20 YEARS AGO September–October 1999 Returning rarities included the Niles Beach Eared Grebe and the Sterling Tufted Duck both back for their fifth consecutive year. Rare October geese included a Greater White-fronted Goose at Plum Island and West Newbury and three Cackling Geese (at the time considered a subspecies of Canada Goose) at Great Meadows NWR. An adult Red-necked Stint at South Beach, Chatham, September 5–13, was the third record for the year while an immature Ruff was at Fort Hill, Eastham on September 12. Eleven Black-legged Kittiwakes were at Arlington Reservoir on October 30 following a night of heavy fog. Passerine rarities included a Boreal Chickadee banded at Manomet, a Henslow's Sparrow in Newbury, a Brewer's Blackbird in Orange, three different LeConte's Sparrows , and a cooperative Lark Bunting in North Weymouth. Best event: Tropical Storm Floyd, September 17–18, brought at least ten Sandwich Terns to Edgartown, three Bridled Terns to Edgartown and Eastham, and six Sooty Terns to Cape Cod. 40 YEARS AGO September–October 1979 A Yellow Rail was flushed at Sandy Neck, Barnstable, in mid-September. Ten skuas, including one identified as South Polar Skua , were spotted between September 12–16 in the Cultivator Shoals–West Georges Bank area on Manomet Bird Observatory cruises. Cattle Egrets reached a high of 25 in Ipswich on September 1. An immature Swainson's Hawk was the highlight of a hawkwatch in Framingham on September 15. Vagrant flycatchers included an excellent 20 Western Kingbirds throughout the state and a Say's Phoebe at Plum Island on September 8. Many long-time birders will remember visiting Herman Weissberg's yard between October 18–24 to see his adult Summer Tanager . Nantucket was the place to be for sparrows and buntings: Black-headed Grosbeak on October 27, Henslow's Sparrow on October 11, and Chestnut-collared Longspur , October 25–27. Elsewhere in the state there were three different Lark Buntings . Best event: Hurricane David, September 6–9, the fallout of which produced more than 85 Sooty Terns scattered around Cape Ann, Cape Cod and the Islands, with three inland reports including an adult being pursued by a Pomarine Jaeger at Lake Quabog, East Brookfield.