Greetings – the past four days have offered absolutely fantastic birding on the lakefront and stunning numbers of birds pushing through our region. Nightly radar has been staggering as hundreds of thousands to millions of birds passed through. Tim Krynak recorded over 200 flight calls over his house in Rocky River two nights ago which translates to literally hundreds of thousands of migrant passerines on the move that night, from sparrows to warblers, thrushes, kinglets and more.
We are seeing an enormous transition from late September migrants with 17 species of warblers days now changing over to 8 or less species with HUGE density of Yellow-rumped, Blackpoll, plus lesser numbers but abundant Cape May, Parula, Palm. White-throated Sparrows made a massive push south and are now one of the most abundant species, plus White-crowned and Dark-eyed Juncos.
Both Ruby-crowned and now Golden-crowned Kinglets and Brown Creepers are moving through in large numbers plus Yellow-bellied Sapsuckers, flickers, jays, and finches.
Red-breasted Nuthatches continue to arrive in solid numbers, with upwards of 20 plus each day at Dike 14.
Both Swainson’s and Gray-cheeked Thrushes are still in fair numbers but lessening and Hermits are starting to appear.
Check all finches for Purple, Pine Siskin, and flyover Red Crossbill.
Check all flycatchers for rarities such as Say’s Phoebe, western empid species and kingbirds. A WESTERN KINGBIRD was found and photographed by Jerry Talkington today at Wake Robin Trail in Mentor.
Rare sparrows such as Nelson’s and Le Conte’s are here in small numbers and take patience and determination and the right habitat to locate.
Sedge and Marsh Wrens are still moving through but peaked last week and now Winter Wrens are incoming.
Chimney Swifts made a stunning push through the region today with over 10,000 recorded between Edgewater, Lakewood and Wendy Park on a brief survey.
Gulls are building in harbors with more Great Black-backs and growing numbers of Lesser Black-backed present. Keep watch for Franklin’s Gulls as they made a push into Ohio last week and are still present at multiple locations.
THIS COMING FRIDAY AND SATURDAY will see a mega cold front moving down from Alaska and the territories across the Great Lakes. GET TO THE LAKE if you can for lakewatching or checking migrant traps. Rarities are already showing up in the Great Lakes ahead of this front.
Jaegers, rare gulls, and the first grebes and loons of the season plus a push of waterfowl are to be expected.
Get out birding during this massive cold front and luck could be on your side for finding rarities. Even mega rarities.