Year 9, Issues 7-8

***************************************************************** *^^^^^^^ ^ ^ ^^^^^^ ^^^^^^^ ^ ^ ^^^^^^^ * ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ * ^ ^^^^^ ^^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^^^^^ * ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ ^ * ^ ^ ^ ^^^^^^ ^^^^^^^ ^^^^ ^ *The Cup 9.7-9.8 ­ July/August 2004 *The electronic publication of the David Cup, McIlroy and various *other birding competitions. * Editor-in-Chief: Jay McGowan * Highlights: Jay McGowan * House Interviewer: Mark Chao * Guest Columnist: Matt Medler * Bird Taste-Tester: Martin McGowan ****************************************************************** Welcome to the latest egregiously belated edition of The Cup! You are about to embark on a journey to the past, a time before the Muckrace 2004, before September even started, a time when we were all at least a month younger. Now hold on as we travel back to... ...July and August 2004! ---------------------------- <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<< PILGRIMS' PROGRESS >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> July, August 2004 David Cup Totals While Jay continues to hold the lead, Scott is closing fast. Will Scott have the momentum to pass Jay in the coming months? Our sources say: Ask again later. 234, 240 Jay McGowan 231, 238 Scott Haber ---, 231 Steve Fast 224, 226 Kevin McGowan 217, 223 Mark Chao 216, 219 Bruce Tracey 218, ??? Bard Prentiss 200+,200+Ken Rosenberg 192, 199 Anne Marie Johnson ---, 198 Chris Tessaglia-Hymes 197, ??? Meena Haribal 190, 197 Perri McGowan 188, 188 Tim Lenz ---, 177 Lena Samsonenko ???, ??? Steve Kelling 155, 155 Erin Hewett 145, 145 John Baur ???, ??? Sam Kelling 143, 143 Matt Medler 108, 110 Tringa (the Dog) McGowan !!!, ??? Allison Wells 82, 85 Martin (the Cat) McGowan 85, 85 Pete Hosner 69, 69 Julie Hart ??, ?? Evan Wells July, August 2004 McIlroy Award (Ithaca) Totals No doubt Mr. Ithaca (formerly Mr. Dryden) Ken Rosenberg has had no problem keeping the lead in this town since his fiercest competitor moved back to the desert. However, we have no way of being sure, Mr. Ithaca not having sent in his totals. 174+,174+Ken Rosenberg 155, 165 Mark Chao 160, 160 Tim Lenz 137, 145 Jay McGowan ---, 144 Jeff Gerbracht 120, 127 Kevin McGowan July, August 2004 Evans Trophy (Dryden) Totals Jay has kept his strangle-hold on the Dryden competition this year. It is rumored he might be trying to break the Dryden record, if he can ever find out what it is. 187, 192 Jay McGowan 172, 176 Kevin McGowan ---, 174 Steve Fast 168, ??? Bard Prentiss July, August 2004 Yard Totals 119+,119+Steve Kelling, Caroline 108, 112 McGowan/Kline Family, Dryden 99, ?? Pixie Senesac 92, 95 Nancy Dickinson 72, 72 Anne Marie Johnson, Caroline July, August 2004 Lansing Competition Totals Mark Chao takes the lead for this under-represented but undoubtedly potential-filled competition. 154, 163 Mark Chao ???, 150 Kevin McGowan 144, 144 Bruce Tracey July, August 2004 Etna Challenge Totals "several" - Allison Wells --------------------------------------------- $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ BASIN COMPOSITE DEPOSIT July and August added many species to the list, bringing the overall total to 260 species. This is about 9 species higher than the at the same time last year, but still at least 10 species short of the final total in 2003. We still have a few birds to find! Some of the additions included the normal fall-only shorebirds (such as Stilt and Baird's sandpipers, Long-billed Dowitcher, and Red-necked Phalarope); the very unlikely Red Crossbill at the Lab; and Cape May Warbler, which Cuppers failed to find in the spring. Here they all are: Mute Swan, Tundra Swan, Canada Goose, Brant, ROSS'S GOOSE, Snow Goose, Wood Duck, Mallard, Am. Black