[Tweeters] Seattle to the coast--good birding day

Byers byers345 at comcast.net
Wed May 8 17:58:38 PDT 2013

Hello Tweeters,
Bill and I headed to Ocean Shores today to see what shorebirds might be about. We stopped at Nisqually NWR to check the pond where we saw the Solitary Sandpiper last Saturday (across from the Education Center). We found about 30 Long-billed Dowitchers in the pond and one of the Solitary Sandpipers.
We toured the Brady Loop Road area and found a field full of about 20 Whimbrels. We also saw a mixed flock of geese in a field, among them aobut 10 White-fronted Geese and a handful of Cackling Geese. These all decamped about the time we stopped the car, so we didn't have an extensive observation. Among other raptors, were a pair of Peregrine Falcons.
We stopped at the Hoquiam sewage treatment ponds. The air was full of birds around there: swallows, shorebirds, gulls, terns, ducks and one Osprey. Shorebirds at this location included a couple of Dowitchers (would they be Short-billed here?), about 10 Semi-palmated Plovers, lots of Dunlins and a few peep (which I never got a good look at). The interest here was watching first a Bald Eagle and then another Peregrine Falcon attempt to get lunch, causing all the birds to lift off a couple times. The shorebirds went very high in the air and never returned :(
Finally we arrived at Ocean Shores at about 3:30 pm we headed out to the beach on a receding tide. The shore was covered with shorebirds: Dunlins, Western Sandpipers, Sanderlings, and Semipalmated Plovers. When we first arrived there were about 4 Marbled Godwits, but someone spooked them and they left. I looked in vain for a Least Sandpiper.
The sun had finally come out when we arrived on the shore, so the lighting was beautiful. We took lots of photos.
Charlotte Byers, Seattle

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