Date: 12/25/18 8:47 am
From: Lydia Schindler <lydia13621...>
Subject: [MDBirding]
Hotline: Voice of the Naturalist
Date: 12/25/2018
Coverage: MD/DC/VA/central and southern DE/WV panhandle
Reports, comments, questions: <voice...>
Compilers: Rick and Nancy Sussman
Sponsor: Audubon Naturalist Society of the Central
Atlantic States (independent of NAS)
Transcriber: Steve Cordle

Please consider joining ANS, especially if you are a regular user of the
Voice of the Naturalist (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

This is the Voice of the Naturalist, a service of the Audubon Naturalist
Society. This report covers the week starting Tuesday, December 18, and was
completed on Tuesday, December 25, at 9:00 a.m.

Information on noteworthy birds is presented below in taxonomic order, as
set forth in the American Ornithological Society Checklist for North and
Middle American Birds, as revised through the 59th Supplement (June 2018).


Other Birds of Interest include: SNOW GOOSE, GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE,
ORANGE-CROWNED and other out-of-season warblers, ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK,


The WHITE-WINGED DOVE*, a bird of the desert SW, that has been visiting a
feeder in Claytor Lake, Pulaski Co, VA, continued daily Dec 18-21.

The now locally famous CALLIOPE HUMMINGBIRD*, a hatch-year male, continues
to visit several feeders in a yard at 77 Dogwood Tree Lane, Cape St.
Claire, Anne Arundel Co, MD through Dec 23. The owners ask that visitors
come between 9 am and 4 pm, stay on the cement pad on the left side of the
backyard, do not park in front of the home across the street, close the
gate, and sign the guest book.

A BAR-TAILED GODWIT*, likely the same individual seen in the spring, was
found again during a shorebird survey at Chincoteague NWR, Accomack Co, VA
on Dec 18 and 19.

A SAY’S PHOEBE* was found mid-day on Dec 24 along Sandiges Road (Rt 610) in
Amherst Co (north of Lynchburg), VA. The bird was hanging around a brush
pile near an old barn about 0.4 miles from US Rt 60. It flew back and forth
across the road a few times then flew out of sight and was not relocated.

A vagrant GREAT TIT* (Parus major), a Eurasian native related to our
titmouse, was photographed at a feeder on the naval base in Norfolk, VA.
Its provenance has not been determined, but it was very likely

A male VARIED THRUSH*, normally found in the western U.S. and Canada, was
seen and photographed in a front yard on Philip Dr, St. Mary’s Co, MD on
Dec 22, for a first county record, and if accepted by the MDDC Records
Committee, a fifth state record. The bird was relocated on Dec 23 in the
woods on the left side of the house at 22070 Philip Drive in Leonardtown,
MD, and again in the same neighborhood on Dec 24. The (extremely welcoming)
homeowners request that birders come between 8 am and 4 pm, and park along
the left side of the road between the first house on Philip and this house
(both houses are on the left side). If that space is full, please try to
avoid parking directly in front of another house.


A large flock of 250-300 SNOW GEESE were seen in flight, away from the bay,
at Dutch Gap Conservation Area-Henricus Historical Park, Chesterfield Co,
VA on Dec 22. A lone GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE, lingering for the past
two weeks, was seen again at Fallston Road Pond in Harford Co, MD on Dec
18. A CACKLING GOOSE was reported at Ocean Lakes High School in Virginia
Beach, VA on Dec 22, another was seen on Dec 22-23 at Cumberland-Terminus,
Allegany Co, MD, and another was found on Dec 24 at Belle Haven Park-North
Parking area, Fairfax Co, VA.

A TRUMPETER SWAN (wing tag #T87) remains on Lake Artemesia, with sightings
Dec 18-24. A pair of TRUMPETER SWANS were at the Patuxent Research
Refuge-North Tract, Anne Arundel Co, MD on Dec 21, and two continued on
Lake Brittle in Fauquier Co, VA on Dec 22.

A REDHEAD was seen in western MD at Rocky Gap SP, Allegany Co, on Dec
21-23. A first year male COMMON EIDER was spotted again at Phoebus
Waterfront Park, Hampton, VA on Dec 22. On Dec 18, 19, 22, and 23, a pair
of SURF SCOTERS were seen, continuing from last week, at Lake Frederick,
Frederick Co, VA. All three SCOTER species were seen at Eastern Neck NWR in
Kent Co, MD on Dec 20, with 40 SURF, one WHITE-WINGED and one BLACK
reported. On Dec 20-23 an adult BLACK SCOTER was at Everett Lake in Bedford
Co, VA. A male LONG-TAILED DUCK was seen and photographed at Cranberry
Reservoir, Carroll Co, MD on Dec 18, while another was spotted at Liberty
Corner Farm, Albemarle Co, VA on Dec 22.

