Red-flanked Bluetail

Tarsiger cyanurus

This small but stunning old-world thrush is a casual spring and accidental fall migrant to the Bering Sea. Red-flanked Bluetails breed as far north as the central Kamtchatka Peninsula. Three of the roughly twelve North American records of this species come from Saint Paul. Of the three Saint Paul records one is from spring (June 10, 1987), and the other two are from fall; one on October 1, 1997 and a female which lingered for the first week of October in 2003. In its native lands this species is often very skulky, and the two recent birds that made it to the Pribilofs seemed to follow this trend. The dapper males, replete in their sky blue upperparts, and rich orange flanks are unmistakable. Females are also very distinctive, as no other small old-world thrush possesses a white throat, orange wash on the flanks and a blue tail. Both recent records of this species come from sheltered cuts in hillsides (Hutchinson and Polovina) during strong west winds