2011 Annual Report



4710 Canyonwood Drive, Austin, Texas 78735

The Texas Bird Records Committee (hereafter "TBRC" or "committee") of the Texas Ornithological Society requests and reviews documentation on any record of a TBRC Review List species. Annual reports of the committee’s activities have appeared in the Bulletin of the Texas Ornithological Society since 1984. For more information about the Texas Ornithological Society or the TBRC, please visit www.texasbirds.org. The committee reached a final decision on 92 records during 2011: 78 records of 39 species were accepted and 14 records of 12 species were not accepted, an acceptance rate of 84.78% for this report. In addition, there was 1 record which was withdrawn by the submitters (Red-breasted Sapsucker, 2010-89). A total of 126 observers submitted documentation (to the TBRC or to other entities) that was reviewed by the committee during 2011.

In 2011, the TBRC did not accept any first state records. Therefore the official Texas State List remained at 636 species in good standing. This total does not include the four species on the Presumptive Species List.

In addition to the review of previously undocumented species, any committee member may request that a record of any species be reviewed. The committee requests written descriptions as well as photographs, video, and audio recordings if available. Information concerning a Review List species may be submitted to the committee secretary, Eric Carpenter, 4710 Canyonwood Drive, Austin, Texas 78735 (email: ecarpe@gmail.com). Guidelines for preparing rare bird documentation can be found in Dittmann and Lasley (1992) or at http://www.greglasley.net/document.html.

The records in this report are arranged taxonomically following the AOU Check-list of North American Birds (AOU 1998) through the 53th supplement (Chesser et al. 2012). A number in parentheses after the species name represents the total number of accepted records in Texas for that species at the end of 2011. Species added to the Review List because of population declines or dwindling occurrence in recent years do not have the total number of accepted records denoted as there are many documented records that are not subject to review (e.g. Brown Jay, Tamaulipas Crow, and Evening Grosbeak). All observers who submitted written documentation or photographs of accepted records are acknowledged by initials. If known, the initials of those who discovered a particular bird are in boldface but only if the discoverer(s) submitted supporting documentation. The TBRC file number of each accepted record will follow the observers' initials. If photographs or video recordings are on file with the TBRC, the Texas Photo Record File (TPRF) (Texas A&M University) number is also given. If an audio recording of the bird is on file with the TBRC, the Texas Bird Sounds Library (TBSL) (Sam Houston State University) number is also given. Specimen records are denoted with an asterisk (*) followed by the institution where the specimen is housed and the catalog number. The information in each account is usually based on the information provided in the original submitted documentation; however, in some cases this information has been supplemented with a full range of dates the bird was present if that information was made available to the TBRC. All locations in italics are counties. Please note that the county designations of offshore records are used only as a reference to the nearest point of land.

TBRC Membership -- Members of the TBRC during 2011 who participated in decisions listed in this report were: Randy Pinkston, Chair; Keith Arnold, Academician; Mark Lockwood, Secretary; Eric Carpenter, Secretary; Tim Fennell, Mary Gustafson, Jim Paton, Martin Reid, Byron Stone, and Ron Weeks. During 2011, Mark Lockwood resigned as Secretary and Eric Carpenter was elected to replace him. Martin Reid was re-elected as a voting member after his first term expired. The Chair and Academician were also re-elected.

