Check out City Birder Tours, and Green-Wood sponsored tours on their calendar pages here.
Celebrate your inner nerd with my new t-shirt design! Available on my Spreadshirt shop in multiple colors and products.

Saturday, February 29, 2020

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, February 28, 2020:

- RBA
* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Feb. 28, 2020
* NYNY2002.28


- Birds mentioned
THICK-BILLED MURRE+
BARNACLE GOOSE+
PAINTED BUNTING+
TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE+
(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Red-necked Grebe
Common Gallinule
BLACK GUILLEMOT
Razorbill
Iceland Gull
Lesser Black-backed Gull
BLACK-HEADED GULL
EURASIAN WIGEON
BARROW'S GOLDENEYE
HARLEQUIN DUCK
KING EIDER
GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE
Cackling Goose
American Bittern
Rough-legged Hawk
RED-HEADED WOODPECKER
Eastern Phoebe
Orange-crowned Warbler
VARIED THRUSH

- Transcript

If followed by (+) please submit documentation of your report electronically and use the NYSARC online submission form found at http://www.nybirds.org/NYSARC/goodreport.htm

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

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

Transcriber: Ben Cacace

BEGIN TAPE

Greetings. This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, February 28th 2020 at 9pm. The highlights of today's tape are VARIED THRUSH, PAINTED BUNTING, TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE, BLACK GUILLEMOT, THICK-BILLED MURRE, BARNACLE GOOSE, GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, EURASIAN WIGEON, BARROW'S GOLDENEYE, KING EIDER, HARLEQUIN DUCK, BLACK-HEADED GULL, RED-HEADED WOODPECKER and more.

Of the standout passerines present locally the VARIED THRUSH was reported as recently as yesterday in Brooklyn's Prospect Park occurring in the Nethermead often on the hillsides near the arches. The PAINTED BUNTING at Brooklyn Bridge Park was last Sunday seen ranging from Pier 5 over to Pier 3 and the Greenway Terrace and later back to Pier 5. One assumes the possibility of two different individuals has been addressed.

Out in the East Hampton area the TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE was still present in Northwest Harbor along Three Mile Harbor Drive near number 56 and the small park designated by a sign bearing the initials SLPOA. This bird does call occasionally.

Out at Montauk Point last Monday a birder watching the THICK-BILLED MURRE on the ocean by the lighthouse was also treated to a BLACK GUILLEMOT landing off the restaurant and remaining visible for a short while. Neither the MURRE nor the GUILLEMOT have been reported since Monday but could still be around. A RED-NECKED GREBE was off the point Saturday. The western Long Island BARNACLE GOOSE was seen on Belmont Lake State Park last Saturday afternoon and again on Sunday therefore continuing in that area. The GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE in the Rye area was still present today on the Rye Brook Pond off Bowman Avenue. A few CACKLING GEESE include one found Sunday at Frank Melville Memorial Park and Mill Pond in Setauket north of Old Field Road.

A drake EURASIAN WIGEON was seen Sunday at West Neck Beach in Lloyd Harbor. A drake BARROW'S GOLDENEYE was still around the south end of Lake Montauk last Sunday seen from West Lake Drive but also try South Lake Drive to locate the GOLDENEYE flock. Also on Montauk a drake KING EIDER was seen again from Culloden Point last Sunday while single females, also continuing birds, were present with Common Eiders Saturday at Shinnecock Inlet and to Monday at Orient Point where 4 HARLEQUIN DUCKS also remain. The immature male HARLEQUIN DUCK was still present today in Brooklyn's Sheepshead Bay where both the adult BLACK-HEADED GULL and an immature ICELAND GULL visited last Sunday. LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULLS were noted in Brooklyn during the week at Coney Island Beach and Floyd Bennett Field and a few RAZORBILLS remain along the shore including 2 Monday well inside Jones Inlet at the fishing piers and another Sunday at Canarsie Pier.

AMERICAN BITTERNS continue along Dune Road and a COMMON GALLINULE was still on the Mill Pond in Bellmore Wednesday. A ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK remained in the area of Cedar Beach along Ocean Parkway through last weekend and another was spotted at Orient Point Sunday. A RED-HEADED WOODPECKER has continued into this week at the north end of Central Park while EASTERN PHOEBES were noted at at least 6 different locations. An ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER was visiting the suet feeder at the South Fork Natural History Museum in Bridgehampton at least to Wednesday.

To phone in reports call Tom Burke at (914) 967-4922.

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

- End transcript
...Read more

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Treehugger Tuesday

From National Audubon:

These Beloved Warblers Migrate North Almost a Week Earlier Than 50 Years Ago
By Kevin Wheeler
Editorial Intern, Audubon Magazine
February 21, 2020


Black-throated Blue Warblers have shifted the timing of their spring and fall migrations over the past fifty years.
Photo: Kyle Horton


If you’ve spent much time observing the seasonal comings and goings of your backyard birds, you may have noticed some favorite species returning a little earlier in spring than they used to. No, your eyes do not deceive you—a new study on Black-throated Blue Warblers adds to a growing wealth of research showing that the timing of bird migration is indeed changing.

These neotropical warblers make an annual spring journey that spans 3,000 kilometers, from Central America to the eastern deciduous and boreal forests of North America. And it now starts about 5.5 days earlier than it did in the 1960s—a rate of around one day per decade, according to the study, published this week in the journal The Auk: Ornithological Advances. The researchers reached that conclusion by analyzing around 150,000 bird-banding records from the U.S. Geological Survey between 1965 and 2015.

While most migration research has focused on spring, the new study also examined trends in fall migration. “And with fall migration, we found that the peak of the migratory season is not changing, but early fall migration is getting earlier and late fall migration is getting later, which means a whole migratory season overall is getting longer,” says lead author Kristen Covino of Loyola Marymount University.

Read the entire article here

Monday, February 24, 2020

Upcoming Birding and Nature Trips

Below is a list of upcoming birding and nature trips by local birding/conservation groups for Saturday, February 29, 2020 to Sunday, March 1, 2020:

Brooklyn Bird Club
Saturday, February 29, 2020
“Leap” into Western Rockaway: Fort Tilden and Breezy Point Queens
Leader: Steve Nanz
Focus: Raptors, winter waterfowl, open dune and brush species, gulls
Car fee: $12.00
Registrar: Heidi Steiner-Nanz email heidi.steiner.bklyn@gmail.com or call before 8 pm 718- 369-2116
Registration Period: Feb 22nd – Feb 27th
Please review our trip guidelines here: http://brooklynbirdclub.org/information-registration

Saturday, February 29, 2020, 12:00pm - 2:00pm
Prospect Park: Birdwatching for Beginners
Leader: Cyrus Baty
Birdwatching for Beginners meets at the Prospect Park Audubon Center at The Boathouse at 12 noon. Bring binoculars if you have them; otherwise, binoculars are available for loan.

