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#ABArare – Bahama Woodstar – Pennsylvania – UPDATED

I usually wait until I have photos, maps to the location of a sighting, confirm the ID for tricky species, etc. before posting, but given how major this sighting is if everything pans out, I want to get it out ASAP: A Code 5 Bahama Woodstar has been visiting a feeder in Denver, Pennsylvania for the past several days.The homeowners are accepting visitors. For information about visiting, check out this post from PA Birds, and PLEASE RESPECT the homeowners requests!

Photos can be found here.

I'll update this post with more information as soon as I can.

If accepted, this will be the first ABA record since 1981. All previous records have come from Florida, as you would expect.

UPDATE (Apr 24 pm): The Woodstar was last seen around noon today, though birders were present until the early evening.

ABArare Bahama Woodstar Bortz 01photo by Chris Bortz

Additional photos and videos from Meredith Lombard can be found here.

Denver, PA is located approximately 10 miles southwest of Reading. The hummingbird is coming to a feeder at 160 Mountain Road, which is northwest of "downtown" Denver. I marked the spot on this map, and I included a suggested driving route from Exit 286 of the PA Turnpike, highlighted by a blue line. Note that the house is located at the end of a long gravel driveway, so the location marked on the map appears east of Mountain Road. If you go, please watch out for children when driving on the driveway, and do not block it when you park. Do not arrive before 9 AM or stay after 8 PM. Remember that the homeowners are being generous in allowing you to visit. In fact, there are rumors, apparently backed up by a photo at Nemesis Bird, that a portable toilet has been brought in for the expected visitors.

When you arrive at the house, walk around the right side. The feeder is hanging in the corner of a small deck in the back. Please sign the guest book.

The provenance of this bird is being debated on some Facebook groups and probably elsewhere. Will it be accepted by the Pennsylvania Ornithological Records Committee? Only time will tell, but this species is already on the ABA Checklist, so if you want to count it on your ABA Area list, it's completely up to you according to the ABA's recording rules.

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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.
  • I think it’s Denver, PA – not Dallas

  • John Puschock

    Thanks for catching that. I was sending people to the wrong county (Luzerne instead of Lancaster). I’ve correct it.

  • Tim
  • This Bahama Woodstar sighting may explain another mystery in PA hummers this season – the first report of late summer 2012.

    On Monday, Aug 13th a sighting of an unusual hummer was made in Bucks Co. On Wed. Aug 15th, Al and Nancy Bilheimer posted on PABirds: “A few days ago we had a one-time (that we know of) visit from [a hummer] that seemed to be noticeably larger overall, and huskier. The bill was also very much longer in proportion and was very heavy – it almost looked front-heavy. It had a large, brilliant red/pink gorget that was easily seen at any angle.”

    This sounded like a Broad-tailed to me, and that was the initial thought about the Bahama Woodstar as well, but now that we know about the Woodstar, the Bucks Co bird might have been the Woodstar as well. Unfortunately, there were no pix taken in Bucks Co, so we’ll never know for sure.

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