[Tweeters] Stilly Valley - 11/22/15

Barbara Deihl barbdeihl at comcast.net
Tue Nov 24 13:06:05 PST 2015

Norman Rd. got Anne and me off to a good start, from swans to Eurasian Collared Doves, with bunches of unknown sparrows in the brambles, a couple of redtails and a sunning towhee). I'd love ID help with the bramble birds...:-)
Next was Boe Rd and Port Susan Bay for distant views of Snow Geese and marauding eagles (we pretty much averted our eyes while the struck goose lamely tried to protect itself from 2 young Baldies. A Fox Sparrow posed at the entrance to the preserve. At one point we heard Western Meadowlarks, then saw some clustered in a small tree on the dike to the north.
Next up, Thomle Rd, where Anne spotted the Short-eared Owl and we saw Bald Eagles near nests and a tree smothered in ivy ! Also 3 Northern Harriers were cruising around out in the field where the SEOW was, but they never got into it with the owl, just each other. On our way back down Thomle, we saw a Cooper's Hawk chasing another bird, which we could only determine was woodpecker-sized and -colored. This happened at the tree near the end of the road that houses a Bald Eagle nest and pair. The lookout eagle seemed nonplussed by the hawk and its chasee.
Last stop was Eide Rd (Lecque Is.) - we were ushered in and out by a perched redtail and then treated to a few shortears, V's of north-flying Snow Geese and great sky features at sunset. Chatted with a couple photographers and saw some hunters return to the parking lot with their dogs and other companions.
Other birds seen and/or heard (but not photographed), during the afternoon in the Stilly Flats were California Quail, Brewer's Blackbirds, Red-winged Bbirds, Europ. Starlings, Dark-eyed Juncos, a Belted Kingfisher, a Great Blue Heron or 2 and a juvenile Northern Shrike (near the Eide parking area). Great excitement over the appearance of a porta-potty near the parking lot at Eide !
The Chatterbox restaurant in Stanwood served up warmth and tasty Thai, Indian and Malaysian food, and, after that, in no time flat, with little traffic and residual chatter from the restaurant, we were at the outskirts of Seattle. A lovely excursion...

link to Flickr album of photos from the day: "In the Valley of the Stilly" : https://flic.kr/s/aHskmnjdpf

Barb Deihl
Matthews Beach Neighborhood - NE Seattle
barbdeihl at comcast.net

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