This morning, before heading to a soccer scrimmage, I was able to do some birding around the yard. Right away, I headed to the highest point on the property which receives the first rays of sunlight as the sun peaks over the Kittatinny Ridge. This area, which is made up of Gray Birches, usually holds migrants. Although I couldn't find any migrant songbirds, I did see a Great Blue Heron flying over. From here, I worked my back towards the house. In a small meadow, I found two Sharp-shinned Hawks flying around. The two birds chased each other then rested on a bare treetop before flying into a stand of pines. In the vicinity of the pines was a calling Red-breasted Nuthatch.
From the meadow, I headed to the area around the house. Most of the birds in this area were in the fruit trees. A large group of Gray Catbirds, Northern Mockingbirds, and a Brown Thrasher fed on wild cherries while a group of Red-eyed Vireos and warblers fed on insects in an apple tree. Although most of the warblers were common species, I did find one Worm-eating Warbler which is always a pleasant surprise.
As I walked back to the house, I saw a large bird flying towards me from the west. At first glance, I thought it might be a raptor of some sort. As it flew closer, I realized that it was a gull. More specfically, a young Herring Gull, a somewhat rare species in this area during the summer. I have no idea where it came from, but it was flying directly east.