February 18, 2022

Loads of continuing rarities in the ABA Area this week, including the triumphant return of the Steller’s Sea-Eagle (ABA Code 4) in Maine, where it has settled for now in the many coastal nooks and crannies along the coast there. In Texas, birders are still finding the Bat Falcon (5), Social Flycatcher (4), and Golden-crowned Warbler (4) trio. A Little Stint (4) and an Oriental Turtle-Dove (4) continue in California. In Maryland, the Northern Lapwing (4) is still reported from time to time, and the Zenaida Dove (5) is still being seen in south Florida.

The great Heermann’s Gull trek of 2021 comes to North Carolina in the new year, where this bird, which has passed over the state at least twice in the last eight months was finally found in New Hanover, where it represents the state’s 1st record. A couple days later it was discovered a few hundred miles north in Dare, indicating once again that this bird is capable of wandering extremely widely.

Also in North Carolina, the state’s 2nd record of Mountain Bluebird was also seen in New Hanover, not more than 5 miles from the initial Heermann’s Gull spot. And a Yellow-nosed Albatross (4) was seen from shore at Cape Point in Dare. 

Up the coast to Maryland, where a Barrow’s Goldeneye was seen in St. Mary’s, notably in the presence of a goldeneye hybrid.

In Arkansas, the state’s 3rd record of Northern Shrike was discovered in Benton. 

Nebraska 7th record of Golden-crowned Sparrow was photographed this week in Keith.

Colorado’s 6th Pyrrhuloxia was showing for many birders in Denver. 

A Nutting’s Flycatcher (4) was found once again at the traditional spot for the species in Mohave, Arizona.

And in California, a Slaty-backed Gull (3) was a very good find in Los Angeles, as most records of this species come from northern California.

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.