[Tweeters] American Redstart at Skykomish

Wayne Weber contopus at telus.net
Tue Jun 23 09:14:31 PDT 2015


On June 21, shortly after seeing the Crested Caracara just west of
Skykomish, I heard but did not see an AMERICAN REDSTART singing in dense
riparian vegetation along the Skykomish River. The bird sang at least 20
times in 2 minutes. The location was along the BNSF tracks, just east of
where the trail from Mill Town (used by many Caracara watchers!) meets the
tracks. The bird's song was easily distinguished from a couple of nearby
Yellow Warblers; it consisted of four notes on about the same pitch, not
dropping at the end as most Yellow Warblers do.

This is a rare bird in King County, but not unprecedented; there are
numerous records over the years from Stillwater WMA near Duvall, including
one bird there this year. There are other scattered breeding locations west
of the Cascades, including the County Line Ponds and vicinity along the
Skagit River, and the south end of Pitt Lake near Vancouver, BC, where up to
4 birds have been seen on territory in the last few days. Perhaps this
species is more widespread west of the Cascades than previously thought.

The BSNF tracks are private property, and people have been fined for walking
along them, so if you bird along the tracks, do so at your own risk, and
watch out for railroad cops!

Wayne C. Weber

Delta, BC

contopus at telus.net

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