North American Birds

VOLUME 69 NO2 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 6 ) • N U M B E R 2 303 C E N T R A L A M E R I C A pear to have taken up residence, with multiple reports through the winter season from 8 Dec (PO) through 14 Jan (JT). This species was first recorded in North America in 2010 near Colón. A Glossy Ibis found 3 Feb in Finca Tamashan (ph. MR) established only the second docu - mented record for the Guatemalan Pacific slope. Another Glossy Ibis observed 12 Feb in Laguna de Metapán (NH et al.) was notewor - thy as a first record for Santa Ana and the w. half of El Salvador, as well as the first for the country in more than 10 years. A White-faced Ibis observed 9 Dec in Laguna El Jocotal, San Miguel (ph. EC, JA, MB, MT, AC) was the third documented record and the first reported in El Salvador since 1926. Although reported repeat - edly in Guatemala, this species was not well documented until 3 Feb, when 7 were seen at Finca Tamashan, Retalhuleu (ph. MR). Still a vagrant outside South America, a dark-morph male Long-winged Harrier found 14 Feb in Metropolitan Park, Panamá (ph. OQ) was the first to be reported from within Panama City. Most Swainson's Hawks winter in South America, but a small (and increasing?) percent - age winter in the Pacific lowlands throughout Mexico and Central America. Typically, only singles or small groups are found at any given location; thus a congregation of 60 at a con - struction site for a solar energy farm in Cholute- ca 5 Feb (ME) was impressive. Three days later, 15 were still present (RJ, ph. JvD). Several White-throated Crakes heard 31 Jan–1 Feb at a small lake on Isla Contadora in the Pearl Islands, Panamá (RM, KK) were the first ever reported in the archipelago. Providing a new site record for Guatemala, 3 Gray-breast - ed Crakes were heard at Hacienda Tijax, Izabal 29 Dec (KE, CAv) and 26-27 Jan (JPC, JK). A Spotted Rail heard at the same site 29 Dec (KE, CAv) also provided a new site record. And a group of 20 Double-striped Thick-knees seen 2 km n. of Estanzuela 5 Dec (ph. KVV, JPC) established a first record for Zacapa. AVOCETS THROUGH TERNS American Avocets have been reported with in- creasing frequency in the past 15 years and are now nearly annual in most countries through - out the Region. In Guatemala, up to 10 were present at two sites in w. Retalhuleu in Dec and Feb; in Honduras, up to 9 were present in two localities throughout most of the winter; in El Salvador, 6 were at Bocana Río Jiboa 29 Dec (EnC); in Costa Rica, one each was present at four sites in Guanacaste and w. Puntarenas in Dec, Jan, and Feb; and in Panama, one seen 1 Dec at Panamá Viejo, Panamá (JAC) was pre - sumed to be the same individual that had been noted there 4 Oct. Unexpected in winter and perhaps an early spring migrant, a Pectoral Sandpiper was present 22 Feb in Los Cóbanos, Sonsonate (ph. EnC). Two Pomarine Jaegers were seen 5 Feb in waters off Tela, Atlántida on the n. coast of Honduras (SS et al.). Although it may be regular off the coast of Honduras, few pelagic trips are run out of Honduras, and its marine avifauna remains poorly known. Infrequently reported in the Region, and even rarer inland, a Ring-billed Gull was seen 21 Dec at the bridge over Río Chagres in Gam - boa, Colón (HL). California Gull was new to Honduras last winter, in Feb 2014 (a first-cy - cle bird). On 25 Jan, a second-cycle bird was present at Punta Ratón, Choluteca (ph. JvD), the same locality as the previous winter, thus potentially a returning individual. Providing only the second record for Belize, a first-cycle Lesser Black-backed Gull was seen at Punta Gorda 6 Dec (ph. EmC et al.), 2 were there 8 Dec (ph. AL, LJ, JU), and one was still present 9 Dec (AL, AF). At the other end of the Region, one was seen 15 Dec at Panamá Viejo, Panama City (VW, MO). A Kelp Gull was found at Pan - amá Viejo 14 Dec (ph. MO), and another was reported from Caldera, Puntarenas, first 28 Jan by an unknown observer, photographed the next day (ph. JZ), and last seen 31 Jan (DP). While still considered rare anywhere in Cen - tral America, a recent increase in Lesser Black- backed Gull and Kelp Gull reports from the Region may to some extent reflect increased awareness of the potential for stray gulls to turn up occasionally coupled with an increas - ing sophistication of observers in solving the complexities of gull identification. But both species have demonstrated a clear pattern of range expansion throughout much of their re - spective global ranges, most recently into tropi- cal waters. Four Bridled Terns observed 14 Dec at Los Cóbanos, Sonsonate (ph. OK, MB, JA, EvdB) provided only the fourth record for El Salvador. In Guatemala, single Bridled Terns were seen approximately 35 km off Escuintla 30 Dec (JPC) and 28 Jan (JPC, JK). Seldom seen as far s. as Panama, a Forster's Tern was at Playa El Retén, near Monagrillo, Herrera 8 Dec (ph. RM), and in Guatemala, a Sandwich Tern at El Remate, Petén 13 Feb (MOv, BG) provided a noteworthy inland record. DOVES THROUGH HUMMINGBIRDS The rapid expansion of the Eurasian Collared- Dove into n. Central America continues, most recently in Petén, as illustrated by 4 seen 13 Dec (CE, CA) and 6 seen 24 Feb (CE, ABL) at San Benito, plus 3 seen at Flores 5 Jan (CE). It has also been recorded outside urban centers in Pe - tén, where one was seen 14 km nw. of Melchor This Swainson's Hawk was one of 15 seen at a construction site for a solar energy plant in Choluteca, Honduras on 8 February 2015, a remarkable number for this time of year. Photograph by John van Dort Perhaps the same individual that provided the first record for Hon- duras when found at Punta Ratón in February 2014, this second- cycle California Gull was present at the same location in southern Honduras on 25 January 2015. Photograph by John van Dort. These two first-cycle Lesser Black-backed Gulls found at Punta Gorda, Belize on 8 December 2014 followed close behind Belize's second record two days earlier at the same site. Photograph by Alex Lamoreaux.

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