New York County (in N.Y. City) including Manhattan, Randall's, & Governors 
Tues., May 25th through Thursday, May 27th -

On the shift in wind and after evening storms passed through the area on Wed. 
night, Thursday featured a somewhat broader array of typical May migrants, & 
while the emphasis continued on the later-moving species, a diversity of 
migrants were seen around the county. At least 21 warbler species were found in 
Central Park alone on Thursday, and there also were some warbler species 
showing in smaller parks & green-spaces that had not been seen (or not much) 
over prior most-recent days. 

Some further highlights:  Olive-sided Flycatchers, Empidonax [genus] 
flycatchers including Acadian, Yellow-bellied, & Willow/Alder (sometimes still 
called "Traill's" to denote the possibility of either one of the 2 preceding 
species when they are not vocalizing) Flycatchers. However, these species have 
all been found (in some places, not all locations!) to be singing & seen doing 
so (eliminating any chances that any person is anywhere playing a song via any 
devices) by multiple observers in the period of this report. Still the toughest 
to come by (among the regular five species in the genus Empidonax) at least in 
N.Y. County (it's seemed - although the species is *not* a rare bird, rather 
one of the tougher ones to ID here) are (singing) Alder Flycatchers. This 
species & other flycatchers have received a bit more attention for this week, 
in part thanks to it being less-busy-looking-for some of the many other 
migrants, so many of which had been present & in good variety & numbers over 
recently-past weeks.  A modest increase in E. Wood-Pewee song & sightings have 
also occurred in this report's period.  Olive-sided Flycatchers continued in a 
few locations, including one at the same site where many dozens of birders have 
found it this week within the Central Park Ramble; others also in other parks.

All five of the northeastern-breeding Empidonax species have been found - & 
documented, with songs heard - in N.Y. County, starting at least by 5/26, and 
with more observations for more birders by Thurs., 5/27.  An Alder Flycatcher 
which happily remained in the same area from Wed. to Thursday was in the n. end 
of Central Park, with multiple observers by Thursday (& thanks to L. LaBella 
for the heads-up to many), while also being seen in that park were 
Yellow-bellied (& previously seen singing as well), Willow (same comment), & 
Acadian (same) Flycatchers.  The one species that may have almost-all moved on, 
of the five Empidonax expected is Least Flycatcher, which is also usually the 
earliest of the genus to arrive in the region.  All of these 5 Empidonax have 
been in other parks as well, and could be in more sites than realized in the 
county, as the migrations of that genus continue. Also present in at least a 
few parks have been Olive-sided Flycatchers, and some of them vocal at times 
(at least calling, if not giving much song).  Additionally it can be added that 
the other NYC counties & their birders have been finding most or all of the 
preceding flycatcher species this week, if not previously. One of the ‘tougher’ 
flycatchers to find in late May & on thru summer in N.Y. County can be E. 
Phoebe, but a few are present.  Some of the Empidonax have also been occuring 
in parks other than Central in N.Y. County, & on the outlying islands of the 

Also coming through have been Mourning Warblers, with at least a few being 
found -and some singing heard- at times and some views obtained, especially for 
those patiently, quietly watching and listening.  While warblers have certainly 
thinned out in both diversity and overall numbers, they are still being found 
in doube-digit species-numbers overall, in the county. Indeed, on Thursday 
5/27, at least 22 species of warblers were still in N.Y. County, and of those, 
at least 21 species were found in Central Park alone on the day. Further, a 
number of species that are typically less-easy to find by this date, were still 
being seen in the multiple, in addition to expected later-moving species. 
Blackpoll Warbler continues as about the most-numerous migrant warbler now, 
while American Redstart has also been quite numerous. Also still rather 
numerous & likely represented by some individuals that will linger & attempt to 
breed in the county are Yellow Warblers, some of which also will go on to very 
far-north breeding destinations - some birders aren't aware that (some of) that 
species comes to essentially-Arctic destinations on their full breeding range - 
in the farthest northeast; (some of) these make it to Labrador (where I've 
camped among them on willow-flats & ridges, ripe with many biting insects which 
however also make for lush food for many birds).

As we get closer to June, it will be interesting to see what migrants are still 
coming along.  There have been Mourning Warblers (just as one example) still 
moving through south Texas in the period of this report.  There are still as 
many as a dozen species of migrant warblers which breed in Canada (and/or in 
the northern portions of eastern U.S.) passing through the U.S. southern states 
this week, a majority of those not breeding in those (southern-most) states.  

