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What is a "Superflight?"

What Do We Mean By "Invading"?

Where Were They Going?

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Was the 1997-98 Irruption More Significant for Some Winter Finches Than Others?

Arrival dates for Common Redpoll were exceptionally early that season. This species does not usually appear in numbers in the United States until late-October or the beginning of November. That Evening Grosbeaks were reported as far south as Tennessee by the end of November is also suggestive of the magnitude of the invasion. Pine Grosbeaks made appearances in Iowa and New Jersey, where there are relatively few records of this species.

The most exciting irruption that winter, though, was that of the White-winged Crossbill. The numbers and extensive southward movement brought this finch into areas that have not reported White-winged Crossbills since the 1970's. Hundreds were reported in Maine and Massachusetts, and their movement down the Atlantic seaboard reached North Carolina. In the Great Plains, White-winged Crossbills were seen in Iowa and as far south as Kansas and Missouri.

The 1997-98 winter presented us with perhaps the most outstanding finch year in recent history.