Rose-breasted Grosbeaks in Glenville
I was very surprised to look out the window just now (21 April 2006) and see two Rose-breasted Grosbeaks at the feeder. Based on my experiences in the Cayuga Lake Basin, where I compiled a list of average first arrival dates for migrants http://www.birds.cornell.edu/cayugabirdclub/firstrecords/medlerarrivals.html,
this is more than a week early for this species, which I think of as a classic May 1st arrival. Even more suprising was the fact that both birds were females (I tend to see males of this species before females when they arrive back).
Lest anybody think that I observed two female Purple Finches, which are probably more expected on this date, I had good, close-range looks at the birds through binoculars for a few minutes. I clearly saw the massive, pale-colored bill, the very "clean" white eyeline extending to the front of the head, and the two white wingbars.