Sunday, March 1, 2020, 8:00am - 11:00am
Prospect Park First Sunday Walk
Meets at the Prospect Park Audubon Center at The Boathouse, the first Sunday of every month except July and August. Leaders are members of the Brooklyn Bird Club.
Bring binoculars.
Note: Meets at 8am except in the winter months of December, January, and February when the walk starts at 10am

**********

Gateway National Parks​
Saturday, February 29, 2020, 1:00pm — 2:30pm
Leap Day Nature Walk at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge
View Details

**********

Linnaean Society of New York
Saturday, February 29, 2020 (Rain date Sunday, March 1)
New Jersey Coastal Hotspots
Leader: Robert Machover
Registrar: Anne Lazarus — amlazarus47@gmail.com or 212-673-9059
Registration opens: Monday, December 23
Ride: $40

**********

New York Botanical Garden (Bronx)
Saturdays -- 11:00 a.m.
Debbie Becker leads a free bird walk at the Garden every Saturday from 11am to 12:30pm beginning at the Reflecting Pool in the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Included in All-Garden Pass
Get Tickets

**********

New York City Audubon Society
Saturday, February 29, 9am - Sunday, March 1, 7pm
Winter Waterfowl Weekend at Montauk II
Guide: Gabriel Willow
Gabriel's trip to Montauk, take two! The gatherings of sea ducks around Montauk Point are the largest winter concentrations in New York State; the Audubon Christmas Bird Count at Montauk Point consistently tallies from 125 to 135 species, one of the best totals in the Northeast. Species that come to feed on the Point’s rich kelp and mussel beds include Common and Red-throated Loon, Common Eider, all three scoter species, Bufflehead, Common Goldeneye, Great Cormorant, and Red-breasted Merganser. Harlequin Duck and King Eider also occur here regularly during the winter.
Accommodations at Daunt's Albatross in Montauk and transport by passenger van included. Limited to 10. $340 ($60 single supplement) per trip
Click here to register

Saturday, February 29, 2020, 9am – 12pm
Winter Walk at Inwood Hill Park
Guide: Nadir Souirgi
Inwood Hill Park, simply put, is a jewel. Nestled between the Hudson River, Dyckman Street, and Seaman Avenue, this last tract of largely undeveloped oak and tulip forest transports you to another world and another time. Glacial "pot holes," towering trees, and stunning river views create an unrivaled birding backdrop. Limited to 15 per walk. $36 (25) per walk
Click here to register

Sunday, March 1, 2020, 8am-4pm
Winter Birds of the Barrier Islands, LI
Guide: Tod Winston
Several bird species that nest in the far North spend the winter at Jones Beach, in a habitat similar to their summer homes. We’ll visit Point Lookout and Jones Beach in search of Harlequin Ducks, Common Eider, scoters, Horned Larks, and Snow Buntings. Transport by passenger van included. Limited to 12. $97 ($68)
Click here to register

**********

New York City WILD!
Saturday, February 29, 2020, 11:00am
Winter Wonderland! The Bronx: Fort Schuyler

For the FULL INFORMATION ABOUT EACH WALK click HERE to take you to the Eventbrite Profile page where you will find all details (scroll down to the thumbnails) for each of the outings and how to SIGN UP !

**********

South Shore Audubon Society
Sunday, March 1, 2020
Mill Pond Park
Use street parking on the westbound side of Merrick Road. The park is four blocks west of the Wantagh State Parkway.
Directions via Google Maps

Bird walks led by a member of SSAS are conducted nearly every Sunday morning from late August through early June. Walks are open to the public and are free of charge. We especially encourage youngsters to attend.
All walks start at 9:00 A.M.
There is no walk if it rains or snows or temperature is below 25°F.
For more information or in case of questionable weather conditions, please phone Joe at 516 467-9498.

**********

Urban Park Rangers
Saturday, February 29, 2020
Birding: Winter Waterfowl at 43rd Street and First Avenue, Brooklyn
10:00 a.m.–11:30 a.m.
Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle. Birding programs are appropriate for all skill levels and beginners are welcome.
Free!
...Read more

Saturday, February 22, 2020

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, February 21, 2020:

- RBA
* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Feb. 21, 2020
* NYNY2002.21


- Birds mentioned
THICK-BILLED MURRE+
BARNACLE GOOSE+
PAINTED BUNTING+
TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE+
(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Red-necked Grebe
Common Gallinule
Razorbill
Black-legged Kittiwake
Iceland Gull
Lesser Black-backed Gull
BLACK-HEADED GULL
Canvasback
BARROW'S GOLDENEYE
HARLEQUIN DUCK
KING EIDER
GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE
Rough-legged Hawk
Red-headed Woodpecker
Eastern Phoebe
Baltimore Oriole
Boat-tailed Grackle
Vesper Sparrow
Chipping Sparrow
CLAY-COLORED SPARROW
Orange-crowned Warbler
Pine Warbler
Palm Warbler
YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT
Wood Thrush
VARIED THRUSH

- Transcript

If followed by (+) please submit documentation of your report electronically and use the NYSARC online submission form found at http://www.nybirds.org/NYSARC/goodreport.htm

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

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

Transcriber: Ben Cacace

BEGIN TAPE

Greetings. This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, February 21st 2020 at 9pm. The highlights of today's tape are TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE, VARIED THRUSH, PAINTED BUNTING, THICK-BILLED MURRE, BARNACLE GOOSE, GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, BARROW'S GOLDENEYE, KING EIDER, HARLEQUIN DUCK, BLACK-HEADED GULL, CLAY-COLORED SPARROW, YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT and more.

The TOWNSEND'S SOLITAIRE, first seen on Sunday the 9th in Northwest Harbor north of East Hampton, was still present along Three Mile Harbor Drive today. Look especially around the fruit bearing trees in the vicinity of 56 Three Mile Harbor Drive and near a small turnout marked by a small park sign bearing the initials SLPOA. Also listen for the bird occasionally calling.

In Brooklyn two excellent winter passerines also remain with the Prospect Park VARIED THRUSH continuing in the Nethermead through today and the PAINTED BUNTING at Brooklyn Bridge Park noted as recently as yesterday around Pier 5.

Out at Montauk Point for the third Sunday in a row a THICK-BILLED MURRE was spotted off the restaurant at the point. This time though the MURRE remained floating a short distance offshore rather than disappearing and has continued to swim around the point providing excellent views right through today. Among the other birds out there have been some RAZORBILLS with 270 counted Monday and early in the week on Sunday and Monday one or two BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKES reported well offshore. Completing the Montauk area a drake BARROW'S GOLDENEYE was spotted last Sunday in a Common Goldeneye flock on Lake Montauk as viewed from South Lake Drive still there Monday. On Tuesday the BARROW'S and Goldeneye flock had moved farther north on the lake. One or two RED-NECKED GREBES also remain off Culloden Point with one also off Montauk Point Monday and a YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT, perhaps the one initially seen on the Christmas Count, was around the traffic circle at the point near the Camp Hero turnoff on Monday.

The Riverhead area BARNACLE GOOSE was spotted today with Canada Geese east of Horton Avenue and south of Sound Avenue while the Rye area GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE was still present today on the Rye Brook Pond off Bowman Avenue.

A female KING EIDER as well as up to 4 HARLEQUIN DUCKS were present off Orient Point at least to Monday and the Shinnecock female KING EIDER was reported again Tuesday on the east side of the inlet. The young male HARLEQUIN DUCK was noted in Sheepshead Bay at least to Wednesday with a BLACK-HEADED GULL still being seen there through yesterday and one or two RAZORBILLS were noted this week off Canarsie Pier as well as Fort Tilden and Breezy Point. Single ICELAND GULLS were noted in Sheepshead Bay to Monday and on the Central Park Reservoir to Wednesday joined there by a LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL last Saturday. Other LESSER BLACK-BACKEDS visited Coney Island Beach to Monday and Jones Beach West End Tuesday. Another BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKE was seen off Robert Moses State Park Tuesday and a ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK continues in the Cedar Beach area with COMMON GALLINULE seen again on the Bellmore Mill Pond last Saturday.

A nice count was the 380 CANVASBACK present on the Mill Pond in Waterville last Sunday. A RED-HEADED WOODPECKER and a female BOAT-TAILED GRACKLE continue in Central Park with a VESPER SPARROW still on Randall's Island Monday. A WOOD THRUSH in Central Park Thursday was quite interesting.

On Staten Island the CLAY-COLORED SPARROW was still at Moravian Cemetery Monday and single YELLOW-BREASTED CHATS were uncovered at Great Kills Park Saturday and Cemetery of the Resurrection Monday.

