November 6, 2020

As we have since summer, we start with the continuing rare birds in Arizona, where birders can still find Northern Jacana (ABA Code 4), Eared Quetzal (4), and Plain-capped Starthroat (4) in that fantastic birding state. Up to California where a Garganey (4) and a Red-footed Booby (4) were reported as continuing this week. The ABA 2nd record Red-backed Shrike (5) in British Columbia was seen at least through the beginning of the week but has lately been missing, and a Black-faced Grassquit (4) is continuing in Florida.

November is frequently one of the better months for vagrants across the ABA Area, and it started off with a bang in Rhode Island, a state that has already had a great 2020, with the discovery of a Common Cuckoo (3) near the town of Johnston. This is a 1st state record, but perhaps more notably, only the 3rd for the Lower 48, with two additional records from Canada. Common Cuckoo is an uncommon, but regular, vagrant to western Alaska. With visiting birders unable to travel to those Bering Sea hotspots, it’s comforting to know that the birds are instead coming to us.

Other 1st records to report this week include one next door in Connecticut, where a Pacific Golden-Plover near Fairfield represents a state 1st and further indication that eastern birders are getting better at finding them.

Also to Kansas where the state’s 1st Yellow-eyed Junco was found in Scott. 

That Kansas record might have been the tip of the spear of a mini-movement of Yellow-eyed Junco, as Texas’s 10th record was found in El Paso. This week also brought Texas its 10th Yellow-billed Loon in Reeves and a Blue Bunting (4) in Cameron. 

Notable for New Mexico was a Red-shouldered Hawk found in Socorro. 

Coloradoalso had a Yellow-billed Loon this week in Eagle in addition to its 2nd Magnificent Frigatebird in Boulder.

California’s 3rd Eurasian Skylark was seen in Del Norte and a Red-throated Pipit was found in Los Angeles, though on San Clemente Island which makes chasing it a bit easier.

British Columbia’s 5th record of Prairie Warbler was seen in Vernon.

In Wisconsin, a Ash-throated Flycatcher in Kewaunee represents the state’s 4th.

Missouri had a flyover Magnificent Frigatebird in St Charles, likely a remnant of Hurricane Zeta’s passage in the Mississippi River valley.

Indiana’s 2nd record of Anna’s Hummingbird was visiting a feeder in Lake, as well as a Magnificent Frigatebird on their own in Indianapolis.

Ontario also had a Magnificent Frigatebird, in Leamington.

In Pennsylvania, a Calliope Hummingbird was at a feeder in York. 

New York’s 7th record of Sage Thrasher was seen in Columbia, and a “Western” Flycatcher turned up in Kings. 

Quebec’s 4th Golden-crowned Sparrow was seen by many in Rimouski-Neigette. 

In Massachusetts, a Canada Jay has been visiting a feeder at a private residence in Berkshire.

And in Nova Scotia, a Green-tailed Towhee was seen this week in Bridgewater.



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.