New York County, including Manhattan, N.Y. City -
Friday, 12 April to Tuesday, 16 April, 2019

Migration happens. Locally, last Friday night featured a good push, and then 
Saturday night a situation with some stormy weather that may have contributed 
to a very unexpected even for Manhattan - a genuine rarity from out of its 
usual range, even if semi-regular up the east coast of North America at some 
time during each year.

The White-winged Dove found on Sunday 4/14 (& only on that day) in Central 
Park’s Ramble, at the feeding station & vicinity was the obvious highlight of 
the period, for all of New York County.  Although the White-winged Dove was not 
relocated on Monday or since reported, it could still be present in that park 
or in some other part of N.Y. County.  A nice consolation on Monday, 4/15 for 
Central Park was the discovery of a pair of Blue-winged Teal, a species that 
was never particularly expected in that park, & had been increasingly tough to 
find in recent years; this find was on the Lake in Central Park, conveniently 
close to where many birders go at most times of year, the Ramble.  There were 
more observers of the rare-for-New York dove, but a fair number who managed to 
see the 2 teal.

A few other White-winged Doves got to almost as far north (in other states) as 
this one did in recent days, but none as far east as well as north. There was 
at least a modest push of the species into the midwestern states, and one that 
showed up at Rondeau Provincial Park, Ontario (Canada) provided the 
most-northerly of any so far this spring of this species - the latter was seen 
there in the past week. Far more were in U.S. states a bit farther west, or 
much farther south.

(Worth a note that a female Evening Grosbeak was found in Prospect Park, 
Brooklyn/Kings Co., NYC on 4/14 by L. Ewing. This species has, rarely, occurred 
in N.Y. City into May, and this past winter, there were some in multiple states 
well to the south of NY, including at least a few which may yet be present to 
the south of NYS.)

It appears that a fairly widespread -if perhaps a bit diffuse- migration that 
included a variety of neotropical-wintering species came into NY in the last 
week, with a good indicator of this being the arrival & passage -in small 
numbers- of Chimney Swift, which passed thru Manhattan by Friday, 4/12. (This 
also could indicate the potential now for Caprimulgid spp. to have arrived - & 
the most-likely of those would be Eastern Whip-poor-will at this fairly early 
stage of spring. Indeed some of the latter have already been noted from points 
far north of NYC.)

Blue-headed Vireo arrived in Central Park by Friday, 4/12, and a few more 
sightings came for the weekend there, & elsewhere in N.Y. County. (The species 
had also been detected at least 100 miles to the north of NYC by Sunday, 4/14). 
 (Of note was a rather early Yellow-throated Vireo detected & photographed at 
Calvert Vaux Park in Brooklyn/Kings Co., NYC by Alex Wilson on 4/14; the bird 
also re-found later the same day by R. Manian & D. Hrehowsik. This a bit more 
unusual than the White-eyed Vireo that was seen in Brooklyn on 4/16, the latter 
being a species that’s overwintered in Kings County.)

2 Wild Turkeys, previously reported in northern Manhattan, made additional 
forays in that section of Manhattan thru at least Sat. 4/13 & may well try & 
work the neighborhood parks there for some while. There once were a few 
semi-resident turkeys in a couple of places in that neighborhood, including at 
Inwood Hill Park, where 2 were found on 4/13.  

Green Heron[s] arrived at least by Sunday, 4/14 in Central Park, & have also 
been seen in locations to the north & west in NY state. 

The 3 most-regularly-seen swallow species have been moving thru Manhattan, but 
in what seem to be sparse numbers on any given day - those being Tree, Northern 
Rough-winged, & [form erythrogaster] Barn Swallows. All 6 of the breeding 
swallow & martin species of NY state have been seen by now north to near or on 
the NY-Canada border.

The first Broad-winged Hawks (plural) of the year arrived in NY County airspace 
on Monday, 4/15, & some more moved thru on Tuesday. (The first B.-w. Hawks of 
the year at some of NY state’s Great Lakes watch-sites were seen on Sat., 4/13 
- such as at Hamburg, NY & the Braddock Bay observatory, while at Ripley, NY & 
also at Derby Hill, 2 appeared by April 12th. The first B.-w. Hawks had reached 
southern Maine by as early as April 11th this spring.)  Turkey Vultures 
continue to move, and there have been a few sightings of Black Vulture as well.

