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.
Our continuing birds are beginning to clear out as the zugunruhe of the season drives them away from spots that some have been enjoying for most of the winter. Birders are still seeing both Northern Jacana (ABA Code 4) and Streak-backed Oriole (4) in Arizona, as well as Red-legged Thrush (5) and Black-faced Grassquit (4) in south Florida. And up in the Yukon, the Hawfinch (4) was still visiting a feeder this week.
One of the most interesting reports of the week comes from Wyoming, where a Mexican Duck in Fremont would represent the 2nd record for the state. This species is somewhat regular to the south in Colorado but is still a rather difficult identification due to the similarity with the ubiquitous Mallard.
Notable for California, a nice Curlew Sandpiper (3) was photographed in Santa Barbara.
Nebraska had two Common Cranes (3) among the vast Sandhill flocks near Kearney this week.
In Arkansas, a Lesser Goldfinch was seen visiting a feeder in Little Rock.
Good for Kentucky, and perhaps the vanguard of another irruption this year, a Neotropic Cormorant was found in Lexington.
In Maryland, a Thick-billed Murre was seen at Assateauge National Seashore in Worcester.
In South Carolina, a Townsend’s Warbler was discovered in Georgetown.
And good as far south as Florida, a Purple Sandpiper has been in Miami-Dade for most of the month.
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.