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lables repeated with different inflections, something like chu-v}Uf chu-we'e
ehtt-toe^ generally pausing a little after three or four notes. Sometimes
the order is reversed. This seems to be the song of the male, as the only
female that X am positive of having heard, sung more like V. puHllus.
Sometimes when alarmed they will scold like a Wren. When near to
them, as they are singing, a sort of whistling sound can be heard between
the notes. I have never seen them catching insects in the air, as some other
Vireos do, but have observed them scratching on the ground like a Pipilo.

The colors are not so bleached as in specimens I have seen in New
Mexico, nor do the birds frequent the trees so much as those. I had hoped
to get a nest, as it is unknown, but have failed so far. They first ap-
peared about March 24, and as their numbers seen have varied but little
since the beginning of April till the present time (middle of June), they
probably do not go much farther north, which may account for their not
having been found in California before. — F. Stephens, Campo, CaL

Nest and Egos or Zonotrichia coronata! — The nest and ^gs of
this species have hitherto escaped the notice of collectors, and are, so far

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General Notes. 43

as I am aware, unknown to the public I have in my poesesBion a nett
which with its eggs — then four in number — was taken by )ir. Ludovio
Kumlien in Shasta County, California, the female having been shot from
the nest The eggs measure from .80 to .82 of an inch in length, and from
.64 to .67 in breadth. They are of a rounded oval shape, and are but
slightly more obtuse at one end than at the other. Their ground-color is
a light green, and is generally plainly visible, as the markings of reddish
and of golden-brown, with which the whole surface is pretty uniformly
flecked in small and well-distributed blotches, are nowhere numerous or
confluent. The eggs closely resemble very lightly marked specimens of
Zonotrickia aUncoUiSf but are slightly smaller and more nearly spheroidal
in shape.

The nest has an outer diameter'of ^ve inches and a height of three. The
cavity is two and a half inches deep, with a diameter, at the rim, of the
* same. Its outer portions and base are made of thin strips of bark, skele-
ton leaves, and coarse stalks and stems of plants, reeds, and EquiHtacece,
It is very strongly and thoroughly lined with fine wiry rootlets of plants.
It was found, June 14, 1877, on the banks of the McCloud. — T. M.
Brewer, Boston, Man.

Note on Dendr(bga dominica. — In an article upon Dendraea do-
miniccif in the October number of the " Bulletin " I took occasion to express
serious doubts as to the correct identification of certain alleged nests of
that Warbler collected by. Mr. N. C. Giles at Wilmington, N. C, and
upon which most of the recent descriptions of the nidification of the spe-
cies were based. My attention has since been called by Dr. Brewer to
his supplementary note in the Appendix of the " History of North Amer-
ican Birds " (Vol. Ill, p. 506), where farther mention is made of Mr. Qiles's
specimens, and he also informs me by letter that some of the specimens
recently sent to the Smithsonian Institution by Mr. Qiles have been ac-
companied by skins of the parent birds, thus setting at rest all doubts
which he had previously entertained. I take this opportunity to express
my regret at having cast any doubts upon Mr. Giles's identification. —
W. Brewster.

Eastward range of Chondestes orammaca. — On the morning of
the 27th of August I saw in the grounds of the Smithsonian Institution
a pair of the above-named Sparrows, the only ones I ever saw in the Dis-
trict of Columbia or vicinity. They were adults, and when first seen flew
up before me, expanding their white-tipped tails as they flew, and alighted
in the gravelly roadway about two rods in advance ; then ran along the
ground, Lark-like, as is the characteristic habit of the species, now and
then giving chase to a grasshopper, which they usually captured on the
wing. Although originally a western bird, this species seems to be stead-
ily extending its range to the eastward over those portions of the conntiy
most denuded of timber. According to Dr. Wheaton (see Coues's " Birds of

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44 Oeneral Notes.

the Northwest,'' p. 234), it made its advent into Ohio about the year 1860,
since which time it has gradually increased in numbers, until it is now a
common summer resident (see Ohio Agricultural Report for 1874, p. 566).
In the semi-prairie districts of Indiana, Illinois, and adjacent States, it has
become generally dispersed, being now common in the cleared portions
surrounded by heavy forests, and where a few years ago was dense and
continuous woodland. It has already been captured in Florida (the Na-
tional Museum possessing a specimen from that State), and should be care-
fully looked for in other sections of the Eastern States. — Robbbt Ridq-
WAY, Washington, D. C.

