[Tweeters] Another Day in the Okanogan - With Sharp Tailed Grouse (Finally)

Blair Bernson blair at washingtonadvisorygroup.com
Sun Dec 27 17:06:30 PST 2015

It snowed in the Okanogan last night maybe 2
inches and continued most of the day today in most
areas - limited visibility and not too many birds
- BUT some real good ones.

Finally after much searching this year I was able
to find 6 Sharp Tailed Grouse in the Scotch Creek
Wildlife Area - just before reaching Happy Hill
Road. Pictures were not bad given conditions and
distance. This is the 390th species in Washington
for which I have a picture and picture number 355
for species in Washington in 2015 (excluding
exotics). It was a great moment even though we
had run into a deep ditch as we pulled over to
observe the birds and be off the road.
Unfortunately the ditch looked like s solid
shoulder and we were STUCK! Some wonderful local
folks helped dig us out and made for a nice touch
to the momentous photograph.

Other good birds: 35 plus Gray Crowned Rosy
Finches, a single Bohemian Waxwing and 2 Common
Redpoll at the Nealey Road Feeders (where there
was more than 10" of snow), a flock of 30-40
White Winged Crossbills and a Pygmy Owl on Chesaw
Road near Byers Hill (where Jon Houghton and I had
the same species last month), multiple Clark's
Nutcrackers at Conconully, and an immature Golden
Eagle (observed carefully) also on Chesaw Road.

At times the conditions approached whiteout and I
am sure we missed a lot of birds but it turned
into a very very good day.

Blair Bernson

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