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Saturday, December 18, 2010

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, December 17, 2010:

* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Dec. 17, 2010
* NYNY1012.17

- Birds mentioned

(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Brant (subspecies Black Brant)
Cackling Goose
Common Eider
Harlequin Duck
Red-necked Grebe
Purple Sandpiper
Iceland Gull
Lesser Black-backed Gull
Black-legged Kittiwake
Black Guillemot
Red-headed Woodpecker
American Pipit
Orange-crowned Warbler

- Transcript

If followed by (+) please submit documentation of your report electronically and use the NYSARC online submission form found at

You can also send reports and digital image files via email to nysarc3 AT

If electronic submission is not possible, hardcopy reports and photos or sketches are welcome. Hardcopy documentation should be mailed to:

Jeanne Skelly - Secretary
NYS Avian Records Committee (NYSARC)
420 Chili-Scottsville Rd.
Churchville, NY 14428

Hotline: New York City Area Rare Bird Alert
Number: (212) 979-3070

To report sightings call:
Tom Burke (212) 372-1483 (weekdays, during the day)
Tony Lauro at (631) 734-4126 (Long Island)

Compiler: Tom Burke, Tony Lauro
Coverage: New York City, Long Island, Westchester County

Transcriber: Ben Cacace


Greetings. This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, December 17th 2010 at 5pm. The highlights of today's tape are VARIED THRUSH, ATLANTIC PUFFIN, DOVEKIE, RED PHALAROPE, BLACK-HEADED GULL, GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, NORTHERN SHRIKE, LINCOLN'S SPARROW and WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILL.

As we prepare for the Christmas Count season, noting that many of our areas recent rarities have departed, it's good to see that the Central Park VARIED THRUSH was still present Thursday around the Maintenance Field area. Recently it has been seen at various locations in the same general vicinity it has been frequenting but has now become more elusive, perhaps wandering about a bit. Thursday it was seen along the south side of the Maintenance Field which is reached by entering the park at 5th Avenue on the south side of the 79th Street transverse and continuing into the park across the roadway and to the maintenance buildings and adjoining small fields. Look around the field edge or on the upslope on the north side of the path near the restrooms.

Also in Central Park a RED-HEADED WOODPECKER has been present along the southeast corner of the Sheep Meadow since Saturday and a LINCOLN'S SPARROW appeared in Riverside Park on Thursday.

The GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE was found with Canadas on the parade ground opposite the Nature Center in Van Cortlandt Park in The Bronx last Saturday and seen again there briefly Sunday.

An adult BLACK-HEADED GULL was seen Wednesday roosting on the fishing pier at 69th Street near the Owl's Head waste water treatment plant in Bay Ridge Brooklyn presumably last year's bird back hopefully for another winter.

A "Black" BRANT was found in a brant flock near the eco-village at Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn last Saturday. With searching, this subspecies has been located over the years in the brant flocks using this park or Riis Park and Fort Tilden across the channel.

Out at Jones Beach West End 3 HARLEQUIN DUCKS continue to visit the boat basin next to the Coast Guard Station. A WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILL was noted in the median last Saturday. Another WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILL, a flyby, was reported from Sunken Meadow State Park on Monday. Today a BLACK-HEADED GULL was found in Jones Inlet off Point Lookout and a WILLET was also noted there with 22 AMERICAN PIPITS at West End.

An ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER was seen again at Massapequa Preserve today.

Out east good numbers of RAZORBILLS continue mostly off Montauk Point where about 350 were estimated last Saturday. Also spotted Sunday were 1 or 2 BLACK GUILLEMOTS during the morning flight. Most of the large rafts of ducks were staying well offshore but also seen Sunday were a RED-NECKED GREBE and over 20 BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKES. Also on Saturday a DOVEKIE was found sitting off Ditch Plains in Montauk where another RED-NECKED GREBE and 25 PURPLE SANDPIPERS were present. An immature ICELAND GULL was spotted of Culloden Point with another Iceland at Montauk Harbor Inlet Sunday when a RED-NECKED GREBE was on Fort Pond Bay and 6 REDHEADS were on Fort Pond itself. Adult LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS were along Fort Pond Bay and at Lazy Point in Napeague, both back for another winter. A NORTHERN SHRIKE was also present Saturday near the boat launch area at Lazy Point which is north of Route 27 at the end of Lazy Point Road. Noted in the goose flock, along Further Lane in East Hampton, were 4 GREATER WHITE-FRONTED and 2 CACKLING GEESE on Sunday.

At Shinnecock Inlet birds seen Saturday featured 450 COMMON EIDER, 2 immature ICELAND GULLS and a few RAZORBILLS.

A pelagic trip aboard a fishing boat going out about 35 miles south of Shinnecock Inlet counted 2,129 DOVEKIE and among them 35 ATLANTIC PUFFINS and 8 RED PHALAROPES last Saturday.

For those finding this enticing, See Life Paulagics will be running pelagic trips from Freeport in 2011 on January 23rd and February 13th. For information visit their website at:

We will for the next 3 weeks include Christmas Count highlights so please call in local count results on Long Island, call Tony Lauro at (631) 734-4126, or weekdays call Tom Burke at (212) 372-1483.

This service is sponsored by the Linnaean Society of New York and the National Audubon Society. Thank you for calling.

- End transcript

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