[Tweeters] Umtanum report: a woodpecker-y day

Warren Clemans wumpusbear at gmail.com
Sat Jun 15 09:43:42 PDT 2013


Hi Tweets--

I spent a fantastic day yesterday hiking up Umtanum Creek. I went in hopes
of seeing my first Yellow-breasted Chats and saw plenty. In fact I don't
think I was ever out of earshot of them. They're truly hilarious birds.
Photo here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/63285381@N00/9051423346/

The highlight of the day for me was the number of Lewis's Woodpeckers that
I saw. They were everywhere, from high on the canyon walls to the tops of
trees or perched on shrubs. I spent almost an hour watching a pair bring
bugs to their nest. Unfortunately I couldn't see the nest hole from the
trail (and didn't want to disturb the birds by bushwhacking), but it was
definitely a nest. Sample photo here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/63285381@N00/9051430078/

Lazuli Buntings were everywhere. As was reported last week, there weren't
many warblers about (I saw one Nashville) but maybe that's because the
buntings were drowning out every other sound. Photo here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/63285381@N00/9051425834/

I was easily able to locate the prairie falcon nest about 2 miles in. The
chicks weren't very active by the time I got there in the early afternoon.
Here's what they looked like:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/63285381@N00/9051430718/

Finally, here's a kestrel that was kind enough to land just off the trail
and pose for me:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/63285381@N00/9051433770/

Other highlights included gobs of Western Wood-Pewees, black-headed
grosbeaks, a common merganser with chicks in the Yakima, 8 or 10 turkey
vultures looking for lunch, a couple of downy woodpeckers, bullock's
oriole, and a taunting olive-sided flycatcher (him: "quick, three beers";
me: "that sounds great, thanks"; him: "just kidding!"). Oh, and no
rattlesnakes.

Additional photos, including a bunch of Lewis's Woodpecker shots, are in
this flickr set:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/63285381@N00/sets/72157634143388880/

Happy birding,
Warren
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