Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Oregon rare bird: Brown Booby: October 6, 2012

Brown Booby
Brown Booby. Photo by Noah Strycker.
On last weekend's pelagic trip from Newport, Oregon, Russ Namitz spotted a female Brown Booby about 1/2 mile in front of the boat. Noah Strycker got the above photo. Unfortunately, it was quickly a mile away before many in the stern could spot it, and then it was no longer identifiable with binoculars. We were NW of Newport, about 20 miles W of Depoe Bay. (Trip report.)

This is the 5th accepted Oregon record. Here are the previous Accepted records from the Oregon Bird Records Committee.

  • October 3, 1998. 15 miles WSW of Depoe Bay, Lincoln Co. Juvenile. 6 written rare bird reports. (Almost exactly where we saw this bird above, on the same weekend, 14 years earlier!)
  • May 2005. Off Tillamook and Lincoln Cos. Photo.
  • October 26, 2008. Dead on beach. Cape Arago, Coos Co.
  • October 28 to December 8, 2009. Coos Bay, Coos Co. Many photos. Here, and here.
There are three additional reports, not submitted to the OBRC.
July 25, 2005. 20 miles W Winchester Bay, Douglas Co. (2nd hand report)
July 25, 2005. On beach at Seaside, Clatsop Co. (2nd hand report)
November 22, 2009. Seen from Boiler Bay, Lincoln Co. (Good description)

Oregon Bird Records Committee pdf of Accepted records through April 2012.


  1. Well done... ! Brown Booby is a rarity on this side of the Pacific (in Hong Kong ) too.

  2. Phil Pickering reports another Brown Booby from Oregon, this one a juvenile seen from shore on October 16, 2012. Here is his description as posted to OBOL:

    * extended look within 1/2 mile, moving south by itself but near Pelicans. Definitive booby shape well seen with long neck and long dagger bill & long sharply pointed tail. Size roughly 2/3 Pelican. Largely nondescript dark brownish including apparently dark face/bill. Only distinctive visible plumage feature I noticed was an obvious paling in the area of the axillaries/underwing coverts contrasting with much darker brown breast, belly, & under-primaries.