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2013 Year Summary

2013 Year Summary

RIARC Number Vote (Accepted-Not Accepted-Natural Status Uncertain): # of birds reported; location; date(s); reporters (I = initial observer, R = report submitted, P = photograph submitted).



WESTERN TANAGER (Piranga ludoviciana
2013-1 (6-0): One; Block Island; 10 Jan 2013; Maggie Komosinski (I,R), Don Mawhinney (I,R,P).

Maggie Komosinski observed this Western Tanager on Block Island in the area of Dorrie’s Cove Road.  Later that same day Don Mawhinney independently found a Western Tanager in his yard about a mile from Maggie’s sighting.  Don quickly grabbed his camera and took photos through the screen door.  The bird flew off shortly after those photos were taken.


WESTERN GREBE (Aechmophorus occidentalis
2013-2 (6-0): One; Sachuest Point; 15 Jan 2013; Geoff Dennis (I,R,P).

This Western Grebe was found by Geoff Dennis late in the afternoon. The grebe was seen from a boat, about 150 yards off the South corner of Sachuest Point National Wildlife Refuge.  The refuge was still closed due to Hurricane Sandy damage therefore land access to try to view the bird was not available to birders.



(Fratercula arctica)
2013-3 (6-0): Two; Pelagic; 21 Jan 2013; Paul L'Etoile (I,R,P).

While aboard the cod-fishing trip aboard the Lady Frances out of Galilee Paul L’Etoile found and photographed two Atlantic Puffins.  One was 7 miles SE of Block Island and one was seen on the return trip from Cox's Ledge shortly after leaving the Ledge.



Grus canadensis
2013-4 (6-0): One; Seapowet, Tiverton; 27 Jan 2013 to 28 Feb 2013; Marjorie Bradley (I,R), Jim Spears (P), Robert Weaver (P).

Marjorie Bradley found this bird near the Seapowet Marsh in late January.  The bird was seen in the area for about a month, and was reported by several observers.




ATLANTIC PUFFIN (Fratercula arctica
2013-13 (6-0): One; Second Beach, Middletown; 31 Jan 2013; Chris Raithel (R,P).

This bird was found alive but weakened on Second Beach in Middletown.  It was brought to a rehabilitation facility, but subsequently died.  The skin was prepared and sent to the American Museum of Natural History.



NORTHERN LAPWING (Vanellus vanellus)
2013-5 (6-0): Two; Treaty Rock Farm, Little Compton; 1-7 Feb 2013; John Park (I,R,P), Robert Weaver (P).


John Park first found two Northern Lapwings on a private farm in Little Compton.  These birds were sometimes visible from the road, but often remained out of sight for long periods of time.  The birds were observed in a couple of different fields over the seven-day span.  A blizzard hit the area dropping a large amount of snow, and the Northern Lapwings were not reported after the storm.
The occurrence of these Northern Lapwings and others in the Northeast may have been related to Super-storm Sandy that impacted the area in late October 2012.


PACIFIC LOON (Gavia pacifica)
2013-6 (6-0): One; Newport 15 Feb to 6 Mar 2013; John Magill (I,R), Dan Finizia (P), Rey Larsen (P), Paul Champlin (P).

John Magill found this Pacific Loon at the Newport Navy Base just north of the Newport Bridge.  In the next few weeks the bird was seen intermittently in the area just north of the base of the bridge.




2013-7 (6-0): One; Weekapaug, Westerly; 23-24 Mar 2013; Dan Finizia (I,R,P) and Sue Talbot (I,R).

Dan Finizia and Sue Talbot found this Eurasian Green-winged Teal in the marsh on the east side of Weekapaug Road.



2013-8 (6-0): One; Braman's Lane farm pond, Portsmouth; 7 Apr to 7 May 2013; Tom Auer (I,R,P), Rey Larsen (P).

Tom Auer found this bird in the farm pond on Braman’s Lane in Middletown.  The bird stayed in the area for a month and was seen by several other birders.




WHITE-FACED IBIS (Plegadis chihi)
2013-16 (6-0): One; Beavertail Road at Fort Getty; 1 May 2013; Carlos Pedro (I,R,P).

Carlos Pedro observed this White-faced Ibis in the field at the entrance to Fort Getty in Jamestown.  He photographed the bird, and was able to confirm the identification when he later viewed the photograph. A few days later a White-faced Ibis was reported from Marsh Meadows.



BOAT-TAILED GRACKLE (Quiscalus major)
2013-9 (6-0): One; Charlestown Breachway; 11-12 May 2013; Tom Auer (I,R), Carlos Pedro (P), Dan Finizia (P), Sue Talbot (P).

Tom Auer found a Boat-tailed Grackle singing and moving between a few perches in the boat launch parking lot of the Charlestown Breachway.  It was calling frequently, and Tom was able to get audio recordings.  The next morning it was seen and heard as well, but was not seen after early morning.



