November 12, 2021

Continuing rarities in the ABA Area this week include the Steller’s Sea-Eagle (ABA Code 4) in Nova Scotia, joined in the province by a Little Egret (4), and the Inca Tern (5) in Hawaii.

There are a number of 1st records to note this week, and well start in North Dakota, a state we don’t get to mention much in this spot. But a Groove-billed Ani at Lake Tchida in Grant is a state 1st and an interesting record following a Groove-billed Ani in Ontario last month. This species has a surprisingly extensive pattern of vagrancy across the center of the continent, though one that hasn’t manifested much in recent years.

Over to Vermont, where a Razorbill on Lake Champlain is a state 1st and almost certainly related to the impressive push of this species onto Lake Ontario.

California also has a potential 1st record of Eastern Towhee in San Diego, though this individual has caused a great deal of investigation into the species limits of Spotted and Eastern Towhees. While it looks good for Eastern, there have been reports that it sounds more like a Spotted. Though the extent to which towhees can mimic each other’s vocalizations is not well know. It’s a stumper for sure.

In Arizona, however, a less contentious bird in the form of an American Woodcock in Cochise represents a 1st confirmed record for the state. Also notable for Arizona, a Black-legged Kittiwake was seen in Pima. 

Notable for attendees of the Rio Grand Valley Birding Festival this week, a Social Flycatcher (5) and a Golden-crowned Warbler were found in Cameron. 

Up to Alaska, where a Hawfinch (4) was discovered on St Paul Island.

Michigan’s 6th record of Sprague’s Pipit was discovered in Chippewa.

Pennsylvania had a Say’s Phoebe in Montgomery. 

Both a Scissor-tailed Flycatcher in Montreal and a Tundra Bean-Goose (3) in Arthabaska were nice finds in Quebec this week.

Newfoundland and Labrador’s 3rd Long-billed Dowitcher and 6th Western Tanager were seen within meters of each other in St. John’s, Newfoundland.

Good birds for Maine this week include an Ash-throated Flycatcher in York and a Barnacle Goose (4) in Knox. 

In New Jersey, a Black-throated Gray Warbler was photographed in someone’s yard in Ocean via a feeder cam.

And in West Virginia, a Scissor-tailed Flycatcher in Malden is only that state’s 5th record.

Omissions and errors are not intended, but if you find any please message blog AT 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.