A high number of 30 EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVES were reported from Dayton,
Rockingham Co, VA on Dec 22.

A pair of SANDHILL CRANES have been seen in the area of Poolesville,
Montgomery Co, MD recently. On Dec 20 they were spotted walking and eating
in a large field on the north side of Westerly Road and seen again on Dec

Six BLACK-BELLIED PLOVERS were spotted from the wildlife drive at
Blackwater NWR, Dorchester Co, MD on Dec 18. Four MARBLED GODWITS were
found sleeping and preening at Bombay Hook NWR, Kent Co, DE on Dec 23.
Notable anywhere away from the coast, a pair of PURPLE SANDPIPERS were seen
along the jetty at Herrington Harbor, Anne Arundel Co, MD on Dec 19, and a
single individual was at Chesapeake Beach Marina in Calvert Co, MD on Dec

A lone BONAPARTE’S GULL was seen flying over with Ring-billed Gulls at
Wingina Boat Ramp in Nelson Co, VA on Dec 21. On Dec 22, 61 LAUGHING GULLS
were counted from Loreley Beach Community Pier (private) in Baltimore Co,
MD. On the same day, an immature ICELAND GULL was seen at the Prince
William County Landfill, Prince William Co, VA. On Dec 23, two ICELAND and
one GLAUCOUS GULL were reported from the same location. A LESSER
BLACK-BACKED GULL was reported from Leonardtown, St. Mary’s Co, MD on Dec
20, in the company of Ring-billed and Herring Gulls.

As many as 17 GREAT CORMORANTS were perched on the Bloody Point Bar Light
at the Kent Point Marina, Queen Anne’s Co, MD, Dec 19, with a fewer number
seen there on Dec 22.

A pair of AMERICAN BITTERNS were reported from Hart-Miller Island, Essex
Co, MD on Dec 20. A late GREAT EGRET was reported throughout the week at
Lake Artemesia in Prince George’s Co, MD Dec 18-24. Another was seen at
Port Mahon Rd, Kent Co, DE on Dec 19. A late lingering GREEN HERON has been
reliably seen feeding, sunning, and preening in an outflow channel at the
Ashby Pond Conservancy Site in Fairfax City, VA on Dec 18 and 19. A
lingering immature BLACK-CROWNED NIGHT-HERON was seen again in the marshy
area at Culler Lake in Baker Park, Frederick Co, MD on Dec 19. A pair of
GLOSSY IBIS were spotted at Chincoteague NWR-Snow Goose Pond, Accomack Co,
VA on Dec 24.

On Dec 21, an immature GOLDEN EAGLE was reported from Newport News Park,
Newport News, VA.

A LONG-EARED OWL was photographed at the Blandy Experimental Farm/State
Arboretum of Virginia, Clarke Co, VA on Dec 19. On Dec 18, a SHORT-EARED
OWL was hunting over the marsh at Fowler’s Beach, Sussex Co, DE, and three
were seen there on Dec 19.

RED-HEADED WOODPECKERS were once again seen in MD at Fox Chase Pond and
Wetlands, in Howard Co, on Dec 19-22, and at Gibson Rd, Baltimore Co on Dec

A LOGGERHEAD SHRIKE was discovered on Dec 23 on Bells Lane, in the area of
the big pond, in Staunton, VA. The continuing NORTHERN SHRIKE was seen
again at the Sully Woodlands, Fairfax Co, VA, most recently on Dec 18. A
late BLUE-HEADED VIREO was located at Sandy Bottom Natural Park, in
Hampton, VA on Dec 21, while another was seen at Leonardtown, St. Mary’s
Co, MD on Dec 24.

Lingering wrens included a HOUSE WREN continuing at the city point area of
Hopewell, VA on Dec 20 and 23, another at Eastern Regional Park, Baltimore
Co, MD on Dec 20, a SEDGE WREN continuing at the Chesapeake Bay
Environmental Center (Horsehead) Queen Anne’s Co, MD on Dec 20, and MARSH
WRENS at Swan Creek Wetland-Cox Creek DMCF (continuing) on Dec 19, another
at Blandy Experimental Farm/State Arboretum of Virginia, Clarke Co, VA the
same day, and another at Baylight Rd in Baltimore Co, MD on Dec 22.

Late BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHERS in Virginia were found at Dutch Gap
Conservation Area/Henricus Historical Park in Chesterfield Co, Dec 19-20,
and a pair continuing at Ancarrow’s Landing in Richmond City, on Dec 22,
while another was seen among a group of Yellow-rumped Warblers on the dune
trail at Back Bay NWR, Virginia Beach, VA on Dec 23.

EVENING GROSBEAKS were reported in small numbers this week. One was seen
again at Gapland SP in Frederick Co, MD on Dec 18, and four females were
seen the same day on private land near Union Springs dam in Rockingham Co,
VA. A pair of females continue to visit feeders in the same yard as the
White-winged Dove, in Claytor Lake, Pulaski Co, VA, with sightings
throughout the week.

A COMMON REDPOLL was discovered feeding on seeds at the top of a sweet gum
tree on the road to the marina at Dyke Marsh, Fairfax Co, VA on Dec 24.

Twenty or more SNOW BUNTINGS were at Fowler’s Beach, Milford, Sussex Co, DE
on Dec 18. A small flock with varying numbers continues to visit North
Point SP in Baltimore Co, MD, with reports on Dec 19, 21, and 22. In
Virginia, 13 SNOW BUNTINGS were along the 88th Street Beach, Virginia Beach
on Dec 23.

A CLAY-COLORED SPARROW was seen again at the Laurel Hill Equestrian Center,
Fairfax, VA, as recently as Dec 23. A VESPER SPARROW flushed up from a
field with a flock of Savannah Sparrows at Sayler’s Creek Road Pond in
Prince Edward Co, VA on Dec 22. The adult LARK SPARROW at the National
Arboretum, NE DC remains in the area of the stream restoration, seen in the
company of a mixed flock of Song and White-throated Sparrows and Dark-eyed
Juncos as recently as Dec 23. Three SAVANNAH SPARROWS were found at
Kenilworth Park and Aquatic Gardens, NE DC on Dec 23. A well seen and
photographed GRASSHOPPER SPARROW continued in the brambles along the
Anacostia River, at the National Arboretum, NE DC on Dec 23. A LECONTE’S
SPARROW was found at Princess Anne WMA-Whitehurst Tract, Virginia Beach, VA
on Dec 23. At least two (one adult, one immature) WHITE-CROWNED SPARROWS
were seen in the stream restoration area at the National Arboretum, NE DC
on Dec 20, continuing through Dec 24.

An adult male YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD was seen in a mixed group of
blackbirds heading north at Princess Anne WMA-Whitehurst Tract, in Virginia
Beach, VA on Dec 23. Another adult male was reported from Whitehall Neck
Road, near the intersection with Bear Swamp Road, Kent Co, DE on the same

On Dec 19, a well-described YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT was reported from the C&O
Canal-Potomac Boat Club, NW DC, seen eating berries near the towpath.

An ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER, found on a CBC last week, was relocated at St.
Mary’s College of Maryland, St. Mary’s Co, MD on Dec 19. Other lingering
warblers this week included a BLACK-AND-WHITE WARBLER at Weyanoke
Sanctuary, Norfolk, VA on Dec 21, a bright adult NASHVILLE WARBLER at the
National Arboretum, NE DC on Dec 20, another at Ancarrow’s Landing,
Richmond City, VA on Dec 22, a COMMON YELLOWTHROAT at Huntley Meadows Park,
Fairfax Co, VA on Dec 18 and another at Chino Farms-10 acre Pond (private),
Queen Anne’s Co, MD on Dec 23, a CAPE MAY WARBLER eating suet at a feeder
in a yard in Entwood (private), Hanover Co, VA on Dec 22 & 23, a PALM
WARBLER seen at a private farm in Kent Co, MD on Dec 23, a YELLOW-RUMPED
(AUDUBON’S) WARBLER continuing at a private residence on Deep Creek Road in
Accomack Co, VA on Dec 22, and a YELLOW-THROATED WARBLER which was found on
the DC CBC and continued at East Potomac Park-Haines Point, SW DC on Dec 19.

An out-of-season ROSE-BREASTED GROSBEAK was visiting a feeder on Dec 18 on
Westview Drive, St. Inigoes, St. Mary’s Co, MD.

A late INDIGO BUNTING wad discovered at Algonkian Regional Park in Loudoun
Co, VA on Dec 21.


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,
is an excellent source for guidebooks and many other nature-related titles.

To report bird sightings, e-mail your report to <voice...> 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.

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