North American Birds

VOLUME 70 NO2 2018

A Quarterly Journal of Ornithological Record Published by the American Birding Association. The mission of the journal is to provide a complete overview of the changing panorama of our continent’s birdlife.

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Page 62 of 115

V O L U M E 7 0 ( 2 0 1 8 ) • N U M B E R 2 197 Mew Gull was long overdue for LA. This first state record, present from 1-24 Jan, was seen and enjoyed by many thanks to boat trips led by its finder, Charlie Lyon. Photo by © Dave Patton. Arkansas & Louisiana Paul Conover Kenny Nichols –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– W inter 2015-2016 was mild, with some heavy rains at the end of the season. Seasonal highlights for Arkansas included Iceland Gull, Royal Tern, Cape May Warbler, and Brambling. Headliners in Loui - siana were Mew Gull, Pyrrhuloxia, and Lesser Goldfinch. Significance of Arkansas records is based on AR Birds, their distribution and abun - dance (James and Neal 1986) and the Arkansas Audubon Society's (A.A.S.) online bird record database (for records since 1986). The signifi - cance of Louisiana records is based on trends derived from the database of bird record cards archived at the Louisiana State University Muse - um of Natural Science (LSUMNS). Records were taken from cards submitted to LSUMNS and rare bird reports submitted to the Louisiana Bird Re - cords Committee (L.B.R.C.). Records of Review List species included below have either been ac - cepted by or are pending review of the L.B.R.C. GEESE THROUGH GALLINULES 2000 Black-bellied Whistling-Ducks near Forked I., Vermilion 1 Jan represented a good number in sw. LA, while 320 Fulvous Whistling- Ducks at the same location were out of season (PEC, PAW). A blue-morph Ross's Goose north of Pine Bluff, Jefferson 28 Dec (K&LN) furnished only the fifth or sixth occurrence for AR. This extremely rare color morph is now almost an - nual at this location. There were multiple AR Tundra Swan reports; most interesting was a single near Atkins, Pope 9 Dec (RDu); a single near Pine Bluff, Jefferson 14 Dec (JR, FS); and 3 photographed at Magness Lake, Cleburne 22 Dec (KNa). Rare during winter in AR, especially so far north, a Blue-winged Teal was at Lake Norfork, Baxter 23 Dec (JB, KB, TrB). Present since late fall, an ad. male Cinnamon Teal continued at the Arkadelphia Oxidation Ponds, Clark, AR 15 Jan (CL, GG, EG, JefT, RSe). An estimated 10,800 Northern Shovelers occupied the Boyd Point Wastewater Plant, Pine Bluff, Jefferson, AR 28 Dec (DSc, RDo). Rare but annual in AR, a Long-tailed Duck was discovered at the Arkadelphia Oxi - dation Ponds, Clark 15 Jan (CL, GG, EG, JefT, RSe). There were three Common Merganser re - ports for the season, all in AR: 3 at Charlie Craig State Fish Hatchery, Benton 30 Dec (BT); a female photographed at Magness Lake, Cleburne 17 Jan (DH); and two ad. male flyovers at Lake Mau - melle, Pulaski 25 Jan (ET). Rare in winter in AR, a single male Red-breasted Merganser was at Cabin Creek R.A., Lake Dardanelle, Johnson 1 Jan (LA), while 5 were identified at Lake Maumelle, Pulaski 5 Feb (CL, JefT, JenT). Lake Maumelle, Pulaski continues to be AR's winter hotspot for rare loons and grebes. This season was no exception as a Red-throated Loon was present 24 Jan (JD, SD), while a Pacific Loon and Red-necked Grebe were both discovered 26 Jan (DSi, JSc, SL). A West - ern Grebe at Lake Dardanelle, Yell 30 Jan–16 Feb (KH, DSc) and 3 Aechmophorus grebes, uniden - tifiable to species, at Little Rock, Pulaski 