The Lark-Finch (Chondestes grammaca) again in Massachusetts. —
On November 25, 1877, 1 had the pleasure of seeing in the flesh a female
bird of this species, taken the previous day near the residence of Mr. C. J.
Majmard, Newtonville, who notified me of the fact, and has since kindly
presented me with the skin. The bird was brought to him by a boy very
soon after it was shot, who stated it was in company with another of the
same kind. Mr. Maynard went immediately in search, but only Tree
Sparrows and a flock of Snow Buntings were to be seen. The Lark
Finch i^ a rare bird east of the Ohio River, and there is but one previous
record for this State or New England, namely, a specimen found in
Gloucester about 1845 (Proc. Ess. Inst, Vol I, 1856, p. 224). — H. A.
PuRDiE, Newton, Masi,

A Third Specimen of Helhinthophaqa leucobronchiaus. — Last
winter, while working among the Warblers {Sylvicolida), in the collection
of the Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences, I discovered among
hem a specimen of the White-throated Warbler (Helminthophaga Uuoh
bronchialis, Brewster), which, according to some writing on the bottom
of its stand, had been in the dark for nearly fifteen years. The writing
was this : "J. C, 20 October, 1862," and also what I made out to be,
"Not from Bell," which was much blurred. The "J. C," which means
John Cnssin (for it is his handwriting), shows that he once possessed or
had something to do with the specimen, but how it ever escaped his no-
tice and found its way into the collection of the Academy without being
discovered I cannot see. The other is, I suppose, the date of its capture ;
and it is curious that it shoidd have been taken so long before the one
which for several years was the only known representative of the species.
No label was attached to it designating the locality where it was procured,
its sex or species ; but by careful comparison with Mr. Brewster's descrip-
tion, as well as with Mr. Wood's specimen, I can safely say that it is a
genuine specimen of H, UucobronchialiSy and still further proves the valid-
ity of the species. As the first two were males, and as this specimen
closely resembles them, I judge it to be a male also. A paper which I
wrote on this specimen was read before the Academy, at a recent meeting,
and will be published in their Proceedings.

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General Notes. 46

I may further add that I have searched the Reports and record of dona-
tions to the Academy from 1862 to 1876, without finding any reference to
this specimen. — Spencer Trotter, PhilaoUlpkiay Pa.

The Blaok-throated Bunting (Eutpiza americana) nesting in Mas-
8A0HU8ETT8. — Mr. Frank K Bean of Medford has called my attention to
a nest and four eggs of this bird found by him in the above town on the
dth of June, 1877, at which date the eggs were fresh. The. nest, seem-
ingly large for the species, was supported about a foot from the ground by
the stem of a bush and the blades of the grass-clump in which it was
placed. Both nest and eggs are quite tyjAcaL Towards the last of June
he found, in another locality, a second nest containing four young. This
was in a field bordering the highway ; the song of the male bird perched
on the fence-rails hard by first attracted his attention, and both birds
were soon seen feeding the nestlings. Mr. Bean thinks that more than
these two pairs may have raised young in his vicinity, as he has heard
other birds in this and previous years. But few instances of the nesting
of the Black-throated Bunting in Massachusetts are known, and it is to be
hoped that this bird of "neat plumage" and "trim form," so common in
the Middle and Western States, where it is known as the " Little Field
Lark," " Dick-sissel" and " Judas- Bird," will gradually become a perma-
nent resident of ourfields and bushy pastures. — H. A. Purdie, Newton,

The Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (Polioptila coervlea) in Massachu-
setts. — Through the kindness of Mr. Arthur Smith of Brookline I am
enabled to add this species to our list of Massachusetts Birds. On the 18th
of November, 1877, he noticed a bird flying about in a small orchard at
Chatham (Cape Cod), but was unable to identify it, and failed to procure
the specimen. A few days later his friend, Mr. Stephen Decatur, shot a
female P. ccBTulea in the same locality, which was undoubtedly the same
specimen, as Mr. Smith has preserved it and recognizes it as the species
seen by himself.

A few si)ecimen8 have been taken in Rhode Island, though it is but re-
cently that the Qnatcatcher has been recorded as a bird of New England.
— RcTHVEN Deane, Cambridge, Mass.

