When it rains it pours in early spring, it seems. Not just in the flood of year firsts returning to North America from parts south, but also in the number and scope of rarities in the ABA Area. Two states pick up first records this week – sure it’s nothing like the streak we saw last year – but it’s a second state record that has people talking this time around.
An ABA Code 5 Marsh Sandpiper in Solano, California, is that state’s second record, but only the second ever of this species for the ABA Area outside of Alaska. Interestingly, California’s first Marsh Sandpiper was one found only last fall at the Salton Sea.
Least likely of the first state records this week is probably the Northern Wheatear found in DeBaca, New Mexico. That species is only regular in the ABA Area in the far northeast and northwest corners of the continent.
On the short list of new species possibilities in a number of states and provinces, a Neotropic Comorant near Clinton is a first for New Jersey. Though there has been some talk as to whether this bird is an abnormal Double-crested. Consensus seems to be building towards the state first, though.
A good bird in New York, a Gyrfalcon was photographed in Washington.
In Maine, a Northern Lapwing (4) in Cape Elizabeth is that state’s third record.
Annual nowadays but still worth noting when they occur, a Barnacle Goose (4) was seen in Centre-du-Québec, Quebec
Illinois had a Snowy Plover and a Eurasian Wigeon (3), both in Fulton.
Tennessee’s fourth record of Townsend’s Solitaire was seen this week in Morgan.
In Louisiana, a Little Gull is noteworthy in Cameron.
In Florida, a Townsend’s Warbler was seen in Escambia.
A Great Black-backed Gull was recorded in Minnehaha, South Dakota.
And likely to receive #ABArare treatment shortly, a Slate-throated Redstart (4) was discovered in Cochise.
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 <aba.org/nab>, the richly illustrated journal of ornithological record published by the ABA.
Latest posts by Nate Swick (see all)
- Rare Bird Alert: December 19, 2014 - December 19, 2014 8:00
- The Warbler Guide App, featuring 3-D Images - December 18, 2014 8:00
- Holiday Gifts at the ABA Store! - December 17, 2014 1:54
- Get Eagle Optics Bins for the Holidays, Add an ABA Membership - December 17, 2014 8:00
- Blog Birding #215 - December 15, 2014 8:00