5 Jan (SaB) served as the season's only reports in AR, while LA hosted a Western Grebe at Cross Lake, Shreveport, Caddo 30 Dec–24 Jan (CL). LA's in - land Brown Booby invasion continued courtesy of an ad. at the Morganza Forebay, Pointe Cou - pee 3 Dec (VR). Rare at any season and perhaps representing the third for Yell, AR, a flyover Neo - tropic Cormorant was noted at Lake Dardanelle 9 Jan (TBu, DF, BH, K&LN). What was most likely the same bird was later photographed be - low Dardanelle Lock & Dam 18 Jan (ML). Very rare during winter in AR, a female Anhinga was at Swan Lake, Lafayette 20 Jan (CL). An Ameri - can Bittern near Pine Bluff, 6 Dec (DMo) sup- plied just the second winter record in Jefferson, AR. Rare in winter in AR, especially so far north, 3 Cattle Egrets were south of Jonesboro, Poinsett 26 Jan (DR, ThB, JW, AW, LB). Two Green Her - ons were at Felsental N.W.R, Union, AR 31 Dec (LA). This species is very rarely encountered in AR in winter. Also very rare in winter, 38 White Ibis were counted in e. Miller 22 Jan (CL, CMa). Rare but annual in AR, a Golden Eagle was spot - ted hunting the edge of a prescribed burn area within the Ozark N.F. near Witt Springs, Searcy 6 Feb (LA). Present since early fall, an ad. female Rough-legged Hawk continued near Bradford, White AR 5 Feb (CL, JefT, JenT). Now annual in LA, a White-tailed Hawk was near Holmwood, Calcasieu 30 Jan–2 Feb (KH, MJM). Virginia Rails are rare and local in appropriate habitat through much of AR in winter. Two were south of Pine Bluff, Jefferson 6 Dec (DG, JR), 4 were east of Pine Bluff 28 Dec (RDo, DSc), and 3 were tallied on the Bayou DeView C.B.C. in Monroe 5 Jan (LA, TS). Also very rare during winter in AR, 12 Com - mon Gallinules were found at Bois d'Arc W.M.A., Hempstead 17 Feb (CL, JefT, JenT). CRANES THROUGH LONGSPURS Once quite rare, Sandhill Cranes now appear to be wintering in AR in unprecedented numbers. Of the dozen reports, most interesting were 21 at Little Rock, Pulaski 17 Jan (DotB, DorB); an amazing 210 in rural Miller 22 Feb (CMi); and 9 near Lake Chicot, Chicot 25 Jan (DSi, JSc, SL). Representing just the second Jan occurrence, 6 American Avocets were counted during the Lo - noke C.B.C. near Pettus, Lonoke AR 2 Jan (KNi, DBa). A Ruff near Thornwell, Jefferson Davis, LA 18-24 Dec may have been a returning bird from the previous two winters (SWC, DLD). A great bird for New Year's Day and a new bird for the LA state list, a Mew Gull entertained boatloads of observers 1-24 Jan (CL, m.ob). Dardanelle continues to be the winter hotspot for rare gulls in AR. An ad. Thayer's Iceland Gull, about the ninth for the state, was a one-day wonder 20 Dec (K&LN); long overdue, the state's first Ice - land Gull was present 6 & 9 Jan (K&LN, TB, DF, BH); and 2 ad. Lesser Black-backed Gulls were present throughout the season (K&LN, m.ob.). In LA, a Glaucous Gull seen at Elmer's I., Jefferson 13 Jan was later seen the same day at Bay Champagne, Lafourche (DO'M). Annual in LA but visiting an unexpected inland loca - tion was a first-winter Great Black-backed Gull at Zachary, East Baton Rouge, 29 Jan (VR). Rare in AR in winter away from the southern tier of counties, 16 Forster's Terns were at Lake Fay - etteville, Washington 15 Feb (DOu, JP). Deliver- ing just the seventh record for AR was a com- pletely unexpected Royal Tern at Dardanelle Lock & Dam, Pope 8-9 Jan (RR, JN, DOa, ML, RHe, m.ob.). Three Inca Doves at a Paris back - yard 25 Dec (JG) furnished just the second oc-

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