Snowy Plover (click to see the larger version)
Woody Goss found a Snowy Plover early on the morning of May 31 on the protected portion of Montrose Beach. It reappeared in the same place on June 3. This is about the 5th Snowy Plover record for Montrose and the second this year (the first was on April 23 and 24). More photos of the bird can be seen at my eBird checklist for the morning, URL below.
Snowy Plovers are normally found on the Gulf Coast and throughout the western and southwestern United States. They do vagrate regularly and show up far outside their usual range.
May 31, 2022
Connecticut Warbler (click to see the larger version)
Late May is prime time for Connecticut Warblers at Montrose. We’ve had multiple sightings so far this spring. The best way to find them is to listen for their loud, distinctive song. Two were at Montrose on May 26, and both were located because they were singing. Good recordings of Connecticut Warbler songs are on YouTube.
West Montrose Avenue, looking west (click to see the larger version)
Big parking changes at Montrose Point are here. Repaving of West Montrose Avenue is almost finished and lines have been painted for perpendicular parking. More cars will now be able to park along the street, which means even more people will be able to use Montrose. This also means a narrower road to drive on, which could reduce speeding but create more traffic and congestion. These changes only apply to West Montrose Avenue – nothing has changed on West Montrose Harbor Drive. This Google Map shows the road system in and around Montrose Point.
Imani, the male Piping Plover and son of Rose and Monty (click to see the larger version)
Talk about fortuitous, and funny. Imani, the male Piping Plover and son of Monty and Rose, was feeding on the long fishing pier on May 26. This is common behavior for shorebirds at Montrose (Monty and Rose would do the same thing there). These shorebirds like to feed on the hordes of midges that gather on the pier. Easy pickings. When I saw Imani on the pier I walked out to look at and photograph him. I took lots of pics and the best one happened by accident when he walked across and stopped briefly on one of the “no diving” glyphs painted on the pier.
Rose and Monty are gone but if a female Piping Plover finds her way to Montrose, the cycle could start anew.
View of the protected beach at Montrose (click to see the larger version)
If you’ve been to Montrose you’ve probably noticed the fencing and roping in the Dunes and Montrose Point Bird Sanctuary. The fencing and roping are there for a good reason – to protect the natural areas from potentially harmful human activity. For example, the Dunes are home to unusual and fragile plants that are easily trampled. Montrose is a wonderful natural area but it’s also popular with joggers, dog walkers, birders and others. If these areas weren’t cordoned off they would be overrun with people who could, unintentionally, harm the nature that makes Montrose so special. Not being able to access these areas is an inconvenience to birders but the protection gives the plants and animals a chance to thrive and feel safe.
You can now park legally on the north side of West Montrose Avenue but the parking ban has been extended to May 27 for the south side of the road. Hopefully the street repair project will be finished by that date. You can still park along West Montrose Harbor Drive but you’ll have to feed a meter for the privilege. This Google Map shows the road system in and around Montrose Point.