[Tweeters] Franklin County American Dipper (AMDI)...Code 5

Tom Mansfield birds at t-mansfield.com
Fri Jan 18 18:00:41 PST 2013

Inspired by Matt Yawney's irrigation canal AMDI at Ephrata and with a tip from NancyL that AMDI was seen years ago at the Esquatzel Flume north of Pasco, I poked around upper Franklin County's irrigation canals today. I started checking along the river from Broadmoor, zigged and zagged back and forth finding access, checked the Esquatzel Flume and another further north on Columbia River Road, and then continued on to the Ringold Hatchery, where there is a tremendous amount of water spilling over that creates excellent looking AMDI habitat with rocky edges and matted grasses/sticks along the outflow. Alas, that flume was devoid of birds. Driving up the Ringold access road headed back to the hotel, I noticed there was a bridge a bit to the north of the access road's intersection with Ringold Road/Road 170. The flume that emptied at Ringold flowed under Ringold Road/Road 170. So, I pulled over in fading light and checked under the west side of the bridge but it looked too deep for AMDI. When I crossed the road and checked the east side, I found that another, smaller flume emptied into the Ringold Wastewater Canal after falling down a steep hill to the south. There were more rocks where the two canals met and sitting right next to a drain pipe on a big rock was the AMDI! There is a maintenance access road (and structures but no signs) so I walked over opposite the smaller flume and tried some photos but it was nearly dark. My guess is the AMDI will be there in the morning...and I probably will be, too.

Tom Mansfield in Pasco tonight.

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