Alabama & Mississippi: Spring 2017

Spring 2017: 1 Mar­–31 May

Lawrence F. Gardella
[email protected]

Recommended citation:

Gardella, L.F. 2021. Spring 2017: Alabama & Mississippi. <https://wp.me/p8iY2g-9Rt> North American Birds.

Spring 2017 opened very warm with unseasonably high temperatures on 1 March. Those temperatures quickly moved back to normal range. Then, starting 12 March, temperatures dipped well below normal before returning to levels well above normal, and averaging five degrees above normal for the balance of March and April. Temperatures in May were much less volatile, but they were still several degrees above historical averages. Rainfall was below average for March, well above average for April, then back below average for May. Black-bellied Whistling-ducks had the most significant range expansion, but White-winged Doves also continue to expand their range. The largest number of warblers establishing early records were found in the Tennessee region; this bears watching.

Contributors (subregional editors in boldface):

Skyler Abell, Ken Archambault, Larry Basden, Wayne Baumgartner, Jeremy Bearden, Michael Bernard, Charles Boley, Florence Box, Larry Box, Ned Boyajian, Jordan Broadhead, Emily Brown, Allen Burrows, Kevin Calhoon, Dwight Cooley, Holly Cox, Judy Crittenden, Debbie Dailey, Frank Dailey, Ed DeVries, Gerry Dinkins, Duston Duffie (DDu), Lawrence Gardella, Ben Garmon, Jeff Garner, David George, Neil Gilbert, Mackenzie Goldthwait, Olivia Graves, Van Gravlee, Eric Gustafson, Karl Gustafson, Andrew Haffenden, Tom Haggerty, Greg Harber, Ken Hare, Jeffrey Harris, Amber Hart (AmH), Eric Haskell, David Hicks (DaH), Della Hicks (DeH), Kathy Hicks (KHi), Geoff Hill (GHi), Jason Hoeksema (JHoe) , James Holmes (JaHol) , Jim Holmes (JiHol), Mary Hooper, Sharon Hudgins, Eugene Huryn (EHu), John Imhof, Debra Jackson, Greg Jackson, Lucy Jacobson, Wes Jarnigan, Chris Johnson, Brian Johnston, Heath Jordan, Michael Jordan, Doug Kibbe, Rick Kittinger (RiK), Ron Kittinger (RoK), Gene Knight, Craig Litteken, Paul Mack, Nancy Madden, Cody Massery (CMo), Rodney McCollum, Steve McConnell (SMc), Glenda Merrill, Anne Miller, Cindy Mirarchi, Laura Mirarchi

Contributors (cont.)

Ralph Mirarchi (RMi), Hal Mitchell, Thomas Moorman, Marlee Morris, Sue Moske, Joe Mulrooney, Phyllis Nofzinger, Jimmy Osborne, Wayne Patterson, Ashley Peters, Rick Remy, J.R. Rigby, Pelham Rowan, Scott Rush, Frank Sandford (FSa), Thomas Savage (TSa), Marion Schiefer, Terence Schiefer, Don Self (DSe), Judy Self, Floyd Sherrod, Tom Siegwald (TSi), Damien Simbeck, Renea Simpson (RSi), Eric Soehren, Christine Sparks, Elise Stahlman, Jimmy Stephenson, Sheila Stevens, Robert Stewart, Shirley Swope (SSw) , Steven Tatum, John Trent, Mary Tucker, Mac Walter, Hunter Walters (HWa), Ken Ward (KWa), Harold Weber, Daniel West, Mariah West, Randy White, Robert Wiedenmann (RWi), Max Williams (MWi), Ken Wills

Abbreviations:   Blakeley (Blakeley Island dredge disposal ponds, Mobile, AL); Dauphin (Dauphin Island, Mobile, AL); FWFTA (Forever Wild Field Trial Area in Hale, AL); Ft. Morgan (Fort Morgan State Historical Park, Baldwin, AL); G.C. (Gulf Coastal Region of s. Alabama); I.C.P. (Interior Coastal Plain Region of s.-cen. Alabama); M.R. (Mountain Region of n. Alabama); Noxubee (Noxubee NWR, Noxubee/Oktibbeha/Winston, MS); T.V. (Tennessee Valley Region of n. Alabama); Wheeler (Wheeler NWR, Limestone/Morgan/Madison, AL). “seven-county area” refers to the following seven counties in Mississippi near Starkville: Choctaw, Clay, Lowndes, Noxubee, Oktibbeha, Webster, and Winston.

