North American Birds

VOLUME 68 NO2 2015

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 53 of 131

N O R T H A M E R I C A N B I R D S 220 I l l I n o I s & I n d I a n a ham, IL 26 Dec (CLH), and one at Minnehaha F.W.A., Sullivan, IN during the Sullivan County C.B.C. 1 Jan (LWS, KM, MC). Continuing from fall and present through the period was the Townsend's Solitaire at Jon J. Duerr F.P., Kane, IL 7 Nov+ (m.ob.). A Varied Thrush was photographed in a yard near Zions- ville, Boone, IN 17 Jan (fde DoS). At least 13 Gray Catbirds and 46 Brown Thrashers were reported from the Region. Forty of the latter were from Indiana, with 4 or 5 of those seen 9 Feb in s. Spencer (JM) establishing a new winter high for the state. Northern Mocking- birds in the n. tier included one at Michigan City, La Porte, IN 14 Dec and 4 Jan (JJM, KJB, JKC), another at Portage Marina, Porter, IN 27 Dec (GAW, CLW), one at Lost Mound N.W.R., Jo Daviess, IL 3-5 Feb (ASt, DTW), where the species is expected in the breeding season, and another on 20 Jan in Carpentersville, Kane, IL (DFS), where it is less expected. As is typical, some American Pipits lingered into Dec in the n. tier. Ten were seen at Two Rivers N.W.R., Calhoun, IL 10 Dec (BS, CS), and single birds were noted at Fermilab, Du- Page, IL 2 Dec (JL) and at Jon J. Duerr F.P., Kane, IL 1 Dec (ASA). The Region was awash in Lap- land Longspurs. The 2703 reported in Gibson 15 Dec (G&LB) represented the second larg- est count for Indiana's s. tier. Other large tallies included 1000 at Somerville Mine, Gibson, IN 6 Jan (JR), 1000 in Bond, IL 16 Feb (MSS), 850 in McLean, IL14 Dec (MLPR, MHa), and 620 in Clinton, IL 21 Jan (MSS). Impressive numbers of Snow Buntings also invaded the Region. No- table counts included 480 in Stephenson, IL 24 Feb (PAM) and 375 in Carroll, IL 19 Dec (DA), while peak tallies in the s. tier included 100 in Decatur, IN 9 Jan (BD), 72 in Dubois, IN 8 Feb (KM), 50 in Bond, IL 16 Feb (MSS), and 25 at Newton Lake, Jasper, IL 13 Feb (RES). Two Snow Buntings in Massac, IL 8 Feb (FKB) were at the far s. edge of the Region. Astonishing was an extremely early Louisiana Waterthrush at McCormick's Creek S.P., Owen, IN 9 & 15 Feb (RPH), providing the Region's frst winter record. An ad. male Nashville Warbler in downtown Indianapolis 6 Dec (WH) provided Indiana's third winter record. Common Yel- lowthroats were seen at Ryerson C.A., Lake, IL 1 Dec (BJS) and at Union County C.A., Union, IL 29 Dec (SDB, PAM). In Blooming- ton, an ad. male Cape May War- bler was on the Indiana Univer- sity campus 3 Jan (ph. VWW). A Palm Warbler was seen in Perry, IL 27 Dec (DA), and one visited Phoebes reported in Indiana, 2 were present in Jan and 3 in Feb. Six Northern Shrikes reached the s. tier; Illinois birds were present in Cass, Clinton, Fayette, Richland, and St. Clair, while Indiana hosted a single 2-3 Feb in Warrick (DC, JHC), and a stunned juv. that had struck a window in n. Allen was photographed 24 Dec (IRB, fde JAH). The tally for American Crows on the Middlefork River C.B.C., Vermilion, IL 1 Jan was only 91,400 (fde SDB), down from the usual six-digit fgure they encounter. This is in contrast to the Bloomington, IN Ameri- can Crow roost, which has grown dramatical- ly over the past decade and now numbers in the tens of thousands. An enormous fock of 2440 Horned Larks discovered near Saunder's Woods, Gibson 15 Dec (G&LB) was the larg- est ever for Indiana's s. tier. Indiana's third Jan record of Tree Swallow was provided by 2 birds near the Indianapolis Airport 19 Jan (PDRH), and an early migrant