Below is a snapshot of the national map with radar and weather fronts. Use this map to get an overall feel of migration and how weather affects nocturnal migration. A front is rolling across the Central Flyway and restricted migration behind its trail. Winds behind the front were not optimal for migration, but conditions ahead of the front were right on! Heavy migration was evident from eastern Texas to New York, birders should see some new faces today. Florida is being emptied out with the migration vacuum in full affect, as the front rolls east it creates a suction type flow over our state and drives birds to the north.
Migration was evident over the state last night; much of this action will have past us by morning though. As a front approaches the state we have a “vacuum affect” where birds literally get up to altitude and are sucked up into a stream of winds that shoot them north in a rush. Birds begin to overshoot the state and leave us dry! We expect some turnover and some birds to have lingered around in areas that late afternoon diurnal heating caused strong thunder and lightning storms. Birds were crossing the FL Straits and the lower half of the state. Tampa radar picks up these birds moving fast over the coast as well as to the east of the station. With little precipitation or head winds it looks like these birds are going to pass up the Nature Coast. Birds that were moving east of Tampa could be seen on a regional radar loop flying over Lake Okeechobee, birders north of the lake could see new arrivals today. Heaviest migration was recorded over the NE coast of the state; looks like the best birding will be at migrant traps from the Palm Coast north to Amelia Island. Look out for incoming migrants at coastal migrant traps and in the swamp to the west of Jacksonville. Georgia and the Carolina’s should see new arrivals today; birds that overshot FL would have been able to make it into the region.
Get out and bird and see what is around, late season migration can be interesting; you never know what will turn up and where!
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Nature is Awesome,
Angel and Mariel