New York bird lovers have been seen openly weeping after catching a glimpse of an extremely rare visitor to the Empire State.

Hundreds of people flocked (no pun intended) to a New York home after the owner reported seeing a bird that had not been spotted in the state since 1998. The elusive bird showed up on a feeder ten days ago and has caused a frenzy ever since.

According to the New York Post, Meigan Madden Rocco first spotted the bird outside of her home and was unsure what it was. The colorfully-feathered visitor had a bright turquoise blue head, tan breast and black wings. While similar to a bluebird, this species was unlike anything Rocco had ever seen, so she snapped a photo and sent it to a friend who works at the Department of Environmental Conservation.

New York State

Rare Bird Identified In New York State

Quickly, Rocco realized that this was no normal bird. It was identified as a lazuli bunting. This beautifully colored bird can occasionally be seen during its breeding season west of the Mississippi, but rarely ever makes its way east of Colorado. It's extremely unusual to catch a glimpse of a lazuli bunting as far away as New York State.

Word quickly spread of the sighting and bird lovers from New Jersey, New York and Connecticut quickly descended on Rocco's eastern Long Island home to catch sight of it. It's unknown how or why the lazuli bunting got so far off track, but bird lovers took full advantage of the opportunity to see it up close.

Soon, Rocco's street looked like the parking lot of a Grateful Dead concert, but instead of bongs and cheese sandwiches, the bird-loving spectators shared binoculars and exchanged images of their most exciting bird encounters.

New York State

How to Find the Lazuli Bunting in New York

Sadly, it appears that the lazuli bunting was only a temporary visitor to New York. After a week of stopping to refuel at Rocco's bird feeder, the bird continued its misguided migration. It's unclear what the bird's final destination will be, as it's already terribly off course.

Those still determined to see one will have to do some flying themselves. The lazuli bunting is currently making its way north for the breeding season along the west coast.

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