July 1, 2022

Continuing rarities in the ABA Area into the last of June include both Berylline Hummingbird (ABA Code 4) and Pine Flycatcher (5) in Arizona, and La Sagra’s Flycatcher (4) and Bahama Mockingbird (4) in Florida.

When is an expected ABA 1st completely unexpected? When it’s a Southern Lapwing along the Lake Huron shore in Iosco, Michigan. This species has been on the list of likely ABA 1sts for some time, as they have exploded into Central America in the last decade, expanding northward as far as southern Mexico in recent years. Plus, with at least two previous reports from Florida and Maryland that were, at the time, unconfirmed by local records committees, the idea that this vociferous neotropic plover was due for the ABA Area was commonly held.

But who could have expected Michigan?

The bird turned up at an airfield, and has been present since late May according to local workers. Though many birders have no doubt picked up their lifer Southern Lapwing on the tarmac of some Latin American destination, this bird’s precense at a cargo airfield prompted some discussion about provenance. But as the only large open area in a mostly wooded part of the state, there are reasons to believe that the bird could have arrived naturally as well. It just depends on whether you think a bird hitching a ride on a cargo plane is more or less likely than a rapidly expanding species overshooting into the Great Lakes. Who knows?

One other first of a similarly unlikely persuasion, Yukon boasts its second 1st record in as many weeks with a juvenile Mississippi Kite photographed near Haines Junction. The species is regular in southern Ontario and has even nested in southern Manitoba in recent years, but far Yukon is certainly quite the jump.

Elsewhere in the west, Oregon’s 2nd record of White-eyed Vireo was recorded and has been infrequently seen in Tillamook. 

In Nevada, a Hepatic Tanager in Clark is that state’s 5th record.

And down in Florida, a Common Redpoll in Miami-Dade is rare enough in the winter, let alone middle of summer.

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.