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Alaska Rare Bird Alert » Blog Archive » RBA St. Paul Island June 22nd-28th: EUROPEAN GOLDEN-PLOVER, Cassin’s Auklet, White-winged Crossbill

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RBA St. Paul Island June 22nd-28th: EUROPEAN GOLDEN-PLOVER, Cassin’s Auklet, White-winged Crossbill


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Hello Birders, this is the St. Paul Island bird report for the week of June 22nd-28th, 2015, sponsored by St. Paul Island Tour. The following sequence of sightings is in taxonomic order; an asterisk denotes a species of less than annual occurrence or one of particular note.

 

2015 Species Count: 123

Weekly Species Count: 66

 

Birds Mentioned:

 

Mallard

Greater Scaup

King Eider

Common Goldeneye

*BARROW’S GOLDENEYE

Red-breasted Merganser

Pacific Loon

Common Loon

Yellow-billed Loon

Red-necked Grebe

Short-tailed Shearwater

*DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT

Bald Eagle

***EUROPEAN GOLDEN-PLOVER

Pacific Golden-Plover

LESSER SAND-PLOVER

Wandering Tattler

BRISTLE-THIGHED CURLEW

Ruddy Turnstone

*STILT SANDPIPER

Pectoral Sandpiper

Western Sandpiper

Short-billed Dowitcher

Wilson’s Snipe

Red Phalarope

Parasitic Jaeger

*MARBLED MURRELET

**CASSIN’S AUKLET

Rhinoceros Auklet

Herring Gull (ssp. vegae)

Glaucous Gull

Snowy Owl

PEREGRINE FALCON

BRAMBLING

*RED CROSSBILL

**WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILL

Common Redpoll

PINE SISKIN

 

WEATHER

 

The weather this week on St. Paul was quite, average, with no pressure system of any kind in the central Bering Sea as high pressure stayed to our south and low pressure to our north.  The resulting weather was un-eventful with temperatures continuing just above average around 50-52 degrees daily, a bit of rain on the 22nd, 23rd, and 27th, and some fog on the 24th and 28th for good measure.  Winds were generally quite calm with nothing about 10-15 MPH, mostly out of the north, from the 22nd-26th and moderately strong W/NW winds on the 27th.  The only weather event of note was thunder and lightning that occurred early in the morning on the 23rd, a VERY rare event on St. Paul Island.

 

WATERFOWL

 

A fairly quiet week as is to be expected this time of year with a Mallard on the 23rd-27th, Red-breasted Mergansers on the 24th and 27th, and then the continuing BARROW’S GODLENEYE, Common Goldeneye, Greater Scaup, and King Eider.

 

SEABIRDS & GULLS

 

At least one of the CASSIN’S AUKLETS from last week continued through the 23rd while a MARBLED MURRELET (only the 12th local record) was seen on the 22nd.  A single Rhinoceros Auklet was seen on both the 25th and 27th while Parasitic Jaegers were found on the 24th and 26th and the long-staying DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT continued through the at least the 26th.  Single Pacific Loons were noted on the 22nd and 24th while a Common Loon was seen on the 28th and Yellow-billed Loons continued to be seen in impressive numbers with 5+ on the 22nd and daily sightings through the 25th.  Small numbers of Short-tailed Shearwaters were seen daily this week while a “Vega” Herring Gull was found on the 28th and a couple Glaucous Gulls continued to be seen each day, a long Red-necked Grebe on the 22nd rounds out the seabirds for the week.

 

SHOREBIRDS

 

The sighting of the week, and likely the entire year to this point, was a EUROPEAN GOLDEN-PLOVER found on the 24th which provides the first record for the Pribilofs, 2nd record for Alaska, and about the 4th or 5th record for the United States with most North American record coming from Newfoundland in the spring.  There were a number of other notable shorebirds seen this week as well with the first ever late June arrival of BRISTLE-THIGHED CURLEW (and only the 6th summer record overall) on the 25th-28th, the second late June and summer record of STILT SANDPIPER on the 24th, the second ever late June arrival of Pectoral Sandpiper on the 26th-27th, and the 9th summer record of LESSER SAND-PLOVER being a pair present from the 22nd-26th.  Other migrants noted this week of slightly less interest were two Pacific Golden-Plovers on the 28th, single Wandering Tattlers on the 22nd and 24th, five Ruddy Turnstones on the 27th, daily sightings of one to six Western Sandpipers, a Short-billed Dowitcher on the 22nd, a Wilson’s Snipe on the 27th, and one or two Red Phalaropes daily.

 

LANDBIRDS & PASSERINES

 

It was more or less about the finches this week on St. Paul with sightings on the 26th of a RED CROSSBILL (10th Pribilof record and first since 2003) and WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILL (8th Pribilof record and first since 2006) while a BRAMBLING continued from the 22nd-24th and a PINE SISKIN was last noted on the 23rd.  A flyover PEREGRINE FALCON was seen on the 24th while a Snowy Owl was present on the 22nd and the Bald Eagle remained through the week.  Common Redpolls continue to be seen daily in seemingly increasing numbers this week.

 

Breeding or resident species present on/around the island:

 

Northern Pintail

Green-winged (and Common) Teal

Harlequin Duck

Long-tailed Duck

Northern Fulmar

Red-faced Cormorant
Pelagic Cormorant

Semipalmated Plover

Least Sandpiper
Rock Sandpiper (ssp. ptilocnemis)

Red-necked Phalarope
Black-legged Kittiwake
Red-legged Kittiwake
Glaucous-winged Gull
Common Murre
Thick-billed Murre

Pigeon Guillemot

Ancient Murrelet
Parakeet Auklet

Least Auklet

Crested Auklet

Horned Puffin

Tufted Puffin

Pacific Wren (ssp. alascensis)
Lapland Longspur
Snow Bunting
Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch (ssp. umbrina)

This is Scott Schuette, Cory Gregory, and Alison Világ, the 2015 St. Paul Island Tour guides, wishing you good birding. For tour information or to make travel arrangements visit our website http://www.alaskabirding.com or call 1-877-424-5637.

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