Friday, May 23, 2014

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, May 23, 2014:

* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* May 23, 2014
* NYNY1405.23

- Birds Mentioned

(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Red-necked Grebe
Sooty Shearwater
Wilson’s Storm Petrel
Little Blue Heron
Tricolored Heron
Cattle Egret
Glossy Ibis
White-rumped Sandpiper
Stilt Sandpiper
Lesser Black-backed Gull
Glaucous Gull
Gull-billed Tern
Roseate Tern
Black Skimmer
Yellow-billed Cuckoo
Black-billed Cuckoo
Red-headed Woodpecker
Olive-sided Flycatcher
Yellow-bellied Flycatcher
Acadian Flycatcher
Alder Flycatcher
Eastern Kingbird X Western Kingbird hybrid
Philadelphia Vireo
Gray-Cheeked Thrush
Bicknell’s Thrush
Hermit Thrush
Tennessee Warbler
Cape May Warbler
Yellow-throated Warbler
Bay-breasted Warbler
Kentucky Warbler
Mourning Warbler
Hooded Warbler
Summer Tanager
Saltmarsh Sparrow
Seaside Sparrow
Lincoln’s Sparrow
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 nysarc44nybirdsorg

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)
125 Pine Springs Drive
Ticonderoga, NY 12883

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

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

Transcriber: Gail Benson

Greetings. This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, May 23 at 5:00 pm.

The highlights of today’s tape are MISSISSIPPI KITE, WHITE-FACED IBIS, LEAST BITTERN, RED-NECKED PHALAROPE and numerous spring migrants.

An interesting, if inconsistent week, with some decent migration sprinkled with a few nice rarities.

Very early last Saturday two MISSISSIPPI KITES were reported over Saw Mill Creek Marsh in northwestern Staten Island. This was followed by a subadult flying over Big John’s Pond at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge Saturday mid-day; a quickly placed call enabled a group of birders on the West Pond to pick the bird up as it crossed over Cross Bay Boulevard and turned north, ultimately disappearing towards Spring Creek. On Tuesday another was noted in north central Staten Island, and on Wednesday a very briefly seen raptor moving over the Rye Nature Center in Westchester was also probably a Mississippi Kite, so be on the alert for them.

A WHITE-FACED IBIS found Friday the 9th was still being seen with GLOSSY IBIS at least to Tuesday in Captree Marsh on the north side of Captree Island, just west of the Robert Moses Causeway and before you enter the private community there. If there, please park off the road near the information sign and do not block the roadway. Other birds there have included a STILT SANDPIPER to Saturday and LITTLE BLUE HERON.

Not on last week’s tape, a RED-NECKED PHALAROPE was photographed off Battery Park in southern Manhattan back on May 10th.

A LEAST BITTERN was seen a couple of times as it flushed at Plum Beach in Brooklyn last Saturday, when a Red-Necked Grebe was also still offshore there.

A very interesting flycatcher spotted in Northville on Long Island’s north fork last Saturday superficially resembled a Cassin’s Kingbird, but has been judged to be an apparent EASTERN KINGBIRD X WESTERN KINGBIRD hybrid.

An excellent variety of land birds this week, many arriving with Wednesday’s decent flight, featured over 2 dozen species of warblers, including a respectable number of MOURNING WARBLERS detected at numerous locations, and KENTUCKY WARBLER in Forest Park Sunday and Central Park Wednesday. Others included TENNESSEE and BAY-BREASTED WARBLERS in good numbers and fewer CAPE MAY and HOODED WARBLERS.

A female BLUE GROSBEAK visited Prospect Park’s Butterfly Meadow today.

SUMMER TANAGERS occurred in Central Park at the Ramble and at the north end during the week, with singles also at Valley Stream State Park Sunday, Greenwood Cemetery Monday, Sunken Meadow State Park Tuesday and Wednesday, Forest Park Wednesday, and the Belmont Lake State Park corridor at Marcy Avenue today, with two at Willbowbrook Park on Staten Island on Wednesday.

The recent influx of Thrushes provided decent numbers of GRAY-CHEEKEDS, and BICKNELL’S THRUSHES have also been reported, this interesting bird probably more closely resembles HERMIT THRUSH than Gray-Cheeked, so knowing the song and hearing it sing are very helpful towards identification.

Other reports from the parks this week have included PHILADELPHIA VIREO, very unusual here in spring, OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER, and all five eastern Empidonax flycatchers, including YELLOW-BELLIED, ALDER, and ACADIAN, hopefully all singing, plus both YELLOW-BILLED and BLACK-BILLED CUCKOOS and LINCOLN’S SPARROW.

A RED-HEADED WOODPECKER was on the east side of the Great Lawn in Central Park Tuesday.

SOOTY SHEARWATERS have occurred off Robert Moses State Park Field 2 yesterday and today, with WILSON’S STORM PETREL also there today, and their numbers should be on the increase. Ocean watching does seem to get better the further east you go on Long Island’s south shore.

Also of note, a GLAUCOUS GULL was at Smith Point Park in Shirley Monday, LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS were at Breezy Point and the Rockaways last Saturday, two GULL-BILLED TERNS were at Nickerson Beach Tuesday, and a CATTLE EGRET was at Croton Point yesterday. Four WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPERS, 2 ROSEATE TERNS, BLACK SKIMMER, TRICOLORED HERON and SEASIDE and SALTMARSH SPARROWS were among the birds at Cupsogue County Park and adjacent Pike’s Beach in Westhampton Dunes last Sunday. And if visiting locations such as Connotquot State Park to view the nesting YELLOW-THROATED WARBLERS, please do not use tapes on such scarce local breeders and keep disturbances to an absolute minimum.

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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