North American Birds

VOLUME 70 NO3-NO4 2019

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 77 of 163

N O R T H A M E R I C A N B I R D S 324 A L A B A M A & M I S S I S S I P P I HERONS THROUGH RAPTORS An American Bittern at Coldwater R. NWR, Tal- lahatchie, MS 4 May (HM, KM) established the late spring date for the seven-county area for this rare bird. In Hale, AL 7 Apr, 56 Great Blue Herons set an I.C.P. spring maximum (BCG). A Tricolored Heron 13 May at Pea R. east of Brun - dige, Pike, AL was rare for the I.C.P. (ph. by CT). A very rare probable Snowy Egret X Little Blue Heron hybrid was at Leighton, Colbert, AL 2 Apr (DJS). Green Herons provided early records for the Alabama Gulf Coast 10 Mar at Dauphin I, Mobile, AL (AH) and for the T.V. 27 Mar south of Hartselle, Morgan, AL (ph. by BJ). A Black- crowned Night-heron at Noxubee NWR (Bluff L.), Oktibbeha, MS 16 Apr (TP) was the earliest ever to arrive in the area. The earliest T.V. record for Yellow-crowned Night-heron was provided by one at Swan Creek W.M.A., Limestone, AL 13 Mar (CB). A high I.C.P. count for Glossy Ibis was established by 10 at Eufaula NWR, Barbour, AL 23 Apr (GEH,m.ob). Alabama's seventh inland record (fourth I.C.P.) for White-faced Ibis came from Eufaula NWR, Barbour, AL 27 May (ph. by JC). A Roseate Spoonbill at Oktibbeha County L., Oktibbeha, MS 17-18 May (TS,MS) provided the seven-county area's first spring record. The M.R.'s earliest Osprey was found 7 Mar at Saginaw, Shelby, AL (RJK). The sixth spring Swallow-tailed Kite for the M.R. was found at Saginaw, Shelby, AL 14 May (JB). Missis - sippi Kites continued to expand their range in Alabama. There were records of lone birds in sites either new or not regular in Limestone (DJS,CBo), Shelby (RJK) and Tallapoosa (ECS). At Tillman's Corner, Mobile, AL 23 Apr 175 established a new maximum for the Alabama G.C. and an Alabama maximum for spring (ph. by PR,SH). At Elk R. Limestone/Lauderdale Counties 23 Apr, 7 Bald Eagles provided the highest North Alabama spring count (DJS). A Sharp-shinned Hawk south of Mobile, Mobile, AL 24 May provided the latest spring record for the Alabama Gulf Coast (BCG). At Huntsville, Madison, AL 3 Apr, 13 Broad-winged Hawks set a new T.V. maximum (CB,m.ob.). RAILS THROUGH TERNS Virginia Rails at Huntsville, Madison, AL 14 Mar (SR (SRM) and in Swan Creek, Limestone, 18 Mar (RJK,RLK) were either wintering (rare T.V.) or very early migrants. Soras were probably win - tering (rare M.R.) at CR 36 near Tallapoosa R., Cleburne, AL 1 Mar (SRM) and Saginaw, Shelby, AL 6 Mar (KW). In the Birmingham area, Jeffer - son, AL on 30 Apr, 14 Soras established an M.R. maximum and an inland Alabama spring maxi - mum (DPG, SHH). Rare in T.V., but becoming regular, a Common Gallinule was at the Wheel - er NWR area, Madison, AL 30 Apr (CDC,MSG). A state spring maximum was established by 48 at Cottonton ( ponds), Russell, AL 30 Apr (JHol). A rare Sandhill Crane at Saginaw, Shelby, AL, 7 Apr established the late spring date for M.R. (ph. by DL). Rare inland were a Black-necked Stilt at Leighton, Colbert , AL 12 May (DJS), others at McLeod (Paulette Rd.), Noxubee, MS 23-28 Apr (TS,MS), and Catalpa Creek Bottoms, Lowndes, MS 4 May (MS,TS), as well as an American Avocet at Wilson Dam Colbert/Lauderdale, AL 30 Apr (JTG,TMH) and another at Oktibbeha County L., Oktibbeha, MS 3 May (TS,MS,JH). A Black-bellied Plover at Oktibbeha County L., Oktibbeha, MS 17 May (TS,MS) was the first found in