Sunday, April 24, 2011

Next migrant wave 4/27 or later?

Late evening Sunday, April 24: In an earlier post, I had suggested that we might have a good arrival of migrants in n.w. Ohio on Tuesday, April 26. That still might happen, but the latest weather forecast is making it look less likely. The latest prediction shows a lot of rain overnight Monday night, and winds mostly from the east, not shifting to southeast until shortly before dawn Tuesday. That’s not a good formula for a big overnight arrival of migrants.

Winds are supposed to be southerly on Tuesday and through Tuesday night. We may have a lot of rain and even strong thunderstorms during the day, but overnight it appears there may be a lot less rain. With southerly winds and a break in the rain, a lot of migrants could be moving, especially if there are clear skies anywhere to the south of us. So at the moment, it looks as if Wednesday April 27 could be a moderately good day in the migrant traps along the Lake Erie shoreline. A lot of species could put in their first appearance of the season. At the moment, diversity of warblers and other tropical migrants is a little lower than expected for this date, but that will change in a hurry as soon as a wave arrives.

Looking a little farther ahead, we’ll have rain and shifting winds off and on this week, but there’s a chance that Saturday could offer very good birding. According to some forecasts, by late Friday a large high-pressure area may have moved off to the east of us, with a couple of low-pressure areas lined up just a little to the west, and these could produce a strong southerly flow coming all the way from the Gulf states Friday night. If that forecast holds, that could be a setup for a really major arrival of birds Saturday morning – a good situation for the many birders who can get out most easily on weekends!

In the meantime, unsettled weather often produces records of interesting birds. Good finds today (Sunday) included a beautiful adult Tricolored Heron found by Sherrie Duris at Metzger Marsh, seen from the second pulloff on the causeway on the way in to the marsh. A Yellow-headed Blackbird was being seen on Veler Road, just west of the n.w. corner of Ottawa NWR (please be respectful of private property if you go to look for this bird!). The Black-necked Stilt and Cattle Egret mentioned in the previous post were both seen again today.

No comments:

Nature Blog Network