Thanks for sharing this spectacular record, Willie, as well as all the other
great highlights from the swamps!
Gull-billed Tern was reported by DeKay (1844) to occur around the Great Lakes
in New York State, at a time when it was not known from Long Island (e.g., by
Giraud). DeKay's vague statement is shared by Eaton (1910) but was ignored by
It's interesting to note that this species, like Caspian Tern, has an
inexplicable geographic distribution--practically cosmopolitan, but highly
localized within almost every larger region.
[bounce-124653609-11143...@list.cornell.edu] on behalf of Willie D'Anna
Sent: Monday, May 25, 2020 3:28 PM
Subject: [nysbirds-l] Amazing Cayuga Pool in Genesee County and other rarities
Congratulations to Peter Yoerg on one of the best finds ever in Western NY
(yesterday evening) – an adult in breeding plumage GULL-BILLED TERN. With
little information to go on other than somewhere in Iroquois NWR, Josh Ketry
was out at Cayuga Pool early this morning and he relocated, photographed, and
confirmed the identification of the tern. Many birders have been able to see it
so far today. The bird spends its time sitting in and flying over Cayuga Pool,
as well as nearby Kumpf Marsh. At Cayuga Pool, it is usually off to the back
left (not the extreme left) and can be difficult to see because of cattails
when sitting. It is much easier to see in flight. A scope is highly recommended.
Cayuga Pool is being drained, which we have learned over the years can be very
productive for birds. Other birds at Cayuga Pool today were: the continuing
SNOWY EGRET found by Josh Ketry and singing young male ORCHARD ORIOLE, a GLOSSY
IBIS (found by Josh Ketry and identified by Chris Wood), two WILSON’S
PHALAROPES found by Mike Morgante, a WHIMBREL found by Joe Mitchell, and about
300 shorebirds, mostly Semipalmated Sandpipers, with some Semi Plovers, Least
Sandpipers, Dunlin, one Pectoral Sandpiper, and a few Short-billed Dowitchers.
My thanks to Andy Guthrie for the shorebird report.
At nearby Tonawanda WMA, the CATTLE EGRET found by Bev Seyler two days ago
continues. It was seen from the north-south dike through Ruddy Marsh West
(access from Rt 77) and also seen back where it was discovered, at Paddy 2
(access from Griswold St) and most recently, on the dike between Paddys 3 and
4. Maps of Tonawanda WMA may be found online at the DEC web site, here:
At about 1:15 today, Joe Mitchell had an adult SWAINSON’S HAWK fly over his
home in Alden, Erie County, heading northeast. Perhaps someone will get lucky
and see it at the swamps and hopefully, David Brown will get it at the Braddock
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