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Rare Bird Alert: October 7, 2016

Friday, October 7, 2016 6:09
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Continuing ABA rarities have mostly cleared out, but Texas hosted at least two into this last week. The Variegated Flycatcher (ABA Code 5) on South Padre Island stuck around through last weekend before the weather changed and it disappeared. The Crimson-collared Grosbeak (4) that was also on Padre left a couple days previously.

The accommodating Variegated Flycatcher was replaced on the rarity front by an equally accommodating Lesser Sand-Plover (3) in Coconino, Arizona. This is a 1st state record and one of only a few records of this east Asian species in the interior of the continent.

The cooperative Lesser Sand-Plover in Arizona is the 1st for that state and the 1st for the interior southwest. Photo Laura Keene via Macauley Library

The cooperative Lesser Sand-Plover in Arizona is the 1st for that state and the 1st for the interior southwest. Photo Laura Keene (S31899538) via Macauley Library

There was one other 1st this week, from Quebec where a Western Wood-Pewee banded at Cap Tourmente looks to provide the province with a new species.

Quebec also hosted the first Pink-footed Goose (4) of the season, an individual photographed in La Mitis.

Elsewhere in eastern Canada, a Lark Bunting at Cape Breton and a Fork-tailed Flycatcher (3) in Conway are highlights for Nova Scotia.

Maine had a sharp young Swainson’s Hawk in Millinocket.

In Connecticut, frigatebird sp (likely Magnificent) flew over Middleton last week, and a California Gull was photographed in West Haven.

New Jersey also had a Swainson’s Hawk in Cape May.

A Bar-tailed Godwit in Carteret, North Carolina is about the 9th for the state and the 2nd this year.

Georgia had a Lark Bunting last week on St. Catherine’s Island.

As the powerful Hurricane Matthew begins to churn past Florida, birders are on the lookout for Caribbean strays, at the time of this writing, a Mangrove Swallow (5), flew past the Key West hawkwatch in Monroe, a 2nd record for Florida and a 2nd for the ABA Area. More on this as it develops.

In Alabama, a Say’s Phoebe was photographed in Mobile.

Arkansas had a Brown Booby (3) turn up on Lake Greeson.

In Kentucky, an Inca Dove was a nice find in Ballard.

An Anhinga was reported soaring over Oshawa, Ontario last week, but not refound.

In Iowa, noteworthy birds include a Rufous Hummingbird in Gliddon and Great-tailed Grackles in Johnson.

In North Dakota, a Vermilion Flycatcher in Adams isn’t the first record, but it’s the first in a very long time.

Notable from Texas was a Short-tailed Hawk at the Santa Ana hawkwatch in Hidalgo.

In Colorado, a Tricolored Heron was discovered in Jackson.

Idaho had an extralimital, and very late, Scissor-tailed Flycatcher in Twin Falls.

In Nevada, a Tropical/Couch’s Kingbird was photographed in Clark, and a Blackburnian Warbler was seen at a migrant trap near Tonopah.

California had a pair of Red-throated Pipits (3) in Marin.

British Columbia’s 2nd Lucy’s Warbler was discovered this week in Kelowna, along with a Summer Tanager also in Kelowna.

And last but certainly not least, late season vagrants in western Alaska include briefly seen Pallas’s Bunting (5) and Eurasian Bullfinch (4) on Gambell, along with Little Bunting (3) and a surprising Lazuli Bunting, while on St. Paul Olive-backed Pipit (3) was a nice find.


Omissions and errors are not intended, but if you find any please message blog AT 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 <>, the richly illustrated journal of ornithological record published by the ABA.

Join the American Birding Association at!


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