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Rare Bird Alert: June 9, 2017

Notable ABA rarities continuing into this week include breeding attempts in Arizona and long-staying vagrants in Alaska. In the former, the Slate-throated Redstart (ABA Code 4), Flame-colored Tanager (4), and Tufted Flycatcher (5), as well as the rediscovery of that state’s first record of Common Crane (4) originally found a few weeks ago. In Alaska, a number of Asian strays have continued, most notably White-tailed Eagle (4), Far Eastern Curlew (4), Common Rosefinch (4), and impressive numbers of Hawfinch (4).

Indeed, Far Eastern Curlew (4) has been one of the signature birds of this spring in Alaska, with records coming from both the Aleutians and the Bering Sea Islands. Most amazing, however, was one photographed north of Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, this past week, furnishing a territorial 1st record and only the 2nd record for Canada.

A 2nd record for Canada, a Far Eastern Curlew in Yukon is one of several that have been found in the ABA Area this spring. Photo:Cameron Eckert/Macaulay Library (S37427862)

There was one other 1st record to report this week, from Michigan, where a Shiny Cowbird (3) was the latest great bird found this spring at the incredibly productive Whitefish Point in Chippewa. Also food for Michigan this week was a Pacific Loon in Isabella.

Things slowed down just a bit in western Alaska this week, with the most noteworthy find the season’s 2nd Common Chiffchaff (5) in Gambell.

Washington’s 16th record of Scissor-tailed Flycatcher was found in Kittitas.

Oregon had both a Glossy Ibis in Harney and a Lawrence’s Goldfinch visiting a feeder in Washington.

Arizona’s 6th record of Ruby-throated Hummingbird, a nice male, was visiting a feeder in Coconino.

Texas had a Short-tailed Hawk in Davis.

An Ash-throated Flycatcher in Harper is a nice bird for Kansas.

Minnesota’s 9th record of Western Wood-Pewee was recorded in Clay this week.

In Quebec, a Fork-tailed Flycatcher (3) was found in Centre-du-Québec, and a Western Grebe in Outaouais.

Massachusetts had a Scissor-tailed Flycatcher in Norfolk and a breeding plumage Pacific Loon was photographed flying past Cape Race in Barnstable.

In Pennsylvania, a Swallow-tailed Kite in Quakertown is the first for that state in several years.

In Virginia, a Limpkin was photographed in James City.

North Carolina’s 4th record of Tropical Kingbird was photographed at restricted site in Carteret.

In Florida, a Tropical Mockingbird in Palm Beach will undoubtedly be at the center of a difficult provenance argument. A Red-footed Booby (4) was also in Escambia, in the panhandle and far from where they are usually found.


Omissions and errors are not intended, but if you find any please message blog AT 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.

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Nate Swick

Nate Swick

Editor, Social Media Manager at American Birding Association
Nate Swick is the editor of the American Birding Association Blog, social media manager for the ABA, and the host of the American Birding Podcast. He lives in Greensboro, North Carolina, with his wife, Danielle, and two young children. He is the author of Birding for the Curious and The ABA Field Guide to Birds of the Carolinas.
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