblers and the second Olive-sided Flycatcher of the season.

Olive-sided Flycatcher © Daniel Irons

September 14th brought our first Red-breasted Nuthatch of the season. A total of 11 have been counted at the Point. This species will likely push south in small numbers this fall and winter, but nowhere near in the numbers they did last year.

Red-breasted Nuthatch © Daniel Irons

September 19th was another solid morning with a few notable counts of warblers and the season’s first Philadelphia Vireo. The first influx of Blackpoll Warblers was noted with 13 counted. Northern Parulas also showed well with 40 counted. Parula numbers have picked up in the last two weeks as we are now in the peak window for them moving south through our area. We’ve counted 504 Northern Parulas so far this season, 458 of those have been in September.

Northern Parula © Daniel Irons

We also saw a noticeable increase in Northern flickers on the 19th with 23 counted. Numbers of Flickers should pick up as we get closer to their peak flight season in early October.

Northern Flicker © Daniel Irons

Red-headed Woodpeckers are also currently moving through our area and Turkey Point is a great spot to see them in active migration. Since the first arrived at the point on Aug 31st, 36 have been counted.

Red-headed Woodpecker © Daniel Irons

The next couple weeks look promising with lots of northerly winds and a few strong cold fronts. With October just around the corner, many of the late-season migrants and some winter residents should be showing up.

Thanks for reading!


Visit MBP’s Turkey Point Bird Count project page for more information.

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