April 30, 2021
Because of continuing COVID-19 cases in many states and provinces, the purpose of this report is to keep homebound birders caught up rare bird sightings across the ABA Area. The ABA encourages readers to respect state, provincial, and local suggestions with regard to non-essential travel. The ABA’s Recording Standards and Ethics Committee has released guidelines on how birders should approach this ongoing pandemic and we urge birders, whether they are members of the ABA or not, to consider traveling to see a rare bird. Stay safe and healthy, everyone. We’re almost through this.
We’re going to have to call this weekly rarity roundup the “Jacana Report” because, as has been the case for many months now, the Northern Jacana (ABA Code 4) in Arizona leads off the list of continuing rarities, joined by it’s nearly equally long-staying partner, the Black-faced Grassquit (4), in Florida. Both Little Stint (4) in California and Tamaulipas Crow (4) in Texas were seen into this week as well, with the latter looking increasingly good for a summer residency.
The big news for the last week, and on the short list for most exciting ABA Bird of 2021, comes from Ontario where a presumptive Yellow-browed Warbler (4) was seen in Mississauga, a 1st for the province. Identification of the bird leans towards Yellow-browed, but Hume’s Leaf Warbler, a potential ABA Area 1st, is not completely ruled out as of the writing of this post. Both species are east Asian, and rare in western Europe making the likelihood of an Atlantic crossing unlikely. The most probably scenario is that this bird came over to North America last fall, overwintered unseen, and was discovered as it made its way north again.
Another 1st record to note, and also likely Asian arrival, comes from Washington, where a Common Crane (4) in Skagit represents a new bird for that state’s list, leaving only Oregon among Pacific states/provinces who still lack a record.
Nevada’s 6th record of Little Blue Heron was seen in Clark, a nice adult bird.
Notable for Colorado this week was a Painted Redstart found in Ouray.
Iowa had a Brant in Hardin, nice bird for the middle of the continent.
In Illinois, a Ruff (3) was seen in DuPage, one of several seen in the ABA Area this week.
New York had a Burrowing Owl in Kings this week.
And in Nova Scotia, a Wilson’s Plover in Glace Bay was a nice overshooting spring migrant.
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.
Among the other Ruffs seen was one in Holmes County, OH, present from April 25-28. No reports since.
Illinois had two different Ruffs, first one in Kendall County (the one pictured at the link in the RBA), and a few days later a different bird in DuPage County.