OCTOBER 2014 in REVIEW
Single Wood Ducks showed south to Sawgrass Lake Park Oct 5th (P.Plage), at Weedon Island Preserve Oct 7th (J.Clayton) and at Harbor Isles Oct 8th (J.Clayton). An estimated 250 Blue-winged Teal flew past Fort De Soto Park (FDP) Oct 4th (P.Plage). Several female Green-winged Teal were at Brooker Creek Preserve (BCP) Oct 11-15 (D.Goebel & T.Mast) and a lone male was there Oct 30th (T.Mast). Ring-necked Ducks announced their arrival with first two at the south Tierra Verde duck pond on the 22nd (E.Plage) and then 8 at Palm Harbor’s William E. Dunn WRF Oct 28th (P.Graber) while the first two Redheads were reported at their usual haunt, the south Tierra Verde duck pond Oct 30th (W.Meehan).
The first American Bittern recorded this fall in Pinellas was one at BCP Oct 5th (T.Mast) while a Glossy Ibis was south at Harbor Isles Oct 8th (J.Clayton). Broad-winged Hawks were noted at FDP Oct 5th (S.Tavaglione) and at Dunedin Hammock Oct 15th (C.Gjervold). Two dark-morph Short-tailed Hawks were photographed at Boyd Hill Nature Preserve Oct 3rd (A.Wallace).
Smith noted a minimum of 10 Virginia Rails at Roosevelt Wetlands Oct 28th and 18 Soras at St. Petersburg’s NE STF Oct 23rd. A Black-necked Stilt stopped at FDP’s East Beach Turnaround Oct 4th (E.Plage et al.). American Avocets were reported at several locations in October with the largest total being 21 at FDP on the 6th (R.Smith & R.Harrod). A whopping 47 Snowy Plovers and 42 Piping Plovers were counted at Anclote Key South Oct 28th (D.Sauvageau).
Ninety Marbled Godwits graced FDP Oct 18th (P.Plage) and an estimated 500 Red Knots were at Three Rooker Bar Oct 2nd (D.Sauvageau). A pair of Pectoral Sandpipers spent time at Tarpon Springs Oct 2-15 (T.Mast, C.Gjervold) as did 1-3 Stilt Sandpipers Oct 3-18 (T.Kalbach). A flock of approx. 20 Long-billed Dowitchers called as they flew over Shell Key Oct 26th (B.Ahern et al.) and two other calling birds landed at Honeymoon Island State Park Oct 29th (E.Plage). Impressive was an est. 4000 Common Terns and 3500 Sandwich Terns at FDP Oct 13th (R.Smith).
Several migrant White-winged Doves were observed at FDP during October. At least 20 Yellow-billed Cuckoos landed at FDP Oct 4th (R.Smith et al.) and even more, an estimated 50, stopped there Oct 15th (E.Plage et al.). Perhaps as many as three Groove-billed Anis were seen/heard at different ends of FDP Oct 25-27 (W.Steele, E.Plage & S.Wilson). Close to 80 Chimney Swifts were over the St. Pete NE STF Oct 5th (R.Smith).
At FDP 60 Eastern Wood-Pewees swarmed the grounds Oct 4th (R.Smith, E.Plage et al.), a Yellow-bellied Flycatcher was seen briefly Oct 4th (C.Cox, E.Plage) and a Least Flycatcher was reported Oct 15th (J.Clayton). Philadelphia Vireos made a nice showing in October with several reports between Oct 5th and Oct 19th; at John Chesnut Park, at Dunedin Hammock, at FDP, at Fred Howard Park and at Bonner Park. The first of fall Wood Thrush report was received Oct 5th with 4 at HISP (T.Kalbach) and the last report was one at FDP Oct 20th (E.Plage). Six Cedar Waxwings at Dunedin Hammock Oct 15th were early (C.Gjervold).
Significant warbler reports included a Golden-winged invasion on Oct 4th; one at Bonner Park (T.Young), three at FDP (E.Plage, R.Smith et al.) and one at John Taylor Park (S.Aversa). A Blue-winged was at HISP Oct 3rd (T.Kalbach) and 3 were at FDP Oct 4th (R.Smith, E.Plage et al.). A Swainson’s Warbler was discovered at FDP Oct 4th (R & L Smith). Six Tennessees were at FDP Oct 4th (R.Smith) and 6 was also the magic number at HISP Oct 19th (T.Kalbach). Nashvilles graced Pinellas at HISP Oct 3-4 (T.Kalbach) and at FDP Oct 5th (M.Burns et al.). The fallout of Oct 4th also brought FDP a nice count of 50+ American Redstarts, 35 Magnolias, 30 Chestnut-sideds, 15 Black-throated Greens and a Wilson’s. The first Bay-breasted was detected at FDP on Oct 5th (J.Clayton) with three at Fred Howard Park on Oct 17th (T.Kalbach) and 3 at FDP Oct 18th (M.Burns). A beautiful Canada was photographed at FDP Oct 20th (R.Blair) and a Yellow-breasted Chat was seen briefly at BCP Oct 21st (T.Mast). The first Yellow-rumped of the fall, reported Oct 3rd at John Chesnut Park (A.Zions), was nearly two-weeks earlier than when the first significant push arrived, Oct 15th.
A Nelson’s Sparrow was at HISP Oct 11th (T.Kalbach) and 4 were banded at Shell Key Oct 26th (L.Deaner et al.). A juvenile White-crowned Sparrow was at a north St. Petersburg yard Oct 25th (J.Gibson) and 4 female Painted Buntings were appreciated at Sawgrass Lake Park Oct 28th (J.Clayton, S.Tavaglione). Kalbach was surprised to find two Dickcissels in his Clearwater backyard on Oct 31st.