Sorry for the lack of an RBA last week. I was away in Panama with an ABA travel group and unable to make time amongst the toucans and trogons to put it together. However, readers get a bonus extra week for this current period.
Continuing rare birds in the ABA Area include the return of the Gray Heron (ABA Code 4) on Prince Edward Island, a Little Stint (4) in California, and the long-staying Berylline Hummingbird (4) in Arizona.
It’s always a big deal when California adds a new bird to its state list, in part because it takes a while to recognize what hasn’t yet been seen in the state with the largest list in the ABA Area. That’s certainly part of the reason why the Small-billed Elaenia (5) on SE Farallon Island, in San Francisco, last week is so noteworthy. Hardly anyone had it on their radar, despite the fact that birders have been noting this austral migrant elsewhere on the continent in the last couple years. Southeast Farallon has an impressive list of unlikely rarities, partly because the island is populated by bird researchers who are always up for a little inter-island birding beyond their study species for much of the year. Though that does make their finds all the more bittersweet because birders on land can’t chase them.
That wasn’t the only notable find in California this week, a pelagic out of San Diego collected an impressive list featuring Wedge-tailed Shearwater, Nazca Booby (3), and Blue-footed Booby (4).
The last couple weeks have been exceptional ones for birders in Alaska’s Bering Sea islands. St. Paul in the Pribilofs experienced a run of Asian vagrants including Eurasian Bullfinch (4), Common Ringed Plover. Taiga Flycatcher (4), Spotted Redshank (4), and Gray Wagtail (4), where Gambell on St Lawrence Island countered with Blyth’s Reed Warbler (5), Gray-streaked Flycatcher (4), Pechora Pipit (4), and Stonechat (4).
Moving down the coast to British Columbia, where a Curlew Sandpiper (3) was seen this week in Delta.
Washington’s 6th record of Philadelphia Vireo was photographed in Whitman.
Nevada had a pair of good finds in the state’s 5th Laughing Gull in Washoe, and an Arctic Tern in Clark.
Idaho’s 2nd record of Acorn Woodpecker was well-seen by many in Adams.
Colorado had a Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher in El Paso, that state’s 2nd.
An Elegant Tern in Nueces, Texas, represents the 12th for that state.
Notable for Indiana was a Ruff (3) in Linton.
The Limpkin summer moves into Limpkin fall with a bird seen this week in Stark, Ohio.
Georgia’s 2nd record of Tropical Kingbird was seen in Rome, first discovered on the ABA’s What’s this Bird Facebook group.
Good for Pennsylvania was a Black-throated Gray Warbler in Chester.
In Connecticut, the state’s 12th Ruff was seen at Hammonassett and the state’s 8th Brown Pelican at Old Saybrook.
In Quebec, a late Swallow-tailed Kite was a nice find at La Côte-de-Beaupré.
Maine had a Northern Wheatear in Kennebunk this week.
And in St Pierre et Miquelon, the territory’s 3rd Fork-tailed Flycatcher was a nice surprise.
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.