WATERFOWL THROUGH GREBES

Black-bellied Whistling-Ducks continue to increase and expand in the region. The Dauphin Island Sanctuary, Mobile, AL (not a usual site) hosted 11 on 21 Apr; and 20 on 22 Apr (RM, ES, CJ et al.). Six were at Tupelo Water Treatment Facility, Lee, MS 18 Mar (WP) for a second county record. Rare but increasing on the I.C.P., reports were received from four sites, including an unusual one: Bamberg, Hale 27 May (ph., NG). Four adults were on top of a Wood Duck box in Tibbee Creek, Clay 25 Apr (ph., SSw) and two–four birds were at Columbus Lake, Lowndes 2–3 May (JO, TS, PM, FD, DD, MS); two locations where they rare but regular since 2015. Now only casual in Alabama, 10 Fulvous Whistling-Ducks were on the e. end of Dauphin, Mobile, early-to mid-May (MW; p.a) for the third record since 2000. Rare but increasing, and occasional in spring on the I.C.P., four Ross’s Geese in Hale 5 Mar (DSe, JS) tied the Alabama maximum spring count; a single was in Tuscaloosa 24 Mar (RoK, RiK, ph.). Rare in spring in the T.V., one was in Limestone 8 Mar (DS). Casual in spring on the G.C., a single at Baldwin, 26 May (BJ, ph.) marked the latest departure for S. Alabama. An apparently injured Greater White-fronted Goose lingered in Oktibbeha at least through May 21 (TS), five days past the prior late departure date for the seven-county area. A new spring maximum for Canada Geese in the G.C. was set by counts of 108 birds on 13 May in Mobile (JB), and 108 in Baldwin, 16 May (LG). In Lee, 26 May (RMi) 103 Wood Ducks established a new spring maximum for the M.R. An adult male Cinnamon Teal at Wheeler, Limestone 4–19 Mar (SM, m. ob., ph.; p.a.) provided the sixth record for Alabama; third for T.V. A new high spring count of 282 Northern Shovelers on the I.C.P. was made in Hale 5 Mar (DSe, JS). An apparently injured Northern Shoveler lingered at Clay at least through 19 May (TS), three days past the prior late departure date for the seven-county area; another was found at McLeod, Noxubee 24 May (JH). In Perry 4 Mar (NG, EHu, EB), a count for Gadwalls (200+) set a new spring maximum for the I.C.P. A single Green-winged Teal at Noxubee, 22 Apr (TS) was a day past the previous late departure date for the seven-county area. In the M.R., a new season maximum for Ring-necked Ducks was set and then tied by counts of 12 birds on 1 Mar at Lee (RM) and 12 at Shelby 21 Mar to 5 Apr (RoK). Nine Greater Scaup from Baldwin 4 Mar (LG) marked a spring maximum for the Gulf Coast. Rare in spring on the Gulf Coast, a single Surf Scoter was at Gulf Shores, Baldwin 7 May (AP). Occasional in spring on the Gulf Coast; four White-winged Scoters were at Bon Secour NWR, Baldwin 8 Apr (BG). Rare in spring on the Gulf Coast, Dauphin, Mobile, hosted 19 Black Scoters on 5 Apr and three on 16 May (AH, LG, TM et al., ph.); and a single female was at Ft. Morgan, Baldwin 28 Apr (BJ, ph.). A single female Bufflehead was at Mobile 30 Apr (ph., LG) for a late record for the Gulf Coast. At Jefferson 11 Mar (PR), eight Hooded Mergansers marked a spring maximum for the M.R. Rare in the T.V. and occasional in spring, a single Common Merganser was at Guntersville, Marshall 22 Mar (SM).

At Madison, 22 Mar (SM) 34 Wild Turkeys marked a spring maximum for the T.V. The 29 Pied-billed Grebe tallied in Mobile, 2 Mar (LG) marked a spring maximum for the Gulf Coast.

