North American Birds

VOLUME 69 No1 2016

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.

Issue link: http://nab.aba.org/i/629070

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V O L U M E 6 9 ( 2 0 1 5 ) • N U M B E R 1 125 C O LO R A D O & W YO M I N G from Yellowstone, Park 24 Sep (R. Auler). The Wyoming Harris's Sparrow migration was about average, with fve reports of singles spanning 27 Sep (about two weeks early) through 1 Dec. Also early were imm. Harris's Sparrows in Weld 29 Sep (SGM) and Jefferson 30 Sep (DSu). A Golden-crowned Sparrow at Brooklyn Lake, Albany 30 Aug (ZH, M. Paulley) would be Wyoming's sixth, third in fall. The 5 Colorado Golden-crowned Sparrows included an early individual 4 Oct at Peoria, Arapahoe (GR), one nearly to the Kansas border at Hale, Yuma 25 Oct (MP), and individuals returning to Boulder by 30 Oct and Jefferson by 2 Nov. The juncos forms not breeding in Colorado all arrived there on typical dates: Slate-colored 23 Sep, Cassiar 30 Sep, Oregon 18 Sep, Pink-sided 13 Sep, and White-winged 15 Oct. Scarlet Tanager was found twice at Brett Gray, 21 Sep and 11 Oct (both MP); the 20-day interval for a migrant suggests 2 birds, while the complete lack of oth - er Regional sightings this fall suggests just one. Wyoming's ffteenth fall Rose-breasted Grosbeak graced E.K.W. 22 Aug (ZH), while the state's only Indigo Bunting also visited E.K.W., the day before (ZH). Just 3 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks (29 Aug–5 Oct) in Colorado made for an abys - mal showing. Despite the relative abundance of Lazuli Bunting x Indigo Bunting hybrids breed - ing in Colorado, exceedingly few such are found in migration, so of interest were singles in ne. Bent 17 Sep (NM, SGM) and somewhat late at Paonia, Delta 2 Oct (J. Beason). A green Painted Bunting was reported at Neenoshe Reservoir 8 Sep (SGM). Wyoming has a paucity of fall Dickcissel reports; one in e. Laramie 29 Aug (ph. ZH) provided only the fourth fall report. A single male Bobolink at Ocean Lake, Fremont 24 Aug (B. Hargis) was late for still be - ing in identifably male plumage and provided the lone report of this species rarely encountered in fall in Wyoming. Although Yellow-headed Blackbirds have been considered rare after Sep in Wyoming, there were two reports of 10 birds from early Oct in eBird. A Rusty Blackbird at Keyhole Reservoir, Crook 26 Oct (JA) provid - ed the nineteenth report for Wyoming, ninth from fall. Two Common Grackle reports of singles on 11 Nov from Worland, Washakie (S. Wildlife Habitat Management Area 26 Aug (ph. DJ), while Colorado scored 3 Canadas, the high - light being Fremont's frst, at Cañon City 30 Aug (RM). A Wilson's Warbler was somewhat late 26 Oct at Littleton, Arapahoe (DSu), but one 11 Nov at Eagle, Eagle (M. Hopkins) was genuinely late. SPARROWS THROUGH FINCHES An apparent arcticus Spotted Towhee, appar- ently fairly rare Regionally, visited Neenoshe Reservoir 3 Oct (SGM). A male Eastern Towhee was early at Fox Ranch, Yuma 13 Sep (†SGM), while single Spotted Towhee x Eastern Towhee hybrids were noted in Aug in Morgan and Logan, Sep in Weld, and Oct in Yuma (SGM, GW, MP). The last of four Nov Colorado Chipping Sparrow reports was of one 15 Nov at Grand Junction (MH). Almost a month late was a Brewer's Sparrow 16 Nov at Aurora Reservoir, Arapahoe (DD). A late Field Sparrow was at Neegronda Reservoir, Kiowa 24 Nov (CLW, JBa). Locally rare in their respective corners of Wyoming were a Clay-colored Sparrow on Little Firehole Rd., Sweetwater 16 Aug (R. Merrill) and a Lark Sparrow at Signal Mountain Lodge, Teton 23 Aug (ph. P. Carney). Black-throated Sparrows are infrequently reported in fall, perhaps due to early departure or to birders not visiting their bleak habitat, so two Sep reports from the breed - ing range were of interest: one in Montezuma 6 Sep (T. Martinez) and 2 in Las Animas (GW). A well-out-of-range bird was near Niwot, Boulder 15 Sep (C. Nunes). Sagebrush Sparrow is an - other enigmatic species for which there are few fall records, so the single 7 Oct at Franz Lake (RM) provided not only a rare record for the month but also a frst for Chaffee. Virtually un - reported as migrants in Wyoming, it was a good fall for Grasshopper Sparrows, with 1-2 along Chalk Bluff Rd., Laramie 9-11 Aug (J. Beck, S. Courtney), 6 in Goshen 16 Aug (DJ), and one at Woodhouse W.A., Laramie 30 Aug (CSh). White-throated Sparrows showed well in Wyoming, with at least 10 reports involving at least 18 individuals, from a very early bird singing 6 Aug at Yellowstone, Park (SSc) to a rare Nov record 12-13 Nov at Evanston, Uinta (ph. H. Winfrey); both of these records were from the w. where rare, as was another report 10% of Wyoming's Blackpoll reports. Colorado notched just 5 Blackpolls, 1-23 Sep, with 2 at Brett Gray 21 Sep (MP). Black-throated Blue Warbler is an expected mid-fall migrant in small numbers in e. Colorado, rarer in spring and early fall. One seen 1 Oct in Adams (K. Sucy) made the only Colorado report. E.K.W. hosted both of Wyoming's Black-throated Blue Warblers, 26 Aug (CMn) and 26-27 Sep (CMn, ZH), add - ing to at least 30 previous fall reports. Adding to 36 total and 12 fall reports for Palm Warbler in Wyoming were Natrona singles at Casper 20 Aug (AH) and E.K.W. on 21 Aug and 27-30 Sep (ZH). In Colorado, singles were noted 17 Oct in Weld (SGM) and 1-5 Nov in Boulder (SF). All 4 Regional Pine Warblers were in Colorado, singles near Pueblo Reservoir, Pueblo 13 Sep (S. Riffe), Colorado City, Pueblo 13 Sep (D. Silverman), Jackson Reservoir, Morgan 1 Nov (DD), and the Denver West Offce Park, Jefferson 30 Nov (M. Chavez). As an indication of how numerous they can be for observers looking for them, 57 Myrtle Warbler x Audubon's Warbler crosses were noted in nine e. Colorado counties and in Eagle, with the Eaton cemetery, Weld hosting 9 on 23 Sep and 6 each on 29 Sep and 17 Oct, and with 11 at Jackson Reservoir 28 Sep (all SGM). Grace's Warblers apparently sneak out of Colorado early; the last report this season was of one at the Acorn Woodpecker site w. of Durango, La Plata 16 Aug (VR, SL). Wyoming's only Black-throated Gray Warbler was a late bird on the Little Firehole Rd., Sweetwater 2 Sep (DJ) adding to just a handful of post-Aug reports. The Wyoming Townsend's Warbler fall migration was very strong and broad - ly distributed statewide excepting the ne. quar- ter, with over 70 reports involving 100+ birds 5 Aug–28 Sep and one very rare post Sep report of 2 birds at Laramie 4-5 Oct (NB, CP). Conversely, the show in Colorado (3 Aug–10 Nov) was me - diocre, with the highest single-site tally of just 18 at Brett Gray 12 Sep (MP). Five Black-throated Green Warblers were all in Colorado 5 Sep–19 Oct, highlighted by 2 at the Melody Tempel Grove, ne. Bent 5 Sep (JS, JT). Wyoming's ninth Canada Warbler (ffth in fall) was at Rawhide SA Baird's Sparrows is certainly overlooked as a migrant in Colorado, considering the lon- gitudinal boundaries of both the breeding and wintering grounds relative to those of the state. However, the total of just 11 accepted records (as of 2013) emphasizes how dif - fcult the species is to detect as a migrant. Starting with a single individual 26 Aug, the tally of Baird's Sparrows along and near Drennan Rd., El Paso rose to at least 8 (B. Maynard), with many observers managing photographs as birds perched obligingly on fences. With scrutiny of the large volume of photographs, there was much speculation that the species had bred locally, as multiple individuals appeared to be birds conducting preformative molt. As is seemingly typical for such enigmatic species, no Baird's Sparrows were noted in the area in 2015, despite at least some searching. The last individual was seen 8 Sep. Very late in the fall season, this Northern Parula was at Wyoming Hereford Ranch, Laramie County, Wyoming 1 November 2014. Photograph by Steve Campagnaro.

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