Sunday, January 10, 2010
I arrived yesterday evening into New York City, more specifically, Brooklyn, where my son lives. I was coming off a bit of a slow birding day because it is so cold that much of the fresh water ponds are frozen, and even flowing water is not totally open. My day began at Port Mahon in Delaware at sunrise (photo at top). I was looking for short eared and long eared owls there and at Bombay Hook NWR but found none.
From there I drove about 2.5 hours over to one of the country's great birding locations--Cape May, NJ. There was enough open water at the Cape May lighthouse that a few birds were feeding, including a male eurasian wigeon, a fairly hard to find bird. I drove on up the coast toward NYC, stopping at Barnegat lighthouse where I walked out the jetty in a very brisk wind to see what was around. Lots of harlequin and long-tailed ducks, red-breasted mergansers, surf scoters, brant, and 1 purple sandpiper made the walk worthwhile.
I then headed further north to a small place named Califon, NJ where a barnacle goose has returned with 100's of canada geese for the past 2 winters. I had tried last year to see this bird but the day I stopped in it was not around. Yesterday though it was sitting as pretty as it could be on the water surrounded by a slew of canada geese. This makes my 3rd new life bird of 2010. Day 9's birding added a total of 11 new species for the year.
Last night my son and I tried out a pizza place called Franny's located on Flatbush Ave. in Brooklyn. Being Saturday evening, it was totally jammed. We waited for 30 minutes but then got a good table next to the kitchen with its wood fired oven. The appetizers--a plate of coppa, pancetta and soppressata, and a puntarelle salad--were superb. The sausage pizzas were quite good, but having lived in Florence, Italy, we both agreed we had even better pizza there. So tonight we are going to La Pizza Fresca in Manhattan to try its pizza. Stay tuned!