New York State Avian Records Committee

a committee of the New York State Ornithological Association

Annual Report - 1992


First published in The Kingbird 44: 3-9, (1994)

The New York State Avian Committee received 82 reports from 1992, representing 57 records of birds. In addition, five reports from 1991 plus single reports from 1976, 1982, 1985 and 1990 were received. Three reports from 1991 and one from 1962 were resolved. The 1976 and seven of the 1992 reports are still being reviewed.

To the list of species normally reviewed by the NYSARC, which was last published in The Kingbird (43:18-19; 1993), should be added Roseate Spoonbill, Spotted Redshank and Slaty-backed Gull, the three species admitted to the New York State List in this report. Reports should be sent to the Secretary:

Jim Lowe, Secretary,
New York State Avian Records Committee,
c/o Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology,
159 Sapsucker Woods Road,
Ithaca, New York 14850


Leach's Storm-Petrel (Oceanodroma leucorhoa). 1992-21-A: one at Cedar Beach, Town of Babylon, Suffolk Co., 26 September (SS, RM); this observation followed by a day the passage of tropical storm Danielle.

American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos). 1992-34-A: one at Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge, Town of Tyre, Seneca Co., 23 April (NB). 1992-39-A: one over Lakeside Memorial Park, Town of Hamburg, Erie Co., 22 April (RA).

Brown Pelican (Pelecanus occidentalis). 1992-3-A: one resting on breakwater off LaSalle Park, Buffalo, Erie Co., 10 July (WD). This appears to be the third record from upstate New York. The species is being reported with increasing frequency on Long Island, but few observers are submitting documentation to support their observations.

Yellow-crowned Night-Heron (Nyctanassa violacea). 1992-38-A: one adult off Smokey Hollow Road, Town of Lafayette, Onondaga Co., 8 June (DC); this bird was reported to be present for several days, but no other documentation was received. 1992-42-A: one at Utica Marsh, Town of Deerfield, Oneida Co., 26 April (GC).

Roseate Spoonbill (Ajaia ajaja). 1992-17-A,B: one juvenile at Goethals Bridge Pond, Staten Island, Richmond Co., 20 August (LS, CA), photographs on file. A more complete account with a photograph of this first record for New York appears in The Kingbird 43: 2-5; 1993.

Ross's Goose (Chen rossii). 1992-27-A: one at Stillson's Pond, Town of Cold Spring, Cattaraugus Co., 9 October (SE), photographs on file (Fig. 1). This is the first record from New York substantiated by tangible evidence. Although this species is reported with increasing frequency from the Atlantic seaboard, the possibility remains that this bird is an escape from captivity.

Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus). 1992-6-A: one off Sand Hill Road, Town of Dover, Dutchess Co., 11 August (EP, MVW, MY). 1992-47-A: one west of Cayuga, Town of Aurelius, Cayuga Co., 23 March (NB). This species is still on the list of species for which all observations should be submitted to the NYSARC for review, despite the frequency with which it is reported downstate.

Swainson's Hawk (Buteo swainsoni). 1992-35-A,B: one at Derby Hill, Town of Mexico, Oswego Co., 21 April (NB, RP). Although this species has been reported annually in recent years, all observations should be submitted to the NYSARC for review.

Merlin (Falco columbarius). 1992-57-A-G: two adults and three nestlings (fledged) at Spitfire Lake, Town of Brighton, Franklin Co., 11 June to 11 August (WM, RG, KB, JMCP, RH, GC), photographs on file. This first substantiated nesting in New York is detailed in The Kingbird (42:206-209; 1992).

Gyrfalcon (Falco rusticolus). 1992-13-A-D: one at Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge, Town of Tyre, Seneca Co., I March (AC); one west of Cayuga, Town of Aurelius, Cayuga Co., 21-29 March (AC, CC, NB). These observations apparently refer to a single bird.

Yellow Rail (Coturnicops noveboracensis). 1992-19-A: one at Tivoli Bays, Town of Red Hook, Dutchess Co., 16 September (MD).

