[Tweeters] Nisqually NWR 11/13/13

scrubjay323 at aol.com scrubjay323 at aol.com
Wed Nov 13 19:27:37 PST 2013


Today 48 (or so) of us enjoyed a great walk at Nisqually under mostly sunny skies with a 14.0 high tide at 2:00 PM.

The day got off to a humbling start when the group, led by Eric and Shep, caught me completely off guard with a celebration of my leading this walk for 10 years. Eric had 10 year pins made and presented me with an oil color of the refuge he did that was really nice. We had coffee and goodies that the ladies prepared and I was presented with a nice gift from the group that floored me! What did I ever do to deserve this except do something I really love and get people involved in birding. Thanks you so much to a wonderful group of people!

Now to the birding. Waterfowl were plentiful and everywhere. Lots of MALLARDS,PINTAIL, SHOVELERS, AMERICAN WIGEON, and RING-NECKED DUCKS. We also saw BUFFLEHEAD, HOODED MERGANSERS, and GREEN-WINGED TEAL. Both CANADA and CACKLING GEESE were present and I saw a couple of GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE next to the parking lot as I was leaving the refuge.

Raptors were in good numbers with multiple sightings of BALD EAGLES, NORTHERN HARRIERS, RED-TAILED HAWKS, and PEREGRINE FALCON. One of the BALD EAGLES had something in it talons and an irate gull chasing it. Must have been stolen goods. We also had good looks at a juvenile NORTHERN SHRIKE.

Out in the reclamation area were about 500 DUNLIN with a few LONG-BILLED DOWITCHERS mixed in. Earlier we spotted a WILSON'S SNIPE on the pond near the entrance road.

We also had great looks a two PILIATED WOODPECKERS, a male hiding from a PEREGRINE FALCON, that froze on the side of a tree in plain view for the group and a female that was making sawdust out of a stump near the twin barns. Both birds were in view for at least 15 minutes without moving on.

There were lots of passerines about, including both KINGLETS, SONG, FOX, LINCOLN'S and GOLDEN CROWNED SPARROWS, TOWHEES, AMERICAN GOLDFINCH, and BUSHTITS.

The folks that went out on the estuary boardwalk saw RED-THROATED LOON and TRUMPETER SWANS among other things that Shep will have in his e-bird post.

We also had two different GREAT HORNED OWL sightings. One was in plain view on the outside of the boardwalk from the twin barns to the Nisqually side and the other was in an alder thicket near the beaver dam on the Nisqually side.

For the day I had 52 species with nothing new for the year.

The only mammal I saw was a MUSKRAT at the visitor's center after the walk.

Until next week......

Phil Kelley
scrubjay323 at aol.com
Lacey, WA

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