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 65 A L A B A M A & M I S S I S S I P P I Only occasional in the I.C.P., single Ol- ive-sided Flycatchers were spotted 29 Aug in Russell (JH) and 20 Sep at Montgomery (LFG); other individuals detected 12 Sep at Dauphin (AHf) and 13 Sep in Limestone, AL (CG) were rare but more expected. The Eastern Wood-Pewee at Montgomery 11 Nov (LFG) established an I.C.P. late date, and another in Baldwin 14 Nov (MJJ) marked a late-departure record for Alabama. Yellow- bellied Flycatcher is an expected though un - obtrusive and low-level fall migrant in our Region. One in Lowndes, MS 26 Aug (TLS) set a locally early arrival date. There were 24 reports in Alabama that detailed at least 27 birds, with the M.R. and I.C.P. predominat - ing slightly. These included a notably late re- port of 3 Yellow-bellieds at Dauphin 2 Nov (BCG, PR). The 32 Acadian Flycatchers re - corded 19 Sep in n. Baldwin (MJJ) provided a high tally for Alabama in autumn. A rare, calling Alder Flycatcher was at Montgomery 7 Oct (LFG), after single rare, vocalizing Wil - low Flycatchers were in Shelby, AL 30 Aug (RJK) and Madison, AL 7 Sep (LFG). Thirty- two Eastern Phoebes were noted in Barbour 21 Nov (GEH), delivering a new fall maxi - mum to the I.C.P. With only nine prior records in Missis- sippi, a Say's Phoebe was unexpected away from the coast in Quitman 27 Sep (ph. JHk, JRR et al., p.a.). Another inland Say's, only the seventh for Alabama and second for the M.R., was discovered in Winston 7 Oct (LB, acc.). Rare but regular in the G.C., an ad. female Vermilion Flycatcher was at Ft. Morgan 10- 12 Oct (RAD, LRD et al.). Rare in our coastal areas, an Ash-throated Flycatcher was stud - ied at Ft. Morgan 12 Oct (GDJ); another was a surprise well away from the outer coast in n. Baldwin, AL 15 Oct (BCG, ph. PR). Other Ash-throated Flycatchers included one that was enjoyed at Pascagoula, Jackson, MS 24- bled Godwit was discovered 27 Aug in Sunflower, MS (ph. JHk, JRR). Ear - liest for the I.C.P., a Dunlin was de- scribed in Russell 29 Aug (JH). Rare in Alabama but expected during fall in small numbers, there were six reports of 13 Baird's Sandpipers 14 Aug–29 Sep, including 4 each at Blakeley I. 14 Aug (RJK, RLK) and Colbert 8 Sep (DJS). Rarely noted in autumn, a juv. White-rumped Sandpiper was stud - ied at Blakeley I. 11 Oct (JLD, JAT, HEH, AHf, m.ob., ph. BC). Provid - ing a fall maximum for Alabama were 67 Short-billed Dowitchers at Pelican Pen., Mobile 1 Aug (AHf). A Long- billed Dowitcher, rare in the I.C.P., was found in Montgomery 18 Oct (ph. LFG). Usually a few Wilson's Phala - ropes are seen throughout the Region in autumn; locally notable this season were singles in Russell, AL 29 Aug (JH) and at Tupelo, Lee, MS 31 Aug (ph. WRP). JAEGERS THROUGH FLYCATCHERS Two Pomarine Jaegers, rare near shore, were described at Ft. Morgan 30 Nov (SRM); a rare Parasitic Jaeger thrilled a boatload of birders 24 Oct n. of W. Ship I., Harrison, MS (EE, JHk, JRR, WRP, TLS, m.ob., ph., p.a.). Franklin's Gull is expected in a few areas of Alabama during mid-late autumn, though numbers vary annually. There were reports from five locations detailing at least 20 in - dividuals, with up to 9 in Marshall begin- ning 13 Oct (ph. AH et al.). A count of 320 Ring-billed Gulls in Alabama waters at West Point L., Chambers 24 Nov (JH) set a M.R. fall maximum. Among several reports of the rare but increasingly regular Lesser Black-backed Gull, the most notable was up to 7 birds at Wilson Dam, Colbert/Lauderdale,AL 16 Sep– 24 Nov (DJS). A Caspian Tern in Marshall 13 Nov (RJK, RLK) was the latest in fall for inland Alabama (though there are two win - ter records). A count of 150 Ruby-throated Hummingbirds (40 b.) in Lauderdale 29 Aug (RPD, DJS, MA) broke the prior T.V. maxi - mum, and 79 in Marengo 15 Sep (D&JS) did the same for the I.C.P. Now regular in small numbers at feeders in the G.C., a Buff-bellied Hummingbird was in s. Baldwin 25-28 Nov (EC et al., ph.). An easy choice for "bird of the year" was a stunning ad. male White-eared Hummingbird in w. Mobile 7-10 Nov (DZ, FB, PR et al., b., ph., acc.). It represented Alabama's first record, the Region's second re - cord, and one of few in the East. Unfortunate- ly, access restrictions at the private residence did not allow for public viewing after the bird was banded, a tough break for area birders. in Baldwin (ph. JO), and 15 Nov at Dauphin (AHf). The 158 Black Vultures in Limestone 13 Nov (DJS) set an inland Alabama fall max - imum, and 83 Turkey Vultures in Marshall 7 Oct provided a new T.V. fall high count (DJS). At least 14 Ospreys in Baldwin 16 Aug (RJK, RLK) constituted a high G.C. fall tally. Rare in the M.R., a Swallow-tailed Kite was spot - ted at Auburn, Lee 9 Aug (GEH). Mississippi Kite is rare and local in the T.V.; singles away from regular sites were observed 23 Aug in Morgan (SWM) and 1 Oct in Colbert (DJS et al.), the latter setting a new departure date for n. Alabama. A new high count for inland Ala - bama, 125 nesting Common Gallinules were notable 29 Aug in Russell (JH). Rare in n. Ala - bama, and not previously confirmed breed- ing there, 13 Common Gallinules including 4 downy young were unexpected at L. Gunters - ville, Jackson 3 Sep (JTG, MB). An elegant American Avocet, rare inland, was a treat in Clay, MS 27-29 Aug (TLS); 3 were admired 13-17 Oct in Marshall (ph. AH et al.). An encouraging count was that of 35 Snowy Plovers at the Pelican Pen., Mobile 14 Nov (SH), making for an Alabama maxi - mum. Ten Spotted Sandpipers in Madison 1 Aug (CB) tied the inland Alabama fall high, and 19 Spotteds exceeded the state fall re - cord in Mobile 15 Aug (RJK, RLK). Equaling the prior autumn maximum for Alabama, 6 Solitary Sandpipers were in Colbert 31 Aug (DJS). Rare but regular inland, single Willets were at Noxubee 5 Sep (D&JP, PM, MC), in Lauderdale, AL 13 Sep (SRM, ph. JCA), and in Montgomery, AL 22 Sep (LFG). Unfortu - nately just a "one day wonder," a Hudsonian Godwit was a surprise visitor at Ft. Morgan 28 Sep (ph. JN), just the 20 th for Alabama and eighth in autumn. Rare inland, a Mar - Unexpected in the Region, particularly in autumn, this Hudsonian Godwit appeared at Fort Morgan, Baldwin County, Alabama, 28 September. Photo by © Janice Neitzel. Field trip participants returning from West Ship Island, Har- rison County, 24 October were thrilled to have close looks at a rare Parasitic Jaeger. Photo by © Erik Enbody.

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