Contributors - John Arvin, Chris Bailey (CBa), Becky Baker, Jim Bangma, Lynn Barber, Matthew Baumann (MBa), Mikael Behrens, Devin Bosler, Jeff Bouton, Gil Bozeman, Erik Breden, Winnie Burkett, Carol Burlinson, Brad Carlson (BCa), Eric Carpenter, Jeff Cheney, Karen Chiasson, Bill Clark (BCl), Chuck Clark, Scarlet Colley, Greg Cook, Mel Cooksey, Bob Creglow, David Dauphin, Tripp Davenport, Jim Derington, Jon Dunn (JDu), Marc Eastman (MEa), Maryann Eastman, Gil Eckrich, Robert Epstein, Mark Esparza (MEs), Amy Farrell, Terry Ferguson (TFe), Shawneen Finnegan, Joe Fischer, Linda Forrest, Ray Forrest, Phyllis Frank, Tony Frank (TFr), Brush Freeman, Gary Froehlich, Andres Garcia, Raul Garza, Joseph Gebler, Dave Grise, Steven Gross, John Groves (JGr), Mary Gustafson, Martin Hagne, Mitch Heindel, Troy Hibbitts, Carol Hobby, Tom Hobby (THo), Petra Hockey, Steve Howell, Mark Hubinger, Huck Hutchens, Al Jibb, Dexter Johnston (DeJ), Dan Jones (DaJ), Irme Karafiath, Bill Keim, Joseph Kennedy, Gayle King, Marcin Kotjka, Tom Langschied, Greg Lasley, Javier de Leon (JdL), Michael Lindsey (MLi), Mark Lockwood (MLo), Stephan Lorenz, Jason Luscier, Jon McIntyre, Brad McKinney, Darlene Moore, Roy Morris, James Naismith, David Nelson, Bruce Neville, Rick Nirschl, Kyle O'Haver, Brian O'Shea, Carolyn Ohl-Johnson, Jay Packer (JaP), Jim Paton (JiP), Tom Pendleton, Barrett Pierce, Randy Pinkston, Bob Rasa, Janet Rathjen, Martin Reid (MaR), Michael Retter, Roy Rodriguez, Forrest Rowland, Chris Runk, Christopher Rustay, Kelley Sampeck, David Sarkozi, Steven Schafersman, Mark Scheuerman, Benjamin Schwartz (BSc), Bruce Sherman (BSh), Jim Sinclair, Rex Stanford, Harlan Stewart, Byron Stone (BSt), Mary Beth Stowe (MBS), Bryan Tarbox, Clay Taylor (CTa), Kent Taylor (KTa), Kerry Taylor, Samuel Taylor, Carol Thompson (CTh), Joe Thompson, Matt VanWallene, Doug Weidemann, Dave Welling (DaW), Jana Whittle, David Wolf (DWo), Adam Wood (AdW), Alan Wormington, John Yochum, Barry Zimmer, Robin Zurovec, Troy Zurovec.

Acknowledgments -- The TBRC is very grateful to the many contributors listed above, without whom this report would not be possible. The committee would also like to thank Bill Clark, Alvaro Jaramillo, Osao & Michiaki Ujihara, and Bret Whitney for providing the TBRC with expert opinion concerning records reviewed during 2011. The author thanks Randy Pinkston and Martin Reid for reviewing previous drafts of this report.

Additional Abbreviations -- AOU = American Ornithologists' Union; NP = National Park; NWR = National Wildlife Refuge; SHS = State Historic Site; SNA = State Natural Area; SP = State Park; TBSL = Texas Bird Sounds Library (Sam Houston State University); TCWC = Texas Cooperative Wildlife Collection (Texas A&M University); WMA = Wildlife Management Area.


Trumpeter Swan (Cygnus buccinator) (9). One at Midland, Midland, from 18-21 February 2011 (SS; 2011-23; TPRF 2943).

Masked Duck (Nomonyx dominicus) (90). One at Attwater NWR, Colorado, on 25 January 2005 (BCa; 2011-60; TPRF 2962). Up to two at the King Ranch,Kleberg, from 8 March - 30 April 2011 (MG, BK, CTa; 2011-35; TPRF 2949). Up to three at Sabal Palm Sanctuary, Cameron, from 22 May - 9 July 2011 (RZ, MBS, JM, RP, THi; 2011-57; TPRF 2960). One north of Combes, Cameron, from 19 July - 1 August 2011 (TZ, RZ, MG; 2011-74; TPRF 2968).

Red-necked Grebe (Podiceps grisegena) (23). One at Lake Benbrook, Tarrant, from 6-14 February 2011 (GC, LB, AlW; 2011-31; TPRF 2945).

Red-billed Tropicbird (Phaethon aethereus) (13). One offshore, 20 miles east of Port Isabel, Cameron, on 16 July 2011 (EC,DM, TFr, PF, BM, RP; 2011-72; TPRF 2967).

Snail Kite (Rostrhamus sociabilis) (4). One at El Franco Lee Park, Houston, Harris, on 17 June 2011 (SL; 2011-62; TPRF 2964).

Short-tailed Hawk (Buteo brachyurus) (38). One at Santa Ana NWR, Hidalgo, on 11 August 2009 (MaR; 2010-69; TPRF 2910).

Red-necked Stint (Calidris ruficollis) (2). One at Bolivar Flats, Galveston, from 26 June - 8 July 2011 (KT, PH, JK; 2011-70; TPRF 2966).

Red Phalarope (Phalaropus fulicarius) (38). One at Sal del Rey, LRGV NWR, Hidalgo, from 30-31 October 2010 (DaJ, MG; 2010-74; TPRF 2915). One at Port Isabel, Cameron, on 15 November 2010 (SC; 2010-88; TPRF 2926).

