[Tweeters] Oooh Baby!! Coleman Canyon Plus

B B birder4184 at yahoo.com
Thu Jul 30 18:39:21 PDT 2015

Actually make that oooh babies - lots of them.  Yesterday Frank Caruso and I joined Bill and Deb Essman (who were beyond super guides/company) for a jeep ride up into the canyons north of Kittitas.  We did a long (45 mile) circular route that was largely in the Coleman Canyon area and reached an elevation of 6,000 feet passing through gorgeous country which included views of some of the fire damage in the Naneum last year.  There were lots of birds with extraordinary numbers of young birds and almost unfathomable numbers of Western Wood Pewees as well as large numbers of Chipping Sparrows and Cassin's Finches with young.
How many Pewees?  We figured at least 150 and likely many more.  We had them singularly, in pairs and in groups of up to 5 almost every step along the way.  Similar numbers and groupings of Chipping Sparrows which seemed to be flying into every shrub and tree along the way.  Earlier we ad adult and young Eastern and Western Flycatchers lower down.
Particularly fun was a mother Cassin's Finch feeding her baby a very disgusting (to us) pre-chewed meal of who knows what.  Also fun was a family of Red Naped Sapsuckers still hanging around the nest hole but with a very well developed juvenile in tow.  We wondered if maybe there was a second brood.
Some other goodies were two Dusky/Sooty Grouse (believed to be Dusky), a possible Juvenile Goshawk, many gorgeous Western Tanagers, and juvenile and adult Townsend's Solitaires.
Later Frank and I watched an unbelievable 10!!! Burrowing Owls from Vantage Highway East of Kittitas and then visited the Winchester STP hoping for a Baird's Sandpiper.  Not there but we had two Wilson's Phalaropes, gorgeous Long Billed Dowitchers, Cinnamon Teal, Least, Western and Solitary Sandpipers and an immature Bonaparte's Gull.  First visit this year without Black Necked Stilts.
Some pictures at https://picasaweb.google.com/103072475474183849815/ColemanCanyonPlus?authkey=Gv1sRgCOjp_tTOurnlMQ

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