[And incidentally, while the appearance of multiple Mourning Warblers etc. is a 
fine day for N.Y. County, a singing male Connecticut Warbler in Centre County, 
Pennsylvania is a far-rarer thing in the east in spring, at least that "far" 
east (and that location is not so far south from a broad swath of central N.Y. 
state). The latter species does make the occasional-&-scarce appearance in 
spring in the northeastern U.S., and is a typically very late spring migrant - 
don't stop listening. The Centre County, PA bird was audio-recorded & reported 

An Eastern Bluebird was an unusually-late stop-in at Central Park, back on 
Saturday, 5/22 (T. Healy) in Central Park. That sighting however was indicative 
of a fair number of later-lingering migrants or stop-overs running late, for 
the month of May.  There also have been a very few late Hermit Thrush around, 
although the latter has at least occasionally been found lingering on Manhattan 
into June (the species breeds in some areas within 50 miles of the county). The 
dominant migrant thrush hereabouts has been Swainson's Thrush, while a few 
Veery also were still pushing through, & we have our multiple Wood Thrushes 
which attempt to nest, hopefully with success, in the county. And the expected 
later-moving species Gray-cheeked and (at least by likelihood of passage now) 
Bicknell's Thrush[es] are each moving through, although almost-only the former 
have been fully-confidently ID'd by any number of observers, the usual 
situation for the former's (sightings) in this county.

On Wed., 5/26, there were at least seven Great Egrets at one portion of the 
Central Park reservoir’s shore early in the day, & also found there were a 
fairly high number of Spotted Sandpipers, most of which seemed to have moved on 
by later the same day; also present were 2 modestly-late Solitary Sandpipers, 
which were even more skittish and active than the 8+ Spotted SP’s, and were 
possibly already about to move on by rather early in the day.  Depsite a walk 
of all of the reservoir’s perimeter, no other shorebird species were detected - 
& the water levels have been high, although the rocky shoreline can nonetheless 
harbor birds in & around a lot of vegetation.  A drake Wood Duck I’ve mentioned 
previously was continuing at the reservoir in Central, & has been seen & 
photo’d. as well by many other birders thru this week.

Many Cedar Waxwings have been passing through & also stopping in at times.  On 
Wednesday early morning, I watched *one flock of more than 150* come in from 
north of the park, and come to a tree on the south side of the Meer, in 
(Manhattan's) Central Park, which was (by far!) the largest single group of the 
species I have seen so far this year.  Also at about the same time, a small 
group of 5 female Blackpoll Warblers in one tree (also by the Central Park 
Meer) was a sign of where the migration is getting to in its' May-days 
wind-down... or is it winding-down?  We shall see.  In a general way, some of 
the recently-flowering trees of the area have been productive all this week 
(and some in preceding days also) with various locust species, Tulip-Poplar, 
and at least several other trees found in local parks and green-spaces being 
worth 2nd & 3rd looks. for migrant song (and other) birds.  A good many of 
these kinds of trees are also found a bit off the well-trodden paths of 
birders, while some are very much-known & are watched by many.  In N.Y. County 
overall, there are still multiple Orchard Orioles, & some of these may stay for 
nesting - there are a few of that species lingering in Central Park & at more 
than 2 locations. Baltimore Orioles are set-up for nesting in multiple sites 
and more may yet do so.  We also still have modest no’s. of Scarlet Tanagers, 
Rose-breasted Grosbeaks, & Indigo Buntings in scattered locations.  A few of 
the still-lingering sparrow migrants being found include Swamp as well as 
Lincoln’s Sparrow; the multiple White-throated Sparrows that are still in 
various sites in the county might include some that will summer, as happens 
each year with at least a few of the latter, however with no breeding being 
inferred at all.  And there are a variety of other migrants still passing, and 
even a few that are certainly running “late” for this county, by now.

Below are the warbler species seen in Central Park on Thursday, 5/27:

Blue-winged Warbler (one, & a bit late but not unpredentedly so)
Tennessee Warbler (still in the multiple, but now with females so less vocal, 
and rather tricky to find)
Nashville Warbler (uncommon now, but more than 2)
Northern Parula
Yellow Warbler (still in numbers, and some in other parts of the county may 
also be potential nesters)
Chestnut-sided Warbler
Magnolia Warbler (still in the many multiple)
Cape May Warbler
Black-throated Blue Warbler
Black-throated Green Warbler
Blackburnian Warbler
Bay-breasted Warbler
Blackpoll Warbler (the most-numerous warbler now overall)
Black-and-white Warbler
American Redstart (still numerous overall)
Northern Waterthrush
Mourning Warbler (minimum of 4 males present in Central Park, with at least 3 
in the north end of that park)
Common Yellowthroat (this species has bred or attempted to in the modern 
era/this century in Central Park)
Wilson's Warbler
Canada Warbler

At least 18 of the above species were found in the Ramble as well as its 
immediate vicinity such as the s. side of Turtle Pond, the area around the 
Castle, and along the lake’s shores.

Additionally (& not in Central Park) were a few lingering or ‘late’ 
Yellow-rumped [Myrtle] Warblers, in other locations in the county. None of the 
above are unpredecently late for the county, although some are certainly well 
past their peak days of migratory passage for here. A majority of these were in 
the multiple & in fact just one species - Blue-winged, may have been seen only 
as a singleton.  A number of the above migrant species were still passing 
through southern states as of this week, and many will be working their way 
further on northward.

good birding to all,

Tom Fiore


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