I like to be beside sparrows by the seaside
See Seaside Sparrows by the seaside
by the beautiful sea!
One very rare visitor in New York County is the Seaside Sparrow. It's a marsh bird, like the Nelson's and Saltmarsh sparrows, and Manhattan has relatively little marshland anymore. But on the late afternoon of May 5th there was a report of three in a small green area called Clinton Cove, on the west side along the Hudson River about 55th Street, and of course the area was inundated with birders.
That isn't all the area was inundated with. When the birds were found by Adrian Burke, it was gloomy and threatening weather, and then they were refound the next morning in pouring rain. People found there way to the spot all day. The birds fed mostly in a median between the Hudson Greenway bike path and a pedestrian path. A fourth was spotted, and then one was carried off by a Kestrel.
Lucky for me, three were still there when I finally got there late on May 6. The birds did not seem bothered by people at all. The habitat seemed very poor to me, but there they were--stocky, largish sparrows, extremely drab, with a bit of yellow in front of and over the eye, and a whitish throat. Very unprepossessing birds.
Also, still another Seaside Sparrow was spotted about a half-mile north of Clinton Cove, also on the Hudson River Greenway. It never rains but it pours, I guess.
The birds lingered until at least Tuesday, although at least one more disappeared. Hopefully it flew out rather than becoming a Kestrel's dinner.
As so often happens, once birders are on-site, they start spotting other interesting birds around. Veery, Green Heron, Swamp, Savannah, Song, and Chipping Sparrows, Peregrine Falcon, Hermit Thrush, Orchard and Baltimore Orioles, Ruby Crowned Kinglet, Warbling Vireo, and at least eight species of warbler (Common Yellowthroat, Ovenbird, and Yellow, Yellow-Rumped, Black-and-White, Black-Throated Green, Black-Throated Blue, and Palm Warblers)--a minor demonstration of the famous "Patagonia Picnic Table Effect".