[Tweeters] Perplexing Pelagics-Seattle

Paul Randall paul.ecclesia at gmail.com
Sun Nov 23 13:36:06 PST 2014

After my post the other day about a Seattle shearwater, I got a couple responses which led me to believe that the bird I saw was really unusual and way out of range. So I do not feel comfortable making an ID. I am disappointed that I did not have the presence of mind to take a pic with my phone when it was just outside the window where I was sitting.

This morning, my last in Seattle, I took a walk in the rain along the waterfront, composing this email in my head--when I saw another one! Same one? Maybe. This time I was at Myrtle Edwards Park, about 1/4 mi from the hotel where I saw the first one. I got a better view with binoculars for about 30 secs before it flew. This one did not dive, but I saw it pretty well and then quickly consulted my Sibley when it flew. I'm pretty sure it was a Pink-footed Shearwater. I clearly saw a light bill and light on the sides as it bobbed in the waves. Then clear whitish underneath as it flew away to the south. I am not familiar with the flight of Pelagics, but this one seemed labored. It looked like it took 3 attempts to get off the water. My excuse for no pic this time is the distance (10yds offshore, maybe 20yds from me), rain & bobbing waves. I don't think my iPhone would have gotten anything helpful.

I'd love any comments from those who know the area better than me.
Grateful for the birding community,
Paul Randall
Houston, TX
Sent from my iPhone

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