Monday 12 October 2020

Eastern Wood Pewee and a little more...

Despite weather conditions being largely dominated by easterlies, 7 new American landbird species were added on the blackboard over the last 9 days. This seizable progress amidst a rather 'poor' autumn so far on the Rock was largely due to a short-lived landfall on the 8th/9th, presumably resulting from a favorable system of south-westerly winds that became apparent on the weather charts on the 6th. Most of these new automnal records were rather ‘classics’ for Corvo (i.e. seen almost on an annual basis), with the exception of an Eastern Wood Pewee that was discovered around the Cape Verde Farm on the late afternoon of October 4th by Vincent Legrand upon return from a day spent in the neighboring island of Flores! This gem constitutes only the 4th WP record and is one of Corvo’s specials as it has never been seen elsewhere in the region: 1st and 2nd records dated back from 2015 at Lighthouse Valley and Poço de Agua, respectively (see Dutch Birding 2018, vol 40, pp 285-296) while the 3rd record from Pico dated back from 2018.


While the weather forecast does not look too promising for this week, there is always hope for more discoveries, especially as some of the usual stalwarts managed to reach the island by the middle of last week, bringing up the total number of birders present to around 17. 


The annual ringing scheme has also restarted for the third consecutive year with the first mist-netted individual of the season on the 11th by Thijs Valkenburg being a Swainson’s Thrush that had been lingering around the village since October 9th!

Nearctic species totals for the period 3/10 to 11/10:

American Great White Egret (1) at Old Harbour

Yellow-billed Cuckoo (1) in Middle Fields

Eastern Wood Pewee (1) at Cape Verde Farm

Swainson’s Thrush (2) at Vila do Corvo and Lighthouse Valley

Red-eyed Vireo (5) at Ribeira Da Ponte/PicoR. Do Vinte and Tennessee Valley

Ovenbird (1) in Ribeira Da Ponte

Scarlet Tanager (1) in Lower Fields

Rose-breasted Grosbeak (1cy male) in Cape Verde Fields (N. of airport)

Bobolink (1) in Cape Verde Fields (N. of airport)


PS: one Catharus sp. was also seen in Fojo on two consecutive days..

Eastern Wood Pewee, Cape Verde Farm, 4 October 2020 (Vincent Legrand)
Swainson's Thrush, Vila do Corvo, 9 October 2020 (Vincent Legrand)

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