Black-legged Kittiwake (Rissa tridactyla) (88). One at White Rock Lake, Dallas, from 20 November 2010 - 19 January 2011 (CR; 2010-75; TPRF 2916). One at Belton Lake, Bell, on 20 November 2010 (RP; 2010-79; TPRF 2920). One at Lake Livingston, Polk/San Jacinto, from 28 December 2010 - 14 March 2011 (DWo, JR, SG, DS, AdW, CBa; 2011-04; TPRF 2931). One at Padre Island Nat’l Seashore, Kenedy, on 4 January 2011 (PH; 2011-03). One at Galveston, Galveston, from 6-11 January 2011 (KS, TFr, PF, MLi, JF; 2011-01; TPRF 2929). One at Rollover Pass, Galveston, on 26 March 2011 (BO; 2011-33; TPRF 2947).

Little Gull (Hydrocoloeus minutus) (65). One at Hagerman NWR, Grayson, on 29 November 2010 (DaJ; 2010-81; TPRF 2922). One at Lake Ray Hubbard,Dallas, from 7-23 December 2010 (CR; 2010-83). One at Southside Water Treatment Plant, Dallas, from 15-16 January 2011 (BSt; 2011-05; TPRF 2932). Two in the area around the Port Aransas jetties, Nueces, from 1 February - 31 March 2011 (JM, AdW, MBa, MC, MaR, EB; 2011-18; TPRF 2942). Two at White Rock Lake, Dallas, from 5-14 March 2011 (CR; 2011-34; TPRF 2948). One at Sea Rim SP, Jefferson, on 2 April 2011 (JW, HS; 2011-38; TPRF 2951).

(Vega) Herring Gull (Larus argentatus vegae) (4). One in east Houston, Harris, on 21 February 2007 (MaR; 2011-11; TPRF 2936). One in northeast Houston,Harris, on 12 February 2008 (MaR; 2011-12; TPRF 2937).

Slaty-backed Gull (Larus schistisagus) (5). One in east Houston, Harris, on 21 February 2007 (MaR; 2011-07; TPRF 2933).

Great Black-backed Gull (Larus marinus) (48). One in east Houston, Harris, on 21 February 2007 (MaR; 2011-13; TPRF 2938). One at Port Aransas, Nueces, on 11 November 2010 (JM; 2010-66; TPRF 2907). One at East Beach, Galveston, from 30 December 2010 - 5 January 2011 (MaR; 2010-90; TPRF 2927).

Thalasseus species (1). One at Bolivar Flats, Galveston, on 15 April 2008 (MiR, BSc; 2010-84; TPRF 2923). Photos showed a large Thalasseus, presumably a Lesser Crested, Elegant or “Cayenne” Tern. The record was accepted at the genus level.

Long-tailed Jaeger (Stercorarius longicaudus) (22). One on west Matagorda Bay, Calhoun, on 7 September 2010 (PH; 2010-55).

Ruddy Ground-Dove (Columbina talpacoti) (21). One at Estero Llano Grande SP, Hidalgo, from 10-12 November 2010 (JDu, RS, MaR, DaJ, MS, RR, JBo; 2010-67; TPRF 2908). Two at Canyon Grande Creek, Maverick, on 7 April 2011 (BF; 2011-45).

Mangrove Cuckoo (Coccyzus minor) (13). One in Brownsville, Cameron, on 1 January 1996 (JGe; 2011-75). One at Sabal Palm Sanctuary, Cameron, from 26-30 June 2011 (JA; 2011-69).

Green Violetear (Colibri thalassinus) (72). One near Ratcliff, Houston, from 18-19 September 2010 (BB; 2011-02; TPRF 2930). One in Temple, Bell, from 26-28 May 2011 (RP, JC, GE; 2011-55; TPRF 2958). One in Ingram, Kerr, from 20-21 June 2011 (ST, EB; 2011-66; TPRF 2965). One in Abilene, Taylor, from 8-10 July 2011 (JaP, JT; 2011-76; TPRF 2969).

Costa's Hummingbird (Calypte costae) (32). A returning bird (same as 2009-99) at Christmas Mountains, Brewster, from 17 October 2010 - 15 February 2011 (COJ; 2010-60; TPRF 2903).

Violet-crowned Hummingbird (Amazilia violiceps) (18). One in El Paso, El Paso, from 30-31 October 2010 (BZ; 2010-72; TPRF 2913). One at the Davis Mountains Resort, Jeff Davis, from 8 November - 21 December 2010 (MEa, ME, MLo; 2010-65; TPRF 2906).

Tufted Flycatcher (Mitrephanes phaeocercus) (3). One at Rio Grande Village in Big Bend Nat’l Park, Brewster, from 21 November 2010 - 4 January 2011 (MV, MLo, RP, DB, BP, MaR, CTh; 2010-76; TPRF 2917).

