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Saturday, November 24, 2012

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, November 23, 2012:

* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Nov. 23, 2012
* NYNY1211.23

- Birds mentioned

(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Greater White-fronted Goose
Red-necked Grebe
Lesser Black-backed Gull
Great Horned Owl
Lark Sparrow
Common Redpoll
Pine Siskin
Evening Grosbeak

- 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:

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

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, November 23rd 2012 at 8pm. The highlights of today's tape are VIRGINIA'S WARBLER, CAVE SWALLOW, selasphorous hummingbird, BLACK-HEADED GULL, BARNACLE GOOSE, EURASIAN WIGEON and lots of crossbills.

VIRGINIA'S WARBLER continues its very elusive presence at Alley Pond Park in Queens seen there every day this week through today but usually just for a short period as it works its way through a section of heavy brush and thickets. The bird has often first been detected by its chip note but patience is usually required before the bird comes into sight. It has been reported that the bird has been heard singing and it does appear to be an immature male but certain individuals have unfortunately been playing a tape of the song consistently there this perhaps the source of the vocalizations. For the area to concentrate on the closest parking is along 73rd Avenue near the south end of Cloverdale Boulevard or 228th Street. Walk into the park to a paved path and go west this path goes along the wooded brushy area the bird favors. The second paved path is just on the other side of this wooded stretch closer to the parking lot off the park on 76th Avenue. The gully the bird sometimes is seen in is a continuation of this wooded area and is best viewed from the inner path which also goes by a scrubby area known as Nutmeg Meadow to about its south side. This another location visited by the warbler named obscurely for a Connecticut Warbler that was seen there earlier this year. A couple of dirt paths [...] the area between the two paved paths which do join near the 73rd and Cloverdale entrance.

Appearing at a few locations last weekend were some CAVE SWALLOWS. Last Saturday at Jones Beach West End about 4 or so were spotted in the large Tree Swallow flock around the West End 2 parking lot and out east 3 were at Camp Hero in Montauk but these numbers were minimal compared to the gathering on Staten Island starting last Saturday. At the Cemetery of the Resurrection off Hylan Boulevard across from the Mount Loretto Unique Area flocks would converge on a pond in the cemetery to drink and then disperse again. The flock size varied but count estimates as high as 65 plus were reported. Fewer were still present yesterday with one seen there today.

A selasphorous hummingbird at the Conservatory Garden at the north end of Central Park during the week appears to be a RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRD. Another selasphorous was seen briefly at the Rose Garden in the Brooklyn Botanic Garden today.

An interesting report from Randall's Island Wednesday involved 2 adult BLACK-HEADED GULLS flying towards the Bronx and a LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL was also seen there.

Crossbill numbers along the south shore of Long Island remain large with good numbers of both WHITE-WINGEDS and REDS. Jones Beach West End has consistently featured nice flocks of both. Fewer have also been seen at Heckscher State Park and Smith Point County Park in Shirley provided an estimated 200 WHITE-WINGEDS today with a few REDS. Some WHITE-WINGEDS were along Dune Road west of Shinnecock today while both species were out at Kirk Park on the east side of the town of Montauk today.

Nice for Prospect Park were both WHITE-WINGED and RED CROSSBILLS and EVENING GROSBEAK and PINE SISKINS on Wednesday.

A few COMMON REDPOLLS are in evidence yet with one at Jones Beach West End last Sunday along with a GREAT HORNED OWL.

The EURASIAN WIGEONS were still at Massapequa Preserve yesterday on the pond just east of the end of Pittsburgh Avenue. Three EURASIAN WIGEONS were together on Mill Pond in Sayville last Sunday. A first year male joining 2 adult plumaged birds.

A BARNACLE GOOSE continues to visit Marratooka Pond in Mattituck. The pond is best viewed from New Suffolk Avenue where a nearby farm field also hosted a GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE today.

A LARK SPARROW was at Caumsett State Park last Saturday.

Nine or more RAZORBILLS were off Montauk Point today and a RED-NECKED GREBE was back at Culloden Point in Montauk.

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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