American Birding Podcast



#ABArare – Cuban Pewee – Florida

Florida has been absolutely crawling with incredible birds this spring, and the biggest thus far is an ABA Code 5 Cuban Pewee discovered and photographed by Otto and Jose Zequeira in Crandon Park in Key Biscayne, Florida, on March 12. This is potentially the 5th record for the ABA Area, all from Florida.

Photo: Otto Zequeira

Photo: Otto Zequeira

Crandon Park is on the north end of Key Biscayne, a small barrier island off the coast of Miami. Directions are as follows per Robin Diaz.

Enter Key Biscayne on the Rickenbacker Causeway (toll) and drive to the South Beach entrance of Crandon Park. Pay entrance fee and drive as far south as possible and park. Enter Crandon Gardens via the middle entrance and make a left along the sidewalk. I made a Google Earth map of the area where the bird was seen.

Cuban Pewee is known from 4 previous accepted records and one unaccepted, all in spring or fall. The last was in Miami-Dade County in September 2010. It is fairly distinctive as far as Contupus flycatchers go, with short primaries and a distinctive white crescent behind the eye. Howell et al, in Rare Birds of North America notes that the species does appear to have some seasonal movement between habitats in Cuba, stating that it may have been overlooked in the past as it has generally not been included in North American field guides.

Also, both the ABA Code 5 Zenaida Dove and the Code 4 Black-faced Grassquit are still being seen to the south on Long Key, Monroe County, as of yesterday (3/12).