July 8, 2022

Some interesting rarities continuing in the ABA Area this week including the triumphant return of the wayward Steller’s Sea Eagle (ABA Code 4), still in Newfoundland but now on the tip of the northern peninsula where it no doubt can find plenty of space to roam out of sight of curious people. Elsewhere in the ABA Area, Arizona is still hosting a Berylline Hummingbird (4) and a Pine Flycatcher (5), and Florida still has at least one Bahama Mockingbird (4).

Michigan’s stint at the top of the ABA rare bird world continues into a second week as birders seemed not to be satisfied with what may be the ABA Area’s 1st Southern Lapwing. In the days following that exciting announcement, Michigan birders got to enjoy two more state 1st records, neither of which were expected. A Red-cockaded Woodpecker in Muskegon was the first shoe to drop. This southeastern pine specialist is known to wander a bit, though not usually this far. Notably, this is the second record for the Great Lakes region, as a previous record comes from Illinois.

But the biggest surprise came from the rarity factory at Point Mouillee in Monroe when a Common Redshank (5) was discovered and photographed on the vast mudflats. This is not only a 1st for Michigan, but a 1st for the United States as previous records of this handsome shorebird in the ABA Area have all come from Newfoundland.

It was presumed early on that this individual comes from the European breeding subspecies, which nests as close as Iceland, but closer inspection suggests that this might be one of the Asian breeding redshanks instead. There is certainly a longer track record for east Asian shorebirds in the middle of the continent than those from Europe. Rufous-necked Stint, Spotted Redshank, and even Great Knot have occurred before.

One other 1st of note, from Yukon for the third consecutive week. An American Bittern displaying near Carcross is a territorial 1st and one of the farthest north records of this bizarre wader.

Down to British Columbia, where a single Sedge Wren in Fort St. John representing the province’s 6th record was joined by at least two more individuals and behavior suggesting likely breeding.

Washington’s 8th Least Tern was well-photographed in Walla Walla this week.

Down to Oregon, where a sharp-looking Lesser Sand-Plover (3) was seen in Coos, a very good fine outside of Alaska.

Kansas’s 2nd record of Mexican Violetear was visiting a private feeder in Douglas, and the state’s 5th record of Limpkin was photographed in Neosho. All the more remarkable considering the state’s 1st was less that two months ago.

Minnesota’s 3rd Acorn Woodpecker in Carlton continues the run of western species in the state this summer.

And in Quebec, a Fish Crow was photographed and recorded in Montreal.

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.