After Florence in Durham, this giant wasp is the best thing I could find. I am not exaggerating when I say it was as large as a hummingbird.
I chased a Sabine's Gull at Falls Lake but this Sanderling was the best thing I could find there.
Overall, the storm was disappointing from the bird standpoint. When I finally made it back home there were a ton of spots underwater, but so far I have not turned up anything unusual. The beaches have been littered with dead shearwaters which is unusual, but they don't do me much good dead.
Lesser and Greater Yellowlegs at Fort Fisher
Blue-winged Teal at the flooded athletic fields, and they are still there as I write this 2 weeks later.
Sandpipers in flight - Least SPs and WRSP on the right.
Common Yellowthroat at Fort Fisher
The north end of Wrightsville Beach is surprisingly looking ok after the storm - Great and Lesser Black-backed Gulls.
Lots of Caspian Terns
This Black-bellied Plover was masquerading as an American Golden Plover.
Over 3000 moth species in NC, I am not even going to try to ID this on my own.
And this one was super cool looking.
When a Kirtland's Warbler was found at Ridge Junction, it was too good to pass up and I had to go. A 6 hour drive after working hours and a 3 hour sleep in my truck later and I was up at Ridge Junction.
Kirtland's Warbler - a damn good bird in NC. I see them quite regularly in the Bahamas, but it was nice to get one in my home state.
It was super foggy up there. These pics would have been crippling if the fog cleared.
The fog did clear a bit by the end of my stay.
On Saturday I left home at 2am and made the pilgrimage to Duck, NC to get me some migration. My target was a Philadelphia Vireo. Jim and Al joined me and we did run into 10 species of warbler but nothing new for my year list.
Cape May Warbler
Blackburnian Warbler eating a Daddy Long-legs
But the real target was a Hudsonian Godwit seen at Pea Island for the past week. The plan was to get the godwit chop chop and head to Cedar Island via ferry to pick up another year bird in an American Golden Plover. Of course plans rarely go according to ..... plans. I was searching all over North Pond and met a nice couple Ron and Marie also looking for the bird. We split up and a couple hours later when I walked back to my truck a note was under the windshield wiper with directions to the Hudsonian they had relocated! THANK YOU RON and MARIE!
A beauty which could have been nicer if not backlit but I will take it! A NC lifer.
Is it me or does a Hudsonian look like a Marbled and a Clapper Rail had a drunken night in the reeds.
This beauty was showing me all the field marks. Dark underwings, white rump and blotchy red on the belly.