American Avocet (Recurvirostra americana). 1992-20-A-C: one at Fair Haven Beach State Park, Town of Sterling, Cayuga Co., 3 November (GW, DC, MR).

Spotted Redshank (Tringa erythropus). 1992-23-A,B: one at Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, Kings Co., 6 December 1992 to 18 March 1993 (JY, EC), photographs on file. This is the first substantiated record for New York, but a prior report currently is being reviewed by the NYSARC. A full account of this record appears in The Kingbird (43:166-170; 1993).

Mew Gull (Larus canus). 1992-30-A: one, reported as L. c. canus, at Robert Moses Power Dam, St. Lawrence River, Town of Massena, St. Lawrence Co., 27 & 29 December (DS). 1992-56-A,B: one, reported as L. c. brachyrhynchus, on the Niagara River near Robert Moses Power Plant, Town of Lewiston, Niagara Co., 29 November, 4 December (RK, AW); photographs on file with the Buffalo Ornithological Society.

California Gull (Larus californicus). 1992-29-A-D: one adult on the Niagara River near Robert Moses Power Plant, Town of Lewiston, Niagara Co., 29 November, 1, 2,6 December (RP, TLeuk, RA, NB). This is the first accepted record from New York since 1982, the last of four successive years in which one appeared in Rockland Co.

Slaty-backed Gull (Larus schistisagus). 1992-31-A-C: one adult at Niagara Falls, Town of Niagara, Niagara Co., 4, 20 December (RVT, RB); one adult over Niagara River, Town of Lewiston, Niagara Co., 16 December (DM), photographs on file. This bird, the first for New York, was initially found on 24 November at Niagara Falls, Ontario, and was subsequently seen by many observers, the last report being on 29 December. A complete account of this record will appear in an upcoming Kingbird.

White-winged Tern (Chlidonias leucopterus). 1992-50-A-E: an adult paired with a Black Tern (Chlidonias niger) and produced two young, which did not fledge, at Stone Mills Pool, Perch River Wildlife Management Area, Town of Orleans, Jefferson Co., 17 June to 4 August (IM, SM, MK, DC, SA, DP), photographs on file. An account of this first breeding record of this Eurasian species in New York appears in The Kingbird (42:210-212; 1992).

Northern Hawk Owl (Surnia ulula). 1992-49-A-C: one along New York State Route 5 between Chittenango and Canastota, Towns of Sullivan and Lenox, Madison Co., 1-3, 5, 21 February (DC, SA, SH), photographs on file.

Great Gray Owl (Strix nebulosa). 1992-32-A,B: one near intersection of U. S. Route 11 and New York State Route 342, Town of Leray, Jefferson Co., 1-2 February (DP, SA), photograph on file; this bird was found dead in the same area on 5 February. 1992-33-A: one 3.6 miles north of Jamestown, Town of Ellicott, Chautauqua Co., 3 February (RA), photograph on file.

Western Kingbird (Tyrannus verticalis). 1992-46-A: one at Mount Pleasant Observatory, near Varna, Town of Dryden, Tompkins Co., 13 April (NB). This species is noteworthy anywhere upstate and extraordinarily unusual anywhere in the spring.

Northern Wheatear (Oenanthe oenanthe). 1992-28-A: one at Jones Beach, Long Island, Town of Hempstead, Nassau Co., 24 September (JG).

Black-throated Gray Warbler (Dendroica nigrescens). 1992-22-A: one at Fire Island, Long Island, Suffolk Co., 14 September (JQ), photograph on file and reproduced in The Kingbird (43:86-87; 1993). This is the tenth accepted record from New York State; the ninth appears below.

Yellow-throated Warbler (Dendroica dominica). 1992-44-A,B: one at Clove Valley Cemetery, Town of Union, Dutchess Co., 7 May (HM, JK, MK); details appear in The Kingbird (42:143; 1992).

