Saturday, December 12, 1998

Scissor-tailed Flycatcher at Farfán

A Scissor-tailed Flycatcher was seen on the first tree to the left of the left gravel road at the Farfán Antenna Field. It was with a flock of about ten Fork-tailed Flycatchers. Also seen on the same place were a few Dickcissels and a Yellow-billed Cuckoo.

On Saturday, December 12th, Karl and Rosabel Kaufmann, Darién Montañez and visiting birders Jay Carlisle and Sarah Hamilton went to the West Bank to stake out birds for the upcoming Pacific Christmas Bird Count. After visiting Farfán Beach, the group went to the Farfán Antenna Field. The gravel road to the right produced almost nothing, but our luck changed when we took the one to the left. On the first small tree on the left side of the road a flock of Fork-tailed Flycatchers had a Scissor-tailed Flycatcher in it. It was an adult, clearly different from its companions in its lack of black in the head. Instead, all of its head was light gray, with just a little black on the lores. It was a pale gray overall, darker on the back,with the characteristic pinkish hue on the flanks. The wing feathers were black with contrasting white edgings on most of them.
Further ahead on the same road, we had a male Dickcissel in breeding plumage perched on the grass, and then a Yellow-billed Cuckoo high in a tree. On the way out we saw more Dickcissels flying over the field. A short stop at Amador produced no Western Tanagers, though.

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