Hotline: Voice of the Naturalist
Coverage: MD/DC/VA/central and southern DE/WV panhandle
Reports, comments and questions: email@example.com=20
Compiler: Joe Coleman
Sponsor: Audubon Naturalist Society of the Central
Atlantic States (independent of NAS)
Transcriber: Steve Cordle=20
Please consider joining ANS, especially if you are a regular user of
the Voice (Individual $50; Family $65; Nature Steward $100; Audubon
Advocate $200). The membership number is 301-652-9188, option 12; the
address is 8940 Jones Mill Road, Chevy Chase, MD 20815; and the web
site is http://www.AudubonNaturalist.org.
This is the Voice of the Naturalist, a service of the Audubon
Naturalist Society. This report covers the week starting Tuesday, Dec
13 and was completed on Tuesday, Dec 20 at 9:00 a.m.=20
Information on noteworthy birds is presented below in taxonomic order,
as set forth in the American Ornithologists' Union Checklist for North
and Middle American birds, as revised through the 57th Supplement
Every year several rare and unusual birds are found as a result of the
massive effort and the access to locations that are usually not open
to the public occur during the many Christmas Bird Counts that take
place in our area from Dec 14 through Jan 4. This year is no exception
as many of the sightings below from Dec 14 on were found during CBCs
or during scouting before the counts.
Top birds this week were PINK-FOOTED GOOSE* in MD, BARROW'S GOLDENEYE*
in MD, WESTERN GREBE* in VA, CRESTED CARACARA in DE, BLACK-THROATED
GRAY WARBLER* in MD, and BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAK* in MD. =20
Birds of interest this week included geese including GREATER
WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, TRUMPETER SWAN, EURASIAN WIGEON, LONG-TAILED
DUCK, RED-NECKED GREBE, RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRD, SANDHILL CRANE, AMERICAN
AVOCET, gulls including BLACK-HEADED, ICELAND and GLAUCOUS, GREAT
CORMORANT, AMERICAN WHITE PELICAN, BROWN PELICAN, AMERICAN BITTERN,
herons, NORTHERN SHRIKE, BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE, SEDGE WREN, SNOW
BUNTING, warblers including ORANGE-CROWNED, NASHVILLE, and WILSON'S,
YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT, sparrows including LE CONTE'S and LINCOLN'S,
DICKCISSEL, and BALTIMORE ORIOLE.=20
Two PINK-FOOTED GEESE*, mixed in with a flock of Canada Geese, were
found and photographed on Dec 18 next to a pond about =BD way down
Reese's Corner Rd, Kent County, MD ; they have not been relocated
Just in time to be counted for the Pt Lookout CBC on Dec 18, the drake
BARROW'S GOLDENEYE* returned for the 6th year to the Elm's
Environmental Education Center, St. Mary's Co, MD; it was seen again
on Dec 19.
A WESTERN GREBE was spotted Dec 17 in Chisman Creek off the pier at
the Dare Marina, 821 Railway Rd, Yorktown, VA.
On Dec 18 a CRESTED CARACARA was seen and photographed in flight at
Gordons Pond, Cape Henlopen SP, DE.
The continuing BLACK-THROATED GRAY WARBLER* was again seen at Tydings
Memorial Park, Harford Co, MD with reports as recently as Dec 19.
A BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAK*, first seen visiting a feeder at a private
residence in St. Mary's Co, MD on Dec 13, was seen by numerous birders
as recently as Dec 19.
OTHER BIRDS OF INTEREST
On December 4 four GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE visited Shearness Pool
at Bombay Hook NWR, Kent Co, DE. On Dec 18 a flock of 13 GREATER
WHITE-FRONTED GEESE was found at Sherwood Lakes, Virginia Beach, VA. A
single GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE was found close-by on Dec 16 at
Haviland Dr. On December 13 one and on 14 two GREATER WHITE-FRONTED
GEESE were seen from McHenry in Deep Creek Lake, Garrett Co, MD. A
GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE was found Dec 19 at Chesapeake Farm, Kent
Co, MD. A flock of 7 GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE were reported off of
Rock Hill Rd, Chestertown, Kent Co, MD. Both ROSS'S GEESE and CACKLING
GEESE turned up at a number of locations in both MD and VA this past
The longstanding tagged TRUMPETER SWAN that frequents Lake Churchill
and nearby Gunner's Lake in Montgomery Co, MD was reported as recently
as Dec 16. A TRUMPETER SWAN was also seen throughout the week at Lake
Artemesia, Prince George's Co, MD.
A EURASIAN WIGEON was seen Dec 13 at Battle Royal Circle Virginia
Beach, VA. A drake EURASIAN WIGEON was found Dec 18 at the private
(restricted access) Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary, Montgomery Co, MD.
One was also seen during the Seneca CBC on Dec 18 at Sycamore Landing,
C&O Canal, Montgomery Co, MD. On Dec 14 four LONG-TAILED DUCKS were
seen in Deep Creek Lake from McHenry, Garrett Co, MD.=20
Two RED-NECKED GREBES were seen Dec 19 in Loch Raven Reservoir,
Baltimore Co, MD from Loch Raven Pt.
The continuing young female RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRD was seen in Wildewood,
St. Mary's Co, MD through Dec 16. Another female RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRD is
visiting a feeder on Candymint Ln, Westminster, Carroll Co, MD with
reports from Dec 13 to the 16th.
