[Tweeters] Sprague Sabine's Demise/Reardan SHARP-TAILED Sandpiper

Isacoff, Jonathan isacoff at gonzaga.edu
Sat Sep 14 08:19:30 PDT 2013


Yesterday I joined George Gerdts, Brad Waggoner, and Cindy McCormack for an awesome morning around Sprague. I believe that had a few great birds before I got there that will reported later in a longer post. Sprague on the Adams side was a little slow but lots of Geese and Ducks are moving in, including a few WOOD DUCKS, which are relatively scarce at the location. The adult CLARK'S GREBE was still present with Westerns and observed feeding chicks. Well over 100 RED-NECKED PHALAROPES were scattered about and as was a KINGFISHER feeding from Basalt Cliffs on the North side -- a very tough Adams County, WA bird. The real show-stealer was a young PEREGRINE FALCON we first observed flying in a large arc around the Southwest end of the lake. We next encountered the same bird on a pole near the hay bales by the road, where I viewed 5 Sabine's Gulls last Sunday. The Peregrine flushed and after some scanning we found a single adult SABINE'S GULL feeding near the North shore of the lake. The Gull proceeded to roost in the water when it was TAKEN BY THE PEREGRINE, carried away to the rocky shore, and devoured. I think none of the 4 of us in over 100 years of collective birding has seen a sight like this. And the Sabine's was a great bird too - but no long chaseable I'm afraid!

Sprague resort was slightly slow for this time of year with hordes of Yellow-rumped's. In their midst we eaked out COMMON YELLOWTHROAT, WILSON'S WARBLER, TOWNSEND'S WARBLER, WARBLING VIREO, LINCOLN'S SPARROW. George expertly spotted a very stealthy RED-NAPED SAPSUCKER. The best bird of the location was a LEAST FLYCATCHER, observed very well at eye level, with a wide, bright orange lower mandible. The dull brownish plumage was a striking contrast to the brightly and crisply plumed Hammond's in the area.

I proceeded solo to Davenport Cemetery, which was slow but had a few good birds, the best of which was a late OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER, and a bit of a sparrow show with 7 species: Vesper, Brewer's Chipping, Savannah (many), White-crowned, GOLDEN-CROWNED, and Junco.

Reardan had a very nice little shorebird movement with some later migrants and great diversity, 13 species in all (not including Killdeer and RN Phalarope which were probably present but didn't' have time or patiences to look!):

SEMIPALMATED PLOVER - 2
Spotted Sandpiper - 1
Greater Yellowlegs -2
Lesser Yellowlegs - 2
Solitary Sandpiper - 2
Least Sandpiper - 4
Western Sandpiper - 1
Semipalmated Sandpiper - 1
Baird's Sandpiper - 4
Pectoral Sandpiper - 17
SHARP-TAILED SANDIPER - 1
Long-billed Dowitcher - 4
Wilson's Snipe - 2

Great migrant birding in Lincoln Co., WA!

Good birding,
Jon Isacoff, Spokane


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