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.

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V O L U M E 6 9 ( 2 0 1 5 ) • N U M B E R 1 165 C E N T R A L A M E R I C A This Tahiti Petrel, one of three seen on 25 October 2014 south and southeast of Punta Mala, was the frst photographed in Panamanian waters, although one was seen in the same area on 11 September 2010. Other records of this species from southern Baja California to Costa Rica indicate that the species may be regular in warm tropical waters in the region. Photographs by Rafael Luck. Institute team (B.R.R.I.: RP, VB, IM, AF et al.), with a straggler 9 Dec providing only the second Dec record n. of South America. More undoubt - edly passed through in Sep before the start of this year's hawkwatch, as 578 were counted on the frst day of the count. Also noteworthy, a late Swallow-tailed Kite was seen passing Cattle Landing 1 Oct (B.R.R.I.). In Panama, one of the migrant subspecies of Red-tailed Hawk was seen 10 Nov at Cerro Ancón (RD), and another was seen 16 Nov at Tortí, Panamá (GB, ph. MR). Mi - grants are rare in Panama, especially so far east. RAILS THROUGH TERNS A Rufous-necked Wood-Rail on Caye Caulker 24 Aug (J&DB) established the earliest fall and only Aug record for the species in Belize, where the species is not resident. Providing the frst report from the arid nw. in Costa Rica, 2 Paint- billed Crakes were heard 14 Nov in a rice feld near Bagatzí, Guanacaste (JZ). With an abun - dance of suitable habitat in this Region, it may have been overlooked in the past; however, it may also be a recent arrival in this part of the country, at least during the wet season. A Spot - ted Rail found dead 13 Nov at Santa Ana city (ph. EdC, YM, MB, JA) provided only the ffth record for El Salvador. The specimen was do - nated to El Salvador's Natural History Museum. American Avocets are now being reported an - nually in Central America. This fall, at least 16 individuals were found at nine localities in ev - ery country but El Salvador between 4 Oct and 27 Nov. A Southern Lapwing at Rubelsanto, Alta Verapaz 12-13 Aug (ph. MO) was the frst to be reported in Guatemala, the last country in Central America to record this northward- expanding South American species. Seldom reported in Guatemala, an American Golden- Plover was at Santa Elena, Petén 25 Nov (ph. CE). Rare anywhere in Panama, and providing the frst report for Isla Coiba, Veraguas, 3 Amer - ican Golden-Plovers were seen 10 Sep (KG). Four Collared Plovers were near San Miguel, Alta Verapaz, 26 km nw. of Chisec, 18 Oct (ph. MO), a noteworthy inland report. Also seldom seen in Panama, a Wander- ing Tattler was present 20 Oct (KG) and again 29 Oct (AC) on Cocos and Frijoles Islets near Isla Coiba, Veraguas. A Long-billed Curlew, an - other shorebird rare in the Region, was found at Chomes, Puntarenas 17 Aug (PO). In El Sal - vador, an impressive 10 Red Knots were at Isla Pajarito, Bahía de Jiquilisco, Usulután 5 Sep (AM, ECh), and in Panama, an early Stilt Sand - piper was seen in a marsh near Chepo, Panamá 2 Aug (ph. RMi, GA, KK). Seldom seen in fall in the Region, a White-rumped Sandpiper was at Punta Chamé 30 Oct (EC). Rarely reported in the Region, a skua presumed to be a South Polar Skua was seen in Panama off Pedasí, Los San - tos 22 Nov (GA, JAC, HL, DM). Rare in Central America, 2 Long-tailed Jaegers were reported this fall. Honduras's frst, a juv. dark morph, was observed 30 Aug on tidal mudfats at the s. tip of Punta Ratón, Choluteca (RJ, JvD); and an inter - mediate-morph juv. was observed on a pelagic trip off Pedasí, Los Santos 25 Oct (GA, JAC, ph. RL, EC), providing only the second confrmed record for Panama. Also noteworthy in Panama was a Sabine's Gull off Pedasí 22 Nov (GA, JAC, HL, DM). A Franklin's Gull at La Berbería 17 Aug (RJ, JvD) was either an exceptionally early fall migrant or an oversummering bird. Still rare, but reported almost annually now in Panama, a Lesser Black-backed Gull was at Costa del Este in Panama City, Panamá 10 Nov(EC). A former breeding species