[Tweeters] Lake McMurray HERMIT WARBLER 8/18

Scott Atkinson scottratkinson at hotmail.com
Sun Aug 18 21:43:00 PDT 2013


Tweeters:

At about 9:30 a.m. this morning I started a coastal Skagit County birding day at
Lake McMurray. At the south end of the lake, there are a couple spots that can
be good for passerine migrants in season: one is the public boat launch, the
other is the close-by Centennial trail heading south from Hwy 9. Right at this
spot there is a little pulloff overlooking a boggy section with several prominent
snags. Between these two spots, there were 6 warbler sp and all four vireos,
along with a number of other passerines.

The surprise highlight was a imm. female HERMIT WARBLER that responded
to pishing by dropping down from the top of a tall conifer at the boat launch.
I was ready to pass the bird off as a female TOWNSEND'S on first glance, but:
(a) the bird was browner on the back than any Townsend's I'd ever seen; (b)
the auricular was less distinct than a female Townsend's, more of a suggestion
of the Townsend's auricular; (c) the bird was dingly buff and unstreaked at the
flanks; and (d) the throat and breast were white. Could not find a streak, in
fact, anywhere on the bird! Was pretty amazed to find this one, as we don't
have more than a half-dozen entries for this one in Skagit Co, and all have been
spring birds to this point, at least those that I've heard about.

The HERMIT was associated with a flock that included: five BLACK-THROATED
GRAY WARBLERS, several W. TANAGERS, and a CASSIN'S VIREO. Overall neo
trop summerers/migrants list for Lake McMurray's south end: (BL=boat launch
CT=Centennial Trail)

W. Wood-Pewee 1 CT
Willow Flycatcher 3 BL
Pacific-slope Flycatcher 1 CT
empid, sp 1 BL
Swainson's Thrush 6 CT, BL
Cassin's Vireo 1 BL
Warbling Vireo 1 BL
Red-eyed Vireo 1 BL
Hutton's Vireo 1 BL
Orange-crowned Warbler 1 CT
Yellow Warbler 3 CT
Black-throated Gray Warbler 5 BL
Com. Yellowthroat 4 CT, BL
Wilson's Warbler 9 (! BL-2, CT-7)
W. Tanager 3 BL
Black-headed Grosbeak 1 BL

Otherwise Fir Island was pretty slow, although the most interesting birding was
at the Skagit WMA headquarters off Wylie Rd. Highlights here included 60
GREATER and 30 LESSER YELLOWLEGS, about 50 DOWITCHERS (mostly LB),
and two PURPLE MARTINS. A number of dabblers here included 7 BLUE-WINGED
and two CINNAMON TEAL; about 15 of the latter were at a slough near the
Snow Goose Produce/ice cream spot also. Two W. TANAGERS were far out
on the dike trail and had to have been migrants.

EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVES are everywhere it seems, I even heard one at
the Lake McMurray boat launch, a new spot.

Scott Atkinson
Lake Stevens
mail to: scottratkinson at hotmail.com




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