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 83 E A S T E R N H I G H L A N D S & U P P E R O H I O R I V E R VA L L E Y tral Basin 31 Oct (JB). Rare inland, one was documented in Hancock, OH 16 Nov (Robert Sams, Shane Meyers, Jeff Loughman). Increas - ingly at home within Ohio's interior, very early Lesser Black-backed Gulls were at Indian Lake, Logan 11 Aug (ad.; ph. Steve Jones) and Find - lay Reservoir, Hancock 31 Aug (third-cycle bird; Robert Sams). The latter site held 15 on 2 Nov (Robert Sams) and rare fall inland records of a Glaucous Gull and 2 Great Black-backed Gulls (Jeff Loughman). Caspian Terns are now plentiful in Ohio, where inland tallies continue to set local coun - ty records such as 48 at Clear Fork Reservoir, Richland 1 Sep (Anna Wittmer). Common Terns gathered early, with 1330 at East Harbor S.P., Ottawa 3 Aug and 950 still there 5 Sep (VF). The 910 in the Lorain Harbor, Lorain, OH vi - cinity 10 Sep (VF), 660 tallied from the 21 Sep Lake Erie boat trip (JB et al.), 950 off Hunting - ton Reservation, Cuyahoga 7 Oct (JB), and 700 off Eastlake, Lake 15 Oct (Tom Kaczynski) in - dicated strong passage in Lake Erie. The sight of 15 Black Terns feeding over the Ohio River, Wood, WV 31 Aug (Dick & Jeanette Esker) must have been exciting. This decreasing species is rarely reported from the Ohio River. Two rare Gull-billed Terns were at John Heinz N.W.R., Philadelphia, PA 12 Aug (Frank Windfelder). Lake Erie boat trip off Erie, OH, with 7 birds accounted for (JB, ph. Chris Collins, ph. Paul Hurtado, m.ob.). An ad. Black-headed Gull was at Conneaut, Ashtabula, OH14-15 Aug (ph. Mark Moore, ph. Chris Swan, ph. Tom Frankel, m.ob.). Up to 3 Little Gulls were strewn along 300 km of Lake Erie shoreline at a dozen loca - tions; Presque Isle, Erie, PA recorded a total of 4 for the season (Jerry McWilliams). Away from Lake Erie, Ohio notables were singles in Logan 4-5 Oct (ph. Troy Shively et al., Scott Meyers), at Buck Creek S.P., Clark 11-15 Aug (Stefan Min - nig, Doug Overacker, m.ob.), at Delaware S.P., Delaware 30 Aug (Steve Jones), and at Alum Creek S.P., Delaware 19-25 Aug (ph. Robert Batterson, ph. Carl Winstead, m.ob.), plus 2 in Hancock 2 Nov (Robert Sams, Jeff Loughman). Ten or more Laughing Gulls were found across Ohio. Inland were 2 at Clear Fork Reservoir, Richland 11 Sep (John Herman); the dates of passage ranged from 8 Aug at Deer Creek S.P., Pickaway, OH (ph. Alex Champagne) to one at Cleveland 10 Nov (JB et al.). Reports of more than 60 Franklin's Gull across Ohio were led by a fock 21 at Alum Creek Reservoir, Delaware 28 Oct (ph. Carl Winstead). Two were as far e. as Geauga 6-7 Oct (ph. Scott Huge, ph. Matthew Valencic, m.ob.). Four Thayer's Gulls were in Lake Erie's Cen - (Diane Holsinger). A surprising concentration of 31 Short-billed Dowitchers in Beaver, PA 31 Aug (Geoff Malosh) represented a high count for the w. highlands. It was exceeded within the Western Basin only by 48 at Willow Point W.A., Erie, OH 5 Sep (VF) and 45 at McClures Marsh, Sandusky, OH 20 Aug (Tom Bartlett). Among a number of Nov reports, a very late Least Sandpiper was seen 29 Nov at Norwalk Memorial Reservoir, Huron, OH (Lisa Hug). An easterly fight of Wilson's Phalaropes brought individuals to Tamarack Lake, Crawford, PA 18 Aug (Kenneth Pinnow et al.), Pymatuning S.P., Crawford, PA 22-25 Aug (Mark Vass, ph. Ryan McDermot, Richard Nugent, m.ob.), and Little Blue Run Lake, Beaver, PA 27-31 (ph. Ryan McDermot, Bill Brown, Geoff Malosh; a second county record). Away from Lake Erie, single Red Phalaropes appeared at Berlin Lake, Stark, OH 25-29 Sep (ph. Kent Miller, Anna Wittmer, m.ob.) and Buckeye Lake, Licking, OH 13-17 Oct (Tucker Wilde, Dale Wilde, Margaret Bow - man, ph. Kathi Hutton, m.ob.). Two early