Nebraska Ornithologists' Union


Date of this Version



Silcock, "Summer Field Report, June–July 2016," from Nebraska Bird Review (September 2016) 84(3).


Copyright 2016 Nebraska Ornithologists’ Union. Used by permission.


This was a routine summer, if there is such a thing. Items of interest involved some rarities, most of which were distributional and temporal, some range changes, and a few issues that triggered more discussion than usual.

The only mega-rarity was Nebraska's second Swallow-tailed Kite; this species has apparently moved northward on the Great Plains in the last couple of years. Distributional rarities included the 3rd record for the east of Long-billed Curlew, a White-eyed Vireo in Cherry Co, the 2nd fall Yellow-throated Vireo record for the Panhandle, the 6th Cherry Co record for Purple Martin, and the 5th and 6th Tufted Titmouse records in Jefferson Co. Temporal rarities were a Dunlin that was state record early by 2 days in Knox Co, the 3rd Jun record of Blackburnian Warbler, and a record late Black-throated Green Warbler.

Interesting actual or potential changes in ranges involved possible breeding Mississippi Kites in Kearney and Omaha, probable breeding Red-shouldered Hawk in Jefferson Co, American Avocet nesting eastward in Rock Co, two reports of Barn Owl in the northeast, and the second breeding record for the state of Sage Thrasher in Sioux Co.

Issues discussed in the species accounts are the situation with American Black and Mottled Ducks and their apparent hybrids and other similar-looking possibilities, the continuing nesting success of Osprey, including a nice congruence of power company and Osprey interests, the apparent discernment of two Marbled Godwit migratory populations in Nebraska, and discussions on distribution of five rather common but patchily distributed species: Sedge and Marsh Wrens, Vesper Sparrow, Eastern Meadowlark, and Great-tailed Grackle.