20 YEARS AGO January–February 1999 A Pink-footed Goose discovered on a golf course in Dennis in mid-January was retroactively accepted almost 20 years later—making it the state first—after it was clear that these winter occurrences were almost certainly genuine vagrants not escapes. A Greater White-fronted Goose in Hadley was the second record for Western Massachusetts. Tundra Swans were reported from Westport, Worcester, and Lakeville and a Tufted Duck was at Wachusett Reservoir on January 1. Also seen on New Year’s Day was the Logan Airport Gyrfalcon originally found at the end of December. A Crested Caracara spent a week in Middleboro in early January. At the time the bird was assumed to be an escape. Since then a clear pattern of extralimital wandering has been established and this bird was later accepted as the state first. Seven Red-headed Woodpeckers wintered around the state. Best sighting: an Ancient Murrelet at Rockport on February 5 was the third record for the state (the first and second coming in 1992 and 1998). Since then, there have been no further records. 40 YEARS AGO January–February 1979 An adult Tundra Swan (or “Whistling Swan” as it was then called) continued in the Plum Island–Ipswich area until January 10. Four–five days after a report of a “purple bird with yellow legs” was received from Chatham, an adult Purple Gallinule was captured on Morris Island and later released at Felix Neck, Martha’s Vineyard. Also from Chatham was a Black Vulture found on December 19. An immature male Black-headed Grosbeak visited a feeder in Lexington during February. Best sighting: the biggest Great Gray Owl incursion ever witnessed in the northeast (and the only one since the winter of 1890-91) continued with at least 15 individuals present in February.