USA - New York State........7th to 16th May 2023

Central Park & Jamaica Bay


Chestnut-sided Warbler
Black-and-white Warbler
Scarlet Tanager
Baltimore Oriole
The mention of New York does not immediately bring to mind one of the top birding areas in the USA, perhaps the thinking behind that is a belief that New York is a top venue for sightseeing only. However, New York State is also a fantastic birdwatching region, including excellent sites, not only in the City but also the whole state. Our May tour encompasses Central Park, Jamaica Bay and possibly an optional visit to Bear Mountain State Park.
Spring birding is absolutely, top-notch for migrants and breeding species in this extensive state, which lies in the centre of the “Atlantic Migration Flyway”. Central Park is rated one of USA’s premier birding sites where, common resident species and regular spring visitors, include Red-bellied Woodpecker, American Robin, Blue Jay, Veery, Wood & Swainson’s Thrushes, Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Warbling Vireo, Scarlet Tanager, American Goldfinch and Northern Cardinal. In springtime, a top day in Central Park can produce 20 species of gorgeous American wood warblers, including Ovenbird, Northern Waterthrush, Black-and-white, Yellow, Yellow-rumped, Blackburnian, Magnolia, Bay-breasted and Chestnut-sided Warblers. We may also visit other sites in New York City, including Prospect Park. At Jamaica Bay we should encounter breeding Ospreys, Brant, Black Duck, Great & Snowy Egrets, Forster’s Tern and shorebirds such as American Oystercatcher, Willet, Short-billed Dowitcher and Lesser Yellowlegs. Land birds present include Fish Crow, Carolina Wren, Swamp Sparrow, Eastern Towhee, House Finch and usually good numbers of migrating passerines. On the return journey from Jamaica Bay, we’ll visit Ground Zero and on one day, enjoy an evening river cruise to experience an illuminated Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty!
If we do visit Bear Mountain an exploration should reveal breeding Cerulean, Hooded, Worm-eating, Prairie, Blue-winged & Golden-winged Warblers, Red-eyed Vireo, Baltimore Oriole, Pileated Woodpecker and Louisiana Waterthrush.

Days 1-8: Fly to New York on Day 1. During our stay, numerous visits will be made to Central Park, where we should see Double-crested Cormorant, Cardinal, American Goldfinch, Blue Jay, Mourning Dove, American Robin, Common Grackle, Downy & Red-bellied Woodpeckers and Song Sparrow. Amongst the numerous transient warbler and thrush species, could be American Redstart, Northern Parula, Black-and-white, Black-throated Blue, Black-throated Green, Palm, Blackburnian, Cape May, Canada, Tennessee, Nashville & Wilson’s Warblers, Hermit, Grey-cheeked and Wood Thrushes. Other regular species include Common Nighthawk, Chuck-wills-widow, Black-billed Cuckoo, Red-winged Blackbird, Black-capped Chickadee, Grey Catbird, Indigo Bunting, Scarlet Tanager and Rose-breasted Grosbeak. We also plan a visit to prospect Park, which can also produce very productive bird watching during migration periods.
A trip to Jamaica Bay should produce an array of wetland species, including Brant, Black Duck, Green-winged Teal, Yellow-crowned Night Heron, Great Blue Heron, Snowy Egret, Little Blue Heron, Green Heron, Osprey, American Oystercatcher, Spotted Sandpiper, Willet, Lesser Yellowlegs, Least Sandpiper, Red Knot, Laughing Gull, Least and Forster’s Terns. Amongst Jamaica Bay’s wooded areas can be a good selection of warblers as well as Brown Thrasher, Eastern Towhee and Northern Mockingbird. Fish Crow, Swamp Sparrow, House Finch and large numbers of Tree Swallows are also present on the reserve. On our return to New York city we plan a stop, in order to visit “Ground Zero” – scene of the Twin Towers terrorist attack.
An evening Hudson River Cruise will be another highlight, allowing us to witness the spectacle of an illuminated Statue of Liberty Brooklyn and Manhattan. On one day it may be possible to have an optional trip to Bear Mountain State Park’s wooded escarpment, which could produce an array of breeding American wood warblers, including Cerulean, Worm-eating, Golden-winged & Hooded as well as vireos, tanagers and orioles

Days 9-10: After a final visit to Central Park on Day 8, we’ll catch our early evening flight back to the UK, where we arrive on Day 9.

Tour ref: AA23**

Cost: £3,375
Deposit: £800
Single Room Supplement: £TBA

Leaders: Gerry Griffiths & Peter Scholes

Max. Group: 10 plus 2 Leaders

Includes:
Economy class return scheduled flights (UK-New York-UK); en-suite accommodation based on twin occupancy; meals; transportation in New York and services of leaders

Excludes:
Excludes: ESTA/Visa, travel insurance, drinks, optional trip to Bear Mountain and items of a personal nature.
The Americas