North American Birds

VOLUME 69 NO3 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/778845

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N O R T H A M E R I C A N B I R D S 418 A L A B A M A & M I S S I S S I P P I while one that wintered in a Montevallo, Shelby yard was last reported 9 Apr (MM), the twelfth Alabama record. Single Baltimore Orioles on 12 Apr were early local arrivals by three days for Mississippi at Starkville, Oktibbeha and near Gum Springs, Winston (JH). An excellent count of Baltimore Orioles was made 29 Apr when 50 were totaled at Decatur, Morgan, AL (CHG). Two Pine Siskins at Starkeville, Oktibbeha, MS 14 May (JH) provided a new latest local depar - ture date by six days. Initialed observers (subregional editors in boldface): Allison Anholt, Ned Boyajian, Dick Bruer, Franklin Chalk, Karen Chiasson, Roger Clay, C. Dwight Cooley, Neill Cowles, R. Harry Dean, R. Scot Duncan, Chuck Estes, Chuck Feerick, Ben C. Garmon, Jeff T. Garner, David P. George, Olivia Graves, M. Scott Gravette, Charles H. Grisham, Andrew Haffenden, R. Stan Hamilton, Taylor Hannah, Slavica Harper, Jeffrey Harris, Amber Hart, Geoff E. Hill, Jason Hoeksema, Roger Horn, Sharon S. Hudgins, Greg D. Jackson (Alabama), Brian Johnston, Mary Johnston, Michael J. Jordan, Rick L. Kittinger, Ron J. Kittinger, Paul D. Kittle, B. Kornegay, Mark LaSalle, Robert Lewis, Zach - ary Loman, Paul Mack, Warren Martz, Mary Maxwell, Hal Mitchell, Kristina Mitchell, Sue R. Moske, Jane Neitzel, Michael O'Brien, Pe - ter Osenton, Dianne Patterson, Jim Patterson, Tommy R. Pratt, David Reed, Marion Schiefer, Terence L. Schiefer (Mississippi), Damien J. Simbeck, Eric C. Soehren, George Stoner, Bill Summerour, John A. Trent, Beth Wood, Mark Woodrey, Janet Wright, Louise Zematis. n –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– Steven W. McConnell, 29 Village Drive NE, Hartselle, Alabama 35640 (swmavocet@aol.com) –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– SUMMER –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– John A. Trent W eather was near average in the Re- gion this summer, with no notable extremes. Rainfall in June was slightly below average, while July amounts were very near average. Mean temperatures were warmer during the reporting period throughout the Region by 2º F. Drought condi - tions were minimal in both states, with areas in northern Alabama experiencing periods of moderate drought in July. Marsh bird surveys continued from the spring in Alabama throughout the Lower Mo - bile-Tensaw River Delta between Mobile and Spanish Fort, adding to our knowledge of the distribution and breeding biology of these se - found on the Fort Morgan peninsula 4 Mar (JN). Swainson's Warblers were well represent - ed in five n.-cen. Mississippi counties by the 24 birds found at 21 locations 8 Apr+ (TLS, MS). A new Alabama spring maximum count for Orange-crowned Warbler was set 11 Apr by the 4 at Ruffner Mountain Nature Preserve, Bir - mingham, Jefferson (GDJ). A dead Connecticut Warbler recovered 7 May outside a building in Birmingham, Jefferson, AL was the appar - ent victim of a window-strike (ph. RSD). The species is a rare but regular late spring migrant through our Region. More frequently detected but still rare, a Mourning Warbler heard at Ruffner Mountain Nature Preserve, Birming - ham, Jefferson, AL 13 May (RSH). Three Ameri- can Redstarts were early arrivals by two days 11 Apr at Plymouth Bluff, Lowndes, MS (ZL, TH, PM). Cape May Warblers also provided several examples of early spring returnees: an ad. male on the Fort Morgan peninsula 14 Mar provided a new early Alabama arrival date (ph. JN), and an ad. male at Killen, Lauderdale 31 Mar (ph. JP) established a new early record for inland Alabama. Later