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ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia

Bird species seen just the once in your yard/garden. (1 Viewer)

KenM

Well-known member
Great idea for a thread. My once-onlys are Tawny Owl (although same bird over several nights), Common Whitethroat, Lesser Redpoll and annoyingly an in the dark, most likely Woodcock which I spooked as I opened the kitchen curtains backlit to look at a heavy snowfall! I assume it had moved in with the snow.

Urban garden, no decent habitat in immediate vicinity
It’s those incongruous moments that are so memorable!
...Woodcock outside the “back door”, Stonechat by the “wheelie bin and for me...putting the rubbish out circa midnight and hearing once (no it can’t be I uttered) followed by “wet-my-lips” several times more...pure magic.👍
 

peter.jones

Former supporter. No longer active here.
Supporter
My most memorable, "longer range", was going into the front garden and hearing a Nightjar in the distance. So faint, between traffic noise, and presumably wind assisted.
I grabbed my coat and binocs, legged it towards the woods on the edge of the village to be greeted with a wall of pitch black, which stopped me in my tracks!
Next evening, I was better prepared and saw the Nightjar in a large clearing. I see one most summers now, in the same area.

But never heard from the garden since.
 

birdboybowley

Well-known member.....apparently so ;)
Supporter
England
Had a few one-timers.....Common Rosefinch, Black Kite, Melodious Warbler, Wood Warbler, Mealy Redpoll, Tree Sparrow and Ring-necked Parakeet. But the Arctic Skua in Aug 19 that flew over with a vast mixed gull flock was a total surprise! And finally had an Osprey last August too which was a relief as even my dad's had one over his place 😄
 

WalterRayle

Emeritus Prof at University of the Bearded Clam
United Kingdom
Very interesting Walter! My “window” list is also triple digit+, however it took me 37 years to attain that.
Would I be correct in assuming that you too have also been in long term residence and whereabouts in the realm (roughly will suffice if need) are you?

Cheers
I've been here 25 years (although the first ten of those I was rarely at home to see anything) and I'm not far from the Hampshire coast. Funnily enough, I saw more Golden Plover from the window last year than I saw in all my days out.
 

MJB

Well-known member
In Spring 2020, a Wryneck appeared in our front garden (North Norfolk), wandered about a bit, then ambled across the cul-de-sac turning area on to our neighbours' pavement. I was just about to photograph it when our neighbour suddenly came out of his garden gate and it flew off!
MJB
 

KenM

Well-known member
I've been here 25 years (although the first ten of those I was rarely at home to see anything) and I'm not far from the Hampshire coast. Funnily enough, I saw more Golden Plover from the window last year than I saw in all my days out.
Very interesting Walter, fwiw I “dawn to dusked” it last year during lockdown, needless to say I added a few species to my list. However what was notable, were the number of scarce (certainly not annual) passerine migrants that were recorded particularly Aug-Oct. My 3rd YBW in 5 years, and to my mind even more amazing...3 Spot Flys. and 3 Pied Flys also a 1st with Melodious Warbler.
I live approx.10 miles from St.Pauls and c50 miles from the coast hence my interest in your passerine records and location.
Which might suggest that the passerine migration front may well be broader across the realm rather than being exclusively of a coastal nature.

Cheers 👍
 

KenM

Well-known member
In Spring 2020, a Wryneck appeared in our front garden (North Norfolk), wandered about a bit, then ambled across the cul-de-sac turning area on to our neighbours' pavement. I was just about to photograph it when our neighbour suddenly came out of his garden gate and it flew off!
MJB
....any expletives uttered? 😄
 

connorco

Well-known member
United States
Cackling Goose (Flyover)
Northern Pintail (Flyover)
Feral Pigeon (Flyover)
Black-chinned Hummingbird By far my rarest bird in my yard.
Western Gull (Flyover)
Northern Saw-whet Owl
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Northern Mockingbird
American Pipit (Flyover)
Red Crossbill
Lincoln's Sparrow
Savanah Sparrow (Flyover)
Common Yellowthroat
Hermit Warbler
 
A single male Hawfinch eating from a feeder in my garden in Aviemore in July 2020. He was only there about 10 minutes. I've lived here for 28 years and that's the only one I've seen in the garden.
 

dantheman

Bah humbug
Thinking about it, in France - Quail heard flying up from the patio as I went out to the caravan for the night, Little Ringed Plover calling from beside the pond and Scops Owl in the Eucalyptus were on the property (actually the latter just outside), and a Reed Warbler for several days in the hedge probably count.
 

birdmeister

Well-known member
United States
I have a bunch of single flyover occurrences, but as far as IN the yard, I think the list is shorter but fascinating.

