Date: 1/1/21 6:23 am From: Doug Jenness <dougjenness...> Subject: [AZNMbirds] [EXT]Pinal County 2020 Bird Highlights
Jan. 1, 2021
For the past 10 years I've been keeping track of the number of bird species reported for the year from Pinal County in Arizona, particularly noting species new to the county and those that are very rare. The overall number of species documented for the county is *426.* In 2020, due to Covid 19, several key locations for bird diversity, notably San Carlos Lake and Lake St. Clair, were closed to the public. Despite that, a total of *302* species was reported; the one-year high is 312 set in 2018. Four birders tallied more than 200 species, 7 reported more than 150, and 33 reported more than 100 species (compared to 26 in 2019). The highest number reported by an individual was *251 *(the previous high was 262 in 2019). *T*he total number reported for the 10-year period is *387* species, which is 90.8% of the species documented in the county. As not all reported birds appear in eBird, these figures will not necessarily be the same as eBird's. For more information on Pinal County birds see checklist <http://azfo.org/documents/PinalCo.Checklist062018--final.pdf> and background article <http://www.arizonabirds.org/sites/default/files/articles/arizona-birds-online-checklist-birds-pinal-county-draft3.pdf> on the checklist.
· Two new species for the county checklist were added in 2020. One was MEXICAN DUCK, which came from the American Ornithological Society’s decision to split it from the Mallard and designate it as a separate species; the second was BELL’S SPARROW (Apache Junction), which had not been photographed and well documented in the county before.
· A GROOVE-BILLED ANI at a restricted reserve in the Gila River Indian Community was the second record for the county; the first was reported from the Pinal-Maricopa County line in 1978.
· Amazingly, two GREATER PEWEES were reported—the first at Oracle State Park in the spring was the second county record, and another at Boyce Thompson from 1 Nov- 2 Dec was the third for the county.
· A RUFF seen by many observers near Stanfield was a third county record, and the first since 2010.
· The fourth county record for AMERICAN GOLDEN-PLOVER at a dairy near Maricopa was the first since 2008.
· A possible RED KNOT reported from the Florence area, would be the fourth record if submitted and accepted by the ABC.
· An AMERICAN BITTERN near Stanfield was the fifth record and the first since 1995.
· Two TRICOLORED HERONs were sixth and seventh county records. The latter was the first record for Santa Cruz Flats.
· A REDDISH EGRET was the seventh county record and the first for Santa Cruz Flats.
· A LEAST TERN seen at two dairies on the same day in Stanfield was the first since 2009, and as a juvenile was unusual.
· Up to 2 RIDGWAY’S RAILs were reported from restricted locations on the Gila River Indian Community. These were the first since 2011, when they were last reported at Picacho Reservoir, a known nesting site.
· PAINTED BUNTING reports have been increasing with five, the greatest number, reported in 2020, including three reports from Santa Cruz Flats, the first for that location.
Highest daily totals for single locations were reported for some species, including Snow Goose (24), Pectoral Sandpiper (19), Dunlin (11), Willet (44), and Black Vulture (250).