Other notable passerines have included some lingering EASTERN PHOEBES, ORANGE-CROWNED, PINE and PALM WARBLERS and CHIPPING SPARROWS and a feeder visiting BALTIMORE ORIOLE Sunday.

To phone in reports call Tom Burke at (914) 967-4922.

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

- End transcript
...Read more

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Treehugger Tuesday

From the website Earther:

We're Drowning in Plastic. A New Bill Would Make Companies Pay to Fix the Crisis
Dharna Noor
February 17, 2020

Plastic is creating massive problems. Its production and disposal both release hundreds of millions of tons of greenhouse gases, which contribute to climate change and wreak havoc on public health, especially for the communities of color near which plastic production plants, incinerators, and landfills are often constructed. Plastic is also threatening the health of the world’s waterways: Every minute, the equivalent of one dump-truck load of plastic gets into the ocean, where it kills wildlife, carries diseases, and releases carcinogenic pollutants.

Despite all this, the oil industry is ramping up plastic production. Right now, U.S. production of the most common plastic, polyethylene, is on track to increase more than 40 percent by 2028, according to the research firm S&P Global Platts. Conservative predictions show that plastic production and incineration in the U.S. will produce 300 coal plants’ worth of greenhouse emissions by 2030, and by 2050, that pollution output could double.

Solutions to these crises are often framed in terms of consumer choice. Ads encourage us to buy reusable straws, water bottles, and shopping bags. Nonprofit organizations hold volunteer beach-cleanup days. Coca-Cola blames consumers’ preferences for its decision not to use less plastic.

On Tuesday, two Democratic Congresspeople introduced an ambitious bill to shift the responsibility to address the plastics crisis to the plastics producers.

“This bill is the single most effective bill to reduce plastic pollution in the history of U.S. Congress,” Judith Enck, former Environmental Protection Agency regional administrator and founder of Beyond Plastics, told reporters at a Tuesday press conference on Capitol Hill.

The Break Free From Plastic Act, proposed by Senator Tom Udall (D-New Mexico) and Representative Alan Lowenthal (D-California), calls for a pause of up to three years on permitting new plastic production facilities. It would also require big corporations to design, manage, and pay for recycling programs, like a national “bottle bill” that would call for consumers to return used plastic bottles in exchange for a 10 cent refund for each one.

“Plastics are a part of the fossil fuel industry,” said Representative Steve Cohen (D-Tennessee) at the press conference. “And they put less than 1 percent of what they put into their expansion of their industry into recycling programs.”

Right now, recycling systems are managed by municipal systems and funded by tax dollars. Under that system, U.S. recycling rates are currently fallingless than 5 percent of plastics were recycled in 2018. And since China stopped accepting much of the world’s recyclable material two years ago, recycling costs have skyrocketed, so the national rate could fall even lower. Some U.S. cities have stopped recycling plastic altogether. Funds from plastic-producing corporations could go a long way to boosting recycling rates.

Starting in 2022, the bill would also ban certain plastic disposables that have particularly low recyclability rates and high potential for pollution; it would also require manufacturers to use more recycled materials in their packaging.

The bill’s passage is a long shot. So far, it has no Republican co-sponsors, and it’s already drawn criticism from wealthy industry trade groups. But even still, it shows that the conversation about the plastics crisis—and who should be held responsible—is changing.

“Our plastic pollution process has reached a tipping point, and the American people are fed up,” said Udall at the press conference. “The time has come to break free from this failed system.”

Monday, February 17, 2020

Upcoming Bird and Nature Trips

Below is a list of upcoming birding and nature trips by local birding/conservation groups for Saturday, February 22, 2020 to Sunday, February 23, 2020:

Brooklyn Bird Club
Saturday, February 22, 2020, 12:00pm - 2:00pm
Prospect Park: Birdwatching for Beginners
Leader: Cyrus Baty
Birdwatching for Beginners meets at the Prospect Park Audubon Center at The Boathouse at 12 noon. Bring binoculars if you have them; otherwise, binoculars are available for loan.

**********

Gateway National Parks​
Saturday, February 22, 2020, 10:00am
Late Winter Bird Walk
Location: Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, Queens
Duration: 3 hours
Join naturalist Don Riepe for an in-door presentation followed by a hike around the refuge to look for owls, waterfowl, finches, and other wintering birds. Learn how birds and other wildlife survive the winter. For information, call 718-474-0896; e-mail: don@littoralsociety.org. No reservation necessary. All ages are welcome.

**********

Green-Wood Cemetery
Sunday, February 23, 2020
Birding in Peace
Just because it’s winter, doesn’t mean that there aren’t interesting birds to discover in Green-Wood. For some bird species that migrate south after the breeding season, Brooklyn is their Miami during the cold months. Spend the early morning exploring the cemetery, looking for overwintering waterfowl, nuthatches, woodpeckers, sparrows, finches and any half-hardy birds that decided to stick around. By February we’ll see some of the early north-bound birds beginning to trickle back into the area.

$10 for members of Green-Wood and BHS / $15 for non-members

Green-Wood’s official birding checklist is available to pick up from the security guard at the main entrance on 25th Street or to print here. Comfortable footwear is recommended.

For this program you will check in at the Gothic Arches, right at the main entrance. Click here for our inclement weather policy.

**********

Huntington-Oyster Bay Audubon Society
Sunday, February 23, 2020, 9:00am
Massapequa Lakes and Southern Nassau Area
We will bird the ponds at Massapequa Preserve, then head east in search of variety of wintering ducks and land birds.
Registration: (631) 885-1881
Directions: Meet at western entrance to the park. Park on Parkside Blvd and Pittsburgh Ave.

ABOUT THE FIELD TRIPS
Field trips organized by Huntington-Oyster Bay Audubon are free, unless otherwise specified, and open to the public. However, some special activities may be open only to Huntington-Oyster Bay Audubon members.

Newcomers are most welcome. Binoculars and field guides are strongly advised, but leaders usually have some field guides to share.

Directions to the site are published in our newsletter, website and Facebook page. We urge you to save the directions.

Please arrive before the departure time listed in the trip description. Trips will leave promptly at the time given.

Carpooling is possible, gas and tolls are shared. Contact the trip leader to see if anyone has expressed interest. The trip leader is not responsible for arranging carpools, just giving you names of others who are interested in carpooling.

Registration is necessary. Call the trip leader by 9:00 PM on Thursday for a Saturday trip and by 9:00 PM Friday for a Sunday trip. Be sure to leave your phone number. You may participate if you didn’t register, but we will not be able to notify you of any changes or cancellations without your phone number.

Dress for the weather realizing you’ll be outdoors for long periods of time. Bring water, proper footwear, snacks and if the trip is for a full day, bring a bag lunch. Bring money to cover your share of any carpooling expenses as well as any required entry fees at our destinations.

Rain or temperature below 20° F cancels (sometimes!). Be sure to check our Facebook page the night before or morning of to check if inclement weather has caused us to cancel the trip.

For the health, safety and comfort of all field trip participants, please refrain from smoking or wearing perfumes or colognes on HOBAS field trips


**********

Linnaean Society of New York
Saturday, February 22, 2020 to Sunday, February 23, 2020
Montauk Weekend
Leader: Joseph DiCostanzo
Registrar: Dale Dancis — ddancis@gmail.com or 212-724-3269
Registration opens: Monday, January 20
Ride: $80 – lodging not included

**********

Littoral Society of New York
Sunday February 23, 2020, 11:00am to 2:00pm
A Low Tide Wintertime Stroll at Fort Tilden
Fort Tilden, Breezy Point, NY
Meet at the Fort Tilden Chapel
Join "Good Times with Gordon" for a walk along a lovely winter beach during low tide.
The sun, moon and earth should be in position that day to create a notable low tide.  Explore the intertidal zone and “walk the sea floor” with American Littoral Society naturalist, Gordon Lam, and NYC Botanist Zihao Wang to observe the usually-hidden biological treasures from beyond the tides.
Dress VERY warmly, wear comfortable shoes and bring a pair of binoculars if you have them. We will cover about 1 1/2 - 2 miles along the beach. 
 
