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#ABArare – Lesser Goldfinch – Pennsylvania

The original focus for #ABArare was — and still is — birds on the "rare side" of the ABA Checklist codes: Codes 4 and 5 plus some of the more "vagranty" Code 3 species. When I first talked about what to include with President Gordon, he suggested "anything an ABA big year birder might be interested in" as a guideline. Well, things have been a little slow in the past few weeks, so we're opening up a little and including first and second state records now, too.

And first up for the expanded #ABArare is Pennsylvania's first record* of Lesser Goldfinch. (*Pending acceptance, of course. I will try to include this statement in all posts like this, but if I forget, just remember it's always implied.) A male of the eastern black-backed form (photo here), it was first spotted by Dale Gearhart on a thistle feeder in his yard at 1:45 PM on April 9. Gearhart's yard is in Greencastle, Franklin County. Greencastle is located along I-81 about halfway between Chambersburg and Hagerstown, MD.

Despite many looking, it has not been seen today, April 10. It was last seen around 7 PM yesterday. Keep an eye on PA Birds for news. If it's refound, I will also update this entry.

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John Puschock

John Puschock

John Puschock reports ABA rare bird alerts and manages #ABArare for the American Birding Association. John is a frequent participant in rare bird forums around the web and has knack for gathering details necessary to relocate birds. He has been a birder since 1984 and now leads tours for Bird Treks, as well as for his own company Zugunruhe Birding Tours. He has led tours to locations across North America, from Newfoundland to New Mexico and from Costa Rica to Alaska. He specializes in leading tours to Adak in the Aleutian Islands.
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