SANDHILL CRANES turned up at a variety of locations in both MD and VA
this past week. On Dec 15 a flock of 13 flew across I-95 heading NW on
the Baltimore Co, MD side of Little Gunpowder. Two were seen Dec 15 at
the Algonkian Nature Preserve, Loudon Co, VA. Five were seen on Dec 16
in a cornfield at the Blandy Experimental Farm, Clarke Co, VA. Twenty
SANDHILL CRANES flew from Montgomery Co, MD to Howard Co, VA near the
Triadelphia Reservoir on Dec 17. A flock of between 16 and 28 SANDHILL
CRANES was seen in a farm field along Bradshaw Rd near Kingsville,
Baltimore Co, MD on Dec 18 and 19. Four SANDHILL CRANES were seen Dec
19 at the junction of Routes 47, 15, and 360 in Charlotte Co, VA.=20
Sixty-two AMERICAN AVOCETS were seen Dec 15 at the Craney Island
Disposal Area, Portsmouth, VA.=20
On Dec 17 a BLACK-HEADED GULL was seen Dec 17 at the treatment plant
from behind the shopping center at Rte 404 and Legion Rd in Caroline
Co, MD. A LAUGHING GULL was seen Dec 18 on the Chester River from the
Cliffs City (Kent Co) landing. Other LAUGHING GULL sightings included
a flock at the Eastern Sanitary Landfill (restricted access),
Baltimore Co, MD, on Dec 13 and 14. Also at the Eastern Sanitary
Landfill was an ICELAND GULL on Dec 13 and 14. A first-year GLAUCOUS
GULL was found Dec 16 on the mud flats east of the Hunting Creek
Bridge, Fairfax Co, VA.
Two GREAT CORMORANTS flew north past Eastern Neck Island, Kent Co, MD
on Dec 18.
On Dec 18 an AMERICAN WHITE PELICAN was seen at Hog Island WMA, Surry
Co, VA. An AMERICAN WHITE PELICAN was seen Dec 18 and 19 at Perryville
Community Park, Cecil Co, MD. Out-of-season BROWN PELICANS continued
to be seen in MD along and near the Chesapeake Bay.=20
An AMERICAN BITTERN was seen Dec 18 in Black Marsh at North Point SP,
Baltimore, MD. A well-documented GREEN HERON plus 4 BLACK-CROWNED
NIGHT-HERONS, were seen at Ben Brenman Park, Alexandria, VA as part of
the D.C. CBC on Dec 17.
SHORT-EARED OWLS were seen throughout the week at the Konterra Dr
fields and ponds, Prince George's Co, MD. Six SHORT-EARED OWLS were
seen Dec 16 near the intersection of Milldale Rd, Rte 624 and Stone
Bridge Rd, Rte 644 in Warren Co, VA just past Gate #2 of Milldale Farm
Both continuing NORTHERN SHRIKES, the one at the Sully Woodlands in
=46airfax Co, VA, and the one along 123-132 Bens Point Road in Queen
Anne's Co, MD, were seen again this past week, the former as recently
as the 16th and the latter through the 19th.
The irruption of BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEES continues with widely
scattered sightings throughout the region.
A SEDGE WREN was found Dec 18 at the Eastern Neck NWR, Kent Co, MD;
the same day another one was found at Jamestown Island, James City Co,
The SNOW BUNTINGS at Point Lookout SP, St. Mary's Co, MD, were seen as
recently as Dec 18.
Also found on the D.C. CBC on Dec 17 was a videoed OVENBIRD foraging
near the entrance to the American Indian Museum. Several
ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLERS were seen this past week including 7 on the
Hopewell (VA) CBC on Dec 18. An ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER was found Dec
17 along the bike path north of the Belle Haven picnic grounds,
=46airfax Co, VA. Another was seen at Blandair, Howard Co, MD on Dec 14.
And on Dec 18 in DE, 2 ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLERS were seen at Shearness
Pool, Bombay Hook NWR, Kent Co, and one at Lebanon Landing, Kent Co. A
NASHVILLE WARBLER was seen Dec 14 at Upper NW Branch Park, Montgomery
Co, MD. Another NASHVILLE WARBLER was seen Dec 18 at Cogins Pt, Prince
George County, VA. The continuing WILSON'S WARBLER at the south end of
the picnic area at Dyke Marsh WP, Fairfax Co, VA was seen again on Dec
17. A YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT was found Dec 18 at Back Bay NWR, Virginia
Beach, VA. =20
A LE CONTE'S SPARROW was photographed Dec 18 on Lowe's Island, Loudoun
Co, VA during the Seneca CBC; the same day another one was
photographed on the Beasley Tract, Princess Anne WMA, Virginia Beach,
VA. During the Hopewell (VA) CBC a CLAY-COLORED SPARROW was found Dec
18 at Curles Neck Farm (restricted access), Henrico Co, VA. A
LINCOLN'S SPARROW was found Dec 13 at the Swan Creek Wetlands/Cox
Creek DMCF, Anne Arundel Co, MD. =20
A continuing DICKCISSEL was seen again Dec 13 at a residential feeder
in Charlottesville, VA.=20
Two BREWER'S BLACKBIRDS were found Dec 17 along Sanger's Ln, Augusta
BALTIMORE ORIOLES continued to turn up at a number of locations. =20
This week's report was based on reports on the DE, MD, VA, and WV list
servers, eBird records and various birding pages on Facebook.
The Audubon Sanctuary Shop (301-652-3606, http://anshome.org/shop)is
an excellent source for guidebooks and many other nature-related
To report bird sightings, e-mail your report to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please post reports before midnight Monday, identify the county as
well as the state, and include your name and a Tuesday morning
contact, e-mail or phone.
Thank you for your interest, and enjoy the birds.
*Of interest to the applicable state records committee
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