TENTH REPORT OF THE UTAH BIRD RECORDS COMMITTEE*
Steven P. Hedges
The tenth report of the Utah Bird Records Committee
summarizes 46 records of 35 species that were reviewed by the Committee. Of
those 46 records, 43 were accepted by the Committee and 3 were not accepted for
reasons to be discussed later. Committee members who reviewed some or all of
these records were Keith Dixon, Steven Hedges, Craig Kneedy, Ella Sorensen,
Merrill Webb, and Clayton White. First state records were accepted for Scaled
Quail, White-rumped Sandpiper, Yellow-throated Vireo, Prothonotary Warbler,
Cassin's Sparrow, Field Sparrow, and Hoary Redpoll, which increases the Utah
bird list to 415 documented species.
All records evaluated by the Committee are listed by common
name and scientific name using the nomenclature and taxonomic order of the 7th
AOU Check-list (1998). The following information is included with each accepted
record: common name, scientific name, Committee number of the record in
parentheses, the number of birds observed along with age and sex if known,
date(s) of occurrence, location of sighting, all known observers in parentheses
with the initial finder listed first, observer(s) who submitted written
documentation of the record (doc: ), observer(s) who submitted photographs
(photo: ), audio recordings (tape: ), or video (video: ) of the record, and any
literature reference of the record published in American Birds (AB),
Field Notes (FN), North American Birds (NAB), or Utah
Birds (UB). Information for unaccepted records is the same as for
accepted records except that names of observers and those submitting
documentation are not included.
The Records Committee would like to thank those individuals
who submitted documentation of their sightings to the Committee. The Committee
encourages all observers to document and submit a report of unusual sightings.
Multiple documentation of sightings is often more valuable than a single report,
since one observer may notice key field marks that are missed by other
observers. Those field marks may be the difference between a record being
accepted or not accepted. The Committee also encourages the submission of
photographs, videos, and tape recordings, which significantly aid in the proper
identification of records.
PACIFIC LOON Gavia pacifica. (2-1994); one; 10 Feb 1994; Warm Creek
Bay, Lake Powell, Kane Co.; (JSp,CP,CLa); doc: Jsp; FN 48(2):230, UB 10(1):9.
Pacific Loons are recorded nearly every year in Utah, with
most records from fall or spring. Record 2-1994 is one of the few winter
records. Interestingly, this bird was observed together with a Yellow-billed
(Record 1-1994) and Common Loon.
YELLOW-BILLED LOON Gavia adamsii. (1-1994); one; 10 Feb 1994; Warm
Creek Bay, Lake Powell, Kane Co.; (JSp,CP,CLa); doc: Jsp; FN 48(2):230, UB
10(1):9. (8-1994); one; 2 Dec 1994; Warm Creek Bay, Lake Powell, Kane Co.; (JSp,CP);
doc: JSp; UB 11(2):29. (2-1995); one; Wahweep Bay, Lake Powell, Kane Co.;
(BG); doc: BG; UB 11(2):29.
Yellow-billed Loons have been found nearly every winter in
Utah since the state's first sighting in 1991. The majority of records,
including the three listed here, have been from Lake Powell.
EURASIAN WIGEON Anas penelope. (2-1993); one adult male; 6-11 Mar
1993; Fish Springs National Wildlife Refuge, Juab Co.; (DSW,DT,LL,mob); doc: DSW;
UB 9(3):40. (3-1993); one adult male; 3 Apr 1993; Bear River Migratory
Bird Refuge, Box Elder Co.; (CG,LL,JV,DT); doc: CG,DT,LL; UB 9(3):40.
(5-1998); six adult males; 3 Nov 1998; Farmington Bay Wildlife Management Area,
Davis Co.; (EC); doc: EC.
HARLEQUIN DUCK Histrionicus histrionicus. (13-1993); one female; 25
Sep 1993; Antelope Island Causeway, Davis Co.; (ES,CK,mob); doc: ES; photo: CK; AB
48(1):132, FN 48(2):231, UB 9(4):63-64, UB 10(3):37.
This bird was present for several years and observed by many
people. It is the third documented record for Utah.
BLACK SCOTER Melanitta nigra. (6-1994); three females; 24 Oct 1994;
Fish Springs National Wildlife Refuge, Juab Co.; (JBa); doc: Jba; UB
Most sightings of scoters in Utah occur during the fall
months, including all Utah records of Black Scoter.
COMMON BLACK-HAWK Buteogallus anthracinus. (3-1995); one-two adults; 5
May 1995 & 4 Aug 1995; Lytle Ranch, Beaver Dam Wash, Washington Co.; (SSu,PS,JC);
doc: SSu; photo: Ssu; FN 49(3):281, UB 11(3)47, UB
Common Black-Hawk is now a regular summer resident of Beaver
SCALED QUAIL Callipepla squamata. (7-1997); three; 9 Nov 1997;
Blanding, San Juan Co.; (JiR,JeR); photo: JeR.