As always, NO REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED and the walk is FREE. We hope to see you all there! In case of inclement weather or other concerns please check your email or call Gordon Lam at 646-673-5418 on the morning of the walk.

DIRECTIONS TO FORT TILDEN:
•Subway & bus: Take the #2 or #5 train to Flatbush Ave. / Brooklyn College and then the Q-35 bus past Floyd Bennett Field and just over the Gil Hodges memorial Bridge.  Ask the driver to let you off at Ft. Tilden.   Check Saturday/Sunday train schedules ahead of time.


  •By car: From exit 11s on the Belt Parkway, head south and over the Marine Parkway Bridge (Gil Hodges Memorial). Stay on right and take the right ramp toward Breezy Point. Make a quick left into Fort Tilden at the first light. Go to end and park by Building One or at the nearby Post Chapel.


•By Ferry: The current schedule of the NYC Ferry has an 8:30AM ferry leaving from Wall Street Pier 11 on the weekends that gets to Beach 108 by 9:24AM, and the shuttle on the weekends will leave you at the Jacob Riis Bathhouse by 9:45AM.  You can then walk the short distance to Building 1 in Fort Tilden.  Although you will be early, the next ferry would get you there too late.

**********

New York Botanical Garden (Bronx)
Saturdays -- 11:00 a.m.
Debbie Becker leads a free bird walk at the Garden every Saturday from 11am to 12:30pm beginning at the Reflecting Pool in the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Included in All-Garden Pass
Get Tickets

**********

New York City Audubon Society
Saturday, February 22, 2020, 9am – 3pm
Van Trip to the Winter Thaw Bird Walk at Jamaica Bay
Register for our van trip to American Littoral Society's Winter Thaw Bird Walk (see description above) and get to Jamaica Bay the easy way—by passenger van! Bring lunch and water. Limited to 12. $85 (60)
Click here to register

Sunday, February 23, 2020, 9am – 2pm
Winter Birds of DeKorte Park, NJ
Guide: Gabriel Willow
Come explore the wilds of the New Jersey Meadowlands at DeKorte Park. We'll be on the lookout for large flocks of Canvasbacks, Northern Pintails, Buffleheads, and Northern Shovelers. And we'll scan the skies for hunting raptors including Rough-legged and Cooper’s Hawks, Northern Harriers, and perhaps even a Snowy or Short-eared Owl. We can warm up at the environmental center and learn about the Meadowlands's ecology. Transport by passenger van included. Limited to 12. $97 (68) per walk
Click here to register

**********

New York City WILD!
Sunday, February 23, 2020, 10:30am
Winter Wonderland! Westchester: Marshlands Conservancy

For the FULL INFORMATION ABOUT EACH WALK click HERE to take you to the Eventbrite Profile page where you will find all details (scroll down to the thumbnails) for each of the outings and how to SIGN UP !

**********

Queens County Bird Club
Saturday, Feb 22, 2020
Barnegat Light and NJ shore
Leader: Ian Resnick
Time and meeting location TBD.
more details»

**********

South Shore Audubon Society
Sunday, February 23, 2020
Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge
From the Southern State Parkway, travel west to the Belt Parkway. Exit at Cross Bay Boulevard (Exit 17) south. Continue south on Cross Bay Blvd. through Howard Beach and over the North Channel Bridge (also known as the Congressman Joseph P. Addabbo Bridge). The entrance to the refuge parking lot is on the right side of the road, at a traffic light approximately one and a half miles past the bridge.
Directions via Google Maps

Bird walks led by a member of SSAS are conducted nearly every Sunday morning from late August through early June. Walks are open to the public and are free of charge. We especially encourage youngsters to attend.
All walks start at 9:00 A.M.
There is no walk if it rains or snows or temperature is below 25°F.
For more information or in case of questionable weather conditions, please phone Joe at 516 467-9498.

**********

Urban Park Rangers
Saturday, February 22, 2020
Birding: Eagle Watch at Palisade Avenue and Spaulding Lane (in Riverdale Park), Bronx
11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
New York City is home to an amazing abundance of wildlife. Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle.
Free!
...Read more

Saturday, February 15, 2020

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, February 14, 2020:

-RBA
* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Feb. 14, 2020
* NYNY2002.14

- Birds Mentioned

BARNACLE GOOSE+
THICK-BILLED MURRE+
TOWNSEND’S SOLITAIRE+
VARIED THRUSH+
PAINTED BUNTING+
YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD+
(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Greater White-fronted Goose
Canada Goose
TUNDRA SWAN
EURASIAN WIGEON
KING EIDER
HARLEQUIN DUCK
Red-necked Grebe
American Woodcock
Razorbill
Black-legged Kittiwake
BLACK-HEADED GULL
Iceland Gull
Lesser Black-backed Gull
Rough-legged Hawk
Red-headed Woodpecker
SEDGE WREN
CLAY-COLORED SPARROW


If followed by (+) please submit documentation of your report electronically and use the NYSARC online submission form found at http://www.nybirds.org/NYSARC/goodreport.htm

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
Coverage: New York City, Long Island, Westchester County

Transcriber: Gail Benson

[~BEGIN RBA TAPE~]

Greetings! This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, February 14, 2020 at 9:00 pm.

The highlights of today’s tape are TOWNSEND’S SOLITAIRE, VARIED THRUSH, PAINTED BUNTING, SEDGE wren and YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD, THICK-BILLED MURRE, BARNACLE and GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE, TUNDRA SWAN, EURASIAN WIGEON, KING EIDER and HARLEQUIN DUCK, BLACK-HEADED GULL, CLAY-COLORED SPARROW and more.


The list of unusual passerines in our area increased by one last Sunday when a TOWNSEND’S SOLItAIRE was spotted north of East Hampton. Found initially in the Northwest Harbor area along Three Mile Harbor Drive, this elusive bird was also seen on Monday and Wednesday, the latter along Three Mile Harbor Drive up near Old House Landing Road. Fortunately, the SOLITAIRE has been calling, which helps in locating it.

The Prospect Park VARIED THRUSH was seen as recently as yesterday in the Nethermead section of the park, often near the ravine.

The Brooklyn Painted Bunting also continues at Brooklyn Bridge Park, moving between Piers 3 to 5, noted yesterday at the Pier 5 uplands.

A SEDGE WREN at Arshamomaque Ponds Preserve out on the North Fork east of Southold has not been encountered recently, though is likely still present, and a YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD was reported again Saturday and Monday in a large blackbird flock along Sound Avenue in Calverton, this flock occasionally stopping by the Lewin Farm at 723 Sound Avenue.

Also lingering recently has been a CLAY-COLORED SPARROW seen again Sunday and Wednesday at Moravian Cemetery on Staten Island.

Last Sunday morning at Montauk Point a THICK-BILLED MURRE was spotted flying by the north side of Montauk Point, where one had also been present the previous Sunday. Also recorded at Montauk over last weekend were counts of up to 85 RAZORBILLS and 16 BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKES. Another 45 RAZORBILLS were counted off Breezy Point last Sunday.

A BARNACLE GOOSE out in the Riverhead area was seen Sunday with Canada Geese along Route 105 south of the Northville Turnpike.

Beside the GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE continuing in the Rye area of southern Westchester, another was spotted again Saturday on Shorts Pond off Scuttlehole Road in Watermill. In that area as well were the two TUNDRA SWANS, seen Thursday east of Head of Pond Road in Watermill.

A drake EURASIAN WIGEON visited Lloyd Neck Beach in Lloyd Harbor last Sunday.

