The Varied Thrush is a special bird for me. I will always remember the one that showed up in the Central Park Maintenance Meadow on 28 November 2010. This was, coincidentally, the first day I ever went birding. I did not know about it until my second birding walk, when I happened to wander through while many photographers and birders were trying to find it. I wrote about this bird in Chapter 4 of my book.
This Varied Thrush drew birders day after day, and it amazed everyone by lingering in the same general area for five months, disappearing in mid-April 2011.
Birders doing the Christmas Bird Count for the Stuyvesant Town area found a Varied Thrush near the corner of 20th Street and First Avenue on this past Sunday, December 15. This is the first Varied Thrush reported in Manhattan since the one in Central Park mentioned above. In the following days the bird has been appearing on the Stuyvesant Town Oval and near adjacent building #11. This one is a vibrant male. The one in Central Park was a female.
The bird is generating a lot of excitement among birders. It would generate even more were it not for the 2010-11 Central Park Varied Thrush, which put the species on nearly every local birder’s list. Brooklynites had a Varied Thrush appear in Prospect Park this year in March.
I went to see it on 17 December in the early afternoon. It became species #198 of the year for me in Manhattan.