Kentucky Warbler (Oporornis formosus). 1992-11-A: one at Aurora, Town of Ledyard, Cayuga Co., 22 May (KD). While vary rare upstate, this species is not on the list of reports normally reviewed by the NYSARC.

Black-headed Grosbeak (Pheucticus melanocephalus). 1992-45-A: one behind 152 West 77th Street, Manhattan, New York Co., 2 January (SP).

Painted Bunting (Passerina ciris). 1992-5-A: one at Lafayetteville, Wilbur Flats Road, Town of Milan, Dutchess Co., 10 August (KK). 1992-24-A: one at Montauk Town landfill, Town of Montauk, Suffolk Co., Long Island, 19 December (AB); this bird was reported to have been seen by many observers until 28 December, but no additional documentation was submitted.

Lark Bunting (Calamospiza melanocorys). 1992-18-A: one at Robert Moses State Park, Fire Island, Suffolk Co., 14 September (DM), photographs on file (Fig. 2). 1992-25-A: one at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, Queens Co., 9 September (RL).

Le Conte's Sparrow (Ammodramus leconteii). 1992-41-A,B: one at Nine Mile Point Road, Town of New Haven, Oswego Co., 7 May (MK, SA), photographs on file. Details of this record, with a photograph, are in The Kingbird (42:130-132; 1992).

Brewer's Blackbird (Euphagus cyanocephalus). 1992-16-A-C: one and two at Church Road and northeast of intersection of Chase and WalkerLake Ontario Roads, Town of Hamlin, Monroe Co., 11 April, 8,23 May (RS, CC). 1992-48-A: three about 4 miles southwest of Mecklenburg, Schuyler Co., March (JG, SG). 1992-53-A: one on Beech Hill Road, Town of Andes, Delaware Co., 11,15 March (GW). 1992-54-A: one at Cayuga, Town of Aurelius, Cayuga Co., 24 March (NB). 1992-55-A: one male at Gates Road, Town of Pompey, Onondaga Co., 11-14March (DC). Despite the increasing frequency with which this species is reported, observations still merit careful documentation.


Black-bellied Whistling-Duck (Dendrocygna autumnalis). 1992-52-A: at North 40 Preserve, Floyd Bennett Field, Brooklyn, Kings Co., 19-20 May (JF). There are no accepted New York records of this species.

Barnacle Goose (Branta leucopsis). 1992-43-A: one at intersection of Biddlecum Road and New York State Route 264, Town of Schroeppel, Oswego Co., 26 April (DC). This bird was reported in the area with Canada Geese for several weeks, but no additional documentation was submitted.


American White Pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos). 1992-4-A: one at Perch River Wildlife Management Area, Town of Brownville, Jefferson Co., 28 July.

Little Egret (Egretta garzetta). 1992-1-A: one at Atlantic Beach, Long Island, Town of Hempstead, Nassau Co., 11 June.

Mississippi Kite (Ictinia mississippiensis). 1992-9-A: one on New York State Route 90 halfway between King Ferry and Aurora, Town of Ledyard, Cayuga Co., 9 September.

Yellow-throated Warbler (Dendroica dominica). 1992-36-A: one at Fishkill, Town of Fishkill, Dutchess Co., 18 May.

Summer Tanager (Piranga rubra). 1992-10-A: one at Ithaca, Town of Ithaca, Tompkins Co., 30 August.

Blue Grosbeak (Guiraca caerulea). 1992-51-A: two at Endicott, Town of Union, Broome Co., 15 June.

Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus). 1992-14-A; four to five at Webster,Town of Webster, Monroe Co., 12 April.

Le Conte's Sparrow (Ammodramus leconteii). 1992-8-A: one at Myers Point, Town of Lansing, Tompkins Co., 3 October.


Tufted Duck (Aythya fuligula). 1991-36-A: one on Saratoga Lake off New York State Route 9 near intersection of Fish Creek Road, Saratoga Co., 14 December (RP).