in the season, one at Columbus, Lowndes, MS 17 Apr (DP, JP) provided a new local early arrival date by four days. Four Cerulean Warblers found 3 Apr near Oktoc, Oktibbeha, MS also set a new lo - cal arrival date by four days (ZL, TH), and a Bay-breasted Warbler near Betheden, Winston, MS 19 Apr (JH) was a local early arrival by two days. An impressive 105 Yellow Warblers and 25 Chestnut-sided Warblers were seen 2 May during the Wheeler spring count, both totals providing new T.V. high one-day counts. A Lincoln's Sparrow found in Jefferson 27 Apr (RSD) was rare in spring for the moun - tains. A male Indigo Bunting at Pascagoula, Jackson, MS 4 Mar (BJ) furnished a very early arrival date if not a rare wintering bird. A male Painted Bunting present at a private residence in Pascagoula, Jackson, MS since Nov 2014 was last observed 8 Apr (BJ, MJ). Furnishing only a second local record, a continuing Western Meadowlark at the Mississippi State University south farm, Oktibbeha, MS was last seen 2 Mar (†TLS). Two ad. Yellow-headed Blackbirds at Catalpa Creek Bottoms, Lowndes, MS 25 Apr (ph. RL, m.ob.) made the twelfth local record. A rare spring G.C. record, an ad. male Yellow- headed was at Fort Morgan 3-6 May (FC, ph. KC). Bronzed Cowbirds continue to be rare but regularly found in coastal Mississippi. This season's four reports spanned 23 Mar–8 May, with 8 the highest count 17 Apr at a traditional location in Hancock (NB). Single ad. male Bull - ock's Orioles treated many observers during their winter stays and lingered into spring: one apparently departed 28 Mar from its Ocean Springs, Jackson, MS host (ph. ML, m.ob.), Wheeler spring count by the compiled total of 130 White-eyed Vireos (m.ob.). Single Bell's Vireos in Alabama were in Covington 30 Mar (PC) and at Shell Mound Park on Dauphin 30 Apr (AH). Early by one day, a singing Warbling Vireo was a welcome arrival 9 Apr at Noxubee (ZL, TH). A first local nesting for the species was confirmed 16 May+ at Columbus Lake, Clay/Lowndes, MS (ph. TLS, MS, DP, JP, vt. JH). Cave Swallows are rare but regular spring visitors to the coastal counties of our Region. This season, 13 reports were accumulated of 1-3 swallows 11 Mar–26 Apr, with the 11 Mar record from Dauphin airport (ph. AH) provid - ing a new early G.C. spring arrival date. Missis- sippi contributed one report to the list with the Cave Swallow seen 26 Mar at Seaman (OG). The highest count was of 3 at Shell Mound Park on Dauphin 24 Apr (MO, LZ, RH). A Marsh Wren at Ruffner Mountain Nature Pre - serve, Birmingham, Jefferson 17 May (RSD) es- tablished a new M.R. late date. The Blue-gray Gnatcatcher found at Noxubee 10 Mar (ZL, TH) was either the earliest spring arrival ever by one day or a lingering wintering bird not previously detected; the next gnatcatcher was detected in the area 25 Mar. On the other end of the spectrum, the Hermit Thrush seen 26 Apr in Columbus, Lowndes, MS established a new local late departure date by one day (TLS, MS, JH, PM). A Gray Catbird at the same Mis - sissippi location 27-29 Mar was a locally early arrival by nine days, although overwintering could not be ruled out (PM, DP, JP). An impres - sive number of Cedar Waxwings, estimated to be at least 3000+, was enjoyed 22 Mar on the Mississippi State University campus (TLS). A surprisingly large number of Cedar Waxwings was also recorded in Alabama at Blakeley 21- 29 Apr, with 1000 seen 29 Apr (JAT) providing a new G.C. maximum count. An early Black-and-white Warbler was This immature Great Black-backed Gull was seen multiple times at Dauphin Island, Mobile County 14 June (here)–21 July 2015 and provided only the second summer record for Alabama. Photograph by Andrew Haffenden.

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