Planning for January 1st – First Day of My New Jersey Big Year


I have been thinking quite a bit about the best place to begin my New Jersey Big Year.  There are so many good places to start, but which would be the best?

I finally decided on an area that never fails to please – the North Shore!   New Jersey’s shore is well know as a summer destination.  Tourists from New York, Philadelphia, and all areas of New Jersey visit the Shore in huge numbers every year.

Perhaps a lesser known aspect of the Jersey Shore is the potential for amazing birding opportunities through the late Fall through early Spring.  The big crowds are gone and the summer attractions are shuttered – and the birds are there en masse.

What could I hope to find – loons, ducks, scoter, gulls, and eider are frequently found feeding in the breakers, while sanderling, turnstone, and sandpipers chase the waves to and fro for hours.  A series of fresh water ponds along the route could yield gadwall, teal, mallards, heron, and geese.

I have never been a “beach” goer.  Don’t get me wrong – I love a walk on the boards during warm summer evenings.  But my favorite time at the Shore are those brisk winter mornings when there are few people and many birds.

North Shore it is!  Hope for good weather and abundant birds.  Maybe a crossbill or two!

Wish me luck.

Good Birding!



4 thoughts on “Planning for January 1st – First Day of My New Jersey Big Year

  1. jules

    There’s a report of Western Grebe off of the Allenhurst boardwalk this morning (Saturday), as well as White-winged Crossbill in the pines. Don’t know if that grebe will stay for 3 days, but maybe it will still be in the vicinity… Good luck with your first day!

  2. sheriffsmith

    Good luck Greg … I just completed a Big Year in my local county and I have to tell you as great and wonderful as it was seeing so many wonderful birds the best part ended up being the people … those at home that support and encourage you and those that you will meet along the way and as more and more people find out about your effort you’ll have tons and tons of help and encouragement. In the last couple of years there have been a good number of Big Year blogs and I love living vicariously through them and am looking forward to your year probably as much as you!!! Tom

    1. njbigyear Post author

      Thank you Tom. I am looking forward to a great year and, already, folks are e-mailing offers of help and support. I am eager to get started – the anticipation is building! I would love to read about your big year – is your blog still active? Good birding. Greg


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