North American Birds

VOLUME 70 NO1 2017

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/936087

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V O L U M E 7 0 ( 2 0 1 7 ) • N U M B E R 1 25 H U D S O N - D E L AWA R E was notched during a survey at Montezuma 18 Sep (fide Bill Ostrander). A few notable, inland concentrations of American Golden- Plovers included a max of 214 near Hamlin, Monroe, NY 16 Sep (RS), but it appeared that detections and total numbers along the coast were below average. There were a fair number of Hudsonian Godwits, perhaps more plenti - ful than some recent fall seasons, with quite a few found along the New Jersey and New York coasts during the early-Oct storm. No - table was a flock of 29 that flew s. past Avalon 10 Oct (SH), and a rather late group of 9 that was still at Bombay Hook 13 Nov (Anne & Richard Edden, Jeffrey Wilkins). Ruff contin - ued its recent downward dip in the Region, particularly as a southbound transient. The season's sole report consisted of one flyby at Cape May 3 Oct (m. ob.). Western Sandpip - er is always coveted away from the coast; a handful were found through inland NY, such as one at Montezuma 5-6 Sep (ph. Luke Seitz, m. ob.), while 200 Semipalmated Sandpipers at the same site made for a nice count 6 Sep (Ken Rosenberg). Other select high counts of shorebirds at Montezuma included 8 White- rumped Sandpipers 28 Sep, 6 Buff-breasted Sandpipers 1 Sep, 34 Long-billed Dowitch - ers 4 Oct, and 75 Pectoral Sandpipers 6 Sep (fide Bill Ostrander). Land-based reports of Red and Red-necked phalaropes included a small cluster of eBird reports along the New Jersey & New York coasts during the strong early-Oct storm. Additional sightings of Red Phalarope included 2 at Squaw I., Erie, NY 29 Oct (Jim Pawlicki) and one at Avalon during an additional coastal storm 10 Nov (ph. TR, GDw). There were several land-based reports son; one continued from summer at Brigan - tine through at least 3 Sep (m. ob.), and a juv. took up residence at Cape May 23 Oct–30+ Nov (m. ob.). Consistent s. and e. winds during peak mi - gration windows produced poor hawkwatch totals at both coastal and interior monitoring points, but there were naturally some high - lights. Mississippi Kite has just about become an annual, if still rare, southbound transient during Jul–Sep. The season's sole report con - sisted of one over Cape Henlopen on the fairly late date of 29 Sep (JO, SGr). Swain - son's Hawk made a much-welcomed return after going unseen in fall 2014, with an "aver - age" season total of 3 at Cape May (CC, TR et al.). Even more notable was a fairly late imm. at Cape Henlopen 23 Nov (Bruce Pe - terjohn, SGr) and a well-photographed imm. at Liberty S.P., Hudson, NJ 24 Oct (Shayna Marchese). Rough-legged Hawk did not ap - pear to be encountered as frequently as it was during the previous fall, but a fair number of reports were still logged, with one traveling as far s. as Thompson's Beach, Cumberland, NJ by 22 Nov (Scott Reynolds). The now-ce - lebrity Zone-tailed Hawk put in another Sep appearance this year, this time spending an hour flying around Cape May 23 Sep (ph. JD, TR, m. ob.) before resurfacing at Kiptopeke, VA just a few hours later! RAILS THROUGH ALCIDS Yellow Rail is certainly among the most un- der-detected migrants to travel through the Region; one was flushed from a field at Cape May 26 Oct (VE), an unsurprising date. A rather strong sum of 128 Common Gallinules one report. Interestingly, eBird data showed no reports e. of L. Michigan throughout the season. Multiple Eared Grebes were again re - ported from w. New York (fide eBird), punc- tuated by a max of 3 at traditional site Bata- via, Genesee, NY 24 Oct (Brandi Giambrone). Turning to pelagic birding, New York's second Fea's Petrel was a great catch during a fish - ing trip to the "Lobster Claw," ca. 100 miles s. of Montauk 18 Aug (John Shemilt et al.). Increasingly frequent coverage of offshore waters has shown Black-capped Petrel to be a regular visitor to the Hudson and Wilm - ington canyons, but it was still surprising to learn of 8 found during an overnight birding trip to Hudson Canyon 24 Oct (ph. Doug Go - chfeld, Paul Guris, m. ob.). New Jersey's sec- ond Masked Booby, a hatch-year bird mov- ing s. along the coast and studied by several observers, was a sensational find at Avalon 15 Oct (SH, GDw). Sadly, it could not be tracked down again farther south. The Brown Booby storyline continued to grow, with records this season consisting of an ad. flying s. past Ava - lon 14 Oct (SH), followed by a near-adult fly- ing s. past Avalon 23 Nov (TR). The 23 Nov individual was seen a short time later by a number of observers who waited for it to fly past nearby Cape May. An imm. Neotropic Cormorant was photographed flying n. past Cape May 14 Oct (TJ, Melissa Roach et al.). It constituted the first record for Cape May and just the second for New Jersey. American White Pelican was perhaps a bit less obvious than during the past few falls, though Dela - ware checked in with a robust max of 11 at Prime Hook during late-Aug (m. ob.). HERONS THROUGH RAPTORS It appeared to be a generally unremarkable season for red-letter wading birds, with no overshoots from the South or strays from the Old World. The Great Egret roost at Oak Or - chard W.M.A., Orleans/Gennesee, NY peaked at a robust 267 on 19 Sep (Celeste Morien). A noticeable postbreeding dispersal of White Ibis occurred through the outer coastal plain for a third consecutive year. This was most obvious in Delaware, where an impressive max of ca. 150 was recorded at Cape Henlo - pen 6 Aug (m. ob.). There were also multiple sightings through coastal New Jersey from early-Aug to early-Sep, including a high of 4 at Cape May 1 Sep (CC). An additional bird photographed in a Pine Barrens wetland at Whitesbog, Burlington, NJ 6 Sep (Jim Schill) was less expected. New York also got in on the action, courtesy of an ad. that flew over Prospect Park, NYC 11 Oct (ph. Klemens Gasser). White-faced Ibis continues to make increasingly regular appearances at this sea - A Calliope Hummingbird spent much of the late-fall period in a backyard near Cape May, New Jersey, furnishing the tenth record for the Garden State. Photo by © Jesse Amesbury.

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