The Capture 'op several Rare Birds near West Point, New
York. — 1. Corvns oseifragns, Wilson. On the 7th of May, 1877, as I
was walking up from the river, my attention was attracted to the very
singular utterance of a Crow that sat on an oak-tree in front of Mr. PelFs
house. Its note was a hollow, guttural croak, quite unlike the cawing of
the common species {Corvus americantts). I regarded the bird curiously
for several moments, but as I had never before heard the note of the Fish
Crow, I passed on, attributing this singular vocal demonstration to some
uncommonly strong emotion, — perhaps it was a parent bird whose nest
I had spoiled, not far from that place, several days previous. Accepting

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46 General Notes.

this condunon as satisfactory, I should soon haye foigotten the circum-
stance, had not the bird itself acted in such a manner as to dispel the illu-
sion. It flew before me, and alighted upon a tree far oyer on the other
side of the highway, where it croaked most dismaUy. When I had
reached the highway before climbjng over the stone-wall, I noticed that
the Crow had again taken flight, and as it was .flying somewhat in my
direction, I knelt behind the wall, hoping thus to obtain a shot. When
I ^ventured to look out, I saw the bird soaring in Tcirdes not far away.
Soon it approached me, but soaring very high in the air. When it got
directly overhead, I fired ; it ftU to the ground, close beside me, reeling
and struggling violently all the distance. When I reached it I was both
surprised and delighted to find a fine female example of the Fish Crow.
This is, I believe, the most northerly record of the capture of this species
in the State, though they have been taken on Long Island, where my
Mend, Mr. Theodore Rooeeveldt, informed me he took a single specimen.

2. Helminthophaga oelata, (Say) Baird. On May 13, 1875, 1 shot a
beautiful male of this rare species, as it was skipping among the apple-
blossoms, close to my house, in company with a little band of Warblers
which may have belonged to the same species.

3. DandroDoa oasmlea, (Wilson) Baird. I secured a fine male of this
beautiful species, near my residence. May 17, 1875.

4. Vireo philadelphiotui, Cassin. I have a siifgle male specimen of
this scarce species in my collection, taken near here. It was shot by my
friend, Mr. William K. Lente, at Cold Spring, as it | hopped about in a
tree-top, September 24, 1875. This example exhibits the intensity of
yellow color on the under parts which characterizes the autwnncU plu-'

5. Btelgidopteryx aerripeimii, (Audubon) Baird. I have found this
Swallow on but one occasion, in May, 1872, when a single pair nested in
this neighborhood, in a bank dose to a stable, beside a pond. I watched
this pair while they constructed their nest, during which time they were
often seen to alight close together, on a board-fence from which they de-
scended after the rough materials of which the nest was composed, — hay
and feathers. Late in May I captured the female sitting upon four fresh
eggs. I had no difficulty in doing this, for the hole was quite large, and
not very deep, so that, by baring my arm, I could easily introduce it to
the back of the hole. These eggs are pure white, and one of them meas-
ures .80 X. 53 of an inch, t

6. Ampelis garrulus, GroeL Dr. Frederic Lente, of Cold Spring,
showed me a beautiful Waxwing of this species which was shot near his
residence, several winters before.

His son, Wm. K. Lente, informed me that he shot at several Bohemian
Waxwings that sat in an evei^green tree close to their house. This oc-
curred several years after the first specimen was taken. — ^Bdgab A.
Mearnb, Highland FalU, New York,

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Cftneral Notes. 47

Thb Fibh Crow (Corwu'ogsifraguif Wils.), on Long Island. — On the
17th July, 1873, I shot a fine female of this species near Rockawaj, L. I.
The bird was flying around, but kept apart from a flock of common Crowa
in the vicinity. The bird is not mentioned in Giraud's *' Birds of Long
Island,'' although Samuels, in " Birds of New England/' says, ^ I under-
stand that it has been taken on Long Island." — C. H. Eaglk.

[These twcT recent captures of the Fish Crow by Messrs. Eagle and
Roosevelt (see above p. 46) confirm the statement made long since by De
Kay, that '^ they are occasionally seen on the shores of Long Island, but
are generally confounded with the Common Crow " (New York IZooL, Pt.
II, 1844, p. 135), which seems to have hitherto been the basis of all refer-
ences to its occurrence in that locality, and, in connection with Linsley's
record of its occurrence at Stratford, Conn. (Am. Joum. ScL and Arts,
Vol. XLIV, 1843, p. 260), of its presumed occurrence in Southern New
England. Although recently observed by Mr. Brewster in Cambridge,
Mass. (see this Bulletin, Vol. I, p. 19), there appears to be as yet no un-
questioned record of its capture in New England, where it doubtless
occasionally occurs. — J. A. Allen.]

