[Tweeters] EAS Snoqualmie Valley Birdathon trip 13 May
bellasoc at isomedia.com
Wed May 14 12:03:31 PDT 2014
Yesterday, Eastside Audubon took a Birdathon trip to the Snoqualmie Valley
and vicinity. With predictions for the 80s, the day started out with a light
cloud cover and a temperature of 44F. We started at Marymoor and could see
an Osprey on the nest as we left the park.
Our first stop was at McCormick Park in Duvall under very pleasant
conditions and some sun coming out. While there we saw BLACK-HEADED
GROSBEAK, EUROPEAN STARLING, SONG SPARROW, TREE SWALLOW (with copulation),
VIOLET-GREEN SWALLOW, NORTHERN ROUGH-WINGED SWALLOW over the river, a
SPOTTED SANDPIPER, BELTED KINGFISHER (male), WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW, WILSON'S
WARBLER, YELLOW WARBLER, YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLER, BUSHTIT and ROCK PIGEON. A
small flock (about 8) of EVENING GROSBEAK flew over.
Next we went up W. Snoqualmie River Rd NW to the vicinity of the Halal
Slaughter House. Right on cue we saw a WESTERN KINGBIRD on the wire. While
we watched it flew down into the agricultural area and perched on a fence
post and fly-caught. Then we saw a second Western Kingbird in the same
vicinity, and they cooperatively foraged. Looks like a good spot to check
for nesting. While there we saw NORTHERN HARRIER. A ways north on the road
we saw HOUSE FINCH at a feeder, and nearby a RING-NECKED PHEASANT. Returning
south along the road we heard CALIFORNIA QUAIL.
Andy Franjevic took us to the Wilderness Awareness School headquarters where
they have nesting BREWER'S BLACKBIRDs in the privet hedge. From there we
went to the School's 20 acre parcel up at the end of the Cherry Valley Road.
As we stepped out of the cars we heard ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER and eventually
got very nice looks at it. A BAND-TAILED PIGEON flew over and perched. As we
walked the property we heard BLACK-THROATED GRAY WARLBER, saw a
CHESTNUT-BACKED CHICKADEE excavating a nest. Saw AMERICAN ROBIN,
BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAK (although a terrible distant view), PACIFIC WREN,
GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLET, WILSON'S WARBLER, STELLER'S JAY, heard HAMMOND'S
FLYCATCHER and saw and heard PACIFIC-SLOPE FLYCATCHER. (Although we missed
them the pond has Wood Duck and Hooded Merganser).
Next, back down into Duvall and to the Stillwater WMA (we were lucky, the
construction on Duval/Carnation road had not started and we were able to get
to the WMA before the pilot car process started - bit backups) - by now it
was clear and sunny with ideal temperatures. Almost immediately along the
Snoqualmie Valley Trail we got excellent looks at two male BULLOCK'S ORIOLEs
and a female carrying fluff. As we searched for one of the Orioles in a
Cottonwood tree we saw two side by side nests - one probably last years and
one looking very new. Along the trail we saw SONG SPARROW, WESTERN
WOOD-PEWEE, CEDAR WAXWING (first of the year for most of us), MALLARD, WOOD
DUCK (male and female), MOURNING DOVE, RED-BREASTED SAPSUCKER (several),
NORTHERN FLICKER, BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE, BROWN CREEPER, BEWICK'S WREN,
MARSH WREN, COMMON YELLOWTHROAT, SPOTTED TOWHEE, SONG SPARROW, RED-WINGED
BLACKBIRD, AMERICAN GOLDFINCH and heard PIED-BILLED GREBE and AMERICAN
BITTERN. We had a BEAVER swim past in one of the landward ponds with a nice
bit of vegetation in its mouth. Overhead we had RED-TAILED HAWK and TURKEY
VULTURE. Walking past the pond north on the Trail we had nice views of
MALLARD, WOOD DUCK, GREAT BLUE HERON. We took to longish walk out to the
Snoqualmie River where we saw NORTHERN ROUGH-WINGED and BANK SWALLOWs.
After waiting for a while we were able to proceed south into Carnation and
to Tolt-MacDonald Park for our lunch stop. It was getting warm and the
birding really wound down. We did see TREE SWALLOW, AMERICAN CROW. A trip
down to Tokul Creek, where we missed on American Dipper but did see
DARK-EYED JUNCO. By now it was in the 80s and mid-afternoon with the real
bird doldrums so we headed back toward Redmond. Along the way we stopped at
192 Ave NE and scoped across the road into the Evans Creek Marsh, picking up
a MALLARD, AMERICAN WIGEON, GREAT BLUE HERON and AMERICAN COOT.
At various spots during the day we saw CANADA GOOSE, BALD EAGLE, KILLDEER,
ANNA'S and RUFOUS HUMMINGIBIRD, BARN SWALLOW, RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH (heard),
a HERMIT THRUSH flew across the road, PURPLE FINCH, and HOUSE SPARROW. We
also saw a bunny.
It was a very nice day with some great views of birds, and a good group. We
wound up with 67 species for the day, in spite of now being able to get to
possible good duck spots.
Brian H. Bell
Mail to bell asoc at is o me dia dot com
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