Rare Bird Alert: June 10, 2011
by Nate Swick
Reports of rarities across the continent continue to slow as the summer comes on with a vengeance. Those few birds that are being seen make up for it in quality, if not quantity. It is, perhaps, the best we can hope for for a couple more weeks at least.
The closing of Coronado National Forest due to wildfires in Arizona have put a damper, metaphorically, on bird reports in the state. Most birders are holding out hope that their favorite spots are spared, but a Berylline Hummingbird (ABA Code 3) in the Santa Rita Mountains of Cochise County keeps hopes up. Also notable for Arizona is a Canada Warbler, also in Cochise Co, the state's 10th record.
Florida gets back into the mix with the report of a Tropical Kingbird in Hillsborough County. A Bronzed Cowbird was also reported from the panhandle in Leon County.
A pelagic out of Hatteras, North Carolina, had a Brown Booby (ABA Code 3) this week.
Remarkable for New Jersey was a Wood Stork flyover at Cape May, and a whale-watching trip out of Suffolk County, New York, was surprised to be joined by a Yellow-headed Blackbird offshore.
A Western Kingbird has been present for the last few days in Tioga County, Pennsylvania.
A Wilson's Phalarope was reported from near Kingston, Rhode Island.
A fantastic record for the Canadian maritime provinces was a Swallow-tailed Kite over the Hammond River in New Brunswick.
Elsewhere in Atlantic Canada, a Yellow-headed Blackbird was found near New Minas, Nova Scotia, and a Clay-colored Sparrow is singing from a field near Milville Newfoundland.
Scissor-tailed Flycatchers seem to be all over north and east of their range this spring. Another was found near Port Colborne, Ontario.
Another species seen widely east of its core range this year, a White-faced Ibis was found in Lorain County, Ohio.
Allegan County, Michigan, on the eastern shore of Lake Michigan, hosts a Laughing Gull.
A White-winged Dove in Columbia County is an excellent bird for Wisconsin.
Remarkable for northern Illinois was a Wood Stork in Lake County, near Chicago.
Very good anywhere inland, a Red-necked Phalarope is notable for Nebraska. This one is near La Platte.
Both late in the year and significantly inland is a Lesser Black-backed Gull reported from Hughes County, South Dakota.
A Purple Gallinule was photographed in Logan County, Colorado, quite recently.
In a bit of a directional change from their big movement east this year, comes a Scissor-tailed Flycatcher in the opposite direction. This one from Provo, Utah, in Washington County.
In addition to the continuing eastern shorebird and finches in Alaska comes the report of a Long-billed Murrelet (ABA Code 3) in Kachemek Bay near Homer and an Eyebrowed Thrush (ABA Code 3) on St. Paul's Island.
A Brown Thrasher near New Hazelton, British Columbia, is a nice bird for western Canada.
Washington birders find a second Black-throated Sparrow in as many weeks, this one in Clark County.
California is a mix of north and east as a lingering Iceland Gull is found in San Mateo County, and Black Vulture, Baltimore Oriole and Hooded Warbler come from different spots in San Diego County.
It's not the madness of spring, but notable birds are still being found.