CoaRBCTiON. — On page 137 of my late " Review of the Birds of Con-
necticut," mention is made of the capture of half a dozen specimens of
Podiceps cristatus in Connecticut My attention having been called, through
the kindness of Dr. Brewer, to the improbability of its occurrence at all
within our limits, I immediately made inquiry of my friend, John H.
Sage, Esq., of Portland, Conn., concerning the identity of the specimens
in question. He writes me that a thorough re-examination of the birds
proves them all to be more or less immature examples of P. griseigenctf
var. hoWoUi. — C. Hart Mbrrlah.

Melanism of Turdus miqratorius. — Another* case of this affection,
much less frequent (except in Falconida) than leucism, comes to my knowl-
edge through the attention of Mr. Q. A. Boardman, who desires me to
make a note of it for the "Bulletin.*' The young Robin, "as black as a
Grackle," is still living in Mr. Boardman's possession. About two months
ago this ornithologist heard of a nest of black Robins being taken at St.
John's, and wrote to the owner or collector about it. The person, how-
ever, lost his life in the great fire which occurred there, and Mr. Board-
man, not liking to trouble the family by writing under such circum-
stances, went to St John's and inquired about the black Robins. The
story proved true, and one of the birds was purchased. " When I first got
the bird," writes Mr. Boardman, " he was in pretty good plumage, but his
feathers arc now half out, and I am hoping that be will not disappoint me
by coming out red. Most of the feathers on his head and neck are new,
I think, and jet black. His tail is now gone, but that was pure black too.

• See this Bulletin, Vol. I, No. 1, April, 1876, p. 24.

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48 General Hates.

I see no signs of the normal plumage.'' Mr. Boardman writes me later,
under date of September 23, that he has been much interested in watch-
ing the moult of the black Robin, and says, ** He acts as if he were going
to be an albino. His new tail is about half grown out, and is nearly white,
with a black stripe down each feather. His breast, head, neck, and back
are jet black, but very much out of feather. He would now make a funny
specimen, — part albinic, part melanistic." The parents of these young
were not peculiar in color. — Elliott Coues, IVcuhingUm, D. C,

[NoTB (December 15, 1877). Since this paragraph was penned, the
bird has been killed, stuffed, and sent to the Smithsonian, where I have
seen it. It is black, with white wings and tail. — E. C]

The Seaside Finch (Ammodramus marUimus) in Eastern Massa-
chusetts. — As the existence of this species in Massachusetts has been
challenged, and none are known to have occurred for a number of years,
it would seem not amiss to mention that a single specimen of this species
was shot by Mr. George' 0. Welch at Nahant in August last It was in
company with a number of A. caudacutus^ but was the only one of its
kind. It was in the not common plumage described by Audubon as a
distinct species under the name of Ammodramus macgUlivrayif was sent
to Professor Baird, who found it closely corresponding to Audubon's type,
which he possesses. It was a young male, and appeared to have come from
the north. In " History of North American Birds" (Vol. I, p. 560) it is
given as not occurring north of Long Island Sound.

In this connection it may not be uninteresting to add that Mr. Welch
found Ammodramus caudaeuius quite abundant on the shores of St. An-
drew's Bay, the estuary of St Croix River, and lying between the eastern
boundary of Maine and New Brunswick. This, if I am not mistaken,
is the first time that it has been taken in Maine so far to the east, and
not at all, except that Mr. N. C. Brown (this Bulletin, Vol. II, p. 27) ob-
tained a single specimen in Scarborough. Mr. Brewster (ibid., p. 28), on
the authority of Mr. William Stone, mentions it as abundant at Tignish,
Prince Edward Island. — T. M. Brewer, BosUmy Mam,

The Lark-Bunting {Calam^ospiza hicolor) in Massachusetts. — The
first instance known to me of the capture of this species east of the Mis-
sissippi River occurred on December 5, 1877, when a specimen was shot by
Mr. N. A. Vickary at Lynn, Mass., — a male in autiminal plumage. Its
usual eastern limit is well known to be the plains of middle Kansas^
where it ranges eastwartl to about, or possibly a little beyond, Fort Har-
ker. The specimen has been kindly shown me by Mr. Vickary, to whom
I am indebted for a knowledge of its capture. — J. A. Allen, Cambridge^

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or THB


Vol. III. APRIL, 1878. No. 2.



I PROPOSH four changes in our list of North American Birds as
now accepted: three additions and one subtraction; the addition
of Totanus ochropuSy jEfftalitis kiattcula, and Larus canus, and the
rejection from the list of Podiceps cristains.

