Date: 11/14/19 5:49 am
From: mike sylvia <mikesylvia87...>
Subject: [MASSBIRD] CHUCK-WILLS -WIDOW - Cuttyhunk

ALL TIME LATE DATE: Latest recorded and documented sighting of this species in eBird records for Massachusetts and New England. Only one record in Veit and Peterson of a bird found dead in Dartmouth 1975. No documentation. Next closest record is for a sighting in New Jersey in November.

I first saw the bird as it flushed from a sunny grassy/leafy woody border with a cut into the woods 15 feet away from me. First thought was Sharp-shinned hawk due to long rectangular tail and size. Immediately corrected that thought because of the total tawny coloration and then moth like flight as it went into the woods and long angular wings. I entered the cut and was able to flush it one more time in very thick brush for more flight looks. No photos possible.

After reviewing field guides and texting out the sighting for more intel I returned to the general area and worked my way back to the first spot. Ready with the camera this time all the way. At the cut again the bird flushed close to the original spot and I fired 14 shots. Upon review to see if I got anything I was amazed to see the one shot with anything on it was a full body shot with tail fanned!! I was blown away and immediately fired it off to Sean Williams and Jeremiah Trimble. We were all shocked at this extremely late and significant find.

Large Goatsucker with all tawny body, tail, and wings, Black barring in the tail and pattern all diagnostic over Whip-poor-will. Large size.

Photograph. Positive ID by committee

I returned one more time around 1400 and again flushed the bird near the same spot but in denser brush. Of the 30 odd photos I shot only one had anything on it.

I am spending a lot of time on the island and submit almost daily. If interested follow me on eBird

Mike Sylvia
Lakeville, MA

I am spending a lot of time on the island and submit almost daily. If interested follow me on eBird

Join us on Facebook!