TWO ADDITIONS TO THE NEBRASKA LIST
Copyright 1983, Nebraska Ornithologists' Union. Used by permission.
OUVACEOUS CORMORANT The University of Nebraska State Museum has in its possession a specimen of Olivaceous Cormorant (Phalacrocorx olivaceus) taken 2 October 1982 in Sutherland County, Nebraska. The bird was confiscated and turned over to us by a game warden.
PHAINOPEPLA On 1 January 1983, at 8 A.M. I'd just chipped out the birdbath and refilled it with warm water. I was kneeling in the doorway of the garage, preparing goodies for the "children", when stroboscopic flashes of white outside the door caught my eye. I looked back toward the birdbath and noticed a small black bird drinking. I knew it wasn't anything I had ever seen before, so I eased back into the garage to get a closer look out the window (it's much closer to the birdbath, and birds are much less alarmed being watched through glass). I watched it as long as it drank. The white flashed were significant, I knew, though no white showed when the bird was at rest. The slender, black body (thank God for so few field markings!), the tail shape and length, and the cedar waxwing-like crest all seemed adequate for me to identify the bird. It flew away and I flew into the house to try to find the bird in my field guides. The only detail I had to confirm during other sightings was the red eyes, and he had them. The Phainopepla came back four or five times that day to drink. Knowing it might not survive the cold or native birds, I took the photos the first day it came around. I was tied up at work and didn't have as much time for birdwatching as usual, but I did see it again 9 and 25 January and 2 and 13 February. I've not seen it eating anything in the back yard, but I wonder if it might not have been helping itself to food when I was not watching.