Two drake KING EIDERS were spotted off Culloden Point in Montauk last Sunday, and at least one was still there Wednesday. A female KING EIDER remains on the east side of Shinnecock Inlet.

The Brooklyn HARLEQUIN DUCK was still in Sheepshead Bay at least to Monday, and four were still off Orient Point Wednesday.

BLACK-HEADED GULLS were noted at Sheepshead Bay Monday and Brooklyn Bridge Park today, at West Meadow Wetlands Preserve in Stony Brook Monday, and at Georgica Cove Hollow Sunday.

Recent Central Park Reservoir visitors have included an ICELAND GULL through Thursday and a LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL at least to Tuesday, with others of each continuing in the area.

A ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK continues in the Tobay to Gilgo area, RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS remain in Central and Pelham Bay Parks, among others, three RED-NECKED GREBES were off Montauk Park Saturday, and wonderfully, AMERICAN WOODCOCK are now displaying.

To phone in reports call Tom Burke at (914) 967-4922.

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

- End transcript
...Read more

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Treehugger Tuesday

From the New York Times:

Trump Administration Moves to Relax Rules Against Killing Birds
By Lisa Friedman
January 30, 2020

Since 1918, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, which covers more than 1,000 species, has helped restore populations of birds like the great egret.
Brandon Thibodeaux for The New York Times

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration on Thursday moved to drop the threat of punishment to oil and gas companies, construction crews and other organizations that kill birds “incidentally,” arguing that businesses that accidentally kill birds ought to be able to operate without fear of prosecution.

Conservation groups said the proposed new regulation from the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, which operates under the Department of Interior, would substantially weaken the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 and put millions of birds in danger. The threat of fines and prosecution has, for decades, helped prod industries to take steps to protect birds, like affixing red lights on communication towers, they say.

But industry leaders and administration officials said they expected businesses to continue to voluntarily protect bird habitats. Removing the threat of punishment, they said, would bring regulatory certainty and eliminate legal disputes over whether the law covers birds killed unintentionally, whether from an oil spill or the blade of a wind turbine.

Aurelia Skipwith, director of the Fish and Wildlife Service, called bird conservation “an integral part” of the agency’s mission. By specifying that entities should be held liable only if they can be proven to have set out to kill birds, she said, “we are taking action today to make sure our rules and regulations are clear.”

The proposed regulation, if finalized, would cement a legal opinion that the Department of Interior issued in 2017 that previous administrations had interpreted the law too broadly and that only actions explicitly intended to kill birds should be forbidden.

That interpretation has already had significant consequences for migratory birds. According to internal agency documents recently obtained by The New York Times, the Trump administration has discouraged local governments and businesses from taking simple precautionary measures to protect birds, and federal wildlife officials have all but stopped investigating most bird deaths.

With a presidential election coming in November, the Trump administration is moving quickly to finalize dozens of regulatory rollbacks and other actions to weaken environmental protections viewed as burdensome by industry.

In recent weeks, the administration has scrapped a clean water regulation aimed at protecting streams and wetlands, and blocked an effort to require Americans to use energy-efficient light bulbs. Within the next month, the administration plans to weaken vehicle emissions standards and a rule restricting mercury, a toxic chemical emitted from coal-burning power plants. Completing the rule curtailing the Migratory Bird Treaty Act before the November election will be difficult, but the agency has indicated it will push aggressively to do so.

“It’s a race against the clock,” Bob Dreher, senior vice president of conservation programs at Defenders of Wildlife, an environmental organization, said of the proposed regulation.

Any legal guideline, like the one now governing bird-death enforcement, can be easily overturned; the 2017 opinion on incidental avian deaths reversed guidelines written by the Obama administration to enshrine the government’s ability to fine and prosecute those who accidentally kill migratory birds. Mr. Dreher noted that codifying the opinion into regulation, as the Trump administration is trying to do, would make it harder for a future president to issue a quick reversal.

“They’re trying to entrench this as much as they can, and get stuff locked into place,” he said, but added, “We’re going to fight it.”

For more climate news sign up for the Climate Fwd: newsletter or follow @NYTClimate on Twitter.

Six conservation groups and eight states have already sued to block the underlying legal opinion. Last week, a group of former Interior Department officials from both Republican and Democratic administrations filed an amicus brief in support of the lawsuit.

Oil industry representatives said that they have worked voluntarily to protect birds and would continue to do so. They also accused the Obama administration of abusing the law by singling out oil and gas companies for prosecution. The new rule, several business leaders said, brings regulatory certainty to companies worried that bird deaths would make them criminally liable for millions of dollars.

Erik G. Milito, president of the National Ocean Industries Association, which represents offshore oil and wind industries, called it “welcome news for safe and responsible energy development.” He said the proposal would prevent “the unnecessary criminalization” of accidental bird deaths that he said had blocked or slowed energy projects.

The Migratory Bird Treaty Act makes it illegal “by any means or in any manner” to hunt, take, capture or kill birds, nests or eggs from listed species without a permit. Beginning in the 1970s, federal officials used the act to prosecute and fine companies up to $15,000 per bird for accidental deaths on power lines, in oil pits, in wind turbines and by other industrial hazards.

In 2010, the Deepwater Horizon disaster killed 11 people and spewed more than 210 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. Hundreds of thousands of birds were killed, and BP agreed to pay $100 million for criminal violations under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

Under the current legal guidance and the proposed regulatory changes, that episode would no longer trigger criminal liability because the birds were killed unintentionally. Illegal acts are also protected under the plan. For example, a farmer who sprayed a banned pesticide that killed birds would not be held liable as long as the birds were not the “intended target.”

The rule will appear in the Federal Register on Monday and the public will have 45 days to comment on it.

Monday, February 10, 2020

Upcoming Birding and Nature Trips

Below is a list of upcoming birding and nature trips by local birding/conservation groups for Saturday, February 15, 2020 to Monday, February 17, 2020:

Bedford Audubon Society
February 14, 2020 - February 17, 2020
Cape Ann/Plum Island

Looking for a winter adventure?
You’re in luck ... our Special Winter Birding Week-end Field Trip to Cape Ann/Plum Island mightbe just what you’re looking for! The coast of northeast Massachusetts is the winter home to a spectacular array of seabirds. Our masterful Naturalist Tait Johansson will guide this special trip around the region in search of such stunners as Harlequin Duck, King Eider, Barrow’s Goldeneye, Red-necked Grebe, Rough-legged Hawk, Iceland and Glaucous Gulls, Purple Sandpiper, Black Guillemot, Black-legged Kittiwake, Razorbill, Short-eared Owl, Snowy Owl, and Northern Shrike. The many other possibilities include Dovekie, Thick-billed Murre, and Eastern Screech Owl, and this winter, Townsend’s Solitaire. Add these to your year (or life) list this month!

Cost: $100/members, or $135/nonmembers (and we’ll credit $35 to an annual membership). Travel, lodging, and meals not included in the cost. We will provide an itinerary, hotel suggestion, and coordinate meeting times +locations when you register.
Please register with Susan at info@bedfordaudubon.org or 914-302-9713
See more details

**********

Brooklyn Bird Club
Saturday, February 15, 2020, 8:00am - Sunday, February 16, 2020, 5:00pm
Members Only: Monmouth and Mercer County Winter Weekend
Trip caps at 12 members.
Leader: Ryan Goldberg
Car Fee: $60

Focus/Trip synopsis: Waterfowl and grassland birds in central New Jersey.
Itinerary includes Manasquan Reservoir, Mercer Meadows, and Assunpink WMA. In the winter Manasquan Reservoir and Assunpink attract close to a dozen waterfowl species, including Common Merganser and Canvasback, not to mention Bald Eagles and Trumpeter Swans. At Mercer Meadows, near Princeton, we’ll hope to see Northern Harriers and Short-eared Owls. We’ll depart early Saturday morning for Manasquan Reservoir before heading to Mercer Meadows in the afternoon.
Dress accordingly; we’ll stay at the meadows until dusk. Sunday we’ll go to Assunpink. Hotel TBD but will be near Princeton.
Registrar: Chris Laskowski email celaskowski@yahoo.com
Registration Period: Jan. 2-Feb. 5

Please review our trip guidelines here: http://brooklynbirdclub.org/information-registration

Saturday, February 15, 2020, 12:00pm - 2:00pm
Prospect Park: Birdwatching for Beginners
Leader: Cyrus Baty
Birdwatching for Beginners meets at the Prospect Park Audubon Center at The Boathouse at 12 noon. Bring binoculars if you have them; otherwise, binoculars are available for loan.

