The 2018 Cayuga Lake Basin First Records tables are up & running on the Cayuga 
Bird Club website Resources page here:

First, sorry for the delay. I prefer - but failed for awhile - to keep the list 
up to date so that everyone can easily look up what species have been found in 
what sort of place and who had the knack for finding them soonest in case they 
have any hints. The delay was because I took so long to revise the checklist 
upon which the yearly first records list is based. There were several reasons 
for the revision. 

First, the official taxonomic order has changed in several places. The new 
order now conforms with the current order in eBird.

Second, I went through eBird’s records to ensure that everything eBird had 
recorded for the Basin historically was on our list. 

Third, there are species that have shown up regionally but not shown up in the 
Basin - yet. These species may be of interest to many local birders. They won’t 
be checked off until they show up in the Basin, but perhaps some of them will 
show up here, because of their propensity to wander to the region and 
preference for habitats we may share. When that happens, I will celebrate not 
just the arrival of a new species but the fact that it can be included without 
another checklist revision!

Fourth, I wanted to indicate where in the region these as-yet out-of-basin-only 
species have been found. Paul Anderson, who does the web work for the club, has 
added a column on the Taxonomic table called “Notes”. One or more county names 
are listed in that column to the left of those species’ names. In one case, 
Trindade Petrel, a town name, Caroline, is listed instead, because the bird was 
found there within Tompkins County but outside of the Cayuga Lake Basin. For 
species with few or single records, a year or years follows the county name(s). 

Fifth, I wanted to indicate the rarity of some species which have been found in 
the basin. Species for which there are few or single records within the basin 
are preceded simply by year(s) they were found in the Basin, with no county 
name(s) listed. Some show interesting patterns. 

Sixth, Paul has made the Taxonomic table much easier to read by putting the 
Family names as headers, and by having the rows for species alternate white and 
gray. I want to emphasize that he did this, as well as cleaning up my work, 
very quickly and was not the cause of the delay.  

Anyway, the list is up, and filled in for the 120 species I’ve heard about in 
the Basin so far. Where the observer and location say “Ithaca CBC”, that means 
that multiple parties found the species in multiple places on January first, 
during our local Christmas Bird Count. The designation is a bit Ithaca-centric, 
but it’s a way of indicating that a species is generally already in the basin 
at the beginning of the year. If only one party discovered a species on 1 
January, then that party and the location are listed. For species only found 
outside the Ithaca CBC circle or after 1 January I try to list multiple parties 
of observers and locations of the birds if the observations occurred on the 
same day. 

As always, please let me know if some information looks wrong, or something is 
missing, or someone was left out. And please let me know when you are aware of 
a new species for 2018 found somewhere in the Cayuga Lake Basin. I try to keep 
an eye on eBird reports for the five counties which comprise most of the Basin, 
and reports on CayugaBirds-L, but sometimes things slip by. Thanks. 

- - Dave Nutter

- - Dave Nutter

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