web analytics

No Migration – Until Now?

Posted on Apr 20, 2016

Here is an image of last night’s radar taken a little before midnight with strong and heavy avian migration occurring across the Deep South and Gulf Coast. Very few birds made it into the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest, and there was no action in the Northeast. It was yet another night of poor bird movement for us, continuing a pattern and a theme that has persisted for a while this April. We have had lovely weather recently all thanks to northerly-based flows keeping air moving off the land being warmed by the sun as high pressures have been centered over the Great Lakes or Mid-Atlantic. We end up with calm conditions or a light north wind that does not allow widespread and heavy migration into our area.

No Migration April 19 2016

Yes, birds are returning, and you have seen some come back to nesting grounds or others migrating through, and it is still early in the season. However, there have not been any “big” mornings in terms of diversity and abundance, and migratory hot spots that do not have breeding birds have been very quiet. With that said, I usually look at April 20 to May 20 as the month where migration explodes and we peak in terms of both species and numbers. We do have plenty of birds backed up in the south and ready to go find their way to our too early leaves that are popping out now. I believe the next few days should be very productive as we enter the best period of spring birding in the Northeast with high pressure moving off the coast and a southerly flow setting up. Good birding to you!

Scott Kruitbosch
Conservation & Outreach Coordinator