spring in the Starkville seven-county area. The seven-county area's latest spring re - cord for American Golden-Plover was set by 2 birds at 3 May at McLeod (Paulette Rd.), Noxubee, MS (MS). An I.C.P. spring maximum was established by 6 Semipalmated Plovers at High Bluff, Geneva, AL 23 Apr (RW). The seven-county area's new earliest arrival date for Semipalmated Plover was 11 Apr at McLeod (Paulette Rd.), Noxubee, MS (MS). North Alabama's earliest-ever spring Soli - tary Sandpiper was found 13 Mar at Opelika, Lee, AL (ph. by RM). Willets are rare inland in Alabama and Mississippi. One was at Chewalla L., Marshall, MS 25 Apr (ph. by HM.KM) and another at Wilson Dam, Colbert/Lauderdale, AL 30 Apr (JTG,TMH). Two Upland Sandpipers at Ft. Morgan, Mobile, AL 7 May tied a late spring record for the G.C. (ph. by CL). A Whimbrel at Pelican Pen., DI, Mobile, AL on 16 Mar (ph. by PR) was either a record early bird or a rare wintering bird. The Whimbrel on Dauphin Is - land in December was not seen afterwards de- spite regular birding in the area. A high num- ber (13) of Marbled Godwits were recorded on Dauphin Island, Mobile, AL 13 Apr (DM). The I.C.P.'s second spring record for Ruddy Turn - stone was one north of Gosport, Clarke, AL 18 May 2017 ph. by (JW). Alabama's eighth Ruff (G.C.'s 3d) was a bird at Ft. Morgan, Baldwin, AL 2 Apr (MJJ, EB, KC). An early date for Stilt Sandpiper in north Alabama was set by a lone bird at Swan Creek W.M.A., Limestone, AL 13- 15 Mar (SRM,m.ob.). At Pelican Pen., DI, Mo - bile, AL on 15 Mar, 300 Sanderlings provided a new state spring maximum (AH). Baird's Sandpipers, rare in Alabama, in spring, were found in Colbert (DJS), Lauderdale (DJS), and Lawrence, (DJS,MC,CC), where regular; 1 in Montgomery (1 May) provided an eighth spring record (LFG). A new I.C.P. spring maximum was set by18 Semipalmated Sandpipers at Cot - tonton ( Ponds), Russell, AL 30 Apr (JHol). A Long-billed Dowitcher was found at McLeod (Paulette Rd.), Noxubee, MS 1 May (JH), the earliest date in the seven-county area for this bird, which is rare there. A Wilson's Phalarope at McLeod (Paulette Rd.), Noxubee, MS 12 Mar (ph. by JH, TS) arrived 43 days ear - lier than the previous early arrival date for the area. Lone Wilson's Phalaropes were at Pelican Pen., Mobile, AL 20 Apr (ph. by WP), Wheeler NWR area, Limestone, AL 30 Apr (RSH, DCH, RR, KM), and Ft. Morgan, Mobile, AL 4 May (MJJ). They are rare in spring in each location. A Bonaparte's Gull at Marion (fish hatchery), Perry, AL 31 Mar provided a new late spring date for the I.C.P. (MB,JHol). On Dauphin Island (East End), Mobile, Alabama 14 Apr, 3 of the rare but increasing Lesser Black-backed Gulls provided a new G.C. spring maximum (AH,KG). A Caspian Tern at Columbus L., Lowndes, MS 21 Mar (TS) established a spring record for the seven-county area. Six Forster's Terns made for a new spring maximum for the I.C.P., Eufaula, Barbour, AL 25 Mar (RJK,RLK). A Sandwich Tern on Dauphin Island, Mobile, AL 10 Mar established a new ear - ly spring date for Alabama (AH), assuming it had not wintered there. This Brown Booby was found on a barge in Gulfport, Harrison, MS; unfortunately, it was in rough shape and died before it could be brought to a rehabilitation facility. Photo by © Alison Sharpe On 27 May, a White-faced Ibis at Eufaula NWR, Barbour, AL produced that state's seventh inland record of the species. Photo by © Jason Collins

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