More birds push north from Texas to New Jersey as the latest front marches east

National overview

The latest frontal boundary extends from Texas to New Jersey as of last night, bringing southerly flow from Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula all the way through the Mid-Atlantic region. Trans-Gulf migration was evident late yesterday afternoon across the Texas and Louisiana Gulf Coast, and birds could also be seen making landfall in Florida this morning as they left Cuba after sunset last night. Heavy precipitation associated with the northeastern edge of the front may have caused some localized fallout conditions in the Washington D.C. area this morning as well. The Upper Midwest was again too far north of the frontal boundary to receive the bulk of the migrants heading towards the region, although the light and variable winds over the area did allow some birds already here to push farther to the northwest into the forecast zone.

national composite nexrad from around 11:00pm on 4/16/13
National Composite NEXRAD from around 11:00pm on 4/16/13

Below are the radar loops from sunset last night through 5:00am (central time) this morning

Upper Midwest

Minnesota & Wisconsin

Frames are every 1/2 hour. click on the thumbnail to view the full-sized animation.

base reflectivity image from Duluth base velocity image from Duluth

base reflectivity image from Minnesota base velocity image from Minnesota

Migration was light over Duluth last night, while over the Twin Cities it was a bit heavier. Birds definitely moved farther north into Minnesota this morning, though, and a light movement was still apparent over Duluth at the time of posting. Expect new birds throughout northern MN with no major concentrations due to the lack of weather and the lightness of the flight. Check the tried-and-true spring hotspots in your area for increases in short-distance migrants such as Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Hermit Thrush, and Yellow-bellied Sapsucker.

base reflectivity image from green bay, wi base velocity image from green bay, wi

base reflectivity image from milwaukee base velocity image from milwaukee

base reflectivity image from la crosse, wi base velocity image from la crosse, wi

Easterly winds across the region allowed for some moderate migration across the state last night, with many birds apparently leaving the Michigan lakeshore and heading to the northwest. The pattern was consistent across all Wisconsin radars so expect concentrations to shift from the southeast (especially along the lake) to the northwest. This bodes well for those birders in the northern part of the state for whom spring has barely shown itself.

Iowa & Illinois

Frames are every 1/2 hour. click on the thumbnail to view the full-sized animation.

base reflectivity image from chicago, il base velocity image from chicago, il
base reflectivity image from davenport, ia base velocity image from davenport, ia

Migration was lighter over IA and IL last night as conditions worsened closer to the frontal boundary. Little migration was apparent over either of the two radars and what was moving headed NW towards southern Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Given that the forecast area experienced a shift from south to north, expect less birds in the southern half of the region while the northern half (especially the northwest portion) should see some new arrivals today.

As always, woodcreeper.com depends on you to report your sightings and be our ‘eyes on the ground’, so please come back and give us an idea of how we’re doing predicting birding conditions in your neck of the woods.

Good Birding,

David

For migration updates in other regions check-

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula - The Northwoods BIRDAR by Max Henschell
New England - Tom Auer’s blog
Florida/SE - Badbirdz Reloaded by Angel and Mariel Abreu
PA/Ohio Valley - Nemesis Bird by Drew Weber
NW Ohio - Birding the Crane Creek by Kenn Kaufman
Pac NW - Birds Over Portland by Greg Haworth
Continental US - eBird BirdCast Forecast & Report by Team eBird

Woodcreeper On The Road: Headed for High Island, TX

National overview

Evidence of nocturnal migration could be seen across all flyways last night with the heaviest movements from Texas to southern Minnesota, and along the eastern seaboard. New arrivals on the Texas coast last night should still be present this morning, while a new group of Trans-Gulf migrants is expected to make landfall this afternoon from Texas to Louisiana.

national composite nexrad from around 11:00pm on 4/13/13
National Composite NEXRAD from around 11:00pm on 4/13/13

Below are the radar loops from sunset last night through 5:00am (central time) this morning

Western Gulf Coast

Texas

Frames are every 1/2 hour. click on the thumbnail to view the full-sized animation.