DOVES THROUGH CRANES

Alabama’s first White-crowned Pigeon was found on Dauphin, Mobile 28–30 Apr, (DaH, DeH, fide KHi, ph., p.a.). One Inca Dove at Fort Morgan 18 Apr (ES, SR, CS et al., ph.; p.a.) provided the thirteenth record for Alabama. Two birds returned to the first inland Alabama site in Faunsdale, Marengo 12–23 May (RoK, RiK, FSa et al., ph.). At Mobile, 12 Apr (TSi) 29 White-winged Doves marked a spring maximum for the Gulf Coast. Rare but slowly increasing on the I.C.P., one was heard in Tuscaloosa 27 Apr (NG). Black-billed Cuckoos are rare in the seven-county area, but singles were found in Lowndes 6 May (JO, PM) and in Oktibbeha 8 May (TS, MS). Fifteen Chimney Swifts at Auburn, Lee 9 Mar (JB) marked an early arrival date for inland Alabama. A new maximum for Alabama was established by an estimated 8000 at Limestone 28 Apr (DS). A male Ruby-throated Hummingbird seen in Madison 17 Mar (CB, MH) established an early arrival date for the T.V.

A Sora at Oktibbeha 13 May (JH) tied the late departure date. A single Common Gallinule was seen in Perry 4 Mar (NG), rare this far north on the I.C.P. Twenty-four at Lake Bateau Bay, Baldwin 24 Mar (KHi, ph.) marked a maximum spring count for the Gulf Coast. Rare in the M.R., reports came from three sites: one at Porter Lake, Jefferson 29 Apr (DG, SH); a single on Cuss Creek, Chambers 13 May (JiHol); and two at Opelika, Lee 29 May (JaHol, RM, GHi). Common Gallinules have been breeding at Noxubee NWR, Noxubee, since 2000, but one arriving at the refuge’s Bluff Lake 8 Mar (TS, MS) marked the earliest arrival date by 28 days. Nesting at Eufaula NWR, Barbour, was documented by the observation of five Purple Gallinule (one carrying nest material) 14 May (GHi). As many as four Limpkins were at Gantt Lake, Covington, 5 May–30 July (TSa, m. ob., ph.; voice recording; p.a.) to establish the sixth record for Alabama. A lone bird s. of Alexander City, Tallapoosa 15 May (ph., MT, p.a.) provided the seventh record for Alabama; third for the M.R. A single Sandhill Crane lingering at Morgan, until 20 May (MW, DW, m. ob.) established a late record for inland Alabama.

SHOREBIRDS THROUGH PELICANS

Rare in the T.V., two Black-necked Stilts were in Lauderdale 3 May (FS) with a single there 14 May (WB). Three were at Limestone 13 May (DC). Also rare on the I.C.P., one bird was found at Eufaula NWR, Barbour 31 May (ph, GHi). A single Black-bellied Plover, rare in spring on the I.C.P., was at Henry 25 May (JT). Occasional inland, a single Whimbrel found near Leighton, Colbert 21 Apr (RoK, RiK) marked the first spring record for the T.V. One at Oktibbeha County Lake, Oktibbeha 12 May (TS, MS, JH, ph.) was the first record in the seven-county area and only the seventh inland Mississippi record; third in the past 50 years. Rare in spring in the M.R., four Stilt Sandpipers were tallied on the Birmingham area spring count, Shelby 29 Apr (JI, JB). Also rare in spring in the seven-county area, two Stilt Sandpipers were found at Oktibbeha County Lake, Oktibbeha 12 May (TS, MS, JH). Baird’s Sandpipers are rare but regular in spring in NW Alabama; three reports were received: two in Colbert 3–4 May (DS, JG, GD et al.); in Lauderdale three on 5 May and two on 6 May (DS et al.); and two in Colbert 30 May (DS). A Least Sandpiper at Noxubee NWR, Noxubee 28 May (JH) marked the latest departure date for the seven-county area by six days. Short-billed Dowitchers are rare in spring in the seven-county area. At Oktibbeha, 12 May (TS, MS, JH), there were 26. A Long-billed Dowitcher at Noxubee, 7 May (JH, JO, PM) established a late departure date for the seven-county area. A single Wilson’s Phalarope, occasional in spring in the M.R., was at Jefferson 29 Apr (DG, SH). Rare in spring in the T.V., a female was in Lauderdale 5–6 May (ph., DS et al.) and another female was found at Limestone 14 May (CB). A third female noted at Tuscaloosa, 6 May (ph., WJ) was of interest as they are occasional in spring on the I.C.P. Wilson’s Phalaropes are also rare away from the coast in Mississippi, but 13 were at Lee (m. ob.). Two were also seen in the seven-county area, where they are particularly rare: one at McLeod, Noxubee 28 Apr (JH) and one at Oktibbeha County Lake, Oktibbeha, 20 May (TS). An early arrival record for N. Alabama was marked by a single Solitary Sandpiper at Lee 13 Mar (ph., RM). Rare on the I.C.P., 18 Willets were tallied at Tuscaloosa, on 27 Apr (ph., EH). This species, also rare in the M.R., was reported as a “count week” bird for the 29 Apr Birmingham area spring count, Jefferson/Shelby/St. Clair (fide AM).

