The day before the round-up there was a mass movement of Franklin's Gulls through the area and even a report of a few cave swallows from the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. So everyone is excited and ready to go.
We start our day at the beach at First Landing State Park. The first bird seen was an immature Bald Eagle. Always going to be a good day when you start with an eagle. There was a lot of movement out over the water but the air was cool and the wind brisk making the bird watching uncomfortable. We spotted the regular suspects but nothing unusual. A few people had reported the Franklin's Gulls from Pleasure House Point, nearby and a planned stop later in the day, so we change plans and head over there next to see if any gulls are still hanging out from the night before. It was Saturday morning so maybe they were nursing a hangover. We have a nice walk about to where we can see some sandbars on the Lynnhaven Inlet. There were several hundred gulls out there but none that we could make into Franklin's Gulls. There were a large number of Black Skimmers who should have been further south by now. This spot has had a group stay for the past few years so not unexpected but always nice to find.
As we headed back to the cars we heard a couple little chip notes and two of the party saw a bird flit across the marsh grass. We all quickly stopped and set down the spotting scopes so our hands were free for binoculars. After a few more calls we see a nice, orange-faced sparrow pop up.
After a lunch in the resort part of town we drove down to Rudee Inlet which is a place frequented by unexpected birds. Again, not much unusual but we did see a pair of Purple Sandpipers and three female Red-breasted Mergansers. There were also several dolphins swimming and playing just beyond the jetty. At one point they were splashing their tails around and hopping out of the water. Quite a nice show.
Another stop at First Landing State Park found only this very cooperative Golden-crowned Kinglet. I particularly like the last one where it is trying to identify me.
We returned to Pleasure House Point at the end of t
As we were packing up to call it a night, six wedges of tundra swans flew over. About 500 in all heading to warming, more inviting climes.