New York State Rarities- Varied Thrush (Zoothera naevia)

On Saturday 15 March 2003, Alvin Wollin found a Varied Thrush (Zoothera naevia) at Hempstead Lake State Park in Nassau County, Long Island, New York. The bird was relocated the following morning but was very secretive, giving little more than glimpses. It was heard singing on a few occasions but otherwise was seen only when it flew up from the undergrowth into the bare branches of a tree. The striking underwing pattern - two white bars formed by the white underwing coverts and bases of primaries and secondaries, set on a darker background - was quite evident in flight. Although the bird was heard singing, the absence of a strong dark breast band and pale (slightly washed out) orange tone to the throat and supercillium indicate an adult female. [Note: Earlier in the year, a first -winter male was coming to a private feeder in eastern Long Island.]

Thanks to Al Wollin for a great find and to John Fritz, Andy Guthrie, Lloyd Spitalnik and Tony Lauro for passing the word along.

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