Verification of Unusual Sight Record
For Utah

Rec. # 2006-20

Common name:

Prothonotary Warbler

Scientific name: Prothonotaria citrea
Date: 14 October 2000
Time: ca 1700 hr
Length of time observed: 10 minutes\
Number: 1
Age: ?
Sex: ?
Location: Utah, San Juan County, Glen Canyon National Recreation Area,
Lake Powell opposite of Dangling Rope Marina
County: San Juan
Elevation: ca 3700 ft.
Distance to bird: as close as 25 feet
Optical equipment: 10X binoculars
Weather: clear calm
Light Conditions: shade
Description:        Size of bird:  
(Description:)       Basic Shape:  
(Description:)  Overall Pattern:  
(Description:)            Bill Type:  
Field Marks and
Identifying Characteristics:
I was just browsing through the Utah Birds website and going through some of the rare warbler records and noticed that this record was not in there. I seem to recall submitting it but maybe not and I figure better late than never. It is a bit pointless, I suppose, to submit deatils of a bird seen 5.5 years before but I can tell you this bird was a classic Prothonotary Warbler: large, stocky, bright yellow below with white underetail coverts, blue-gray above, large white tail spots, bright yellow face, heavy black bill. I had recently conducted a bird inventory of Glen Canyon NRA for the National Park Service and I am 100% positive of my identification of the bird (I would stake my life on it) and am familiar with the species. It was first seen flying low across the lake and flew right into our camp on a small beach and landed in a small tamarisk. Something odd struck me about it (it didn't, even in flight, fit the gestalt template of any of the common yellow warblers that migrate through this region) but I chided myself for being so obsessive about birds that I have to ID every single one I see so I didn't look any closer at it. When the bird flew from the first clump of tamarisk past me to another it again struck me as "different" and this time it bugged me so I grabbed my binoculars and took a look. My jaw hit the ground when a Prothonotary Warbler popped out. I got excited and showed it to all the guys there (a group of my former coworkers and I had dayhiked around the north trail of Navajo Mountain to Rainbow Bridge that day and were camping the night on the lake).
Song or call & method of delivery:  
Habitat: Lake shore beach with clumps of tamarisk.
Similar species and how
were they eliminated:
Previous experience with
this & similar species:
Very familiar with this and all other yellowish warblers that migrate/breed in the Southwest.
References consulted:  
Description from: From memory
Observer: Chuck LaRue
Observer's address: 3525 W. Lois Ln Flagstaff, AZ, 86001
Observer's e-mail address:
Other observers who independently identified this bird: None though I pointed out the field marks to my Navajo friend Chaster Salt.
Date prepared: 25 May 2006
Additional material: Contact me if you would like more information.
Additional comments: Sorry to be so late. All the guys I was with were a bunch of coal miners I had worked with on Black mesa Arizona. They were a mix of Navajo and White guys. Boy did I take a load of ribbing over getting excited over this bird although they were all interested to know it was a lost bird of Southeastern North American swamps.