An unusual location for Marsh Wren was the one sighted at Union Square Park in 
lower Manhattan on Monday, 4/15, & reported by Alice Deutsch.  House Wrens have 
been in Manhattan for at least a few days; there were a few slightly earlier 
reports of the latter and more recently an obvious uptick in their numbers. 
Winter Wrens also continued, as have Carolina Wrens.

Not surprisingly for mid-April, nice sparrow variety has been observed by many 
in N.Y. County and Manhattan, with Chipping, Field, Savannah, [Red] Fox, Song, 
Swamp, & White-throated Sparrow[s] plus Slate-colored Junco all represented, 
and a few reports of White-crowned Sparrow. Eastern Towhee numbers also have 
been increasing further.   Purple Finches have been appearing in modest numbers 
on some recent days.

The following (at least nine) warbler species had been found as of Tues., 4/16 
in New York County, all on Manhattan island:  Northern Parula, Hooded, 
Yellow-rumped [Myrtle], Pine, Palm, and Black-and-white Warbler[s], Ovenbird, 
Northern Waterthrush, & Louisiana Waterthrush. None of these (including the 
Hooded Warbler) constitute earliest-ever date records for either Manhattan nor 
for Central Park.  However, a few of these species are slightly early in 
comparison to both historic average early arrival dates, & also (more so) by 
comparison with records of long-term average peak dates.  

Among species seen in the period Friday-Tuesday, 4/12 thru 4/16 were:

Red-throated Loon
Common Loon
Pied-billed Grebe
Horned Grebe
Double-crested Cormorant
Great Blue Heron
Great Egret
Green Heron
Black-crowned Night-Heron
Yellow-crowned Night-Heron
Black Vulture
Turkey Vulture
Canada Goose
Atlantic Brant
Mute Swan
Wood Duck
American Wigeon
American Black Duck
Blue-winged Teal
Northern Shoveler
Green-winged Teal
Hooded Merganser
Ruddy Duck
Bald Eagle
Northern Harrier
Sharp-shinned Hawk
Cooper's Hawk
Broad-winged Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
Wild Turkey
American Coot
Greater Yellowlegs
American Woodcock
Laughing Gull
Ring-billed Gull
[American] Herring Gull
Great Black-backed Gull
['feral'] Rock Pigeon
Mourning Dove
American Kestrel
Peregrine Falcon
Great Horned Owl
Eastern Screeech-owl
Chimney Swift
Belted Kingfisher
Red-bellied Woodpecker
Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Yellow-shafted Flicker
Eastern Phoebe
Blue-headed Vireo
Blue Jay
Common Raven
American Crow
Fish Crow
Tree Swallow
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Barn Swallow [form erythrogaster]
Black-capped Chickadee
Tufted Titmouse
Red-breasted Nuthatch
White-breasted Nuthatch
Brown Creeper
Carolina Wren
House Wren
Winter Wren
Marsh Wren
Golden-crowned Kinglet
Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Gray Catbird (likely still just overwintered individuals)
Northern Mockingbird
Brown Thrasher
European Starling
Cedar Waxwing
Eastern Towhee
Chipping Sparrow
Field Sparrow
Savannah Sparrow
[Red] Fox Sparrow
Song Sparrow
Swamp Sparrow
White-throated Sparrow
White-crowned Sparrow (reported)
Slate-colored Junco
Northern Cardinal
Red-winged Blackbird
Common Grackle
Brown-headed Cowbird
Purple Finch
House Finch
American Goldfinch
House Sparrow
Northern Parula
Yellow-rumped [Myrtle] Warbler
Pine Warbler
Palm Warbler
Black-and-white Warbler
Northern Waterthrush
Louisiana Waterthrush
Hooded Warbler
Hermit Thrush
American Robin
& perhaps some additional species.

good spring birding,

Tom Fiore


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