Sep 5, 2018 | Featured in: Watching Backyard Birds, October 2018

Watch the Moon for Southbound Migrants

If the night sky is cloudless, aim your binoculars toward the moon, and watch. Most migratory land birds make their twice-yearly journey at night.
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In 2018, full moons will occur September 24, October 24, and November 22. If the night sky is cloudless, aim your binoculars toward the moon, and watch. Most migratory land birds make their twice-yearly journey at night, including thrushes, warblers, flycatchers, sparrows, orioles, vireos, and cuckoos. Many start traveling just past dusk, and numbers tend to peak around midnight. You probably won’t be able to identify the birds that fly between your binoculars and the moon, but seeing their silhouettes, and possibly even hearing their nighttime flight chips, is a cool experience. This will work a few days before and after the full moon, too.



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