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Eastern Long Island Audubon Society
Saturday, February 15, 2020
MONTAUK – The End!
Leader: Eileen Schwinn
Meet at 8:30 am at the lower parking lot at Montauk Point. (Heated restrooms are available at this parking lot). The tip of Long Island is the go-to winter place − if you are an ocean-loving sea bird! Huge rafts of birds are usually seen from the (closed) restaurant patio, as well as other points along the shoreline. We will be visiting other well-known birding spots in Montauk, all dependent upon which birds have been reported in the area − rare geese, shorebirds, overwintering hardy songbirds are all possibilities. Plan to spend at least three hours on this field trip − and dress for the weather!
Please contact Eileen Schwinn, trip leader, for information, and please let her know if you plan to attend this field trip (beachmed@optonline.net).​

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Green-Wood Cemetery
Saturday, February 15, 2020, 11:00am - 1:00pm
Winter Tree ID Walk
Join Sam Bishop, Education Director and Arborist for Trees New York, and Ashleigh Pettus, Operations Manager for Trees New York, to learn how to identify some of the common conifers of Green-Wood and New York City. Learn how to use needles and cones to help with identification, the role that conifers play in the urban environment, and how different varieties of conifers can have a place in any urban garden.
Click here to register directly for this day’s program.
The meeting location is Green-Wood’s main entrance at 25th Street and 5th Avenue in Brooklyn.

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Huntington-Oyster Bay Audubon Society
Sunday, February 16, 2020, 10:00am
Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge
Jamaica Bay is known for its world-class shorebirding.
Registration: 585-880-0915
Directions: Meet at Visitor Center parking lot.

ABOUT THE FIELD TRIPS
Field trips organized by Huntington-Oyster Bay Audubon are free, unless otherwise specified, and open to the public. However, some special activities may be open only to Huntington-Oyster Bay Audubon members.

Newcomers are most welcome. Binoculars and field guides are strongly advised, but leaders usually have some field guides to share.

Directions to the site are published in our newsletter, website and Facebook page. We urge you to save the directions.

Please arrive before the departure time listed in the trip description. Trips will leave promptly at the time given.

Carpooling is possible, gas and tolls are shared. Contact the trip leader to see if anyone has expressed interest. The trip leader is not responsible for arranging carpools, just giving you names of others who are interested in carpooling.

Registration is necessary. Call the trip leader by 9:00 PM on Thursday for a Saturday trip and by 9:00 PM Friday for a Sunday trip. Be sure to leave your phone number. You may participate if you didn’t register, but we will not be able to notify you of any changes or cancellations without your phone number.

Dress for the weather realizing you’ll be outdoors for long periods of time. Bring water, proper footwear, snacks and if the trip is for a full day, bring a bag lunch. Bring money to cover your share of any carpooling expenses as well as any required entry fees at our destinations.

Rain or temperature below 20° F cancels (sometimes!). Be sure to check our Facebook page the night before or morning of to check if inclement weather has caused us to cancel the trip.

For the health, safety and comfort of all field trip participants, please refrain from smoking or wearing perfumes or colognes on HOBAS field trips


**********

New York Botanical Garden (Bronx)
Saturdays -- 11:00 a.m.
Debbie Becker leads a free bird walk at the Garden every Saturday from 11am to 12:30pm beginning at the Reflecting Pool in the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Included in All-Garden Pass
Get Tickets

**********

New York City Audubon Society
Saturday, February 15, 2020, 9:30am – 4:00pm
Winter Eagles on the Hudson
Guide: Gabriel Willow
Join NYC Audubon in seeking out one of the most incredible avian spectacles in New York: Bald Eagles wintering along the frozen Hudson River by the dozens or even hundreds. We will travel in comfort by Metro-North to Croton Point Park, where we will look for eagles before hiking up to Croton Point to seek out wintering Short-eared and Snowy Owls, Snow Buntings, Horned Larks, and other cold-weather specialties. Limited to 20. Round-trip Metro-North fare ($20.50) not included in trip price. $53 (37)
Click here to register

Sunday, February 16, 2020, 10am – 4pm
Snow Birds of Floyd Bennett Field and Fort Tilden
Guide: Gabriel Willow
Winter brings many rare birds to the City that can’t be found here at any other time. Perhaps most exciting are the “snow birds” of the Arctic tundra, such as Snow Buntings and Snowy Owls, that can occasionally be found in tundra-like habitats further south. Look for these and other winter visitors such as Horned Larks, American Tree Sparrows, and Rough-legged Hawks, as well as wintering ducks, grebes, and loons. Transport by passenger van included. Limited to 12. $100 (70) per walk
Click here to register

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New York City WILD!
Saturday, February 15, 2020, 9:30am
Winter Wonderland & Bald Eagles! Westchester: Georges Island State Park

Sunday, February 16, 2020, 11:00am
Winter Wonderland! Staten Island: Wolfe's Pond Park

For the FULL INFORMATION ABOUT EACH WALK click HERE to take you to the Eventbrite Profile page where you will find all details (scroll down to the thumbnails) for each of the outings and how to SIGN UP !

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South Shore Audubon Society
Sunday, February 16, 2020
Massapequa Lake
Use street parking on the westbound side of Merrick Road. Massapequa Lake is at the south end of Massapequa Preserve, between Lakeshore Boulevard and Ocean Avenue.
Directions via Google Maps

Bird walks led by a member of SSAS are conducted nearly every Sunday morning from late August through early June. Walks are open to the public and are free of charge. We especially encourage youngsters to attend.
All walks start at 9:00 A.M.
There is no walk if it rains or snows or temperature is below 25°F.
For more information or in case of questionable weather conditions, please phone Joe at 516 467-9498.
...Read more

Saturday, February 08, 2020

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, February 7, 2020:

RBA
* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Feb. 07, 2020
* NYNY2002.07

- Birds Mentioned

BARNACLE GOOSE+
THICK-BILLED MURRE+
VARIED THRUSH+
PAINTED BUNTING+
YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD+

(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Greater White-fronted Goose
Canada Goose
Tundra Swan
King Eider
Common Eider
Harlequin Duck
BARROW’S GOLDENEYE
American Bittern
Rough-legged Hawk
Common Gallinule
Razorbill
Black-headed Gull
Iceland Gull
Red-headed Woodpecker
Sedge Wren
Chipping Sparrow
Clay-colored Sparrow
Vesper Sparrow
Grasshopper Sparrow
Orange-crowned Warbler
Nashville Warbler
Common Yellowthroat


If followed by (+) please submit documentation of your report electronically and use the NYSARC online submission form found at http://www.nybirds.org/NYSARC/goodreport.htm

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
Coverage: New York City, Long Island, Westchester County

Transcriber: Gail Benson

[~BEGIN RBA TAPE~]

Greetings! This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, February 7, 2020 at 9:00 pm.

The highlights of today’s tape are PAINTED BUNTING, VARIED THRUSH, YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD, SEDGE WREN, THICK-BILLED MURRE, BARNACLE and GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE, TUNDRA SWAN, BARROW’S GOLDENEYE, KING EIDER and HARLeQUIN DUCK, BLACK-HEADED GULL, CLAY-COLORED, GRASSHOPPER and VESPER SPARROWS and more.