base reflectivity image from Brownsville base velocity image from Brownsville

base reflectivity image from Corpus Christi base velocity image from Corpus Christi

base reflectivity image from Houston, TX base velocity image from Houston, TX

Louisiana

base reflectivity image from Lake Charles, LA base velocity image from Lake Charles, LA

More birds pushed up into the Western Gulf region last night as light southeast winds and clear skies provided optimal migration conditions. Presumably the small number of birds that arrived from the Yucatan late yesterday evening would have stuck around last night due to exhaustion. Therefore while many birds did leave the region last night, we should see some turnover at spring hotspots this morning. A stationary front across the gulf will provide some resistance to Trans-Gulf migrants making the crossing today and could result in some small influx of new birds along the Texas/Louisiana coastline later this afternoon.

As always, woodcreeper.com depends on you to report your sightings and be our ‘eyes on the ground’, so please come back and give us an idea of how we’re doing predicting birding conditions in your neck of the woods.

Good Birding,

David

For migration updates in other regions check-

Michigan’s Upper Peninsula - The Northwoods BIRDAR by Max Henschell
New England - Tom Auer’s blog
Florida/SE - Badbirdz Reloaded by Angel and Mariel Abreu
PA/Ohio Valley - Nemesis Bird by Drew Weber
NW Ohio - Birding the Crane Creek by Kenn Kaufman
Pac NW - Birds Over Portland by Greg Haworth
Continental US - eBird BirdCast Forecast & Report by Team eBird

Chicken for breakfast? or bloody Balboa?

Watching the Mets game last night I was again reminded of how crappy television can be… which is unfortunate, because the game was awesome (10-8 win with some serious battling down to the end of the 9th inning).

Two images stick in my mind as of this morning; first being the Verizon FiOS commercial, where Kevin Garnett has all of his gigantic television screens wired up in his palacial estate (obscene, whether real or not), playing some of the goriest scenes from the Rocky movie. Each punch from the movie clip is punctuated by a beat in the background “whoomp-there-it-is” soundtrack. Not only is the commercial way too violent for a child under the age of 15 (yes, I have grandiose ideas of watching baseball with my kid, as soon as s/he is able to say “baseball”… or “Reyes”), but it also drives excessive consumerism straight down the viewer’s throat.

The second commercial, that I find comical in its absurdity, is the new McDonalds breakfast advertisement. The commercial shows several Americans fumbling with (one guy struggles to open a cereal box only to have it explode all over the dining room, where is toddler daughter watches in disapproval), burning (one woman flips what appears to be an omelet out of a pan and onto the gas burner where it promptly catches fire), and generally despising (the old “lumpy oatmeal on a spoon” camera shot) their breakfast. The kicker is when the camera pans to the NEW southern-fried chicken biscuit from McDonalds. “Leave breakfast to the professionals” the ad proclaims…the implication, of course, is that indeed YOU are too lame to even make breakfast for yourself, or your family, so go to McDonalds and eat some fried chicken on a biscuit!

McDonalds does acknowledge that “tastes are changing” and “change is good” (on several other new commercials advertising the chicken breakfast biscuit), and challenge the viewer to “think outside the box”… it’s funny they should say that, because now I’m thinking seriously of living without the box entirely…

For more information on the effect of media on children, I can highly recommend The Other Parent, by James P. Steyer (who is also a fan baseball, and had a similar revelation almost twenty years ago)

What to do with that bitter lettuce?

Well, I’m determined to do something with it… will try a Saag Paneer sometime next week, but in the meantime, I’m throwing the stuff into my blender by the handful… it’s actually pretty good!

Here I am with my latest concoction:

My Liquid Lunch

  1. 2 Big handfuls of bitter lettuce + one big leaf of swiss chard, and a smattering of bitter spinach
  2. 20 blueberries
  3. 1 cup water
  4. 2 Tbs of strawberry yogurt

Put it all in the blender, blend, and drink.

Okay, so I might not be the best person to listen to given that I’ve already lost my sense of smell and for all I know this thing tastes disgusting… but as far as my taste buds are concerned, it’s pretty good!

Alright, enough goofing off… lunch is over, back to work!

Cheers

David