Duck, Gadwall, N. Pintail, Am. Wigeon, EURASIAN WIGEON, N. Shoveler, B-w Teal, G-w Teal, Canvasback, Redhead, R-n Duck, Greater Scaup, Lesser Scaup, L-t Duck, Surf Scoter, Black Scoter, W-w Scoter, C. Goldeneye, BARROW'S GOLDENEYE, Bufflehead, Hooded Merganser, C. Merganser, R-b Merganser, Ruddy Duck, R-n Pheasant, Ruffed Grouse, Wild Turkey, R-t Loon, PACIFIC LOON, C. Loon, P-b Grebe, Horned Grebe, R-n Grebe, EARED GREBE, D-c Cormorant, Am. Bittern, Least Bittern, Great Blue Heron, Great Egret, SNOWY EGRET, TRICOLORED HERON, CATTLE EGRET, Green Heron, B-c Night-Heron, GLOSSY IBIS, Turkey Vulture, Osprey, Bald Eagle, N. Harrier, S-s Hawk, Cooper's Hawk, N. Goshawk, R-s Hawk, B-w Hawk, R-t Hawk, R-l Hawk, Golden Eagle, Am. Kestrel, Merlin, Peregrine Falcon, C. Moorhen, Am. Coot, Virginia Rail, Sora, YELLOW RAIL, SANDHILL CRANE, B-b Plover, Am. Golden-Plover, Semipalmated Plover , Killdeer, Greater Yellowlegs, Lesser Yellowlegs, Solitary Sandpiper, WILLET, Spotted Sandpiper, Upland Sandpiper, WHIMBREL, Ruddy Turnstone, RED KNOT, Sanderling, Dunlin, Pectoral Sandpiper, W-r Sandpiper, Baird's Sandpiper, WESTERN SANDPIPER, Semipalmated Sandpiper, Least Sandpiper, Stilt Sandpiper, RUFF, L-b Dowitcher, S-b Dowitcher, Am. Woodcock, Wilson's Snipe, Wilson's Phalarope, R-n Phalarope, Bonaparte's Gull, R-b Gull, Herring Gull, Iceland Gull, Glaucous Gull, Lesser B-b Gull, Great B-b Gull, Caspian Tern, C. Tern, Forster's Tern, Black Tern, Mourning Dove, Rock Pigeon, Y-b Cuckoo, B-b Cuckoo, S-e Owl, Great Horned Owl, Barred Owl, N. S-w Owl, E. Screech-Owl, C. Nighthawk, Chimney Swift, R-t Hummingbird, Belted Kingfisher, R-h Woodpecker, R-b Woodpecker, Y-b Sapsucker, Downy Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, N. Flicker, Pileated Woodpecker, OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER, E. Wood-Pewee, Acadian Flycatcher, Y-b Flycatcher, Willow Flycatcher, Alder Flycatcher, Least Flycatcher, Eastern Phoebe, Great Crested Flycatcher, E. Kingbird, N. Shrike, R-e Vireo, Warbling Vireo, Philadelphia Vireo, WHITE-EYED VIREO, Y-t Vireo, B-h Vireo, Blue Jay, C. Raven, Am. Crow, Fish Crow, Horned Lark, Purple Martin, N. R-w Swallow, Bank Swallow, Tree Swallow, Cliff Swallow, Barn Swallow, Tufted Titmouse, B-c Chickadee, R-b Nuthatch, W-b Nuthatch, Brown Creeper, Carolina Wren, House Wren, Winter Wren, Marsh Wren, G-c Kinglet, R-c Kinglet, B-g Gnatcatcher, E. Bluebird, Am. Robin, Wood Thrush, Veery, Swainson's Thrush, G-c Thrush, Hermit Thrush, Gray Catbird, N. Mockingbird, Brown Thrasher, European Starling, Am. Pipit, BOHEMIAN WAXWING, Cedar Waxwing, N. Parula, O-c Warbler, Tennessee Warbler, B-w Warbler, G-w Warbler, Nashville Warbler, Yellow Warbler, C-s Warbler, Magnolia Warbler, Cape May Warbler, B-t Blue Warbler, Cerulean Warbler, Blackburnian Warbler, Y-r Warbler, B-t Green Warbler, Prairie Warbler, Palm Warbler, Pine Warbler, B-b Warbler, Blackpoll Warbler, W-e Warbler, B-&-w Warbler, Am. Redstart, Ovenbird, N. Waterthrush, Louisiana Waterthrush, Mourning Warbler, C. Yellowthroat, Wilson's Warbler, Canada Warbler, Hooded Warbler, YELLOW-BREASTED CHAT, Scarlet Tanager, N. Cardinal, R-b Grosbeak, Indigo Bunting, DICKCISSEL, E. Towhee, Am. Tree Sparrow, Field Sparrow, CLAY-COLORED SPARROW, Chipping Sparrow, Grasshopper Sparrow, Savannah Sparrow, Vesper Sparrow, W-t Sparrow, W-c Sparrow, Fox Sparrow, Song Sparrow, Lincoln's Sparrow, Swamp Sparrow, D-e Junco, Lapland Longspur, Snow Bunting, E. Meadowlark, Bobolink, B-h Cowbird, R-w Blackbird, Rusty Blackbird, C. Grackle, Baltimore Oriole, Orchard Oriole, Evening Grosbeak, Purple Finch, House Finch, Red Crossbill, W-w Crossbill, C. Redpoll, HOARY REDPOLL, Pine Siskin, Am. Goldfinch, House Sparrow. ALSO SEEN BUT NOT COUNTABLE: Trumpeter Swan LEADER'S MISS LIST EURASIAN WIGEON, PACIFIC LOON, SNOWY EGRET, TRICOLORED HERON, YELLOW RAIL, WILLET, WESTERN SANDPIPER, RUFF, L-b Dowitcher, R-n Phalarope, N. S-w Owl, N. Shrike, Philadelphia Vireo, WHITE-EYED VIREO, BOHEMIAN WAXWING, O-c Warbler, Cape May Warbler, B-b Warbler, Lincoln's Sparrow, W-w Crossbill. $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ --------------------------------------------- JULY AND AUGUST 2004 BASIN HIGHLIGHTS by Jay McGowan ---JULY--- Fall shorebird migration began again in early July. The first few birds started turning up at Myers Point, including a Short-billed Dowitcher on July 7th, and a little later at any available shorebird habitat in the area, including the Cornell experimental ponds, the George Road pond in Dryden, and in the sparse puddles in the bulldozed future athletic fields on Game Farm Road. Montezuma turned up a few shorebirds early on as well, including Short- billed Dowitchers and both yellowlegs in the first week of July. Black-crowned Night-Heron, Great Egret, American and Least bitterns, Black Tern, Caspian Tern, and other common marsh birds were also seen at Montezuma. Breeding ducks at Montezuma included Wood Duck, Mallard, Blue-winged Teal, Redhead, and Ruddy Duck, all observed with young chicks. The GLOSSY IBIS found at Montezuma in late June was still present until at least 18 July. One of the most surprising birds of the month appeared on July 7th at the Lab of Ornithology at Sapsucker Woods. A female RED CROSSBILL (the first reported in the Basin this year, no less) stayed all day at the feeders on the north side of the building. It was seen for a while the next morning as well, but could not be found later in the afternoon. A Peregrine Falcon was reported several times in July and August perching on Bradfield Tower on the Cornell Campus. This bird, apparently an adult but with a few juvenile feathers still showing, is very likely the individual (then in juvenal plumage) that spent the winter on the same building last winter. On July 10th 6 Great Egrets were found at a marsh on Ellis Hollow Road. A Great Egret turned up at the George Road pond on July 30th and one or two were seen there until September. Cathie Sandell found an odd chickadee at her house near Seneca Falls on July 18th. She tentatively identified it as a Boreal Chickadee because of its bright brown cap and dark eyeline, but closer inspection revealed several field marks inconsistent with Boreal, including pale underparts and extensive white in wings and tail. This led observers to conclude it was most likely an aberrant Black-capped Chickadee. So, not a new bird for the year, but still worthy of note. In late July more shorebirds began to arrive at Montezuma. The first Stilt Sandpiper was seen on the 21st, and Semipalmated Plovers, both yellowlegs, Short-billed Dowitchers, Semipalmated, Least, and Pectoral sandpipers, started to be seen regularly a week prior to then. A WILSON'S PHALAROPE was found at Benning Marsh on July 24th. On the same day an early male LESSER SCAUP and an even earlier female BUFFLEHEAD were seen on the main pool. Several Bonaparte's Gulls were observed with the gulls at Benning Marsh as well. A RED-HEADED WOODPECKER was found on the week of the 18th in a stand of trees along McClintock Road in Dryden and was reported on the 23rd. It continued to be seen at the same location until at least July 30th. The CLAY-COLORED SPARROWS at Anne Marie and Tim Johnson's house on Creamery Road near Brooktondale were seen at least until July 21st. Although seen to be feeding young for at least one day in May, juvenile birds were never seen and it is thought the nest probably failed. Anne Marie reports that she has seen no evidence of a second brood. Scott Haber saw 2 Common Terns and 1 Forster's Tern at the Ithaca lighthouse jetty on July 24th. Mark Chao found a SANDERLING on the spit at Myers Point on July 26th, and Kevin McGowan found 6 the next morning. All six species of swallow were seen at Myers Point as well, including two juvenile Cliff Swallows and half a dozen Purple Martins. On July 27th Mickey Scilingo and Melanie Driscoll saw a SANDHILL CRANE flying south over the water at the south end of Cayuga Lake. A RUDDY TURNSTONE briefly joined the shorebirds at Montezuma on July 27th. On July 31st, Bill and Shirley McAneny reported 5 RED KNOTS at Benning Marsh. Four of the knots were present the next day. The birds were still in breeding plumage and allowed great looks fairly close in on the mudflats. After so many years without a confirmed report of this species in the Basin, it is pretty amazing to have them in the spring AND in the fall. An out-of-season SNOW GOOSE was found at Stewart Park on July 31st and remained for several weeks feeding with gulls and geese on the lawn and on the water. ---AUGUST--- An OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER was seen at the Lab of Ornithology on the 12th, along with two Black-crowned Night-Herons. Olive-sided was seen again at Sapsucker Woods on the 19th. Yellow-bellied Flycatcher was first seen on August 3rd, and many more were reported throughout the month. Shorebirding continued to gain momentum at Montezuma, with all the regular early fall species seen. Two possible WESTERN SANDPIPERS were reported at Benning Marsh on August 11th. The first LONG-BILLED DOWITCHERS and BAIRD'S SANDPIPER of the year were reported on the 14th. A juvenile RED-NECKED PHALAROPE was found at May's Point on the 22nd. Meanwhile at Myer Point, RUDDY TURNSTONES turned up on the 13th and 21st and SANDERLINGS were seen several times throughout the month. A BAIRD'S SANDPIPER was found on the spit on the 22nd. Several Common Terns were present at Myers Point on the 13th and 14th. A Forster's Tern was seen at Stewart Park on the 13th. A few COMMON NIGHTHAWKS were reported from various locations in late August, including several from the Ithaca area. Sapsucker Woods was a hotspot for fall warblers in late August. The first Wilson's Warblers of the fall were seen there on the 29th. Mike Harvey found the first CAPE MAY WARBLER of the year on August 31st at Comstock Knoll in the Cornell Plantations. (The next day several Cape Mays were seen at Sapsucker Woods.) --------------------------------------------- STAT'S ALL by Matt Medler While diligent Cuppers have long studied lists of average spring arrival dates to prepare for spring migration, to the best of my knowledge there has never been an average fall arrival date list for fall migrants and winter visitors to the Cayuga Lake Basin. Thanks to Bill Ostrander's database of Kingbird Region 3 bird sightings, I have compiled a list of median and mean fall arrival dates for 39 species of birds that either pass through the Basin as fall migrants or arrive in the Basin during the fall months to spend the winter. Because this list is based on only six years of data, it should probably be taken with at least one grain of salt (and maybe a little pepper, just for flavor). However, I hope that the list will serve as a valuable first attempt in helping birders learn when they can expect to start seeing these species as fall migrants in the Basin. For those who have not taken a course in statistics and would like an explanation of the difference between median and mean, I encourage you to contact the namesake of the David Cup, Karl "Father of the Madness" David. As a master statistician, Karl could tell you all you ever wanted to know (and perhaps even more) about median, mean, standard deviation, and whether this list of mine has any value whatsoever. With a much more limited background in statistics, I would encourage readers to think of the median date as the average fall arrival date (although there is not much difference in most cases between the median and the mean). As for how to interpret the standard deviation (Std. Dev.), the values here should be used simply as a general guide for how much variation there is in a species' fall arrival date. If a species has a small standard deviation (say less than 5.0), there is much less variation in its arrival date from year to year than in a species with a very large standard deviation (say greater than 15). As an example, the fall arrival dates of American Tree Sparrow (SD=2.1) from 1998 to 2003 were: Oct. 27, Oct. 28, Oct. 28, Oct. 28, Oct. 26, and Oct. 23; while the fall arrival dates of Northern Shrike (SD=21.0) from 1998 to 2003 were: Nov. 25, Oct. 21, Sept. 22, Oct. 28, Nov. 9, and Oct. 25. In other words, American Tree Sparrow appears to be very consistent in its arrival date from year to year, while Northern Shrike can vary considerably. So, despite the fact that the two species have very similar median arrival dates (Oct. 28 for the sparrow and Oct. 27 for the shrike), American Tree Sparrow (with its smaller standard deviation) is much more likely to be seen for the first time in the days just before Halloween. Finally, some of you will undoubtedly note that I have included a number of species that breed in the Basin--such as Eastern Meadowlark, Dark-eyed Junco, and Vesper Sparrow--on this list of migrant arrival dates. For the purpose of this list, I have done my best to differentiate (based largely on the locality of sightings) between records of breeding versus migrant individuals. As I mentioned above, this list is definitely a work in progress, but at the very least, I think it should provide a good general guide for Cuppers who are on the lookout for certain species this fall. Now it's up to you to go out and collect another year's worth of data. Or, put another way, throw on a warm jacket and enjoy some good fall birding! Presented here, then, are the median, mean, and standard deviation for the fall arrival dates of the following species: Species 1998-2003 Median 1998-2003 Mean Std. Dev. White-throated Sparrow September 30 September 29 3.5 White-crowned Sparrow September 30 September 29 3.5 Rusty Blackbird October 1 September 29 8.4 Brant October 5 October 6 4.9 Ruddy Duck October 5 October 4 7.1 Dark-eyed Junco October 5 October 1 10.5 Redhead October 6 October 6 5.1 White-winged Scoter October 7 October 4 13.2 Ring-necked Duck October 8 October 7 6.9 Eastern Meadowlark October 9 October 9 8.0 Snow Goose October 12 October 15 11.4 Surf Scoter October 16 October 13 15.1 Common Loon October 16 October 15 8.8 Fox Sparrow October 16 October 15 9.8 Gr. White-fronted Goose October 17 October 18 16.1 Canvasback October 17 October 15 8.8 Black Scoter October 19 October 20 6.9 Evening Grosbeak October 19 October 19 24.3 Bufflehead October 20 October 19 4.1 Horned Grebe October 20 October 18 6.1 Red-necked Grebe October 21 October 24 5.2 Rough-legged Hawk October 21 October 20 7.7 Tundra Swan October 23 October 25 11.6 Vesper Sparrow October 23 October 18 9.9 Long-tailed Duck October 25 October 25 4.0 Snow Bunting October 25 October 23 3.7 Golden Eagle October 26 October 23 8.8 Northern Shrike October 27 October 27 21.0 American Tree Sparrow October 28 October 27 2.1 Common Goldeneye October 29 October 31 8.6 Horned Lark November 2 November 8 20.8 Red-throated Loon November 4 November 7 6.8 Red-breasted Merganser November 6 November 2 21.3 Lapland Longspur November 6 November 4 15.9 Common Redpoll November 6 November 4 4.9 Northern Saw-whet Owl November 15 November 11 19.8 Short-eared Owl November 20 November 18 21.7 Snowy Owl November 27 November 30 13.1 Iceland Gull December 12 December 12 6.4 This table presents the same information, but with the species listed in taxonomic order: Species 1998-2003 Median 1998-2003 Mean Std. Dev. Gr. White-fronted Goose October 17 October 18 16.1 Snow Goose October 12 October 15 11.4 Brant October 5 October 6 4.9 Tundra Swan October 23 October 25 11.6 Canvasback October 17 October 15 8.8 Redhead October 6 October 6 5.1 Ring-necked Duck October 8 October 7 6.9 Surf Scoter October 16 October 13 15.1 White-winged Scoter October 7 October 4 13.2 Black Scoter October 19 October 20 6.9 Long-tailed Duck October 25 October 25 4.0 Bufflehead October 20 October 19 4.1 Common Goldeneye October 29 October 31 8.6 Red-breasted Merganser November 6 November 2 21.3 Ruddy Duck October 5 October 4 7.1 Red-throated Loon November 4 November 7 6.8 Common Loon October 16 October 15 8.8 Horned Grebe October 20 October 18 6.1 Red-necked Grebe October 21 October 24 5.2 Rough-legged Hawk October 21 October 20 7.7 Golden Eagle October 26 October 23 8.8 Iceland Gull December 12 December 12 6.4 Snowy Owl November 27 November 30 13.1 Short-eared Owl November 20 November 18 21.7 Northern Saw-whet Owl November 15 November 11 19.8 Northern Shrike October 27 October 27 21.0 Horned Lark November 2 November 8 20.8 American Tree Sparrow October 28 October 27 2.1 Vesper Sparrow October 23 October 18 9.9 Fox Sparrow October 16 October 15 9.8 White-throated Sparrow September 30 September 29 3.5 White-crowned Sparrow September 30 September 29 3.5 Dark-eyed Junco October 5 October 1 10.5 Lapland Longspur November 6 November 4 15.9 Snow Bunting October 25 October 23 3.7 Eastern Meadowlark October 9 October 9 8.0 Rusty Blackbird October 1 September 29 8.4 Common Redpoll November 6 November 4 4.9 Evening Grosbeak October 19 October 19 24.3 (Matt Medler has recently begun working as a marketing analyst at The Vermont Teddy Bear Company, near Burlington, Vermont. His job responsibilities do not include sewing or stuffing the bears, but he is hard at work on designing a "Birder Bear.") --------------------------------------------- !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ! KICKIN' TAIL! ! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! In this issue The Cup, once again represented by Mark Chao, has a quick chat with David Cup leader Jay McGowan. THE CUP: You're leading by just two. Feeling nervous? JAY: A bit. Scott seems to be gaining and I don't have many more things to pick up. Still, I enjoy the competition. (For now--we'll see how I feel in December.) THE CUP: How do you see the competition playing out? What do you have to do to hang on? JAY: I think it would be fairly easy for Scott to overtake me. I will really have to work to get all the uncommon late fall migrants--not to mention making sure I get all the rarities I can--if I want to stay in the lead. THE CUP: Oh, please. Spare us the underdog act. "Fairly easy?" "Really have to work??" Why, I'll bet you'll add Lincoln's Sparrow and Gray-cheeked Thrush this fall without leaving your yard. What is your Cup highlight of the year so far? JAY: Hmm...I am still very happy about my Eurasian Teal this spring, even though it doesn't add a species for the competition. The Hoary Redpolls in the winter were enjoyable too, as well as the Red Knots at Montezuma. THE CUP: Any particularly frustrating misses? JAY: The two rare egrets at Montezuma this spring were a blow to my rarity success. We missed the Snowy Egret at Benning by about a half an hour. We also missed the Ruff the day before by only fifteen minutes. Come to think of it, that was a pretty lousy weekend for me. I'm still lacking a couple of passerines as well, but nothing that really stands out as a huge gap in my list. I did miss Northern Saw- whet Owl in the spring. That may be difficult to find this fall and winter. I also need to find a shrike this winter. THE CUP: How many species have you photographed this year? JAY: Let me see...I think Kevin and I have photographed 235 species in the Basin so far in 2004. Last year we had only 229 by this time. Still, that makes 13 species I have seen this year that I haven't gotten a picture of. It's really quite humbling. THE CUP: In addition to your fight for this year's David Cup, you are also on a record-setting pace this year with your Dryden list. How high do you think you can go? JAY: It's hard to say. I just broke 200 (in September) but I only have five or six more likely species to get. I think I could get 210, but it will take some work. I'd like to go for the record, but I'm having a little difficulty in finding out what it actually is. Somewhere in the 210 range, I would guess. THE CUP: Do you think that your Dryden list can beat Ken's Ithaca list? JAY: Anything is possible. My list was ahead at the last compiling. We'll see when Ken gets around to sending in his totals. THE CUP: Your sister Perri is birding a lot more this year than ever before. Are you feeling proud? Threatened? JAY: I think it's great that she is showing a bit of an interest in birds. She is interested mostly in birds that are either very cute or new for her list--most others can be more or less disregarded. THE CUP: What are you up to these days, besides birding? JAY: I'm taking classes at TC3 again this year (including Physics, Calculus, and Spanish.) I'm taking a full load, but (so far) I am still finding time to bird. THE CUP: Do you have any plans for next year and beyond? JAY: I hope to attend Cornell next fall, so I will most likely still be around for the local birding (sorry, Mr. Fast). THE CUP: Any comments for Scott? JAY: Scott: Find some good rarities in the next few months, won't you? I think it would help build up your reputation, and we need some more excitement before the end of the year. Also, good luck in the coming months. ---------------------------------------- "CUP...QUOTES" Just a coupe of quick notes --Matt Young Several sweet sightings. Some sizable Sterna. SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPER, Spotted Sandpiper. Six swallow species. Special surprise -- SANDERLING. --Mark Chao Probably unbeknownst to many birders, there is a decent stand of spruces (I think) on the Dryden side of Sapsucker. However, they are located in a section of the sanctuary that is, to the best of my knowledge, very rarely visited by birders. --Matt Medler This is because most birders are sensible enough not to bird the Dryden side of Sapsucker Woods. --Tim Lenz Today I went to Old 600 to look for anything that moves and I think also that is even stationary. --Meena Haribal I saw 2 flycatchers in a small dead tree in a field--one appeared to be a phoebe, and the other showed a clear yellow belly at 100 feet without binos. I got excited, but a closer look revealed no eye-ring, no wingbars, an all black bill, and a dirty white throat=E. PHOEBE. I then watched the other phoebe for a while until it called out "pee-a wee"; I then gave up on flycatchers for the evening. --Steve Fast Encouraged by Jay's post of the Wilson's warblers, wife and I headed to Sapsucker after our afternoon siesta. Weather was fine when we left Brooktondale, but looked threatening at the Lab of O. No matter. At the bridge over the swamp just before the pond (on the Wilson trail) we found a BLUE-GRAY GNATCATCHER and right below it a WILSONS WARBLER! Greatly encouraged, we plunged on toward the observation platform, paying little heed to the very light rain. We saw no birds further on; they knew what was coming and had apparently taken shelter. We got to the platform just as the skies opened; and we saw no birds on the long trudge back either. If we catch pneumonia we know who to blame. --Steve Fast --------------------------------------------- May Your Cup Runneth Over, - Jay