[Tweeters] LHG-Bellevue -- Gr White-fronted Geese continue

Pterodroma at aol.com Pterodroma at aol.com
Mon Oct 14 16:15:01 PDT 2013

The little flock of *16* GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GEESE continue in the small
farm (herb) field on the NE corner of 156th Ave SE & SE 16th St, right
across the street from the little red barn-like produce stand and windmill on
the NW corner. Both yesterday and today, that nice little cohesive flock
were out there all by their lonesome, no Canada's nor anything else. It's
been a week now for this bunch out there that seem quite calm and content
and if not snoozing, spend all their time stomping around pilfering through
and ripping the leaves off the various large leaf whatevers that were
planted back in late July but were never tended to or harvested. Having grown up
in tornado alley in the far NW corner of Missouri, the plants in that
section are beginning to look like they've taken a direct hit and ripped to
shreds by a big hailstorm thanks to the geese. In any case, the photo ops out
there can be quite nice on sunny days since the field is quite small, no
more than a city block square if even that, the geese are remarkably relaxed
to almost tame and often hang out near the west side boardwalk along 156th
Ave SE, and are usually easily seeable even if you have no more time than
a glance out the window during a driveby.

They must really like this field. Late Friday afternoon (no walk that
day), I'd seen the birds out there in the morning during a driveby, but I
popped in at 4pm to tidy up and snip back some annoying low hanging blackberries
and others scattered about north of the produce stand/windmill that I
tend to get snagged on and trip over, and ack!, horror horror, a tractor was
out in the field mowing the grass around the edges (expletive deleted)! Why
now, why not in August when it was DRY? It's all mucky out there now with
standing water in the often winter time birdy areas, the dry season window
is long gone and closed. Needless to say with that kind of disturbance,
the GWFG were gone and I figured most likely gone for good and would have
bet good money on it. No walk on Saturday either but an early afternoon
driveby and no surprise, no GWFG then either. Anyway, in the end, no harm, no
foul. On the loop again Sunday, I had no hopes or expectations for that
area, but surprise! surprise!, the 16 GWFG were back!

Other highlights today & yesterday (afternoon walks due to morning fog),
on Su 10/13, 75 Snow Geese (FOF) noisily passed over straight up high
overhead (SE>NE), and 3 Horned Grebes were out in the middle of Phantom Lake, the
latter a species which is rare here at this small inland lake location.
My only previous HOGR sighting was one bird seen on PL back on 21Oct last
year. Today, early afternoon again, 1 Spotted Sandpiper was seen basking in
the warm sun with 5 Killdeer at Phantom Lake out on and near the end of
the long white 'diving board' dock just east of the first large SW shore
corner lawn, but you really need a spotting scope to do the far shores and
middle & far sides of the lake proper justice. Otherwise, afternoon walks
have been predictably pretty slow and quiet in the routine passerine
department resulting in lots of MIAs. All total for the month so far, 8 walks and
73 species in the Lake Hills Greenbelt. BTW, another milestone was achieved
on Th 10Oct, walk #286, and crossed the cumulative 1000 mile mark. Next
milestone, 10,000 miles, but that's at least 10 years down the trail yet.

Richard Rowlett
Bellevue (Eastgate), WA

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