[Tweeters] Marymoor Park (Redmond, King Co.) 2015-04-30

Michael Hobbs birdmarymoor at frontier.com
Thu Apr 30 14:56:56 PDT 2015

Tweets – A fabulous and frustrating day, with great birds, some poorly seen. The morning started under heavy overcast, but steadily improved.

The predawn was great. I got to the Viewing Mound at about 5:15, and immediately had a BARN OWL fly right past me. Sharon arrived just in time to see the bird fly off to the east. We kept searching for another glimpse, but what we found instead was our first-of-year SHORT-EARED OWL. It was much harder to see than the Barn, being closer in tones to the grasses and bushes it was flying over. It’s flight pattern was quite different (more butterfly-like, instead of the steady, slow flight of the Barn Owl). We got good looks at the wing markings to confirm it. Sharon and I were very happy, but wondered where Matt was, since we were parked next to his car. Just then, he called out from the darkness, urging us to follow him. We racewalked towards the boardwalk, stopping at the willows at the north edge of the “Mysterious Thicket” area, where a GRAY FLYCATCHER could still be heard singing a few phrases. Frustration #1: We never saw the flycatcher. But Matt had heard full songs, and the phrases Sharon and I heard were definitive for Gray. Gray Flycatcher is NEW FOR MARYMOOR PARK, our 229th species!


Green-winged Teal Pair below weir; getting late for them
Common Loon 1 high over East Meadow, 1 far out on lake. Same?
Great Blue Heron Grum, Grum, Grum sounds from heronry. Chicks?
LEAST SANDPIPER 3 on far side of slough below weir. First of Year
Eurasian Collared-Dove One flying east from Climbing Rock
SHORT-EARED OWL Flushed later from edge of East Meadow – FOY
GRAY FLYCATCHER See above. Obviously FOY :)
N. Rough-winged Swallow 2 just above weir, 1 perched on branch – FOY
Orange-crowned Warbler About a dozen that we were able to see or hear
NASHVILLE WARBLER 1 behind new Rowing Club building
MACGILLIVRAY’S WARBLER 1 singing at “Mysterious Thicket” – FOY
Yellow Warbler Saw 1 singing male, heard at least 1 more – FOY
Yellow-rumped Warbler Probably in the area of 200 !
Wilson’s Warbler 2 singing males, seen by few – FOY
Black-headed Grosbeak Saw 1 male, heard at least 1 more – FOY
Western Meadowlark 1 at East Meadow

Species continue to arrive early, or at the early end of things. Today’s was our earliest MACGILLIVRAY’S WARBLER – our previous earliest was 08-May-97! Our YELLOW WARBLER ties for 2nd earliest, beaten only by 29-Apr-05. Our BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAK is 3rd earliest, with our earliest being 24-Apr-05.

The huge numbers of YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLERS made the day frustrating, since there were scores of birds to look at, and virtually all were the same species. NONE of the birds responded to recordings (except for Golden-crowned Kinglet); all of the warblers were very busy feeding and kept moving at quite a pace through the leaves. As I said, we never saw the Gray Flycatcher. I managed to see both the Wilson’s Warblers, but they both disappeared before I could give directions. Only Sharon saw the MacGillivray’s Warbler, though it sang from very close to the trail. It took us probably 20 minutes before all of us saw the Nashville Warbler. Birds were singing sporadically, with few teed up nicely where we could see them.

But it’s hard to stay frustrated when there were so many great birds that we did find. For the day, 70 species. For the year, adding EIGHT species, we’re up to 118 species.

== Michael Hobbs
== www.marymoor.org/birding.htm
== BirdMarymoor at frontier.com

More information about the Tweeters mailing list