Red Phalaropes few by at Presque Isle S.P., Erie, PA 14 Sep (Dan Richards, Mike Weible); another was seen there 18 Nov (Jerry McWilliams). Up to 7 Pomarine Jaegers were detected along the Ohio shoreline of Lake Erie. An ear - ly bird appeared offshore in Erie 21 Sep (ph. Chris Collins, ph. Paul Hurtado, m.ob.). Of the jaeger triad, the least known in our Region is Long-tailed Jaeger. The 21 Sep Lake Erie boat trip produced a subad. Long-tailed (JB, Gabe Leidy, ph. Chris Collins, ph. Paul Hurtado, m.ob.). Another offshore effort in Erie, OH off Cedar Point 2 Oct documented a juv. Long- tailed (ph. Kurt Wray). Pennsylvania shared in the bounty with a Long-tailed over Rushton Farm, Chester 25 Aug (Andrew Leidig, Brian Quindlen, Chad Hutchinson, Mike Defna). The only Black-legged Kittiwake for the Re- gion was not on Lake Erie, but in s. Ohio at Deer Creek Reservoir, Pickaway 26-30 Nov (Marcia Brehmer, Melanie Shuter, ph. Laura Keene, m.ob.). Hooded gull species abounded. A major fight of Sabine's Gulls into the Region involved 15 birds, including 14 in Ohio. A rare ad. ap - peared at Pymatuning S.P., Crawford, PA 5-7 Sep (ph. Daniel Weeks, Mark Vass, ph. Jacob Roalef, Matt Keppler, Geoff Malosh, m.ob.). Away from Lake Erie, and exceptional inland, Ohio singles were found at Paulding Reservoir, Paulding 22 Oct (Scott Meyers), at Indian Lake, Logan 17-30 Sep (Troy Shively, ph. Steve Jones, Paul Sher - wood, m.ob.), in Wayne 11-13 Sep (ph. Jacob Roalef, ph. VF, ph. Paul Hurtado, m.ob.), and at Findlay Reservoir, Hancock 5-6 Oct (Robert Sams, Jeff Loughman, Richard Counts, m.ob.). An ad. made a brief stop along a beach in Lo - rain, Lorain, OH 7 Sep (ph. Elizabeth McQuaid et al.). The peak count came during the 21 Sep SA Our understanding of jaeger distribu- tion of Lake Erie has been obscured for decades by our land-based detection limits. Parasitic Jaeger, understood to out - number Pomarine Jaeger elsewhere in the Great Lakes, has always fallen short along the shoreline of Lake Erie. Most Ohio Poma - rines are well photographed. Is it their afn- ity for harbors that allows closer approach, or their selection of shoreline gull focks when foraging? In contrast, the peak pas - sage of Parasitics in Sep seems timed with the migration of Common Terns, which largely remain well ofshore, where baitfsh congregate. For several years, Jen Brumfeld has led 3-4 Sep boat trips out from Vermilion Harbor at the bathymetric boundary of the Central and Sandusky Basins of Lake Erie. Recruiting an energetic perch fshing charter cap - tain, she has led all-day forays out to the border waters with Canada, covering up to 100 km per outing. Typically, success has come in the form of 1-3 Parasitic Jaegers per outing. On 21 Sep, no fewer than 14 diferent Parasitics were documented (ph. Chris Collins, Paul Hurtado, m.ob.) in less than three hours on storm-tossed seas. On 27 Sep, at least 11 diferent birds were photographed (ph. VF, ph. Chuck Slusarcyzk, ph. Jacob Roalef, m.ob.). A few km to the w., shore-based observers noted 4 on 28 Sep (Kurt Wray); 2 others were noted statewide from shore (ph. Tom Frankel, JB, Ben Warner, Elizabeth McQuaid, m.ob.). At Presque Isle S.P., Erie, PA, 5 Parasitics were seen over the season, but none was detected before 4 Oct (Jerry McWiliams). Were there simply more jaegers (and terns) about on Lake Erie? Was it a good breeding season? Did weather patterns play a role in concentrating the birds? At least 25 diferent Parasitic Jaegers were identifed on two late September 2014 boat trips into Lake Erie (here 27 September), part of an unprecedented infux of the spe- cies along the south shore of the lake, observed from Erie County, Ohio. Photograph by Vic Fazio.

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