BOAT-TAILED GRACKLE (Quiscalus major
2013-10 (6-0): Two; Andy's Way, Block Island; 12 May to 2 Jun 2013; Scott Tsagarakis (I,R), Sean Camillieri (I,P), Dan Finizia (P).

Scott Tsagarakis and Sean Camillieri found a singing male and a female Boat-tailed Grackle in the marsh at Andy’s Way.  Sean was able to get photographs of both birds.  Six days later Dan Finizia and Sue Talbot located both birds, and observed them in the marsh flying back and forth to Beane Point.



Elanoides forficatus
2013-11 (6-0): One; Swan Point, Providence; 15 May 2013; Sue Talbot (I,R), Dan Finizia (P).

Sue Talbot spotted this Swallow-tailed Kite flying over the Swan Point area of Providence.  It circled once or twice then slowly flew NNW over the Swan Point Cemetery and disappeared.  Dan Finizia photographed the bird in flight.



Thalasseus sandvicensis
2013-12 (6-0): One; Third Beach, Middletown; 23 May 2013; Rey Larsen (I,R,P).

Rey Larsen found this Sandwich Tern near the boat ramp at Third Beach in Middletown.  It later moved a good distance south of the boat ramp, but was still able to be seen through a scope.



SOUTH POLAR SKUA (Stercorarius maccormicki)
2013-14 (6-0): One; Cox's Ledge; 27 May 2013; Carlos Pedro (R,P).

This South Polar Skua was photographed by Carlos Pedro while on a dedicated pelagic trip out to Cox’s Ledge.




SANDHILL CRANE (Grus Canadensis)
2013-15 (6-0): One to Two; Cottrell Farm, West Kingston; 17 Jun 2014 thru 5 Mar 2014; Susan Boyce (P), Dan Finizia (P).

In early June a Sandhill Crane was reported from multiple locations in the West Greenwich area.  On 17-June the Sandhill Crane was located at the Cottrell Farm on Route 138 in Kingston, and it remained there until 5-March-2014. In January and February the bird was observed at the farm with a second Sandhill Crane.






YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD (Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus
2013-17 (6-0): One; Cox's Ledge to Galilee; 10 Aug 2013; Carlos Pedro (R,P), Keith Mueller (P).

This Yellow-headed Blackbird was found by birders in the extremely unlikely location of cod-fishing boat on Cox’s Ledge.  The bird landed on the boat in the area of Cox's Ledge and spent 5 hours aboard.  As the boat was returning to Galilee, the bird spent its time eating bread crumbs and drinking water.  Upon entry to the harbor, the bird spotted land and flew off towards the Galilee marsh.





EARED GREBE (Podiceps nigricollis
2013-18 (6-0): One; Bullock Cove, East Providence; 27 Sep 2013; Harriet Moore (I,R,P).
At around 1 PM, just inside the mouth of Bullock Cove, Harriet Moore found and photographed this Eared Grebe.  The photographs generated much discussion that led to the confirmation of this bird as an Eared Grebe.  The bird was not relocated after the initial observation.




Xanthocephalus xanthocephalus
2013-19 (6-0): One; Block Island; 5 Oct 2013; Sue Talbot (I,R), Dan Finizia (P).

Sue Talbot and Dan Finizia found this Yellow-headed Blackbird along the shrubs in the pond just north of Southeast light.  When they checked the area the following day, they did not find the bird.




NORTHERN WHEATEAR (Oenanthe oenanthe)
2013-20 (6-0): One; Peckham Farm, South Kingstown; 19-25 Oct 2013; Carlos Pedro (I,R,P), Rey Larsen (P), Bob Weaver (P).

Carlos Pedro found and photographed this Northern Wheatear at Peckham Farm in South Kingstown.  One of the photos was taken when the bird landed on the hatchback of Carlos’ car.  The bird stayed for about a week and was seen by many birders.




ROSS’S GOOSE (Chen rossii
2013-21 (6-0): Exeter; 23 Nov to 1 Dec 2013; Sue Talbot (I,R), Dan Finizia (I,R,P), Rey Larsen, (P), Danielle Crudden (P).

Dan Finizia and Sue Talbot found this Ross’s Goose on Yawgoo Mill Pond in Exeter.  It was seen with about thirty Canada Geese from the bridge on Bridge Ridge Road.  During the next week or so, the goose was located by many other birders on Yawgoo Mill Pond, an adjacent turf field, or another nearby pond.



PACIFIC LOON (Gavia pacifica)
2013-22 (6-0): One; Point Judith, Narragansett; 21 Dec 2013; Phil Rusch (I,R), Glenn Williams (I,R).

While doing a seawatch at Point Judith for the South Kingstown Christmas Bird Count, Phil Rusch and Glenn Williams observed this Pacific Loon flying by close to the shoreline.  During the 20 to 30 second observation Glenn and Phil called out field marks to each other, and checked each as the bird flew past.  A detailed written report was submitted, along with a sketch showing the field marks observed.