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 2 235 I L L I N O I S & I N D I A N A Dec (JV). A Gyrfalcon in Coles, IL 16 Jan (ph. †RB) was seen in the same area as the 2 Prairie Falcons from the fall season. Those 2 Prairie Falcons persisted until 4 Feb (TDF), with one staying through 8 Feb (RB, TDF). Single Prairie Falcons were in Sangamon, IL 6 Jan (ph. HDB) and Wayne, IL 8-9 Jan (RES). PASSERINES An Eastern Phoebe found on the Calumet Sand Ridge C.B.C. in ne. Illinois 27 Dec (fide JE) was unusual for the n. tier. In the s. tier, Eastern Phoebes at Clinton Lake, DeWitt, IL 24 Jan (NS, PB, CW), in Jackson, IL 3 Feb (JTu), and at Mermet Lake, Massac, IL 6 Feb (KAM, MSS) were unusual given their presence in the latter part of winter. In surveys specifically designed to find wintering Loggerhead Shrikes in Indi - ana, 7 different birds were located: 4 in Orange 3 Dec (AK), 2 in Daviess 29 Jan (AK), and one in Gibson 5 Feb (AK). One Northern Shrike reached Illinois's s. tier: a bird noted at Peabody 15 Jan–7 Feb (KAM, m.ob.). An extraordinary find was a White-eyed Vireo on the Topeka C.B.C., Noble 22 Dec (LY et al.), furnishing In - diana's fifth Dec record. At least one or 2 Fish Crows apparently wintered in the Eagle Creek Park area of Indianapolis, as one was found there 10 Dec and 2 on 22 Feb (SpS). Num - bers of Red-breasted Nuthatches were rather weak in Illinois and numbers in Indiana were the lowest in more than a decade. Part of an excellent season for Winter Wrens, an Indiana record winter count of 6 birds was made 2 Dec in Warrick (JM). A Sedge Wren detected at Prai - rie Ridge State N.A., Jasper, IL 23 Dec (†JWW, CLH, BG) was the only one reported in the Re - gion this season but provided the fourth record in the past 10 years for this C.B.C. (fide JWW). A late Marsh Wren was at Urbana, Champaign, IL 7 Dec (NS). A Townsend's Solitaire was located on a C.B.C. at the Lost Mound Unit of Upper Mis - sissippi N.W.R., Jo Daviess, IL 19 Dec (†DTW et al.). Trying to stick it out in winter was a Gray Catbird seen 12 Jan in Kankakee, IL (JBH). A fine total of 24 Brown Thrashers was reported in Indiana, virtually all in the s. half of the state. winter season was a Franklin's Gull at Carlyle Lake, Clinton, IL 16 Feb (ph. DMK, MSS). At Falls of the Ohio S.P., Clark, IN, an ad. Califor - nia Gull was seen 28 Feb (ph. BP-B, BJ). High counts of Thayer's Gull included 14 of various ages (along with 4 Iceland Gulls) at Winthrop Harbor, Lake, IL 14 Feb during the Illinois Or - nithological Society's "Gull Frolic" (AAA et al.), 8 at Waukegan, Lake, IL 1 Jan (AS), and 7 in Chicago 25 Dec (GAW et al.). Remarkably, 2 first-cycle Iceland Gulls were found inland at Potato Creek S.P., St. Joseph, IN 4 Jan (ph. BH). The high counts of Lesser Black-backed Gulls included 5 at Illinois Beach S.P., Lake, IL 7 Dec (BJS), 4 at Horseshoe Lake, Madison, IL 18 Jan and 14 Feb (FRH), and 4 at Lake Springfield, Sangamon, IL 11 Jan (CD). The Region's sixth and seventh accepted records of Slaty-backed Gull were an ad. discovered on the Illinois River at East Peoria, IL 11 Jan (ph., †DJM) and another ad. on Lake Michigan in se. Chi - cago 7 Feb (ph., †GAW et al.). Glaucous Gulls were present in good numbers and were wide - spread. At Indiana Dunes S.P., Porter, the 13 on 9 Feb (BJG) tied Indiana's third highest count; 7 were seen at Winthrop Harbor, Lake, IL 14 Feb during the Illinois