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Rare Bird Alert: March 16, 2018

Continuing rarities in the ABA include many of our old friends from the winter, most notably the ABA 1st Mistle Thrush in New Brunswick, which is amazingly still hanging around. Both Tamaulipas Crow (ABA Code 4) and Blue Bunting (4) are still being seen in south Texas, with the former being seen at a couple new sites. In California, Nazca Booby (4) and Black-tailed Gull (4) were reported this week, and in Arizona, both a Sinaloa Wren (5) and a Streak-backed Oriole (4) continue.

Almost never seen as a vagrant, Lawrence’s Goldfinch can be difficult to find even in places where it is supposed to be. So one in Comanche, Oklahoma, is a huge surprise. Not only is it a 1st state record, but it is the farthest east record of this flashy finch.

Photo: Larry Mays/Macaulay Library

Georgia also had a 1st this week, in a nice male Mountain Bluebird in Richmond this week. Also noteworthy for Georgia, though not a state 1st, was a Snowy Plover in Camden.

Good for Louisiana was a MacGillivray’s Warbler in New Orleans this week.

North Carolina had a Black-headed Grosbeak at a feeder in Mecklenburg.

In New Jersey, a Thick-billed Murre was seen from shore in Cape May.

A Pink-footed Goose (4) was photographed in a migrating goose flock in New Sydney, Nova Scotia.

Ontario has a Barnacle Goose (4) in Schomberg.

In Ohio, a California Gull was found on the lakeshore in Cuyahoga.

Good for Michigan was a Barrow’s Goldeneye in Chippewa.

Among the most unusual records of Tufted Duck (3) in a good year for the species was in Elmore, Idaho.

Good for British Columbia, a King Eider was found in Qualicum.

A Broad-billed Hummingbird is visiting a feeder in San Francisco, California.

And in Arizona, the Tufted Flycatchers (4) have returned, now in two different locations in Cochise.


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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