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Bird Watchers Spotting Species Not Normally Found In Philadelphia

By John McDevitt

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Hurricane Sandy blew some species of birds normally found along the coast and on the open sea off course and into the Philadelphia area. Bird watchers have been spotting the animals primarily along the Delaware river.

Leach’s Storm-Petrels, Parasitic Jaegers and Red Phalaropes are among species that have been showing up in places like Penny Pack Park and near Commodore Barry Bridge.

Doug Wechsler is the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University’s director of Visual Resources in Ornithology (VIREO).

“It’s certainly interesting to birders because there are birds that some of these birders have never seen showing up inland,” he said. “Normally you would have to take a boat way out on the ocean to see some of these.”

Wechsler says the birds that were blown off course and are well fed will eventually find their way back to the sea.

“They have an incredible sense of direction and an increasable ability to navigate.”

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