Greater Pewee (Contopus pertinax) (23). One at McAllen, Hidalgo, from 26 November 2010 - 17 January 2011 (AdW, JM, DB, GL, MaR, BM; 2010-78; TPRF 2919). One on the Davis Mountains Preserve in Tobe Canyon, Jeff Davis, on 9 April 2011 (FR; 2011-44; TPRF 2954).

(Lawrence’s) Dusky-capped Flycatcher (Myiarchus tuberculifer lawrencei) (12). One at NABA National Butterfly Center, Hidalgo, on 3 December 2010 (MaR, DD; 2010-80; TPRF 2921). One at Sabal Palm Sanctuary, Cameron, from 2 January - 1 March 2011 (MEs, BM, AG; 2011-10; TPRF 2935).

Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher (Myiodynastes luteiventris) (19). One at High Island, Galveston, from 25-28 April 2011 (MK; 2011-46; TPRF 2955).

Fork-tailed Flycatcher (Tyrannus savana) (23). One at Galveston Island SP, Galveston, from 29 January - 2 February 2011 (TFr, PF, JR; 2011-15; TPRF 2940). One at Pollywog Ponds, Nueces, on 30 April 2011 (BCr; 2011-53; TPRF 2957).

Black-whiskered Vireo (Vireo altiloquus) (32). One at the Port Aransas Birding Center, Nueces, on 10 April 2011 (MK, JM, MBe; 2011-39; TPRF 2952).

(Russet-backed) Swainson's Thrush (Catharus ustulatus ustulatus/oedicus) (1). One in El Paso, El Paso, from 9-10 May 2011 (JiP; 2011-56; TPRF 2959). Swainson’s Thrush (olive-backed eastern forms) is a regularly occurring non-review species in Texas but there are no previous documented records of the western Russet-backed subspecies.

White-throated Thrush (Turdus assimilis) (14). One at Estero Llano Grande, Hidalgo, from 29 December 2010 - 27 March 2011 (TD, IK, MaR, BN, DB, BM, MBa, AlW, EB; 2010-91; TPRF 2928). One on the King Ranch Norias Division, Kenedy, from 22-23 March 2011 (JS,TL, DeJ; 2011-32; TPRF 2946).

Rufous-backed Robin (Turdus rufopalliatus) (17). One in the NABA National Butterfly Center & Rio-Bentsen State Park environs, Hidalgo, from 17 November 2010 - 10 March 2011 (DD, JdL, TP; 2010-71; TPRF 2912). One at Laguna Atascosa NWR, Cameron, from 21 November 2010 - 30 January 2011 (JM, DB, BM; 2010-77; TPRF 2918). One at Ft Inge, Uvalde, Uvalde, on 19 February 2011 (MHe; 2011-25). Originally thought to be different individuals, details for 2011-09 and 2011-24 were merged back into and included as part of record 2010-71 since they all pertained to the same bird.

Varied Thrush (Ixoreus naevius) (40). One at High Island, Galveston, on 2 October 2010 (WB; 2010-70; TPRF 2911). One at Lake Palo Duro, Hansford, on 10 May 2011 (JDe; 2011-58; TPRF 2961).

Snow Bunting (Plectrophenax nivalis) (8). One at Sea Rim SP, Jefferson, on 13 June 2011 (TFe; 2011-61; TPRF 2963).

Gray-crowned Yellowthroat (Geothlypis poliocephala) (45). One at Southmost Preserve, Cameron, on 26 December 2009 (MHa; 2009-108).

Rufous-capped Warbler (Basileuterus rufifrons) (26). One at near Crystal City, Zavala, from 30 October 2010 - 5 January 2011 (BR, BN, AdW; 2010-63; TPRF 2904).

Yellow-faced Grassquit (Tiaris olivaceus) (4). One at Goose Island SP, Aransas, from 30 January - 20 March 2011 (ST, JM, BP, DB, AdW, TD, CRu, BSt, MBa, RP, BN, DN, BM, RE, AlW, EB; 2011-16; TPRF 2941).

Golden-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia atricapilla) (35). One at Limpia Crossing, Fort Davis, Jeff Davis, from 5-9 November 2010 (CH, THo, MLo; 2010-64; TPRF 2905).

Flame-colored Tanager (Piranga bidentata) (9). One at McAllen, Hidalgo, on 3 March 2011 (GK, MG; 2011-27; *TCWC 16153).

