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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189 V O L U M E 6 9 ( 2 0 1 6 ) • N U M B E R 2 C O M M O N R E D S TA R T O N S T. PA U L I S L A N D, A K Literature cited Abbott, S., S. N. G. Howell, and P. Pyle. 2001. First North American record of Greater Sandplover. North American Birds 55: 252- 257. Brazil, M. 2009. Birds of East Asia: China, Tai- wan, Korea, Japan, and Russia. Princeton Uni- versity Press, Princeton, New Jersey. Campbell, C. 2010. Ten Years On. Birding (May 2010): 34-44. Christie, D. 2013. Common Redstart account, in: Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. http://www.hbw. com/species/common-redstart-phoenicu - rus-phoenicurus. Collar, N. 2005. Hodgson's Redstart account, in: Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. http://www.hbw. com/species/hodgsons-redstart-phoenicu - rus-hodgsoni. Hirano, K., and E. Tachibana. 2002. First re - cord of Common Redstart in Japan. Strix 20: 175-177. Howell, S. N. G., I. Lewington, and W. Russell. 2014. Rare Birds of North America. Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey. Jenni, L., and R. Winkler. 2011. Moult and Ageing of European Passerines. Christopher Helm, London. Lehman, P. E. 2003. Gambell, Alaska, Autumn 2002: First North American records of Wil - low Warbler (Phylloscopus trochilus), Lesser Whitethroat (Sylvia curruca), and Spotted Flycatcher (Muscicapa striata). North Ameri - can Birds 57: 4-11. Lehman, P. E., and R. L. Ake. 2011. Blyth's Reed Warbler (Acrocephalus dumetorum) at Gambell, Alaska: First record for North America. North American Birds 65: 2-10. Rosenberg, G. H., and P. E. Lehman. 2008. First North American record of Sedge Warbler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus) at Gambell, Alaska. North American Birds 62: 178-181. Pyle, P., R. J. Keiffer, J. L. Dunn, and N. Moores. 2015. The Mendocino Shrike: Red-backed Shrike (Lanio collurio) x Turkestan Shrike (L. phoenicuroides) hybrid. North American Birds 69: 4-35. Shimba, T. A. 2008. Photographic Guide to the Birds of Japan and North-East Asia. Yale Uni - versity Press, New Haven, Connecticut. Small, B. J. 2009. Identification of male Erhen - berg's Redstart, with comments on British claims. British Birds 102: 84-97. Svensson, L., D. Zetterström, and K. Mullar- ney. 2010. Birds of Europe. Second edition. Princeton University Press, Princeton, New Jersey. Tobish, T. 2000. The next new ABA-Area birds: Western Alaska. Birding 32: 498-505. n bell, among them Willow Warbler (Phyl- loscopus trochilus), Lesser Whitethroat (Sylvia curruca), and Spotted Flycatcher (Muscicapa striata) in 2002 (Lehman 2003), Sedge War - bler (Acrocephalus schoenobaenus) in 2007 (Rosenberg and Lehman 2008), and Blyth's Reed Warbler (A. dumetorum) in 2010 (Lehm - an and Ake 2011, Howell et al. 2014) and again in 2015. Of these, only Willow War - bler has become almost annual in occurrence, with about twenty records from St. Lawrence and St. Paul combined. In California, recent vagrants with similar westerly distribution in - cluded a Greater Sand-Plover in 2001 (Char- adrius leschenaultii) (Abbott et al. 2001) and a hybrid Turkestan Shrike x Red-backed Shrike (Lanius phoenicuroides x collurio) (Pyle et al. 2015). Contrary to expectations that Asian additions to the avifauna of Alaska would be of eastern Asian breeding migratory species (Tobish 2000), some additions in recent years have been of species that nest much farther to the west (Campbell 2010). Such birds are not simply wind-drifted from migration along the coast of Asia, as probably occurs with many birds, but instead are almost certainly classic "reverse migrants," individuals with impaired migratory impulses that migrate in a direc - tion reversed from that of most conspecifics (see Howell et al. 2014). For that reason, the weather systems over the Bering Sea in fall 2013 were certainly partly responsible for transporting the Common Redstart to St. Paul Island, but in theory, the Common Redstart had been moving in an east-northeasterly di - rection, rather than a west-southwesterly di- rection, across a large area before reaching the Russian coast. A Common Redstart was found at Hegura-jima, Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan 1-4 November 1998 (Hirano and Tachibana 2002), and another was found in the central Kuril Islands of Russia, which suggests that a reverse-migration vagrancy vector is probably valid (Shimba 2008, Brazil 2009). Acknowledgments We wish to thank St. Paul Island Tour and its parent corporation (Tanadgusix) for the sup - port they provide in making our time on the island possible. We would also like to thank all those who provided insight into the identi - fication of Phoenicurus species and subspecies, especially Killian Mullarney, Brian Small, Yo - shiki Watabe, Peter Kennerley, Julian Hough, Pete Morris, and Mike Crewe. We also thank Paul Sweet at the American Museum of Natu - ral History for facilitating our examination of Phoenicurus skins in that collection, and Shai Mitra, Luke DeCicco, and Paul Lehman, who commented on early drafts of this paper. Island 5 October; the backside of the system was still tied to the Russian coast through the night of 5/6 October (Figure 4). For much of 5 and 6 October, the Pribilofs experienced sustained west-southwesterly winds of 9-13 m/s (20-30 m.p.h.), as the system slowed and then stalled. During the afternoon of 6 October, the system began to lose integrity and its remnants drifted southward and away from the coast. By 7 October, the system was mostly absorbed into a new low-pressure area tracking northward from the eastern Aleu - tian Islands toward the southwestern Alaskan mainland, and the weather at St. Paul Island moderated (Figure 5). Previous experience suggests that this com- bination of systems is frequently the harbin- ger of vagrant Asian birds on St. Paul Island. The combination of a strong mainland storm pushing out into the Sea of Okhotsk imme - diately preceding a second low-pressure sys- tem that passes northward along the Russian coastline to the northwest of the Pribilofs, providing sustained southwesterly winds for multiple days in the Pribilofs, provides an optimal set of wind fields for moving migrat - ing birds from eastern Asia toward western Alaska. In addition to the Common Redstart, the fall of 2013 saw a strong showing of Asian passerine vagrants to St. Paul Island, with ar - rivals evenly distributed throughout the sea- son from late summer through the fall. The most notable examples near the beginning of the fall period were Common House-Martin (Delichon urbicum), Willow Warbler (Phyl - loscopus trochilus), and Asian Brown Flycatcher (Muscicapa dauurica) on 18-23 August, 27 Au - gust, and 6-9 September, respectively, while the second half of September included re - cords of Middendorff's Grasshopper-Warbler (Locustella ochotensis) on 16 September, mul - tiple Gray-streaked Flycatchers (Muscicapa griseisticta) on 19-27 September, Eyebrowed Thrush (Turdus obscurus) on 22 September, Olive-backed Pipit (Anthus hodgsoni) on 29 September, many Bramblings (Fringilla mon - tifringilla), and Common Rosefinch (Carpoda- cus erythrinus) on 21-27 September. New ar- rivals continued into October, with sightings of three additional Eyebrowed Thrushes on 10-17 October, 10-12 additional Bramblings on 3-17 October, and Gray Wagtail (Motacilla cinerea) on 13 October. Even in the context of these many Eur - asian passerines in Alaska, the appearance of a Common Redstart was unexpected, as this species breeds east only the Lake Baikal re - gion. In recent years, however, several other migratory species from western Eurasia have been found on St. Lawrence Island at Gam -

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