June 26, 2020

Because of COVID-19 related Stay-at-Home orders in many states and provinces, the purpose of this report is to keep homebound birders caught up rare bird sightings across the ABA Area during spring migration. We do not endorse the pursuit of rare birds beyond your local area. The ABA urges readers to respect state, provincial, and local restrictions on non-essential travel. The ABA’s Recording Standards and Ethics Committee has released guidelines on how birders should approach this unusual time and we urge birders, whether they are members of the ABA or not, to consider them when deciding whether to travel to see a rare bird. Stay safe and healthy, everyone.

Rarities holding on in the ABA Area into this week include the ongoing Little Egret (ABA Code 4) in Maine. The Arizona Eared Quetzal (4) and  Crescent-chested Warbler (4) were seen at least in the beginning of the week not not since, though Berylline Hummingbird (4) and Common Crane (4) still seem to be present in the state for those looking. In Florida, the Black-faced Grassquit (4) is still being seen on and off.

British Columbia leads things off today with an extraordinary Gray-tailed Tattler (3) in Kitimat representing a 1st for the province and a first for Canada. This is only the 6th record of this species in North America away from Alaska where it is annual.

That wasn’t the only good find in BC this week, as an Ash-throated Flycatcher was seen in Trail.

We have one other 1st to report for the week, in Colorado where a Varied Bunting in Ouray will represent that state’s 1st record.

Once again we sing the praises of Barbara Lestenkof, the birder of note on St. Paul Island, Alaska, when tours aren’t running as she turns up another goodie for the ABA Area in a Common Swift (5).

Staying in the west, which has been very good lately, a Hudsonian Godwit at Antelope State Park in Utah is the first in that state in a decade.

In Arizona, a Streak-backed Oriole (4) in Maricopa appears to be sticking around and breeding with a local Bullock’s Oriole.

Notable for Montana, a Yellow-throated Vireo was seen in Madison. 

Michigan had a Black-headed Gull (3) in Bay. 

Indiana’s 4th record of Roseate Spoonbill turned up in Gibson. Notably almost all of those records come from the last 5 years.

Good for Quebec, a Tricolored Heron was photographed at La Côte-de-Beaupré.

In Nova Scotia, an American Oystercatcher turned up in Victoria.

And up in Newfoundland, a Common Gallinule was seen at a pond in St. John’s.



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.