Scaled Quail are permanent residents of southwestern
Colorado, only a few miles from the Utah border. These birds were suspected of
being from Colorado and represent the first state record for Utah.
HUDSONIAN GODWIT Limosa haemastica. (6-1993); one adult; 11 May 1993;
Syracuse, Davis Co.; (CK,PP); doc: CK; UB 9(3):43. (6-1995); one; 29
Oct-5 Nov 1995; Antelope Island causeway, Davis Co.; (KE,JaR,VAS,LS,DJ,LJ); doc:
KE,VAS; photo: KE,VAS; FN 50(1):86, UB 11(4):56-58.
Record 6-1995 is only the second fall record for Utah. There
are now six documented Utah records.
RUDDY TURNSTONE . (10-1994); 1-2 adults; 17-25 Jul 1994; Antelope Island
Causeway, Davis Co.; (ARG,DBa,SBa,CLe); doc: ARG; UB 10(3):38. (9-1995);
one; 10-21 Aug 1995; Fish Springs National Wildlife Refuge, Juab Co.; (EG); doc:
EG; FN 5091):86, UB 11(4):65.
Ruddy Turnstones occur nearly annually in Utah and is likely
to be dropped from the Records Committee review list on the Committee's next
revision. Observers are encouraged to submit sightings of this species to the
Utah Birds seasonal report editor.
WHITE-RUMPED SANDPIPER Calidris fuscicollis. (8-1993); two adults; 1
Jun 1993; Great Salt Lake, Davis Co.; (PP); doc: PP; AB 47(5):1131, UB
Two birds were observed and heard by a graduate student doing
shorebird research on the Great Salt Lake and are the first record from Utah.
White-rumped Sandpiper is similar in shape to Baird's Sandpiper, but has a
prominent white rump when seen in flight and its call note (clear high pitched jeet)
is unlike any of the common peeps found in Utah.
CURLEW SANDPIPER Calidris ferruginea. (3-1994); one adult; 14 May
1994; Antelope Island Causeway, Davis Co.; (JSa,SSa); doc: JSa.SSa.
This is the second Utah record of this rare Eurasian migrant.
The first record was also an adult observed in mid May.
BUFF-BREASTED SANDPIPER Tryngites subruficollis. (5-1995); two; 3-10
Sep 1995; Great Salt Lake, Davis Co.; (ARG,AG,SG,MM,JuR,JBy,DB,CE,MG,BF,YS);
doc: ARG; UB 11(4):65.
This is the third Utah record of Buff-breasted Sandpiper and
like the first two records is from September.
RED PHALAROPE Phalaropus fulicaria. (7-1994); two; 19 Nov 1994;
Antelope Island Causeway, Davis Co.; (TSa,KE,JBe,VAS,TB,SB,JO,JaR); doc: VAS; FN
49(1):75, UB 10(4):60.
Red Phalaropes are regular fall migrants through Utah and are
no longer being reviewed by the Records Committee. Observations of this species
should be reported to the editor of the Utah Birds seasonal reports.
LONG-TAILED JAEGER Stercorarius longicaudus. (9-1993); one; 9 Jun
1993; Fish Springs National Wildlife Refuge, Juab Co.; (SF,JBa,MD); doc: SF;
photo: Jba; AB 47(5):1131. (12-1993); one; 10 Sep 1993; Price, Carbon
Co.; (EH,NB); doc: NB; UB 9(4):64.
There are now seven accepted Utah records of this rare summer
and fall visitor.
LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL Larus fuscus. (3-1996); one adult; 28 Sep
1996; Brigham City, Box Elder Co.; (SH); doc: SH.
This is the second documented Utah record of Lesser
Black-backed Gull and the first fall record.
SABINE'S GULL Xema sabini. (14-1993); one immature; 25 Sep-8 Oct 1993;
Antelope Island Causeway, Davis Co.; (DSW); doc: DSW; AB 48(1):133, UB
9(4):65. (4-1995); one immature; 10 Sep 1995; Quichapa Lake, Iron Co.; (SSu,SPH,VJH);
doc: SSu,SPH; photo: Ssu; FN 50(1):87, UB 11(4):65. (10-1997); one
immature; 20 Sep 1997; Quail Lake, Washington Co.; (JK,LW); doc: JK. (3-1998);
two immatures; 14-15 Sep 1998; Tropic, Garfield Co.; (BM,PM); doc: BM; photo:
BM; UB 14(2):25.
Sabine's Gull is a regular fall migrant through Utah and is
likely to be dropped from the review list on the Committee's next revision. All
documented records have been immature birds. Adult Sabine's Gulls migrate
offshore and are seldom observed inland.