Ornithological Society's "Gull Frolic" (AAA et al.). Indiana's third larg - est count of Great Black-backed Gulls occurred on the Indiana Lake Michigan lakefront 14 Feb (KJB, JKC, LV) as 55 were tallied. A probable Herring Gull x Great Black-backed Gull hybrid was observed in Chicago 18 Jan (ASA), at the Whiting Refinery Beach, Lake, IN 24 Jan (KJB, ph. JKC, RJP), and again in Chicago 30 Jan (SBB). The long-staying apparent Herring Gull x Kelp Gull hybrid was seen at Michigan City Harbor, LaPorte, IN throughout the period. Three Barn Owls were reported from the s. tier of Illinois. At least 77 Snowy Owls were reported from the Region. Of the 43 Indiana reports, 63% of those appeared in Dec. The invasion reached the s. tier, with one in Bond, IL 23 Dec–6 Jan (MS, DMK, MSS, m.ob.). Five were seen in se. Chicago 2 Jan (AG). Counts of 4 Northern Saw-whet Owls were made at the Klehm Arboretum, Winnebago, IL 20 Dec (DTW, AB) and at Sand Ridge S.F., Mason, IL 21 but not yet through most of w.-cen. Indiana, so notable were the sightings of 5 in n. Vigo 3 Feb (MRB) and one in Clay 21 Feb (PES). Single Northern Goshawks were seen on the Bald Bluff C.B.C. in w.-cen. Illinois 22 Dec (fide C&JM), at Pyramid 31 Dec (KJM, TWo), at Peabody 24 Jan (DR), and at Dahinda, Knox, IL 16 & 26 Feb (ph. MJB). Single Harlan's Hawks were seen in Pike, IN 30 Dec (AK) and at Somerville Mine, Gibson, IN 13 Feb (KR). Also at Somer - ville Mine 26 Jan was a light-morph ad. Fer- ruginous Hawk (ES, m.ob.), almost certainly the same bird that wintered at this location last year and, as last year, it remained through the end of the period. An impressive 23+ Golden Eagles were reported in the Region, highlighted by 3 juvs. present at Pigeon River F.W.A., La - Grange, IN 23 Jan (LRS, G&JC) and an ad. and subad. there 31 Jan (LRS et al.). Single Virginia Rails were discovered in Pike 20 Feb (JR) and in Warrick 15 Feb (CN, KC) and 25 Feb (NB), providing the first Feb records for Indiana's s. tier. Good numbers of Sandhill Cranes were present in the Region early in the period, with close to 8000 at Muscatatuck N.W.R., Jackson, IN during the first week in Dec (fide DC), while a Sandhill Crane at Jon J. Duerr F.P., Kane, IL 30 Jan (KW) was early to return to the n. tier. A Greater Yellowlegs at Goose Pond 28 Dec (ph. VWW) tied for the latest ever in Indiana. A nice find was an imm. Black-legged Kittiwake in Chicago 6 Dec (ph. SGS), while a first-cycle bird photographed at Turtle Creek 18 Dec (BCv) was rare inland. An ad. Ivory Gull found by Jason Mullins on the Mississippi River in Adams, IL delighted scores of birders from several states 2-9 Jan (†PJR, †RD, m.ob.). The first-cycle Little Gull found at Turtle Creek in the fall remained through the entire winter period (SLL, m.ob.), becom - ing the longest-staying member of its species on record in Indiana. Quite unusual for the Furnishing one of two records of Slaty-backed Gull from the Illinois and Indiana region in winter 2014-2015, this adult was on Lake Michigan in southeastern Chicago for one day, 7 February 2015. Photographs by Geoffrey A. Williamson. For the second consecutive year, this adult Ferruginous Hawk spent the winter (here 26 January 2015) at Somerville Mine in eastern Gibson County, Indiana, frequenting many of the same haunts as in the previous year. Photograph by Evan Speck.

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