Posted by: woodcreeper | September 26, 2008 @ 5:52 am

Heavy migration into and out of Florida

Well, as the Ladies of Cape Florida mentioned, yesterday there appeared to be a good push of new arrivals into Southeast Florida. This seems to have continued last night, with a new batch of birds making their way down the state by early this morning. Here’s the radar from 7:00pm last night through 5:00am this morning.

Frames are every 1/2 hour. Click on the thumbnail to view the full-sized animation.
Base Reflectivity image from Key West, FL Base Velocity image from Key West, FL Base Reflectivity image from Miami, FL Base Velocity image from Miami, FL Composite base reflectivity for the Southeastern USA

All Florida radars showed heavy migration last night, and unlike most nights over Florida, the winds appear to have been directly out of the north. This will result in good densities of birds at various fall migrant traps throughout the state, including along both coasts as well as the interior. For south Florida, expect good densities at Fort DeSoto (St. Pete) on the west coast, and Hugh Taylor Birch (Ft. Lauderdale), Cape Florida, and Key Largo botanical site on the east. Key Largo could be especially great given the restricted landmass compared to the overall magnitude of the migration event. Last night was also a good one for birds heading beyond Florida, as the Tallahassee radar showed birds launching into the Gulf of Mexico, while both the Miami and Key West radars indicated birds launching into the Atlantic and Florida Straits. With the clear skies today, it should be a nice one to head out and see what’s around. I look forward to hearing about what you saw.

Good Birding,


Please don’t forget to become a member of the Badbirdz/Woodcreeper flock today. You can read the Become a Member post to find out more information.


  1. There was less volume today with a definite change-over of birds. The birds seemed organized into flocks and went about their business of quietly foraging, unlike yesterday’s willy-nilly frenentic atmosphere. Oh wait, I just described the auxiliary banders…… We banded 49 (mostly warblers) of 14 species with best: Golden-winged, 3rd Canada and 2nd Magnolia. Birds’ conditions were a mixed bag, some ready to pop and others clearly in need of R & R. Black-throated Blues came in force on this wave. Falcons continue in good numbers.

  2. This morning, I went to extreme southern Miami-Dade first thing in the morning to do some birding before class. I stayed at the C-111E Canal from 7:20am to 8:55am. The first thing I noticed when I arrived was the massive numbers of Common Yellowthroats flowing across the street away from the strip of hammock. There must have been hundreds of them! It was a fast moving swarm, and I tried to focus my binoculars on as many individuals as I could to pick out any other birds. Here’s the final migrant count for the C-111E:

    American Kestrel
    Eastern Kingbird (2)
    Yellow-throated Vireo
    Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (4)
    Tennessee Warbler
    Northern Parula (4)
    Black-throated Blue Warbler (3)
    Prairie Warbler (13)
    Palm Warbler (7) FOTS
    Magnolia Warbler
    Hooded Warbler (1 male)
    American Redstart (13)
    Common Yellowthroat (55)
    Ovenbird (3)

    A quick stop at the Annex afterwards was no where near as productive. Amazing how just a couple miles away, there is a huge movement of warblers while another location down the road is quiet! Singles a few common warblers. The most notable bird here was an early Gray Catbird.

    Northern Harrier
    Great Crested Flycatcher
    Red-eyed Vireo
    Gray Catbird FOTS
    Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (3)
    American Redstart
    Black-and-white Warbler
    Common Yellowthroat (a lonely female)



%d bloggers like this: