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3279Cozumel Thrasher and North American Birds

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  • Luke Cole
    Jul 12, 2004
      Thomas Miko's post of the Cozumel Thrasher news brings needed attention to a species in serious trouble, but the Cozumel Thrasher has been seen several times in the past 10 years as careful readers of the ABA journal North American Birds know. The news article stated:

      "The discovery of the Cozumel Thrasher was announced jointly by the American Bird Conservancy and Conservation International, both based in Washington, D.C. Gavin Shire of the American Bird Conservancy called it "a remarkable
      rediscovery" considering the bird hadn't been seen for 10 years."

      Apparently the American Bird Conservancy staff are not readers of North American Birds, which reported back in 2002 that there was an unconfirmed record 18 Nov 2001 at the San Gervacio ruins near El Pozo (Héctor Gómez de Silva); and a confirmed record in Dec 1998 by John Coons and party. See NAB 56/1: 114.

      North American Birds reported earlier this year (before the ABC announcement) of the refinding of the Thrasher last fall. From Page 154 of the Yucatan Peninsula subregional report, Mexico regional report, North American Birds Vol 58, No 1 (Corn Crake at Guadeloupe on the cover):

      A Cozumel Thrasher was reported near the Cozumel Golf Course 12 Sep (2003) at 5:30 in the evening (RC); this would amount to the rediscovery of a species thought extinct since 1999, so confirmation and immediate attention by conservationists are highly recommended.

      These mentions were pointed out to me by North American Birds editor Ned Brinkley, who has promised to add the American Bird Conservancy to the list of complimentary subscriptions to the magazine, so that it can keep abreast of such avian news, too.

      OK, what's the California angle? Well, North American Birds only exists because observers like you send your important sightings to subregional editors. Those hard-working volunteer editors then compile all the data into their county notebooks, and forward the information to the regional editors (also volunteer) who compose quarterly columns which are published in NAB. For those of you who don't yet subscribe to NAB, it is an important tool for enhancing your knowledge of the region's avifauna -- you should subscribe! (You'd know long before CNN about the Cozumel Thrasher...) For those of you who dont yet submit your important records to subregional editors, you have chances about every three months (quarterly) to mend your ways. Suport NAB so that it can continue to keep you on the cutting edge of birding.

      Good birding!


      Luke Cole
      San Francisco
      (full disclosure: I'm one of four Regional Editors of North American Birds for the Middle Pacific Region (aka Northern California))

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