The adult Laughing Gull at Noxubee 15 Apr (JM, TS) arrived four days earlier than the previous early date for the seven-county area. At Chilton/Coosa, 5 Mar (GH) 180 Bonaparte’s Gulls marked a spring maximum for the I.C.P. A Franklin’s Gull was found at Harrison, 18 Mar (HC). Rare in spring, a single Lesser Black-backed Gull was on Little Dauphin Island, Mobile 23 Apr (GJ, DJ). Rare on the Gulf Coast, an immature Glaucous Gull was at Ft. Morgan, Baldwin 16 Mar–17 May (ED, m. ob., ph.). A single Least Tern, occasional in spring in the M.R., was at Shelby 27 Apr (MW, DW, RoK, ph.). Caspian Terns are rare in spring in the M.R.; one was at Jefferson 3 Apr (RoK). The 31 counted at Demopolis Lock and Dam, Marengo/Sumter 25 Apr (EH) established a new spring maximum for the I.C.P. Two Black Terns, rare in spring in the T.V., were at Marshall 19 Apr (AmH). Occasional in spring in the M.R., one was at St. Clair, 15 May (RoK). A rare Red-throated Loon and a rare Pacific Loon were both found at Bay Springs Lake, Tishomingo 19 Mar (ph., WP). At Dauphin, Mobile 25 Common Loons tallied 5 Apr (LG, AH) established a new spring maximum for the Gulf Coast. Rare in Alabama, a single Masked Booby was at Dauphin, Mobile, 25 Mar (AH) and another single was at Ft. Morgan, Baldwin 16 Apr (RoK, RiK, MB). Three reports of Brown Booby, occasional in spring on the Gulf Coast, came from the Fort Morgan Peninsula, Baldwin: four on 8 Apr (BG); one–five on 16–18 Apr (RoK, RiK, AH et al.); and one at Baldwin 25 Apr (BG). One seen at Columbus 26–29 Apr (ST, LB, ph.) was captured for rehabilitation. Another was found at Jackson 27 May (ph., LJ). Two male Anhingas at Madison 16 Apr (SM) were rare, but the species is becoming regular in this area. A male from Lauderdale 7 May (TH) was the third recorded in NW Alabama. Up to 14 seen nesting in Noxubee 11 Mar–31 May (JH, TS, MS, m. ob.) provided an early arrival date for the seven-county area. Up to 1350 Double-crested Cormorants at Etowah 22 Mar–20 Apr+ (GJ), with at least three occupied nests on 20 Apr, provided a maximum spring number for the M.R. A single Neotropic Cormorant at Hussey Sod Farm, Lee 25 Mar (ph., WP) established a first county record. At Elk River Mills, Limestone 2 Mar (DS) 2000 American White Pelicans provided a new spring maximum for Alabama.

HERONS THROUGH RAPTORS

One American Bittern at Shelby 6 Mar (RoK) set an early spring arrival record for the M.R. if not an occasional wintering bird. Three hundred Great Egrets from Hale 17 Mar (NG) provided a new spring maximum for the I.C.P. Nesting was suspected but not yet documented for up to 16 Black-crowned Night-Herons at Noxubee NWR, Noxubee 27 Apr–31 May (JH, TS, MS, MM). Seven White Ibis seen at Noxubee NWR, Noxubee 10 Mar (TS) provided the earliest arrival date in the seven-county area by four days. At Eufaula NWR, Barbour 2–3 Apr (GM, SS), 12 Glossy Ibis—rare inland—established a maximum for inland Alabama; a single was there on 13 May (ph., JoT). A single Glossy Ibis at Oktibbeha County Lake, Oktibbeha 18–19 May (TS, MS) was rare in the area, and established a late departure date. Two White-faced Ibis near Leighton, Colbert 27–28 Apr (ph., SM et al.) established the eighth inland record for Alabama and third for the T.V. Rare but now regular on the Gulf Coast, three sightings of Roseate Spoonbills, all of singles, were received: Mobile 30 Apr (LG); Mobile 27 May (JS); and Baldwin 30–31 May (ph., CL et al.).

