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Rare Bird Alert: January 2, 2020

Welcome to 2020! As is typically the case, we ease into the rare bird world  at the top of the year. But there are a couple nice state firsts for those birders looking to get their year lists off right.

In Georgia, a young Snail Kite in Charlton is the state’s long-anticipated 1st record. This is a particularly nice find in the light of the spate of vagrant Snail Kite records in the east at the end of last year, including a small handful in the Carolinas to the north.

Somewhat surprisingly, Delaware had its 1st living record of Western Tanager at Bombay Hook this week. The species is a fairly regular vagrant throughout the east, but no live bird had ever zeroed in on the tiny state until just recently.

In New Jersey, a noteworhty congregation of Ash-throated Flycatchers was seen at Sandy Hook, with at least five individuals present at one time.

In New York, a Townsend’s Warbler was spotted on a CBC in Nassau, the first on Long Island in some time.

Virginia had a Gray Kingbird in Chesapeake this week.

Notable for Florida was a single Purple Sandpiper that turned up near Jacksonville

Ontario also had a Purple Sandpiper this week, at Presqu’ile.

Always nice for the Lower 48, a Yellow-billed Loon was photographed in Arapahoe, Colorado.

And still fairly notable in the interior west of the continent, Nevada had a young Lesser Black-backed Gull in Washoe. 

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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, the richly illustrated journal of ornithological record published by the ABA.

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