INCA DOVE Columbina inca. (16-1993);
four; 11 Nov 1993; Washington, Washington Co.; (JK); photo: JK.
Inca Dove is now a well-established permanent resident of
most towns in Washington County. This is another species that is likely to be
dropped from the Committee's review list.
GREAT GRAY OWL Strix nebulosa. (15-1989); one adult; 16 Feb 1989;
Paradise, Cache Co.; (EC,VH).
There are several winter records of Great Gray Owl for Utah.
The species breeds in southeastern Idaho, so nesting in extreme northern Utah is
possible but not confirmed.
BOREAL OWL Aegolius funereus. (3-1999);
one; 2-4 Apr 1999; Hell's Kitchen Canyon, Cache Co.; (WM,RJR,BD,JL,SR,TSl); doc:
WM,RJR,BD; photo: WM; tape: RJR.
There have been several reports of Boreal Owl in recent years
in the higher elevation forests of northern Utah, but this is only the second
documented record. Like the first record, this bird was photographed and the
call was also tape recorded. Boreal Owls may be more widespread in Utah than
known at present, but they are difficult to find outside of their breeding
season. They call most actively in late winter when access to their habitat
areas is limited by snow.
VAUX'S SWIFT Chaetura vauxi. (5-1993); one; 2 May 1993; Ogden Canyon,
Weber Co.; (CK); doc: CK.
Vaux's Swift is becoming a fairly regular migrant and the
species of Chaetura most likely to be encountered in Utah.
YELLOW-THROATED VIREO Vireo flavifrons. (8-1997); one adult; 8
May 1997; Logan, Cache Co.; (NW); doc: NW.
This bird was observed in a Logan yard for 10 minutes and is the
first Utah record of Yellow-throated Vireo.
EASTERN BLUEBIRD Sialia sialis.
(9-1997); one adult female; 20 Dec 1997; Logan, Cache Co.; (KA,RR,LAR,BA,BD);
doc: KA,RR,LAR; photo: LAR; FN 52(2):232.
This is the third record of Eastern Bluebird in Utah and the
second December record. Previous records were from Moab and Beaver Dam Wash.
BENDIRE'S THRASHER Toxostoma bendirei. (7-1993); two adults; 22 May
1993; Beaver Dam Slope, Washington Co.; (DSW,DT); doc: DSW,DT; UB
NORTHERN PARULA Parula americana. (6-1998); one adult female; 18 Nov-2
Dec 1998; Willard Bay State Park, Box Elder Co.; (KE,JaR,VAS,CS,mob); doc: KE; NAB
53(1):83. This is the second state record of Northern Parula. The first
record was also from late fall, 12-13 December 1990 in Salt Lake City.
BLACK-THROATED BLUE WARBLER Dendroica caerulescens. (11-1996); one
adult male; 22 Oct 1996; St. George, Washington Co.; (JK,LW,mob); doc: JK.
This is the fourth documented Utah record of this rare
vagrant. All previous records have also been fall males.
BLACK-AND-WHITE WARBLER Mniotilta varia. (4-1999);
one adult male; 11 May 1999; West Jordan, Salt Lake Co.; (SMH); doc: SMH.
Black-and-white Warbler is one of the more common
"eastern" warblers to be found in Utah. Most records are during spring
or fall migration, but there are also records from December and July.
PROTHONOTARY WARBLER Protonotaria citrea. (2-1996); one adult male; 28
Sep 1996; Antimony Creek, Garfield Co.; (MSP); doc: MSP.
This bird was observed for
several minutes as it foraged in low shrubs along Antimony Creek and is the
first documented state record for Utah.
OVENBIRD Seiurus aurocapillus. (5-1994); one; 10 Oct 1994; Horseshoe
Canyon, Canyonlands National Park, Wayne Co.; (AS); doc: AS; photo: AS; FN
49(1):77, UB 10(4):62.
Ovenbird is another "eastern' warbler that has become
fairly regular in Utah and now occurs on nearly an annual basis. Most records
are from May and September-early October, but there is also a 29 July record.
CASSIN'S SPARROW Aimophila cassinii. (6-1999); one adult male; 9-22
Jun 1999; Wah Wah Valley, Millard Co.; (SPH,LW,MS,TSa); doc: SPH; tape: SPH.
This territorial singing male was found on a breeding bird
survey and was present for at least 2 weeks. It is the first documented record
of Cassin's Sparrow for Utah.
CLAY-COLORED SPARROW Spizella pallida. (4-1998); one; 26 Sep 1998;
Warm Springs Wildlife Management Area, Utah Co.; (RJA,KJ); doc: RJA.
Clay-colored Sparrow is probably more regular in Utah than
indicated by the few state records, but can be difficult to distinguish from
Brewer's Sparrow. See Utah Birds 14(4):61-62 for a discussion of field
marks in separating these two species.