In the Uniontown area, Hale/Perry 17 Mar (NG), 100 Turkey Vultures set a spring maximum for the I.C.P. The Wheeler spring count 29 Apr in Limestone/Morgan/Madison, reported 15 Osprey; a new maximum count for inland Alabama. At Barbour 31 May (GHi), 14 provided an I.C.P. maximum; many were nesting. North of Grand Bay, Mobile 25 Apr (RWi) 40 Swallow-tailed Kites set a new spring maximum for Alabama. Rare in the M.R., a single at Lee 29 Apr (CM) provided the sixth spring regional record. At Escambia, Alabama, one was seen 10 May, and 11 May (JB, MWi) 20 set a spring maximum for inland Alabama. Two Mississippi Kites at Lee 15 Mar (LM) marked an early arrival date for inland Alabama. Rare and local but increasing in the M.R., the 29 Apr Birmingham area spring count, Jefferson/Shelby/St. Clair, included two at different sites (JI, JC et al.); and four were at Fayette 20 May (SM, KH, GH, VG).

FALCONS THROUGH STARLINGS

A Merlin at McLeod, Noxubee 20 Apr (TS) occurred 11 days later than the previous late departure date for the seven-county area. Rare in spring in Alabama, three reports of Olive-sided Flycatchers—all of singles—were received: Jefferson 6 May (KA, PR); Madison 14 May (SM); and Madison 20 May (CB). A single Acadian Flycatcher in Madison 19 Apr (CB) established an early arrival date for the T.V. Rare in Alabama, single Willow Flycatchers were found at Opelika, Lee, 8 May (RM) and at Wheeler, Madison 13 May (CB). A single near Starkville, Oktibbeha, 14 May (TS, MS) was rare for the seven-county area and marked the earliest arrival by two days. Another was at McLeod, Noxubee 24–31 May (JH). The region’s only Ash-throated Flycatcher was at Bay St. Louis, Tishomingo 14 Mar (ph., HW). One Eastern Kingbird at Morgan 29 Mar (DK, MG) marked the early arrival date for the T.V. Rare in Mississippi, a single Gray Kingbird was at Ocean Springs, Jackson 14 Apr (HC, ph.). A lone Gray Kingbird at Ft. Morgan, Baldwin 21 Mar (KG, EG, ph.) marked an early arrival date for Alabama. Rare in the seven-county area, a single Scissor-tailed Flycatcher was seen in Biloxi, Harrison, 13 May (HC); another near Prairie Point, Noxubee 20 May (NG); and two near Starkville Oktibbeha 26–31 May (RS, WP, JH. m.ob).

Warbling Vireo is a rare breeder in the seven-county area, but the bird heard singing on a remote island in Columbus Lake, Clay 23 Apr–31 May (TS, MS) for the fourth straight year is suspected of nesting. Rare in Mississippi, a Black-whiskered Vireo was at Singing River Island, Jackson 24 Apr (ph. JR). Rare on the I.C.P., one Horned Lark was at Geneva 18 Mar (JT) and up to three were at Henry 22–31 May (JT, ph.). Occasional in the G.C., one at Baldwin 13 May (MJ) was the fifth for the G.C. and the first ever for that region in spring. At Lake Purdy, Jefferson, 61 Cliff Swallows 20 Mar (RoK) provided an early arrival record for the M.R. At Hale, 28 May (NG), 300 set a spring maximum for the I.C.P. Rare but regular on the Gulf Coast, reports of Cave Swallow came from four sites: one on the e. end of Dauphin, Mobile 30 Mar (ph. AH); one at Ft. Morgan, Baldwin 4 Apr (LG); one at the airport on Dauphin, Mobile 12–14 and 20 Apr (AB, HJ, AH et al., ph.); and one at Ft. Morgan, Baldwin 20­–21 Apr (ES, NG, DD et al., ph.).

