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Re Alice Horst's June 5 report:  

I had an opportunity today to peruse through Stevenson and Anderson's "Birdlife of Florida" and one thing I wanted to check was the state record for latest departure for the Green-winged Teal as I thought Alice's sighting was so late into the year.  It is my understanding that this book is referred by some as the "bible" and a source for records.  If the F.O.S. has either a private or public database of "official state records" for earliest arrival/latest departure, I am not aware of it.

The previous record was set on June 4, 1959, from Leon County, per "Birdlife of Florida".  How exciting!  It looks like Alice now has the new state record -- unofficial, of course, until documented and verified.  

I am not involved with the records at the F.O.S. but I know that some of the list members are.  Alice has a nice photo in addition to her visual sighting and I imagine all she has to do is to file the paperwork along with the photo in order to qualify this into the official F.O.S. records.  I do not even know if the F.O.S. has a database of records.  I do know the F.O.S. website has a section for Published Field Observations, reports that "consist of significant bird observations compiled by the Field Observations 
Committee (FOC)."  That does not tell me if they actually keep up with records for earliest arrival/latest departure.

Stevenson and Anderson's book was published in 1994.  One would think that other state records have been broken since then.  It would be nice if we had a living, breathing database of state records that is regularly updated, one we all can reference.  Perhaps the F.O.S. does.  It would be nice to know.

Others on this email list are far more knowledgeable about all this than I am.  If I made any incorrect statements, please let us know.
 
One thing that keeps birding exciting into the summer are sightings of very late or very early departures/arrivals, regardless of a state record or not.

Bob Stalnaker
Longwood, FL      

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