Blackpoll Warbler
Hairy Woodpecker
Wild Turkey (one sprinted through the yard to all of our astonishment!)
Pine Warbler (was a new yard bird too!)
Palm Warbler
Black-throated Green Warbler (I think only once)
Common Yellowthroat
Yellow Warbler
Scarlet Tanager
Tennessee Warbler
Field Sparrow
Indigo Bunting (I think only once)
 

wheatearlp

Well-known member
England
In my current garden (just under two years) just Redwing, Jay & Goldfinch. In previous gardens (17 years & 11 years) - Hawfinch & Waxwing respectively.
 

KenM

Well-known member
Bizarrely, House Sparrow. in 23 years in this house. And there's a colony hang about in some gardens about 600m away.
I’m not in a dissimilar position here Sancho with HS, they are incredibly sedentary on a street by street basis, I’m lucky if I get one visit per annum. 👍
 

YuShan

hikingbirdman.com
United Kingdom
A pair of Mistle Thrushes perched in a tree in our communal garden in the middle of town a few years ago, just when I was doing my Great Garden Birdwatch survey.
 

kb57

Well-known member
Europe
Very interesting Walter, fwiw I “dawn to dusked” it last year during lockdown, needless to say I added a few species to my list. However what was notable, were the number of scarce (certainly not annual) passerine migrants that were recorded particularly Aug-Oct. My 3rd YBW in 5 years, and to my mind even more amazing...3 Spot Flys. and 3 Pied Flys also a 1st with Melodious Warbler.
I live approx.10 miles from St.Pauls and c50 miles from the coast hence my interest in your passerine records and location.
Which might suggest that the passerine migration front may well be broader across the realm rather than being exclusively of a coastal nature.

Cheers 👍
I was surprised to add pied flycatcher to my year list on a visit to Hyde Park a few years ago, but apparently they are not that rare there as a spring passage migrant (perhaps you told me this at the time???). I'm sure migration does occur on a broader front than we think, we just see the concentrations of landfall migrants at the coast. With big cities, the disorientating effect of bright lighting is also likely to pull birds in - something which is well recognised in North America, less so in Europe.
 

pbjosh

missing the neotropics
Switzerland
I have a couple of yard lists. One for my mother's yard in backcountry San Diego, which gets a lot of good birds and which I've been adding to during my visits for 15+ years. Another for my (now ex) address in Buenos Aires. Also, I find the requirement that the birds perched pretty artificial. If that were the case I would have 4 species on my Buenos Aires list, genuinely. Anyways, birds that have been noticed just once:

San Diego:
Mountain Chickadee
Say's Phoebe (regular a few hundred meters away)
Band-tailed Pigeon
Belted Kingfisher
Caspian Tern
Yellow-breasted Chat
Western Wood-Pewee

the best birds (in my opinion) have appeared various times: Scott's Oriole (local vagrant, recorded twice), Common Poorwill (breeds), Greater Roadrunner (resident). All of the "once only" birds are certainly annual but I'm only there an average of once a year and only record what I see while I stand out on the deck in the morning with tea, or what I kick up while helping in the garden, or whatnot.

Buenos Aires:
Ferruginous Pygmy-Owl
Checkered Woodpecker

Our (now for sale) flat was on a nice quite avenue with a green park strip down the middle, and near a larger park. But still, diversity in the actual city is low. In 4 years I saw 39 species from the flat, though I didn't spend any time watching the sky to try to pick up the rarer raptors or swallows or flyover waterfowl, storks, gulls etc.
 

Jabberwocky

Well-known member
In 42 years I've had Redstart, Garden Warbler, Lesser Whitethoroat, Ring Ouzel, Green Sandpiper flushed from the ditch at the end of the garden when all the still water was frozen, and Black Kite. The latter almost certainly an escaped bird.

Redstart from 2006, the rest all since my retirement in March 2014.
I think I enjoyed the Ring Ouzel most of all, it was feeding on Whitebeam berries from a tree I planted 25 years before.

Lewis
 
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Columbia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Colombia
ZEISS. Discover the fascinating world of birds, and win a birding trip to Colombia

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