A single Red-breasted Nuthatch at Choctaw 7 May (TS, MS) marked the latest departure date for the seven-county area. Five Winter Wrens in Baldwin, 5 Mar (MJ) set a spring maximum for Alabama. Rare in spring in the M.R., a lone Marsh Wren was found at Jefferson 6 May (KA). At Blakeley Historic SP, Baldwin, eight Golden-crowned Kinglets on 1 Mar and eight again on 19 Mar (LG) provided a spring maximum for the Gulf Coast. On Wheeler, Morgan 29 Mar (DK, MG) six Hermit Thrushes provided a spring maximum for the T.V. West of Killen, Lauderdale 4 Mar (PN) an estimated 2000 European Starlings set a spring maximum for the T.V.

FINCHES THROUGH GROSBEAKS

The 54 Purple Finches reported from Huntsville, Madison 10 Mar (CB, MH) marked a spring maximum for the T.V. On the Splinter Hill Bog Preserve, Perdido, Baldwin, 13 Apr (KC) eight Bachman’s Sparrows established a spring maximum for the Gulf Coast. A Grasshopper Sparrow at Prairie Wildlife, Clay 20 Apr (TS) established a new early arrival date for the seven-county area. They are rare breeders locally but have been using this site since 2001. Rare in spring and rare inland in Alabama, two Clay-colored Sparrows found at the Alabama A&M Farm, Hazel Green, Madison 29 Apr (CB) provided the second spring record for inland Alabama; fifth record for the T.V. Rare in the M.R., a single Lark Sparrow at Fayette, Fayette 20 May (SM, KH, GH et al.) provided a first local record. Lark Sparrows are increasing as a nesting species in Mississippi’s Black Belt Prairie region. In the seven-county area, there were eight records of a total of 18 birds; starting with one Stan Tabor Rd., Noxubee 7 Apr (TS, MS, JH, m. ob.). One Dark-eyed Junco at Wheeler, Madison 13 May (CB) and 20 May (SA) established a late departure date for Alabama, unless it was an occasional summering individual. A Henslow’s Sparrow, rare inland in Mississippi, was found at A&D Turf Farm, Lafayette 4 Mar (GK, JH, JR, HM, WP, ph.). A single Savannah Sparrow at the FWFTA, Hale 23 May (NG) established a late record for the I.C.P. Rare but regular in the T.V., two Lincoln’s Sparrows were found 8 Mar at Wheeler, Limestone and a single was there 17 Mar (CB et al.)

Rare in spring on the Gulf Coast, a male Yellow-headed Blackbird was at Bon Secour NWR, Baldwin, 12 Apr (CS). An Orchard Oriole found SE of Auburn, Lee 19 Mar (CM) marked the early arrival record for inland Alabama. At Ashford, Houston 21 Mar (RSi), 10 Baltimore Orioles (a continuation of wintering birds) provided a spring maximum for the I.C.P. One at Oktoc, Oktibbeha 13 May (LB, FB) marked a late departure date for the seven-county area, where there are few summer records. Rare and erratic on the Gulf Coast, a male Shiny Cowbird was at Ft. Morgan, Baldwin, 6–13 May (MJ et al.); one was at Bay St. Louis, Hancock 8 May (NB, NM, OG); and one at Heron Bay, Hancock, 22 May (NB, NM, OG, ph.). Southwest of Auburn, Lee 5 Mar (JB) 800 Common Grackles set a spring maximum for the I.C.P. Calling male Boat-tailed Grackles reported from n. of Hartford, Geneva (same site as 2015), a single on 3 Mar and two on 18 Mar (RW, JT, ph.) provided the third record for inland Alabama.

