Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Yellow-throated Warbler at Valley Stream State Park

Score one for Nassau County and for Valley Stream State Park as one of the sought after warbler of the migration season was found there. Photos of a Yellow-throated Warbler were apparently posted to Facebook on 3-30 and our very own Big Year Dude, Anthony Collerton, a keen birder with a good sense of responsibility, ensured that the wider audience heard of it by posting the sighting to the NY listserv. I will have more to say on this !@#$@#% FB phenomenon in another post.

Today, Robert Proniewych (try pronouncing that) refound the bird and called me to put out a post. Alas, I shirked my posting duties in lieu of work and so picked up his message only after he got around to posting it himself. Moments later I had an opportunity to try for it as I was on my way out, so  I grabbed camera, bins and headed over. It was a short ride and during that time, another birder, Ed Becher, generously offered to stick around to keep an eye on the bird for me.

I did not have to worry too much because as soon as I arrived and walked over to the stream where Ed, Bob Anderson and Stanley (don't know his last name) were looking at the bird, I could hear the chip note. Within minutes I was on the bird and after those guys departed, I helped other arriving birders to get on it. As far as I know, this is the first reported Yellow-throated Warbler in 2015 for the state and possibly for the tri-state area as I have not seen any sightings posted on our neighbors listservs. (Update @ 20:03 - Dawn Hannay, shared that one was reported from Cape May NJ on 3-26--NJ got theirs earlier than us). I could not resist, so I went in search of reported records in eBird. If my query is right, it looks as if this March sighting is the earliest report for the state (Thanks to Willie Danna who brought this to my attention -- the earliest record to date is March 26th at Forest Lawn Cemetry. A bird, found by Richard Salembier) This then is the earliest for region 10-- maybe the 2nd earliest for the state (?)  This bird showed "yellow" in the lores which would seem to qualify it as (Dendroica dominica); however, there is so much variation that I am hesitant to outright say this. Check out the short billed (D. d. albilora) white lored type I photographed at Alley Pond Park in 2012. Research into the genetics and morphology of Yellow-throated Warbler is still sorting this subspecies thing out.

To get those starving for Warblers motivated, I have provided a few photos taken today. Now get out there and find your own good birds!

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1 comment:

gebbgebb said...

I have seen the Yellow-throated Warbler twice now just across the street in A.J. Hendrickson Park near the temple and some garden apartments between the stream and said buildings. Easter Sunday and today 4/7/2015 at approximately 12 noon

Wendy Smith