Like a lot of other British birders I get excited about rare birds especially when I am in a position to twitch for one. So far my twitches have been very infrequent, much less frequent than when I was living in England. This year's excitement (for me) has been porvided by the ABA's first Loggerhead KIngbird (Key West, FL) and a cracking Green-breasted Mango in Dublin, Georgia.
So in an attempt to generate some excitement about rarities I thought I would post what has been happening in Florida, rarity wise, so far this December. I hope eventually this forum will be used by birders all over the US and Canada, providing an internet meeting place to share stories, news and pictures of rare birds. Have a Great Xmas.
Here is the latest summary of the Florida Rare Bird Alert
12/3/07--Franklin�s Gull, Okaloosa County, Ft. Walton Beach. Observer: Don
Ware. Directions: Gull seen on Fort Walton Beach City Pond off of the Beal
extension. (DeLORME p.g 44)
12/2/07-- Male Vermillion Flycatcher, St. Marks NWR, Wakulla County.
Observer: Andy Wraithmell, Michael Hartley. Directions: From US 98, at
Newport take SR 59 to refuge entrance. Pay entrance fee. (DeLORME pg. 50)
Flycatcher seen along 129th dike, halfway to the back of Stoney Bayou 2.
12/6/07-- Male Western Tanager, home of Fran Rutkovsky, 3210 Brookforest
Dr. (off Lakeshore Dr.), Tallahassee, Leon County. Observer: Fran Rutkovsky.
For directions to Fran�s house please call Fran (850-422-3636) or e-mail
franrutkovsky AT comcast.net before arriving.
Due to the several rarities at Fran�s house, Fran and her husband have
No phone calls before 9 AM, and please no visitors till after 10AM.
Please call or e-mail Fran ahead of time, as there may be other birders
already there or on their way.
Please do not wander around the yard. Fran will show you the best places for
Please do not block driveways or mailboxes.
12/1/07--Lapland Longspur, Hugenot Memorial Park, Duval County. Observer:
Bob Richter. Directions: Park located off of Heckscher Dr. (Rt.105/A1A),
just south of Little Talbot Island (DeLORME p.g 58). Follow entrance road
to pavement's end, then follow sand road to lagoon. Llongspur originally
discovered on lagoon shore between road and beach access cut, but flushed
into dunes between lagoon and river. Purple Sandpiper also at jetty.
12/4/07--1st winter Franklin�s Gull, Volusia County Landfill. Observer:
Chris Newton. Directions: From I-4 East, take exit 129 (US-92 E, toward
Daytona Beach) to W International Speedway Blvd (US-92). After 3.16 miles,
turn right on Tomoka Farms Rd (CR- 415). Landfill 2-3 miles down road.
(DeLORME p.75) Sign in and out at office on left as you drive in. Please
stay out of the way of the trucks and do not go near where they are dumping
and stay on paved roads only! 2 Franklin�s gulls seen 11/30 by Dexter
Richardson and Alex Vinokur.
12/7/07--Long-tailed Duck, Volusia County, Dunlawton Bridge- Port Orange.
Observers: Michael Brothers, Bob Wallace. Directions: From I-95 (south
Daytona), take Rt. 421 (Dunlawton Ave.) and head east to A1A. (DeLORME p.g
12/8/07--Ash-throated Flycatcher, Volusia County, Lake Monroe Conservation
Area. Observer: Danny Bales. Directions: From Rt. 415 east of Sanford
travel east towards Osteen. Travel about 5 to 6 miles, look for entrance to
conservation area on right, entrance is right before Reed Ellis Rd (on the
left). Park and go through the gate, follow fence line (to your left) that
runs south (runs next to Rt. 415) until you come to first big oak tree.
(DeLORME p.g 80) Flycatcher was seen feeding in brush pile on south side of
oak tree at 3:46 P.M.
11/29-12/8/07--Male Vermilion Flycatcher, Sanford, Seminole County.
Observers: m.ob. Directions: From Rt. 417, exit at Rt.427 head East short
distance, turn South (right) onto Lake Mary Blvd, then immediately turn
right onto Sanford Ave, then left onto Pine Way Rd., then right onto
Mellonville Ave., then left onto Oakway Lane. Follow road to parking area.
Take Red Trail, stay on Red Trail as it bears left, follow trail for about �
mile, trail will open up to a pasture area. (DeLORME p.g 80) Flycatcher
seen in Easterly side of pasture area.
12/2/07--Fox Sparrow, Orange County, Wekiva Springs State Park. Observer
/bander: Andrew Boyle. Directions: From I-4, exit Rt.434 (exit 94), drive
west to Wekiva Springs Rd., turn right and drive 4.2 miles to park entrance.
(DeLORME P.g 80) Sparrow was banded and released in the AM.
11/26-11/27/07- Male Cinnamon Teal, Viera Wetlands, Brevard County.
Observer: Dot Freeman, Chris Newton, John Thomton. Directions: From I-95,
Exit #191 (Wickham Rd). Go west until road ends at Sewage Treatment Plant.
(DeLORME p.g 88) Teal seen in cell #3, with about 2,000 BWT, GWT.
11/29-12/4/07--male Eurasian Wigeon, Black Point Wildlife Drive, Merritt
Island NWR, Titusville. Reporter: M.ob. Directions: Off I-95, exit Rt. 406
head east go through Titusville, over Rt.1, onto Merritt Island. After
several miles bare left onto Memorial Pkwy, go one mile to Black Point
Wildlife Drive entrance on left. Eurasian Wigeon in impoundment on left
between stops #2 and #3.
11/29/07--2 White-tailed Kites, Miami-Dade County, Everglades National Park,
Research Road. Observers: Bryant Roberts. Directions: From Florida City, go
west on SR 9336/Palm Drive/SW 34 Street to entrance of ENP ($10.00 fee).
Follow main road to Royal Palm/Anhinga Trail/Gumbo Limbo trail. Turn left
into Royal Palm and go about a half mile to a road on right. Turn right
here, road curves around, look for paved road going right this is Research
Road, kite�s seen along here. (DeLORME p.g 122).
12/9/07--Yellow-headed Blackbird, Dump Marsh, Miami-Dade County. Observer:
Roberto Torres. Directions: Take Turnpike and exit at SW 112 Ave., turn
left, and make a right at SW 248th St, (Coconut Palm Dr.) and head east
toward Black Point. The road soon splits around Goulds Canal. Take right
fork and drive along south side of canal (the left fork leads to Black Point
Park). Be careful! Both forks are two-way streets. Follow it to end and park
by gate to the wastewater treatment plant. (DeLORME p.g 119) Check wires for
any Brown-headed Cowbird flocks around the pole and also across the canal.