Totaniui oohropii8» Linn. Green Sandpiper. This species, the
Tringa ochropus of Linnseus, Gmelin, etc., the Totantts ochropus of
Temminck, the Helodromas of Kaup, the White-tailed Tatler of
Nuttall, and the Green Sandpiper of Dresser, and other more recent
authors, is entitled to a restoration to its place in the list of
North American birds, on the indisputable authority of T. Edmund
Harting, Esq., of London. This gentleman, in March, 1873, in-
formed Professor Baird, by letter, that he had then recently re-
ceived from Mr. H. Whitely, a perfectly trustworthy dealer of
Woolwich, a small parcel of North American skins that had just
been sent to him from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Among these was an
example of this species. Upon inquiry Mr. Harting was assured by
Mr. Whitely that the skin actually came to him from Halifax, and
that it had been there prepared from a bird in the flesh. Mr. Harting
regarded it as '* the first atUhentic instance of the occurrence of the
TotanuB ochropus in North America." Nevertheless this species had
previously been included by Mr. Nuttall (Water Birds, p. 157) as
one of the birds of North America, based upon an unverified claim
that two specimens had been taken at Hudson's Bay, a statement
also accepted by Richardson in the ''Fauna Boreali-Americana "

VOL. ni. 4

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50 Brewer's Changes in our North American Fauna.

(II, p. 392). These claims 'not being accepted as authentic, the
supposed examples being attributed to our RhyacophUus solitariiu,
the Green Tatler was not included by Mr. Cassin in the ninth vol-
ume of the Pacific Railroad Reports. The very close resemblance
of these two species, T, ochropus and T. solitarius, both in regard to
their physipal structure and their general habits, — a resemblance
so close that, although Kaup refers the two species to different
genera, a suspicion of their being only varieties of one species has
suggested itself to at least one of my " variety " loving friends, —
seems to warrant us in looking for nearly identical habits in their
mode of nesting. The recently ascertained fact that the T, ochropus
nests in trees, making use of the deserted nests of Hawks, Crows,
Jays, and other birds, makes it apparently worth the while of our
own collectors to ascertain if our solitarius has not the same habits,
and perhaps explains why it is that we have so long suffered the
egg of this species to remain undiscovered. I have never yet seen
a single well-authenticated example of its egg. All purporting to
be eggs of this species were referable either to jEgialitis vocifera or
to Tringoides macularitiSf generally the latter. It may be, there-
fore, that we have not looked for the eggs of the solitary Tatler
in the right place, and that " £xcelsior " should be the motto of
those who would succeed in their researches for authentic speci-
mens. So far the eggs credited to the T, soliiarius bear a very
suspicious resemblance to one of the two species mentioned. Natu-
rally an egg of the solitary Tatler should more resemble in size,
shape, and markings an egg of T, ochropns, which is oblong in
shape, 1.50 in length, and somewhat similar to eggs of Gambftta
flavipes. The egg of the Tringoides macularius, which in many
cabinets does duty for that of T, solitarius, is of a rounded oval,
and only about 1.10 inches long.

Lams oanuSy Linn. European Sea-hew. This species is in-
cluded by Nuttall as a North American bird (Water Birds, p. 299).
It is so given also by Bonaparte (Syn. 1828, No. 296), and by
Richardson (Faun. Bor. Am. II, p. 420), but the last two are re-
garded by Mr. Lawrence as synonymes for Lanis delatvarensis^ Ord.
There appears to be, at least up to the present time, no authentic
record of the European Larus canus in North America, unless we
accept Larus hrachgrhynchus as a variety of the European bird, and
not as having specific distinctness.

In June, 1876, my attention was called by Howard Saunders

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Brewer's Changes in our North American Fav/na, 51

Esq., of London, to a specimeu which he had fully identified as the
true European Larus canus. Its label indicated that it had been
taken on the coast of Labrador in 1860 by Dr. Elliott Coues, —
given by that gentleman to the Smithsonian collection, — and that
it had been labelled by hira some seventeen years ago as Larus
delatoarensis. It passed into the possession of Mr. John Krider of
Philadelphia, by him was sold with other skins to a dealer in Lon-
don, where, fortunately for the preservation of the record, it was
found, identified, and secured by Mr. Saunders, who had at once
recognized it as indisputably the European Sea-Mew. As Mr.
Saunders has announced his intention of restoring the specimen
where, in his judgment, it properly belongs, to the Smithsonian col-
lection, if any doubt is felt as to its identity, there will be full oppor-
tunity for testing it. It is regarded by Mr. Saunders as the only

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