Gyrfalcon (Falco rusticolus). 1991-38-A,B: one at northeast corner of intersection of Cutting and Denton Roads, Town of Lewis, Essex Co., 21 December (JMCP, TB).

Northern Hawk Owl (Surnia ulula). 1991-39-A: one at Town Line Road, Town of Fort Edward, Washington Co., 21 December (BP). This individua l was reported to have been seen by many observers over a period of four weeks but no additional documentation was submitted.

Black-throated Gray Warbler (Dendroica nigrescens). 1991-37-A,B: one in Flushing Meadow park, Queens Co., 14 December 1991 (BD, AK).


Western Grebe (Aechmophorus occidentalis). 1991-29-A: one on Lake Ontario at Derby Hill, Town of Mexico, Oswego Co., 20 October.

Pterodroma, species uncertain. 1991-35-A: one at Montauk Point, Town of Montauk, Suffolk Co., Long Island, 19 August.

Brewer's Blackbird (Euphagus cyanocephalus). 1991-17-A: four west of intersection of Moul Road and Hamlin-Parma Town Line Road, Town of Hamlin, Monroe Co., 20 April. 1991-40-A,B: four 0.5 miles north of Point Rock, Town of Ava, Oneida Co., 29 December.


Brewer's Blackbird (Euphagus cyanocephalus). 1990-37-A: one at 34 Pine Street, Saranac Lake, Essex Co., 24 October (RH).


Burrowing Owl (Speotyto cunicularia). 1985-47-A: one on beach 1 mile west of Shinnecock Inlet, Long Island, Town of Southampton, Suffolk Co., 24 October (BB), photographs on file and reproduced in The Kingbird (42: 70-72; 1992).


Great Black-headed Gull (Larus ichthyaetus). 1982-51-A: one at Genesee River, Rochester, Monroe Co., 1 January.


Common Greenshank (Tringa nebularia). 1962-2-A: one at mouth of Ninemile Creek, Onondaga Lake, Syracuse, Onondaga Co., 30 October.

With this report's three additions, the New York State List now stands at 441.

Respectfully submitted, New York State Avian Records Committee
Kenneth P. Able
Robert F. Andrle (Chairman)
Thomas W. Burke
Robert O. Paxton
Barbara J. Spencer

OBSERVERS SUBMITTING REPORTS CITED IN THIS REPORT: Sue Adair, Robert Andrle, Christopher Aquila, Andrew Baldelli, Tom Barber, Ned Brinkley, Ken Brown, Bertel Bruun, Paul Buckley, John Bull, Barbara Byron, Richard Byron, Bruce Carpenter, Carolyn Cass, Greenleaf Chase, T. L. Clark, Anne Clarridge, Sandra Coester, George Colborn, Richard Collins, Harriet Cramton, Dorothy Crumb, Willie D'Anna, Karl David, Mark Dedea, Bob Dieterich, Stephen Eaton, John Fritz, Richard Gershon, Jon Greenlaw, John Gregoire, Sue Gregoire, Robert Hagar, Sandra Hazen, Jody Hildreth, Karen Kearney, James Key, Mary Key, Sara Kinch, Richard Knapton, Mary Koeneke, Alexei Kondratiev, Robert Kurtz, Charlotte Ladwig, Tony Lauro, Tony Leukering, Robert Lewis, Robert Machover, Helen Manson, Robert Marcotte, Irene Mazzocchi, Doug McRae, Ferne Merrill, David Mizrahi, Wright Montgomery, Sandy Muller, Russ O'Malley, David Peakall, Raymond Perry, John M.C. Peterson, Eleanor Pink, Ron Pittaway, Rod Planck, Sarah Plimpton, David Prosser, Barbara Putnam, Joan Quinlan, Margaret Rusk, Lorna Salzman, Starr Saphir, David Sibley, Robert Spahn, Rohan van Twest, Marion Van Wagner, Gloria Wiener, Glenn Wolford, Alan Wormington, Mary Yegella, John Yrizarry, Mary Yrizarry

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