FIELD SPARROW Spizella pusilla. (1-1999); one adult; 9 Jan-Mar 1999;
Provo, Utah Co.; (MW,mob); doc: MW; NAB 53(2):189.
This cooperative bird was observed by many and is the first
state record for Utah.
GOLDEN-CROWNED SPARROW Zonotrichia atricapilla. (15-1993); one; 14 Oct
1993; Kaufman Ranch, Black rock, Millard Co.; (ES,CK); doc: ES; AB
48(1):135, UB 9(4):68.
Golden-crowned Sparrows have
been reported more frequently in recent years which could be an indication of an
increase in abundance, improved observer awareness, or a combination of both.
Golden-crowned Sparrow is still the rarest of the four Zonotrichia
sparrows in Utah.
HOARY REDPOLL Carduelis hornemanni. (2-1999); one adult female; 26 Feb
1999; Hyde park, Cache Co.; (GB,RJR,LAR); doc: GB,RJR,LAR; NAB 53(2):189.
A female Hoary Redpoll can be extremely difficult to
distinguish from Common Redpoll unless all fieldmarks are observed. This first
state record Hoary Redpoll was observed by three observers, two of which had
previous experience with both species of redpoll and were able to see the upper
and underparts of this bird and note the key fieldmarks. The bird was pure white
from the black chin patch to the undertail coverts, had a white rump, white tips
on the tertials, and only a few tan stripes on the sides. In comparison, a
Common Redpoll always has a few dark streaks on the undertail coverts and even
more streaking on the rump and flanks.
RECORDS NOT ACCEPTED, IDENTIFICATION
OLIVACEOUS CORMORANT Phalacrocorax olivaceus. (16-1989); 7 Oct 1989;
one immature; Colorado River near Moab, Grand Co.
Basis for this identification relied heavily on the thin
white border of the throat patch. However, immature Olivaceous Cormorants lack
the white throat border which is found on adults. A few Double-crested
Cormorants also have a thin white line around the throat patch and could be
mistaken for Olivaceous Cormorant unless other key fieldmarks are observed.
BOREAL OWL Aegolius funereus. (1-1993); one; 3 Mar 1993; Ashley
National Forest, Uintah Co.
Documentation for this record consisted of a single 30-second
territorial call. While this record was very possibly a Boreal Owl, the
Committee felt that additional documentation, either a visual sighting or tape
recorded call, was need for acceptance as a first state record. Since this
record, Boreal Owl has been documented in Utah by both photographs and tape
MAGNIFICENT HUMMINGBIRD Eugenes fulgens. (8-1998); 13 Jul 1998; near
Washington, Washington Co.
The Committee felt that the description, particularly of the
tail, was not adequate to rule out the very similar female Blue-throated
Observers cited: RJ Adams, Keith
Archibald, Bob Atwood, Jay Banta (JBa), Dan Barnett (DBa), Sheila Barnett (SBa),
John Bellmon (JBe), Nelson Boschen, Gordon Bosworth, Suzann Buntrock (SBu), Tim
Buntrock, Dorothy Byrne (DBy), Jim Byrne (JBy), Jim Carlson, Ed Connia, Matthew
deRosier, Bryan Dixon, Clara Elwell, Keith Evans, Shannon Fennell, Betty Fife,
Mary Garcia, Erich Gilbert, Alan R. Godwin, Bill Grossi, Anna Gwiazdowski, Stan
Gwiazdowski, Carol Gwynn, Verl Harchett, Stan Heath, Steven P. Hedges, VJ
Hedges, Eddie Horvath, Susan M. Howell, Kevin Johnson, Dan Johnston, Laura
Johnston, Craig Kneedy, Josh Kreitzer, Charles LaRue (CLa), Carol Lenz (CLe),
Laura Lockhart, Jean Lown, Maxine Martz, William Masslich, Bernard Morris,
Pauline Morris, Joyce Overdiek, Peter Paton, Clive Pinnock, M. Shane Pruett, Jim
Redd (JiR), Jeanne Redd (JeR), Jack Rensel JaR), Stuart Reynolds, June Ryburn (JuR),
Lawrence A. Ryel, Ronald J. Ryel, Terry Sadler (TSa), Jeffrey Saffle (JSa),
Susan Saffle (SSa), Alan Schmierer, Tim Slocum (TSl), John Spence (JSp), V.
Arnold Smith, Linda Smith, Carolyn Somer, Ella Sorensen, Mark Stackhouse, Yvonne
Stroup, Priscilla Summers, Steven Summers (SSu), David Thompson, Julie Van
Moorhem, David S. Wheeler, Lew Wilkinson.
*Source: Utah Birds 15(3-4):52-61.