A Louisiana Waterthrush near Adaton, Oktibbeha 10 Mar (TS, MS) was six days earlier than the previous early date for the seven-county area. A Northern Waterthrush seen near Starkville, Oktibbeha 13 May (TS) matched the latest departure date for the seven-county area. A male Golden-winged Warbler sighted at Huntsville, Madison 5 Mar (CB, MH) established an early arrival date in Alabama, more than three weeks earlier than the previous record. A singing Prothonotary Warbler at Wheeler, Morgan, 27 Mar (SM) set an early arrival date for the T.V. Swainson’s Warblers are rare but regular in the T.V. At Wheeler, Madison, a single 16 Apr provided an early arrival date for the T.V. (SM); two were found at different sites on 29 Apr (SMc, DC et al.). A Tennessee Warbler at Starkville, Oktibbeha 15 May (JH) matched the latest departure for the seven-county area. At Ruffner Mountain NP, Birmingham, Jefferson, six Orange-crowned warblers 1 Apr provided a spring maximum for Alabama (SD); and there were four on 11 Apr (GJ). Rare but regular in spring in the M.R., single Nashville Warblers were reported on 25 Apr, 5 May, and 15 May at Ruffner Mountain NP, Birmingham, Jefferson (KW, RR). Also rare in the seven-county area in spring, one was seen in Columbus, Lowndes 7 May (PM). Rare but regular in spring in the T.V., single Mourning Warblers were in Huntsville, Madison 8 May (CB) and Madison, Madison 14 May (SM). Also rare in Mississippi, one was at Rowan Oak, Oxford, Lafayette 13 May (JR, GK, PM, JHoe, ph.). Cape May Warblers are rare in the seven-county area. One was found in Starkville, Oktibbeha 21 Apr (ph., JH) and one in Columbus, Lowndes 1 May (JO, PM, ph.). A male Cerulean Warbler in Huntsville, Madison 1 Apr (CB) provided an early arrival date for the T.V. Two male Magnolia Warblers from Huntsville, Madison 1 Apr (CB) established an early arrival record for inland Alabama and tied the state early arrival record. A male Blackburnian Warbler near Adaton, Oktibbeha 19 May (TS) established a late departure date for the seven-county area. One in Huntsville, Madison 26 Mar (CB) set an early arrival date for inland Alabama. A male Chestnut-sided Warbler in Huntsville, Madison 19 Mar (CB) set another early arrival record for Alabama. Rare in the M.R., reports of Black-throated Blue Warblers came from five sites: singles were at Red Mountain Park, Birmingham, Jefferson 29 Apr and 3 May (GJ, DJ); three maximum, a total of at least four were at Ruffner Mountain NP, Birmingham, Jefferson 30 Apr–7 May (KW, SD, RR, GJ et al.); a single was at Meadowbrook, Shelby 30 Apr (RoK); one was found in Bankhead National Forest, Lawrence 7 May (DC, SM, KWa, m. ob.); and one was at Mountain Longleaf NWR, Calhoun 10 May (AmH). They are only occasional on the I.C.P., but one was at Yates Lake, Elmore, 3 May (HWa). Black-throated Blues are rare in Mississippi, where one was found at Gulf Islands Nat. Seashore 22 Apr (ph., JO). Two Prairie Warblers found in Huntsville, Madison, 26 Mar (CB) marked an early arrival date for the T.V. A Black-throated Green Warbler seen Noxubee NWR, Oktibbeha 18 Mar (CMa) matched the earliest arrival date for the seven-county area. The fifth Wilson’s Warbler record for the I.C.P. was set by one found at Tuscaloosa, Tuscaloosa, 11 May (NG). Rare in spring in the seven-county area, a male Wilson’s Warbler was seen singing near Adaton, Oktibbeha 8 May (TS, MS, JH).

At Tuscaloosa, Tuscaloosa 27 Apr (NG) 14 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks set a spring maximum for the I.C.P. A male Indigo Bunting at Wheeler, Morgan 27 Mar (SM) marked an early arrival date for the T.V. A first-year male Painted Bunting at Paint Rock Preserve, Jackson 14 Apr provided the third record for the T.V. Occasional in spring in the M.R., a female was Buck’s Pocket SP, DeKalb 14 Apr (AmH). This species is a rare and local breeder on the I.C.P., but there were 10 birds from ten sites in the Greensboro-Uniontown area, Hale/Perry 17–29 May (NG). A Dickcissel near Prairie Point, Noxubee 21 Apr (JH) set a new early arrival date for the seven-county area.

Report processed by José R. Ramírez-Garofalo, 5 Feb 2021.

Photos–Alabama & Mississippi: Spring 2017

Hover or click on each image to read the caption.