Two lingering Brooklyn highlights feature the female-type PAINTED BUNTING present at least to Wednesday near Pier 4 at Brooklyn Bridge Park and the VARIED THRUSH continuing up to Wednesday around the Nethermead in Prospect Park.

A female-type YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD was seen briefly Sunday in a large foraging flock visiting cornfields off Stephen Hands Path north of Sag Turnpike in East Hampton.

A SEDGE WREN, perhaps the one initially found late last December, has been heard and occasionally seen briefly from Sunday through Wednesday at the Arshamomaque Pond Preserve east of Southold on the North Fork.

Last Saturday afternoon a THICK-BILLED MURRE was spotted on the ocean swimming west off Jones Beach Field 6 and then Sunday morning was seen for a short while along the shoreline and off the seawall on the east side of Jones Inlet before disappearing. Another THICK-BILLED MURRE appeared off Montauk Point last Sunday morning along with a few RAZORBILLS.

A BARNACLE GOOSE was noted last Saturday on the Riverhead sod fields in a CANADA GOOSE flock located off Osborn Avenue south of Sound Avenue.

Today a GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE appeared on the ballfields at Valmont Village Park in Commack with some CANADA GOOSE, and another remains in the Rye area in southern Westchester.

Two TUNDRA SWANS were again on Sagg Pond in Bridgehampton Sunday, with presumably the same two on fields off Cook’s Lane in Watermill last Saturday.

A drake BARROW’S GOLDENEYE was still off Crab Meadow Beach in Northport last Sunday, while last Saturday a pair of BARROW’s occurred off the 3 Mile Harbor side of Sammy’s Beach in East Hampton, with the male noted through Monday.

The female KING EIDER was still along the east side of Shinnecock Inlet with COMMON EIDER through Tuesday, usually best viewed from the east side but also sometimes visible from the west side of the Inlet.

The young male HARLEQUIN DUCK was still around Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn today, and up to four continue off Orient Point, with two or more also around Jones Inlet, often at the Point Lookout jetties.

In Brooklyn an adult BLACK-HEADED GULL visited Prospect Park Lake last Saturday, with sightings also at Sheepshead Bay over last weekend and at Riis Park in Queens today.

An ICELAND GULL also continues to visit Sheepshead Bay, with another appearing on Central Park Reservoir last Saturday.

High counts of RAZORBILLS this week featured thirty off Breezy Point Sunday and six at Riis Park today.

A COMMON GALLINULE was still at Mill Pond Park in Bellmore Tuesday, one or two AMERICAN BITTERNS have been seen regularly off Dune Road west of Shinnecock Inlet, and a ROUGH-LEGGED HAWK was spotted at the Calverton grasslands last Saturday.

Single RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS were still in Central Park and Pelham Bay Park at least to Monday.

A CLAY-COLORED SPARROW was present with CHIPPING SPARROWS at Moravian Cemetery on Staten Island Sunday and Monday, a VESPER SPARROW continued on Randall’s Island at least to Sunday, and a GRASSHOPPER SPARROW was still at Playland Park in Rye Wednesday.

Among this week’s WARBLERS were a couple each of NASHVILLE and COMMON YELLOWTHROAT and three ORANGE-CROWNEDS.

To phone in reports call Tom Burke at (914) 967-4922.

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

- End transcript
...Read more

Monday, February 03, 2020

Upcoming Bird and Nature Trips

Below is a list of upcoming birding and nature trips by local birding/conservation groups for Saturday, February 8, 2020 to Sunday, February 9, 2020:

Bedford Audubon Society
Saturday, February 8, 2020, 9:00am - 4:00pm
EagleFest
New Croton Dam, Croton
Do you know which event was named winner of Hudson Valley Magazine’s “Best Outdoor Winter Event” in 2019?
You guessed it… EagleFest! This Teatown event is a celebration of the Bald Eagle’s return to the Hudson Valley after being on the brink of extinction. Join Naturalist Tait Johansson at Bedford Audubon’s post at the New Croton Dam warming station. We’ll be viewing our nation’s symbol, the Bald Eagle, and monitoring local waterfowl along with other birds.
Cost to visit us at the dam: Free (But there is a charge to the main Teatown event.
(Click Here for info/tickets to that.) Registration with Bedford Audubon not necessary.
See more details

**********

Brooklyn Bird Club
Saturday, February 8, 2020, 8:30am - 12:00pm
“Gull friend Please!” An introductory workshop for winter gulls at Coney Island
Leaders: Bobbi Manian and Dennis Hrehowsik
Focus: Identification of gull species and age groups; waterfowl and beach species
Registrar (for weather alerts): Dennis Hrehowsik email deepseagangster@gmail.com
Registration Period: Feb 1st – Feb 6th
Meet 8:30 am at Dunkin Donuts outside the Stillwell Ave train terminus, located at the corner of Stillwell and Surf Ave (no carpool.)
Note: please submit your cell phone numbers upon registration in case notification of a change due to inclement weather is necessary.

Saturday, February 8, 2020, 12:00pm - 2:00pm
Prospect Park: Birdwatching for Beginners
Leader: Cyrus Baty
Birdwatching for Beginners meets at the Prospect Park Audubon Center at The Boathouse at 12 noon. Bring binoculars if you have them; otherwise, binoculars are available for loan.

**********

Feminist Bird Club
Saturday, February 8, 2020
Pelham Bay Park

All walks follow the ABA Code of Birding Ethics

**********

Green-Wood Cemetery
Sunday, February 9, 2020, 6:45am - 8:15am
Birding in Peace
Before our gates open to the general public, birding expert Rob Jett leads these peaceful Sunday morning walking tours to discover the birds that make Green-Wood their home – some at least temporarily.

Just because it’s winter, doesn’t mean that there aren’t interesting birds to discover in Green-Wood. For some bird species that migrate south after the breeding season, Brooklyn is their Miami during the cold months. Spend the early morning exploring the cemetery, looking for overwintering waterfowl, nuthatches, woodpeckers, sparrows, finches and any half-hardy birds that decided to stick around. By February we’ll see some of the early north-bound birds beginning to trickle back into the area.

All walks are at a slow pace on easy to moderate terrain, but proper, close toed footwear is suggested.
$10 for members of Green-Wood and BHS / $15 for non-members
Click here for our inclement weather policy.


Green-Wood’s official birding checklist is available to pick up from the security guard at the main entrance on 25th Street or to print here. Comfortable footwear is recommended.

**********

Linnaean Society of New York
Saturday, February 8, 2020
Central Park Winter Bird Walk 1
Leader: Richard ZainEldeen
Registrar: Ursula Mitra — ursula.mitra@verizon.net or 212-496-7774
Registration opens: Monday, January 27
Public transportation

**********

New York Botanical Garden (Bronx)
Saturdays -- 11:00 a.m.
Debbie Becker leads a free bird walk at the Garden every Saturday from 11am to 12:30pm beginning at the Reflecting Pool in the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Meet at the Reflecting Pool at the Leon Levy Visitor Center
Included in All-Garden Pass
Get Tickets

**********

New York City Audubon Society
Saturday, February 8, 2020, 9am – 12pm
Winter Walk at Inwood Hill Park
Guide: Nadir Souirgi
Inwood Hill Park, simply put, is a jewel. Nestled between the Hudson River, Dyckman Street, and Seaman Avenue, this last tract of largely undeveloped oak and tulip forest transports you to another world and another time. Glacial "pot holes," towering trees, and stunning river views create an unrivaled birding backdrop.
Limited to 15 per walk. $36 (25) per walk
Click here to register

Sunday, February 9, 2020, 8am – 11am
Bird Walk to Central Park's Ramble and Reservoir
Guide: Tod Winston
Enjoy a morning of birding's simple pleasures with a walk in Central Park in search of wintering songbirds, waterfowl, and raptors. Limited to 15. $36 (25)
Click here to register

**********

New York City WILD!
Saturday, February 8, 2020, 11:00am
Winter Wonderland! Staten Island: Fort Wadsworth to South Beach

For the FULL INFORMATION ABOUT EACH WALK click HERE to take you to the Eventbrite Profile page where you will find all details (scroll down to the thumbnails) for each of the outings and how to SIGN UP !

