Rare Bird Alert: November 18, 2016


I’m still overseas, but with a bit sturdier internet, so this week’s Rare Bird Alert will continue as normal. I do have one quick programming announcement, due to the Thanksgiving holiday next week’s RBA will publish on Saturday rather than Friday. Thanks for your understanding!

Continuing rarities in the ABA Area include the ABA’s 3rd record of Amazon Kingfisher (ABA Code 5) in Texas, a Pink-footed Goose (4) in New York (with many more to come), and a Blue-footed Booby (4) in California.

Most exciting bird this week, at least for the birders rushing to pad their Big Year lists, was the ABA’s 2nd record of Common Scoter (5), found this week in Lincoln, Oregon, where it represents a first for the state. This is not far up the coast from where the ABA’s 1st record of this species was discovered just over 18 months ag0.


The ABA Area’s 2nd record of Common Scoter was found in Lincoln, Oregon, this week (the front bird, of course). Photo: John Puschock (more photos available here).

At least three other states enjoyed 1st records this week. In Tennessee a Northern Wheatear in Loudon, in the western part of the state, was a long expected 1st.

And a Crested Caracara in Forsyth, Georgia, was also a 1st record, and the latest in that species expansion as a vagrant into the southeastern states.

Far less expected was a Sagebrush Sparrow that touched down on Whitefish Point, in Michigan, where it represented a very unusual 1st record. Also in Michigan, a Vermilion Flycatcher was seen in Tuscola.

Good for Ontario, a Mountain Bluebird  was found near Moosonee.

In Quebec, a Cave Swallow was at Montérégie.

Nova Scotia had one of the several Pink-footed Geese (4) found this week, in Fredricton.

Newfoundland’s 2nd record of Hermit Warbler was well-documented at Mobile.

Massachusetts had a Mountain Bluebird in Franklin.

Rhode Island also had a Pink-footed Goose (4) near Slocum.

In New York, an Ash-throated Flycatcher was discovered in Nassau.

Pennsylvania had a trio of good birds, including a Townsend’s Solitaire in Cumberland, a Black-chinned Hummingbird in Lycoming, and the state’s 2nd Tropical Kingbird in Lancaster.

A Gray Kingbird  in Kent, Maryland, is that state’s 8th.

Good for Florida was a Red-necked Grebe in Pasco.

Ohio had a Cave Swallow this week in Cuyahoga.

Indiana had a Townsend’s Solitare in Lawrence.

In Saskatchewan, a Red-bellied Woodpecker in Regina is a noteworthy find.

Wyoming also had a Red-bellied Woodpecker this week, near Sundance.

British Columbia’s 2nd Lucy’s Warbler was discovered and well-photographed this week in Kelowna.

In California, a Nazca Booby (5) flew by Point Pinos in Monterey.  The species is being reported more and more frequently in California waters.

In Arizona, a Streak-backed Oriole (4) was a great find in Cochise.

And in New Mexico, a Great Kiskadee  was discovered in Sierra


Omissions and errors are not intended, but if you find any please message blog AT aba.org and I will try to fix them as soon as possible. This post is meant to be an account of the most recently reported birds. Continuing birds not mentioned are likely included in previous editions listed here. Place names written in italics refer to counties/parishes.

Readers should note that none of these reports has yet been vetted by a records committee. All birders are urged to submit documentation of rare sightings to the appropriate state or provincial committees. For full analysis of these and other bird observations, subscribe to North American Birds <aba.org/nab>, the richly illustrated journal of ornithological record published by the ABA.


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