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Saturday, November 03, 2012

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending on Friday, November 2, 2012:

* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Nov 2, 2012
* NYNY1211.02

- Birds Mentioned:
(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Cory's Shearwater
Wilson's Storm-Petrel
American Bittern
Northern Goshawk
Purple Sandpiper
Long-billed Dowitcher
Pomarine Jaeger
Parasitic Jaeger
Tennessee Warbler
Northern Parula
Black-throated Blue Warbler
Blackpoll Warbler
American Redstart
Vesper Sparrow
"Ipswich" Savannah Sparrow
Snow Bunting
Blue Grosbeak

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 nysarc1 AT .

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

Gary Chapin - Secretary
NYS Avian Records Committee (NYSARC)
486 High Street
Victor, NY 14564

~ Transcript ~

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

To report sightings call:
Tom Burke (212) 372-1483 (weekdays)
Tony Lauro (631) 734-4126

Compilers: Tom Burke, Tony Lauro
Coverage: New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
Transcriber: Karen Fung


Greetings. This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, November 2nd, at 9:00pm. The highlights of today's tape are a possible VIRGINIA'S WARBLER, CAVE SWALLOW, BROWN PELICAN, WESTERN KINGBIRDS, NORTHERN SHRIKE, AMERICAN AVOCET, and some pelagic birds from the hurricane, including LEACH'S STORM-PETREL.

Prior to the hurricane, last Saturday two WESTERN KINGBIRDS were found almost simultaneously: one at Jones Beach West End, seen near the Coast Guard Station for a short while, and one at Fort Tilden, flycatching for a few hours along the roadway just west of the ballfields. Neither were reported Sunday. Also at Jones Beach West End Saturday were three VESPER SPARROWS around the south side of the parking lot at the Roosevelt Nature Center, and late in the afternoon three PARASITIC JAEGERS harassing Laughing Gulls off West End field 2. Also last Saturday, a NORTHERN SHRIKE was found at Heckscher State Park, seen in the vicinity of fields 8 and then 7 before disappearing. A WHIMBREL was reported from Shelter Island on Sunday.

And then came Sandy.

This storm was no Irene, causing much more terrible destruction, while providing relatively fewer and less interesting birds. Birders were hampered by finding understandably many fewer favorable vantage points from which to view the storm at its peak or afterwards. Principal among the birds seen were jaegers, with PARASITIC appearing to slightly outnumber POMARINE JAEGER in most cases. Counts Tuesday noted 3 POMARINE and 11 PARASITICS in the south end of New York Harbor off Staten Island, and 6 POMARINE, 8 PARASITIC, and 8 jaeger species off Orient Point. A few storm-petrels were also noted from Staten Island to eastern Long Island, with LEACH'S STORM-PETRELS and WILSON'S STORM-PETRELS both reported, and another tubenose was a CORY'S SHEARWATER off Brooklyn.

Unusual shorebirds featured a RED PHALAROPE at the northern end of Manhattan in a ship canal near Spuyten Duyvil, an AMERICAN AVOCET huddled at Flushing Meadow Park, and three LONG-BILLED DOWITCHERS at Bergen Point.

There was generally very little southern flavor to this storm, perhaps due to its very large size and rather slow progression northward. Birders did note a possible tropicbird in Brooklyn, and a possible pterodroma shearwater off eastern Long Island, but unfortunately neither could be confirmed.

An immature NORTHERN GOSHAWK was spotted Tuesday in Patchogue, and the most interesting landbird Tuesday was a CAVE SWALLOW at Montauk Point.

Also seen at Orient Point Tuesday was a BROWN PELICAN, with another reported today from Gilgo. Access to the outer beach, however, is still very restricted.

The day after the storm, a LEACH'S STORM-PETREL was spotted off the end of Blake Drive at Montauk Harbor Wednesday afternoon, and among the winter birds noted out there were PURPLE SANDPIPER, "Ipswich" SAVANNAH SPARROW, and SNOW BUNTING.

But Wednesday's excitement all centered around a possible VIRGINIA'S WARBLER seen late in the afternoon at Alley Pond Park in Queens. Unfortunately an army of birders could not relocate it on Thursday, though they did uncover seven other species of warblers including TENNESSEE WARBLER, NORTHERN PARULA, BLACKPOLL WARBLER, BLACK-THROATED BLUE WARBLER, AMERICAN REDSTART, and OVENBIRD.

Today a CAVE SWALLOW was seen with a few Barn Swallows near Coney Island Creek in Brooklyn, and a BLUE GROSBEAK continues in Kissena Corridor Park in Queens.

An AMERICAN BITTERN was spotted at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge Wednesday, where the storm has carved a large channel into the south end of the West Pond, this deep cut wiping out a large portion of the West Pond trail.

To phone in reports 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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