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What's the rarest bird you've had in your garden? (1 Viewer)

Definitely a Brolga!

Appeared for half a morning once in ten years, after record rains flooded a small depression in a paddock, turning it into an ephemeral wetland the size of your lounge room. It was many kilometres away from any potential wetland, and 10's of k's away from any former properly recognised wetlands, and well outside their usual range, although I have come to hear anecdotally that historically they were not that unusual in the general area, before the place got just about completely buggered up.

Magnificent!



Chosun :gh:
 
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Nothing particularly rare, in a general sense, but our garden is only about 10m x 10m, and we're in the middle of a housing estate (admittedly one on the edge of town). My own personal "favourites" are:

- a fly-over snipe in a snowstorm a couple of years ago
- a small skein of pinkfoot geese flying over quite low about a month ago
- a pair of ring-necked parakeet landing in a neighbour's tree (an unusual sight for Northumberland!)
- a single tree sparrow, present for a whole day but never seen in the garden again (although local farmland has plenty)
- a single female reed bunting seen for a couple of days this winter (again, not unusual locally, but only once in the garden)

All these are one-offs since moving here 5 years ago, so to me that makes them the rarest!
 
There's barely room to swing a cat in our garden (Surrey, UK), but occasional waxwings, redstarts and a beautiful sparrowhawk sitting on the feeders have been kind enough to visit. Nothing rare, but nice to see.
 
The rarest in my yard in suburban Reno was a Brown Thrasher some years ago, a very uncommonly reported bird in western Nevada. Next come the Indigo Bunting, Harris's Sparrow & White-throated Sparrow in no particular order.

But the best by far have been the owls, 6 species altogether: Barn, Great Horned, Long-eared, Western Screech and (the creme de la creme) Northern Saw-whet and Flammulated

Here's a record shot I took of the thrasher--
https://www.flickr.com/photos/fugl/405161525/in/set-72157632697044443
 
The rarest in my yard in suburban Reno was a Brown Thrasher some years ago, a very uncommonly reported bird in western Nevada. Next come the Indigo Bunting, Harris's Sparrow & White-throated Sparrow in no particular order.

But the best by far have been the owls, 6 species altogether: Barn, Great Horned, Long-eared, Western Screech and (the creme de la creme) Northern Saw-whet and Flammulated

Here's a record shot I took of the thrasher--
https://www.flickr.com/photos/fugl/405161525/in/set-72157632697044443

SIX species of owl? That's just plain greedy! ;)

Here in Haute Savoie France, our rarest in the garden bird has to be our celebrity Italian Sparrow (see today's pic), present for about 4 years now, my theory is that it hitched a lift in a lorry that came through the Mont Blanc tunnel. He's a real macho male, so now there are several hybrid Italian/House Sparrows in the garden too! Rarest from the garden is the Booted Eagle last month, less than annual in our département.

Richard
 

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Hmm...

Well my backyard isn't big (its less than acre), but because its in the woods and along the river, I've managed to see a surprising amount of species.

I would probably say either a Philadelphia Vireo (still the only one I've seen), a Tufted Titmouse or a flock of White-winged Crossbills I had at my feeder one winter.

This doesn't count but I regularly see Grasshopper Sparrows nesting in a field only a kilometer from my house. In that same field someone saw a Henslow's Sparrow, one of just four sight records for the province.
 
February 1990 produced a Naumann's Thrush in the garden (1st for Britain) and since, the odd Hawfinch and Firecrest (the latter almost annual, in fact....more frequent than House Sparrow!). Flyovers have produced fem.Monty's Harrier and Black Kite (both relatively low down), not so low down...Purple Heron last year (managed to get a shot off), and perched up atop trees opposite a Red-backed Shrike in Aug 2004.
 
Nightjar. Firecrest and Spotted Flycatcher as breeding birds. Hundreds, sometimes thousands of overflying Cranes each year.

Steve
 
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Not a rare bird in the general sense, but a rare bird in the context of "in one's garden": the Grey-cheeked Thrush. I had one this morning, during a mini-migration event (along with a stunning male American Redstart, a female Scarlet Tanager, and a Swainson's Thrush). Only the second ever I've had on the yard list, in about 18 years of keeping track.

Peter
 
Not a rare bird in the general sense, but a rare bird in the context of "in one's garden": the Grey-cheeked Thrush. I had one this morning, during a mini-migration event (along with a stunning male American Redstart, a female Scarlet Tanager, and a Swainson's Thrush). Only the second ever I've had on the yard list, in about 18 years of keeping track.

Peter

..... the beauty of reading threads like this. It doesn't take a world rarity to be interesting, a scarce species to your area makes for great excitement
 
Most UK gardens take up less space than the word 'acre'. ;)

Ok, I should have said small in relation to most other properties around me (which are either farms or acreages) ;)

And to add to Bananafishbones, yes seeing an unusual species in your backyard I find more exciting. Of all the places a bird could have end up it visited your yard. It's like having a celebrity arrive at your front door! :-O
 
In Colombia, a Chestnut-bellied Hummingbird (an endangered species of about 1000 to 2500 individuals) on our balcony!

In Britain a flock of Waxwing, but they seem to be common some winters!
 
Having lived in lots of places I've kept lots of garden lists. The highlight though was finding a lesser goldfinch coming to black thistle seeds when I lived in North Carolina. It was the second record and the first "confirmed" record for the state:
https://www.carolinabirdclub.org/gallery/McGregor/lego.html
Other good birds were:
Tallahassee, Florida - Swainson's warbler,
Jos, Nigeria - rock firefinch (endemic), but swallow-tailed bee-eater stands out,
North Ronaldsay - probably Orkney's first aquatic warbler in the Obs garden,
My current house in Scotland...probably Osprey.
 
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