Crimson-collared Grosbeak (Rhodothraupis celaeno) (25). One at the Valley Nature Center in Weslaco, Hidalgo, from 12-18 November 2010 (RG, MaR, SF, RR, SH, JBo, DaW; 2010-68; TPRF 2909). One at Pharr, Hidalgo, from 15 November 2010 - 11 April 2011 (JM, DoW, BN, JGr, DB, JA, AdW, MG, MBa, RR; 2010-73; TPRF 2914). One at Corpus Christi, Nueces, from 12-23 December 2010 (KTa; 2010-86; TPRF 2924). One at Estero Llano Grande SP, Hidalgo, from 29 December 2010 - 3 January 2011 (CC, MG; 2011-36).

Blue Bunting (Cyanocompsa parellina) (42). One at LRGV NWR, Hidalgo, on 4 January 2011 (MG; 2011-30). One at Santa Ana NWR, Hidalgo, from 15 January - 13 February 2011 (GF, RM, MHu; 2011-14; TPRF 2939). Two at Bentsen SP, Hidalgo, from 21 January - 15 March 2011 (GF, KC, JM, MBa, RZ, MBS; 2011-08; TPRF 2934). One at Rio Grande City, Starr, on 27 January 2011 (AlW; 2011-40; TPRF 2953). One at Estero Llano Grande SP, Hidalgo, on 9 February 2011 (HH, JY, KO; 2011-19; *TCWC 16,156). One at Corpus Christi, Nueces, from 19-31 March 2011 (MC, CTa; 2011-37; TPRF 2950). Originally thought to be a different individual, details for 2011-20 was merged back into and included as part of record 2011-08 since it pertained to the same bird.

Black-vented Oriole (Icterus wagleri) (8). One in the Bentsen SP environs, Hidalgo, from 13 December 2010 - 11 March 2011 (JdL, CTh, BP, MaR, RN, RP, BM, DB, AdW, RF, LF, MBa, BN, DN, BSh, JBa, AF, AJ; 2010-87; TPRF 2925). One at South Padre Island, Cameron, from 28 April - 6 May 2011 (BCl, EB, BM, MBS, MG; 2011-47; TPRF 2956).


A number of factors may contribute to a record being denied acceptance. It is quite uncommon for a record to not be accepted due to a bird being obviously misidentified. More commonly, a record is not accepted because the material submitted was incomplete, insufficient, superficial, or just too vague to properly document the reported occurrence while eliminating all other similar species. Also, written documentation or descriptions prepared entirely from memory weeks, months, or years after a sighting are seldom voted on favorably. It is important that the simple act of not accepting a particular record should by no means indicate that the TBRC or any of its members feel the record did not occur as reported. The non-acceptance of any record simply reflects the opinion of the TBRC that the documentation, as submitted, did not meet the rigorous standards appropriate for adding data to the formal historical record. The TBRC makes every effort to be as fair and objective as possible regarding each record. If the committee is unsure about any particular record, it prefers to err on the conservative side and not accept a good record rather than validate a bad one. All records, whether accepted or not, remain on file and can be re-submitted to the committee if additional substantive material is presented.

Eurasian Wigeon (Anas penelope). One at Sherman, Grayson, on 30 November 2010 (2010-82).

Yellow-billed Loon (Gavia adamsii). One at Nueces Bay, Nueces, on 16 February 2011 (2011-26).

Red-necked Grebe (Podiceps grisegena). One near Port Aransas, Nueces, on 20 December 2010 (2011-21).

Sooty Shearwater (Puffinus griseus). One off of Freeport, Brazoria, on 15 June 2011 (2011-68).

Great Frigatebird (Fregata minor). One at Packery Channel, Nueces, on 18 February 2011 (2011-22).

Brown Booby (Sula leucogaster). One at Packery Channel, Nueces, on 29 January 2011 (2011-17).

Short-tailed Hawk (Buteo brachyurus). One at Pollywog Ponds, Nueces, on 20 April 2011 (2011-64).

Spotted Rail (Pardirallus maculatus). One at the Port Aransas Birding Center, Nueces, from 2-3 May 2011 (2011-48).

Violet-crowned Hummingbird (Amazilia violiceps). One in Austin, Travis, on 6 May 2011 (2011-49).

Tamaulipas Crow (Corvus imparatus). Three at Sabal Palm Sanctuary, Cameron, on 4 February 2007 (2011-28). One at Sabal Palm Sanctuary, Cameron, on 24 February 2009 (2011-29).

Golden-crowned Warbler (Basileuterus culicivorus). One at Los Fresnos, Cameron, on 10 March 2011 (2011-41).

Slate-throated Redstart (Myioborus miniatus). One at the Christmas Mountains, Brewster, on 20 April 2011 (2011-43). One near Johnson City, Blanco, on 17 May 2011 (2011-51).


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