[Tweeters] From the Fill

Connie Sidles constancesidles at gmail.com
Tue Apr 29 17:32:34 PDT 2014

Hey tweets, a bittersweet day today. This was the last day you could drive into the Dime Lot (E-5). Notices went up today saying access will be proscribed from now on. That’s the bitter part. I have loved the road leading into the Dime Lot and have driven and walked it many, many times. It’s been there for more than 40 years! The sweet part is that the Dime Lot is going to be converted to new wetlands as part of the mitigation by WashDOT for the 520 bridge expansion (which will destroy cattail habitat on the Foster Island/Arboretum side of Union Bay).

There is some question about precisely what kind of wetland will be built. As it currently is proposed, there won’t be any enhanced mudflats for shorebirds - just swamp and vernal ponds with emergent vegetation. If you’re interested in seeing WashDOT’s proposal, email me offline and I will send you some information.

In other news, a WHITE-THROATED SPARROW has been hanging out in the Wedding Rock area. Darwin Alonso spotted it first yesterday, when it was hopping around Union Bay Circle. I found it today near the kiosk. It is a *very* beautiful bird in absolutely stunning plumage: bone-white throat and head stripes and lemon-yellow lores. Wow.

Also on view today: an Osprey being harassed by a bevy of crows, poor thing. A juvenile Red-tailed Hawk with very see-through wing windows that made me stare quite a long time. Tree Swallows are finally setting up housekeeping in various snags and houses all around (their favorite snag on SW Pond has disintegrated, and it seems the swallows took their time choosing second-best). The Cinnamon Teal pairs that have moved in have become strangely hard to see, but if you’re patient, eventually a couple will fly past going from here to there.

Here is a twitter poem for you today:

A young Tree Swallow
claimed the ramshackle nest box
no one else wanted.
It was all he could offer --
that, and himself.
She liked it.

- Connie, Seattle
constancesidles at gmail.com

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