New York and Philadelphia Migration Forecast: 18-25 October 2012

Andrew Farnsworth The Cornell Lab Oct 18, 2012

Southerly winds and precipitation end this week and begin the weekend, with little or no migration occurring across the metropolitan areas. By Saturday night 20 October, winds shift to the west and a pulse of moderate to heavy nocturnal migration will follow. With this shift to the west, so begins several days of westerly to northerly winds and clear skies for the region that may continue through 25-26 October. These conditions should spawn a series of nights with moderate to heavy movements, followed by good diurnal morning flights in coastal areas and good conditions for raptor and waterfowl migration. Increasing numbers of sparrows, including big pulses of White-throated Sparrows and building numbers of Fox Sparrows and the first numbers of American Tree Sparrows, should be apparent. Later season hawk migration should include numbers of Turkey Vultures, Red-tailed and Red-shouldered Hawks, and the occasional Northern Goshawk and Golden Eagle at inland locations (primarily). Birders should focus their efforts in coastal barrier beach locations during early to mid morning, then head to inland hawk watching site for the middle of the day. Waterfowl movements, including skeins of Canada and Snow Geese, Brant, and several species of ducks, should be visible during the day, particularly along the leading lines of Long Island Sound, the Hudson River, and the Delaware Water Gap. Beginning on Sunday 21 October, careful observers should also watch in places like Sandy Hook and Cape May, NJ, and Robert Moses SP, Jones Beach SP, and Breezy Point for the possible appearance of Cave Swallows, a rare but increasingly regular straggler in the region.