If anyone out there is wondering where the Rare Bird Alert went last week, I was out of town for the Kansas Lek Treks birding festival and was traveling the entire time I usually put this together. That said, this week you get a bonus week worth of rarities to get you caught up.
Continuing rarities in the ABA Area include the Redwing (ABA Code 4) in Newfoundland, the California Little Stint (4), and the Black-faced Grassquit (4) in Florida.
What a month so far in New York, which boasts two 1st state records so far in April. The first was a fortuitous flyover of a Zone-tailed Hawk in Kings, the latest record of this southwestern raptor in the east which might consist of one or two wide-ranging individuals. And the second, a clearly-marked Mottled Duck in Suffolk, another new mark set for a bird that is increasingly wandering up the east coast.
Maryland also gained a species this month, when the Heermann’s Gull that had spent the better part of the winter in Virginia crossed the Chesapeake Bay and ended up in Baltimore, where it represents a 1st. For those keeping track, there are two individual Heermann’s Gulls on the east coast and both, now, have represented 1st record for multiple states.
Down to North Carolina, where a Ruff (3) in Beaufort is one of fewer than 10 for the state, and a White-tailed Kite in Carteret is the state’s 4th.
Tis the season once again for Bahama Mockingbird (3) in Florida, and one turned up right on time in Palm Beach.
In Pennsylvania, a Cinnamon Teal was a nice find in Centre.
New Hampshire’s 4th record of Slaty-backed Gull (3) was found in Rockingham.
The Steller’s Sea-Eagle (4) is back this week, this time at Wallace Bay, Nova Scotia, and seen by many birders on the latest roadshow stop.
In Newfoundland, a Northern Lapwing (4) turned up on the Avalon Peninsula.
Good birds for Indiana include a Ruff (3) in Greene and a Cinnamon Teal in Montgomery.
In Kentucky, a Purple Gallinule randomly turned up in Lexington, as they are wont to do from time to time.
Michigan has been full of interesting ducks lately, with the state’s 6th record of Tufted Duck in St. Clair and the 11th Cinnamon Teal in Huron.
Up to Minnesota, where a Varied Thrush was seen in a private yard in Hubbard.
In Arizona, the season’s first Tufted Flycatcher (4) was seen in Cochise.
And notable birds in Washington include a Common Grackle in Kittitas and a Black-headed Gull (3) in King.
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, the richly illustrated journal of ornithological record published by the ABA.