in Belize, Brown Noddy is now seldom reported there. Note - worthy, therefore, was one seen on the beach in Hopkins, Stann Creek 22 Oct (ph. DF). Forster's Terns were reported in greater numbers than normal this fall. An early fall individual was at El Jicarito in Honduras 6 Sep (RJ, ph. JvD). One was at Lime Caye (the southernmost of the Sap - odilla Cayes) in s. Belize 27 Oct (LJ). In Costa Rica, 3 were at Quepos, Punterenas 12 Nov (ph. JC), and one was at Chomes 27 Nov (ph. LG). Since 2004, when frst reported in Honduras, Elegant Tern has been reported with increasing regularity. But this fall saw a signifcant jump in numbers. At some locations it even out - numbered the typically much more common Royal Tern. At several sites as many as 10 were present, but a concentration of 100 (an exact count!) at a shrimp farm near San Lorenzo, Valle 11 Nov (CF, ph. OK) was unprecedented. DOVES THROUGH TROGONS Eurasian Collared-Dove continues to colonize Belize at an impressive rate, where it is now well established as far s. as Placencia, Stann Creek along the coast. The species, however, is showing little sign of colonizing areas farther s., including southernmost Belize, Guatemala s. of Petén, and all countries to the s., which may be too tropi - cal for this species. Only recently established in Petén, 2 Eurasian Collared-Doves were seen at Santa Elena 23 Oct (CE). Farther s., a Eurasian Collared-Dove was found 16 Sep at the Roatan Electric Company, Islas de la Bahía (DMed), provid - ing either a frst or second record for Honduras. In Costa Rica, an Inca Dove found 8 Sep at Coto 47 (JC) was noteworthy. The species is now colonizing the last large lowland agricultural areas on the Pacifc before the Panama border (Coto 47 is only 15 km from the border) and will surely continue on into Panama at some point. The nesting pair of Pearly-breasted Cuckoos frst observed 12 Jul at Río Mono bridge, Pan - amá continued to be seen until at least 9 Aug, when 2 ads. and 2 chicks were present (JAC, RL, VW). Generally uncommon in most of the Region, more than the typical number of Man - grove Cuckoos were reported this Oct and Nov from Belize and Honduras. Five were seen at a continuously monitored hawkwatch site just n. of Punta Gorda town (AF, AL, VB, LJ), another was seen on Lime Caye (LJ), and yet another was found on Ambergris Caye (DR), all between 25 Oct and 30 Nov. In Honduras, 5 were report - ed during the same period, all from Choluteca. Among these, 3 were seen 1 Nov in a narrow 800-m-long strip of mangrove vegetation bor - dering extensive wetlands near La Berbería (RJ, ph. JvD). An apparent outbreak of caterpillars at this site had concentrated other Coccyzus cuck - oos as well: 4 Yellow-billed, one Black-billed, and 3 Coccyzus sp. In Guatemala, a Mangrove Cuckoo was seen 23 & 25 Oct at Lake Petén Itzá in Santa Elena, Petén (ph. CE), providing a note - worthy inland record. In Belize, 2 Great Horned Owls at Sarteneja airstrip 27 Oct (RM) were the frst reported away from Ambergris Caye in seven years, the last also coming from Sarteneja. In Guatemala, a Stygian Owl was heard near Los Vahos s. of Quetzaltenango, Quetzaltenango 5 Oct (JPC, MO, MN, LN). Rarely reported from Honduras, a roosting Stygian Owl found near Catacamas, Olancho 21 Nov (ph. DMej) was an excellent fnd. Yucatan Nightjar breeds on the n. Yucatan Peninsula s. to n. Belize and is partly migratory, with some individuals occasionally reaching s. Belize and nw. Honduras, at least historically. It has been many years, however, since one was last reported in Honduras; thus, an individual found near La Ceiba, Atlántida 19 Oct (ph. JaZ) was unexpected. In Guatemala, 2 Great Swal - low-tailed Swifts were seen 9 Nov at Biotopo del Quetzal, Baja Verapaz (JPC, KVV, LB). Scaly- breasted Hummingbird is known in Honduras only from the lowlands on the n. coast and from the Moskitia in e. Honduras. Thus, one seen at the frequently birded Los Naranjos Park on the n. border of Lake Yojoa, Cortés 30 Oct (RJ, ph.

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