was noted at Patoka River N.W.R., Gibson 21 Feb (HDH). The 9 Red- breasted Nuthatches reported in Indiana was the lowest winter total in 11 years. Few Winter Wrens were reported from Illinois after 31 Dec, suggesting that most of the population moved farther south. Three Marsh Wrens were noted: one at Bailey Wetlands, Wayne, IL 16-19 Dec (CLH), another at Ballard Nature Center, Effng- Libertyville, Lake, IL 14 Feb (ph. AAA, ph. MVK). This bird was seen regularly through 23 Feb at the site, which has an active landfll right next door, and also made an appearance 26 km away at Winthrop Harbor, Lake, IL 15 Feb (MVK, ph. GAW, m.ob.). It represents the sixth Illinois and seventh Regional record. The 16 Glaucous Gulls at Whiting Refnery Beach, Lake 18 Jan (JCK) established a new one-day high for Indiana; 4 Glaucous among the gull fock at Melvin Price Dam in Alton, IL 26 Jan (fde CMa) was a noteworthy maximum high count for the s. tier of the Region. On 18 Jan, 63 Great Black-backed Gulls were tallied in Lake and Porter (JCK), representing the highest one-day total for the Region ever. A very rare inland Great Black-backed was at Brookville Reservoir, Union, IN 1 Jan (DR, BW et al.). In Indiana, a Barn Owl was seen on the Goose Pond C.B.C. 18 Dec (fde LWS), and 2 were found on the Oakland City C.B.C., Gib- son 28 Dec (fde HDH). A Barn Owl seen 7 Jan in DuPage, IL (JAS) was found dead on 9 Jan. In Indiana, 5 Rufous Hummingbirds were still present in Dec, with 2 birds lingering into Jan, the latest of which survived through at least 28 Jan (fde DG). Eight Merlins were seen on a drive through n. Warrick, IN 8 Feb (DG, AR). The Prairie Falcon found during fall in Coles and nearby Douglas, IL was joined by a sec- ond individual 7 Dec (RB). Two birds were present through at least 19 Feb (TDF), with one remaining 28 Feb+. One of these birds may account for the individual pho- tographed in nw. Douglas 27 Dec (ph. JBr). Other Prairie Falcons included singles in Champaign, IL 12 Dec (NS et al.) and Wayne, IL 14 Dec (CLH, RES); one other, a bonus for many of the Gibson, IN Ferru- ginous Hawk seekers, was an ad. initially seen 26 Jan (DG, ph. AR, MSE et al.) that was seen by many through 28 Feb (MRB). FLYCATCHERS THROUGH WARBLERS There were 31 Eastern Phoebes recorded among nine different C.B.C.s in s. Illinois, with 2 on the Jackson C.B.C. 1 Jan the lat- est reported (fde RSR). Among 12 Eastern sa By mid-Dec, the Snowy Owl fight that had begun in Nov evolved into a major invasion. The 165 and 114 birds documented in Illinois and Indiana, respectively, far overshad- owed the previous highs of 133 and 43 recorded during the 2011-2012 incursion. The maxi- mum daily count of 17 in n. Indiana 28 Dec (JJM) dwarfed Indiana's previous one-day high of 6 birds, which was logged in 1905. Along a 30-km stretch along Lake Michigan in Chicago, 12 Snowy Owls were counted 22 Dec (RDH, KKM), among them 8 at the 31st Street Harbor alone (AG, m.ob.). The 7 noted in a small section of Lee, IL 2 Feb (JCL) formed another notable con- centration. While most of the Snowies were seen in the n. portion of the Region, there were also reports from Clark, Vanderburgh, and Warrick along the Ohio River in Indiana and from Bond, Clinton, and Wayne in Illinois's s. third. Seen on consecutive weekends 9-15 (here 15) February 2014 in a relatively protected creek canyon east of Spencer, Indiana, this Louisiana Waterthrush was either a very early migrant or an unprecedented overwintering bird. Photograph by Roger P. Hangarter.

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