**********

South Shore Audubon Society
Sunday, February 9, 2020
Jones Beach Coast Guard Station Parking Area
From the Wantagh State Parkway, travel south. Upon entering Jones Beach State Park, exit at Bay Drive and continue west. Turn right (north) at entrance for Coast Guard Station and West End Boat Basin; turn right again for parking.
Directions via Google Maps

Bird walks led by a member of SSAS are conducted nearly every Sunday morning from late August through early June. Walks are open to the public and are free of charge. We especially encourage youngsters to attend.
All walks start at 9:00 A.M.
There is no walk if it rains or snows or temperature is below 25°F.
For more information or in case of questionable weather conditions, please phone Joe at 516 467-9498.


**********

Urban Park Rangers
Saturday, February 8, 2020
Birding: Bald Eagle Watch at Payson Park House (in Inwood Hill Park), Manhattan
9:00 a.m.–10:30 a.m.
New York City is home to an amazing abundance of wildlife. Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle. All skill levels are welcome.
Free!

Birding: Winter Waterfowl at Oriental Boulevard and Falmouth Street (in Manhattan Beach Park), Brooklyn
10:00 a.m.–11:30 a.m.
New York City is home to an amazing abundance of wildlife. Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle.
Free!

Birding: Winter Residents at Van Cortlandt Nature Center (in Van Cortlandt Park), Bronx
11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
New York City is home to an amazing abundance of wildlife. Our Urban Park Rangers will guide you to the best wildlife viewing spots in the urban jungle. All skill levels are welcome.
Free!

Sunday, February 9, 2020
Valentine's Day Hike and Craft at Van Cortlandt Nature Center (in Van Cortlandt Park), Bronx
11:00 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
Join the Rangers on a light winter walk on the lookout for "lovebirds". We will end back at the Nature Center to build your own nature valentine for your sweetheart!
Free!
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Saturday, February 01, 2020

New York City Rare Bird Alert

Below is the New York City Rare Bird Alert for the week ending Friday, January 30, 2020:

- RBA
* New York
* New York City, Long Island, Westchester County
* Jan. 31, 2020
* NYNY2001.31

- Birds mentioned
THICK-BILLED MURRE+
AMERICAN WHITE PELICAN+
BARNACLE GOOSE+
PAINTED BUNTING+
(+ Details requested by NYSARC)

Razorbill
BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKE
GLAUCOUS GULL
ICELAND GULL
Lesser Black-backed Gull
BLACK-HEADED GULL
EURASIAN WIGEON
BARROW'S GOLDENEYE
HARLEQUIN DUCK
GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE
BRANT (subspecies "BLACK" BRANT)
Pink-footed Goose (deceased)
Tundra Swan
RED-HEADED WOODPECKER
VESPER SPARROW
GRASSHOPPER SPARROW
Nashville Warbler
Orange-crowned Warbler
Palm Warbler
VARIED THRUSH

- Transcript

If followed by (+) please submit documentation of your report electronically and use the NYSARC online submission form found at http://www.nybirds.org/NYSARC/goodreport.htm

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

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

Transcriber: Ben Cacace

BEGIN TAPE

Greetings. This is the New York Rare Bird Alert for Friday, January 31st 2020 at 9pm. The highlights of today's tape are PAINTED BUNTING, VARIED THRUSH, AMERICAN WHITE PELICAN, THICK-BILLED MURRE, BARNACLE GOOSE, GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, "BLACK" BRANT, EURASIAN WIGEON, BARROW'S GOLDENEYE, HARLEQUIN DUCK, BLACK-HEADED GULL, GLAUCOUS GULL, ICELAND GULL, BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKE, RED-HEADED WOODPECKER, GRASSHOPPER SPARROW, VESPER SPARROW and more.

This week there have been no reports of the PAINTED BUNTING at Jones Beach but the Brooklyn female plumaged PAINTED BUNTING was seen a few times at Brooklyn Bridge Park spotted Tuesday and Wednesday around Pier 3 after having been noted near Pier 5 last Sunday.

The VARIED THRUSH in Prospect Park remains around the Nethermead Arches and Ravine continuing to be elusive but still being found there with patience through today.

The AMERICAN WHITE PELICAN visiting the Sayville area from Thursday the 23rd was seen Saturday and Sunday around the ponds at the San Souci County Nature Preserve on the north side of Montauk Highway just east of Old Broadway Avenue. The PELICAN was flying about regularly and has not been reported since Sunday though possibly still in the area.

Last Saturday's storm did drive a THICK-BILLED MURRE or two into Long Island Sound with one noted Saturday in Port Jefferson Harbor this followed on Sunday by one photographed near the bridge at Pelham Bay Park adjacent to the landfill and another just beyond the New York line at Greenwich Point in Connecticut. There have been no reports since Sunday.

Last Saturday also produced some RAZORBILLS with 36 counted from Jacob Riis Park and 15 noted off Montauk Point. Single RAZORBILLS occurred off Coney Island Beach in Brooklyn last weekend and off Floyd Bennett Field Thursday and also off Staten Island during the week with one still off Playland Park in Rye today.

It was presumably the same two TUNDRA SWANS from Hook Pond last week that visited Sagg Pond in Bridgehampton last Sunday and as recently as yesterday. Four single GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE were noted this week including at Van Cortlandt Park at least to Wednesday, in the Rye area through today, at Sunken Meadow State Park yesterday and on Short's Pond off Scuttlehole Road in Watermill from Wednesday on. BARNACLE GOOSE was not reported this week but should be looked for at Belmont Lake State Park and in the Riverhead Canada Goose flocks. The previously noted deceased PINK-FOOTED GOOSE was, we've learned, shot in Mattituck on December 7th and is bound for the American Museum of Natural History. A "BLACK" BRANT subspecies was spotted flying up to Floyd Bennett Field and then back out into Jamaica Bay on Thursday. A drake EURASIAN WIGEON continues around the Mill Pond in Centerport. Also noted farther up Centerport Harbor at Fleet's Cove Beach Park on Sunday and the female was seen again Saturday at Bush Terminal Piers Park in Brooklyn. A drake BARROW'S GOLDENEYE continues in the Common Goldeneye flock at Crab Meadow Beach north of Northport and a female was in Orient Bay off the East Marion causeway Tuesday. On Wednesday the immature male HARLEQUIN DUCK was still at Sheepshead Bay and 2 were at the Point Lookout jetties.

Of the gulls an adult BLACK-HEADED visited Sagg Pond Tuesday, a GLAUCOUS was seen Saturday and Thursday around Shinnecock Inlet, ICELAND included immatures on Central Park Reservoir Sunday and in Sheepshead Bay all week. A few LESSER BLACK-BACKED are scattered about the area and 4 BLACK-LEGGED KITTIWAKES were off Montauk Point last Saturday.

RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS continue on Central Park's north end and in Queens southeast of Forest Park with another seen today at Pelham Bay Park.

Continuing are a VESPER SPARROW on Randall's Island and a GRASSHOPPER SPARROW at Playland Park in Rye.

Among several ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLERS continuing locally was one seen today at Flushing Meadows-Corona Park in company with single NASHVILLE WARBLER and PALM WARBLERS.

To phone in reports call Tom Burke at (914) 967-4922.

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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