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Saturday, September 17, 2016

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, September 16, 2016:

* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Sep. 16, 2016
* NYNY1609.16

- Birds mentioned
American Bittern
Virginia Rail
American Golden-Plover
Red Knot
Pectoral Sandpiper
Wilson's Snipe
American Woodcock
Lesser Black-backed Gull
Caspian Tern
Royal Tern
Yellow-billed Cuckoo
Black-billed Cuckoo
Common Nighthawk
Peregrine Falcon
Olive-sided Flycatcher
Yellow-bellied Flycatcher
Philadelphia Vireo
Worm-eating Warbler
Black-and-white Warbler
Tennessee Warbler
Mourning Warbler
Common Yellowthroat
Hooded Warbler
American Redstart
Cape May Warbler
Northern Parula
Magnolia Warbler
Bay-breasted Warbler
Yellow Warbler
Chestnut-sided Warbler
Black-throated Blue Warbler
Wilson's Warbler
Lincoln's Sparrow
Blue 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 nysarc44(at)nybirds{dot}org.

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

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, September 16th 2016 at 7pm. The highlights of today's tape are a light show spectacular including CONNECTICUT WARBLER and YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT plus BUFF-BREASTED and UPLAND SANDPIPERS, WHIMBRELS, RED-HEADED WOODPECKER, GOLDEN-WINGED WARBLER, DICKCISSEL and CLAY-COLORED SPARROW.

It seems this week's highlight, given a reasonable but otherwise unspectacular amount of migratory activity, was provided by an event, namely the September 11th Tribute in Light Memorial in lower Manhattan. The powerful lights aimed skyward from just after 9pm on the 11th to after 5am the next morning attracted many thousands of birds during an apparently heavy night for migration. The distracted migrants, often hundreds at a time, were seen swirling about the beams which were fortunately turned off for short periods so the birds could reorient and continue south. The overall volume was estimated at close to 20,000 or more birds the large majority of which were wood warblers. Highlights among the non-warblers featured a calling UPLAND SANDPIPER, AMERICAN WOODCOCK, a snipe, presumably WILSON'S, a few cuckoos and a couple of opportunistic PEREGRINE FALCONS. Of the warblers able to be identified the larger numbers involved OVENBIRD, BLACK-AND-WHITE, COMMON YELLOWTHROAT, NORTHERN PARULA, MAGNOLIA, YELLOW, CHESTNUT-SIDED, BLACK-THROATED BLUE and the most plentiful AMERICAN REDSTART. Among the more unusual were a few each of CONNECTICUT, HOODED and WILSON'S WARBLERS and YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT. Hopefully the birds continued on their journey not too much the worse for wear.

Thursday brought a nice influx of PHILADELPHIA VIREOS into the area with about 4 noted in Central Park, at least 2 in Prospect Park and singles at several other city, Long Island and Westchester parks with over 15 noted.

Among the rarer warblers a male GOLDEN-WINGED was spotted in Prospect Thursday and single CONNECTICUTS were enjoyed in Central Park last Saturday and in Prospect and Alley Pond Parks yesterday. A YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT was in Central Saturday with singles seen Monday at Robert Moses State Park and at Montauk. Other warblers moving through this week have included WORM-EATING, TENNESSEE, MOURNING, HOODED, CAPE MAY and BAY-BREASTED.

This week DICKCISSELS have also appeared along the coast with one at Robert Moses State Park from Saturday to Tuesday and one at Jones Beach West End during the week to yesterday. CLAY-COLORED SPARROW was reported from Moses last Saturday and Drier-Offerman Park in Brooklyn Sunday with 2 BLUE GROSBEAKS noted in Manhasset yesterday. These all species to keep an eye out for.

Other interesting birds in the city parks this week featured an AMERICAN BITTERN in Central last weekend, VIRGINIA RAIL in both Central and Prospect, both cuckoos and still a few COMMON NIGHTHAWKS plus OLIVE-SIDED, YELLOW-BELLIED and other flycatchers and LINCOLN'S SPARROW. An adult RED-HEADED WOODPECKER has been around the Ramble in Central Park since Monday.

On the shorebird front about 50 AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVERS and up to 11 BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPERS were on the sod fields on the east side of Osborn Road just south of Sound Avenue early in the week and another BUFF-BREASTED was at Plumb Beach in Brooklyn Saturday. WHIMBRELS included one at Nickerson Beach Saturday and one at Cupsogue County Park Sunday and 2 on Monday, 2 at Moriches Bay Monday and 1 at Jones Beach West End Thursday. Other Cupsogue shorebirds last Sunday included 158 RED KNOT and 2 PECTORAL SANDPIPERS among the 17 species there while ROYAL TERNS reached 56 there Saturday with others continuing along the coast. CASPIAN TERNS have included up to 3 at Mecox and 2 at Breezy Point Monday. Single LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS were spotted at Nickerson Beach Saturday and Cupsogue Sunday and others should be around the coast.

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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