North American Birds

VOLUME 68 NO4 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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V O L U M E 6 8 ( 2 0 1 5 ) • N U M B E R 4 475 man Settlement Rd., Cumberland, NS 27 Apr (Peter McCathie). Spring sightings of this spe- cies are increasing in Nova Scotia, and reports indicate that they are staying longer within the province; a breeding record is anticipated in the near future (fde Ulli Hoeger). In Prince Edward Island, a Sandhill Crane was observed 21 May at Campbell's Cove, Kings (ph. Joanne Dunphy). Reports of cranes on Prince Edward Island have also been increasing in recent sea- sons. Two American Oystercatchers at The Hawk, Cape Sable Island, NS 12 Apr (John Nickerson) signaled continued breeding in that location, the sole nesting site in Canada for this species since 1997 (fde Rick Whitman). Willet is considered a rare vagrant in spring to St. Pierre et Miquelon; one was located 17 May at St. Pierre (Joël Detcheverry). Whim- brels, scarce in Nova Scotia, were noted 3 May at Framboise, Richmond (David McCorquodale) and 8 May at Martinique Beach, Halifax Re- gional Municipality (Dominique Cormier). Two rare Hudsonian Godwits were noted 16 May at The Hawk, Cape Sable Island, Shelburne, NS (Clyde Stoddard). For Prince Edward Island, Ruff is an extremely rare spring vagrant; a male at Noonan's Marsh, Borden 24-25 May was only the province's sixth (Kathleen MacAulay, ph. Dwaine Oakley, m.ob.). Also on Prince Edward Island, a Wilson's Phalarope was unex- pected at Mount Stewart 31 May (Ray Cooke, Dan McAskill, David Seeler). was locally rare (Patrick Boez, Patrick Hacala). Uncommon in spring in Nova Scotia, a female Ruddy Duck that wintered at Trenton, Pictou remained through 12 Apr (fde Ross Hall); an- other was observed 13 Apr in North River, Col- chester (Ken McKenna). A Pacic Loon off St. Vincent's, NF 18-24 May provided that prov- ince with its frst documented record of that species (Alvan Buckley, Lancy Cheng, Alison Mews, Ed Hayden, ph. BM et al.). An excep- tional fnd for Nova Scotia, a Bermuda Petrel was discovered 243 km (131 nautical mi.) s. of Cape Sable, Shelburne, NS 21 Apr during a Cetacean and Seabird Survey conducted from the NOAA ship Henry B. Bigelow (ph. Michael P. Force, Nicolas Metheny, Gina Shield); ad. Bermuda Petrels tagged with geolocators often forage in this productive area, but direct ob- servations are otherwise unknown. Quite rare in Nova Scotia, a Brown Booby visited Gerald Comeau's fshing boat in St. Mary's Bay, Digby 19-21 May (ph. Gerald Comeau). Snowy Egret is considered a rare migrant to New Brunswick; one was a welcome sight at the Irving Nature Park, St. John 14 May (Gilbert Bouchard). A Tricolored Heron was an excellent fnd at Cape Sable Island, Shelburne, NS 6-8 May (John Nickerson, ph. Ron d'Entremont, m.ob.). Two Sandhill Cranes were located 10 Apr along Milford Rd., Halifax Regional Municipality, NS 1013 Apr (Jeff Ogden, ph. Ed Dawson). Two ad. Sandhills were reported along the Chap- David Seeler –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– SPRING 2014 –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– W eather patterns were close to nor- mal for the season within most of the Region, although a few areas experienced rainfall slightly above normal. The most signifcant weather event occurred over the North Atlantic, where a series of low-pres- sure systems aligned across the North Atlantic, providing conditions for fallouts of European migrants in Newfoundland. WATERFOWL THROUGH SHOREBIRDS Rare to New Brunswick in spring, a Great- er White-fronted Goose was discovered at Cocagne, Kent, NB 4-5 Apr (Louise-Émile Cormier, Gilles Bourque). A male Common Shelduck at Renews, Avalon Peninsula, NF 2 Apr (Tony Dunne, ph. Yvonne Dunne) was the frst of several European species to appear in Newfoundland this season; records of this species are under review by records commit- tees, and this bird and others will likely ensure the species' place on offcial avifaunal lists of Newfoundland, Canada, and North America. A Eurasian Wigeon discovered 2 Apr on St. Pierre Atlantic Provinces & St. Pierre et Miquelon SA "Icelandic Invasion" is a term used in Newfoundland to describe fallouts of European migrants in spring. During such events, a strong easterly wind fow develops across the North Atlantic from Iceland and/or Europe, often the result of a persistent low-pressure system (or set of systems) churning over the ocean between Newfoundland and Iceland. European migrants bound for Iceland are then drifted westward and make landfall in e. Newfoundland. Such was the case this season when sustained easterlies created excellent conditions for a major fallout of European species from late Apr through mid-May (Table 1). The frst European Golden-Plover was seen 26-27 Apr at Renews, Avalon Peninsula, NF (ph. BM), with subsequent arrivals making for the second highest spring total of this spe- cies on record (fde BM). A Eurasian Whimbrel was found at Cape Race, NF 3 May (Dave Brown). A Com- mon Redshank was discovered 3-13 May at Renews Beach, providing the province with its seventh record of the species (ph. BM, Ken Knowles, m.ob.). As observ- ers gathered to search for this bird, a second Common Redshank was discovered 4 May with the frst, which eventually drove the new arrival out of the area (Les Sweetapple, Keith Fillier, ph. BM, m.ob.). Two male Black-tailed Godwits discovered at Renews 25 Apr, with one remaining through the season, were the frst shorebird species reported for the spring Icelandic In- vasion (ph. Tony Dunne, m.ob.), and these were followed by 11 more from across Newfound- land! Only in 2011, when 2 Black-tailed Godwits were reported, has there been a record of multiple birds of this species present in Newfoundland at the same time (fde Jared Clarke). Table 1. Minimum counts of selected spe- cies in Newfoundland, April and May 2014. Species Number European Golden-Plover 225 Common Redshank 2 Eurasian Whimbrel 1 Black-tailed Godwit 13 Ross's Gull 1 Northern Wheatear 36 This Bermuda Petrel was seen from the NOAA ship Henry B. Bigelow within Canadian waters south of Cape Sable Island, Nova Scotia, the frst record for Canada and Nova Scotia of this species. Photograph by Michael P. Force.

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