[Tweeters] Magnuson Park, 27 November 2015
lsr at ramoslink.info
Sat Nov 28 09:57:13 PST 2015
Past Thanksgiving weekends have so often brought wind and rain, flooding and power outages, that this weekend seemed like a blessing. Yes, a little chilly in the wee hours, into the upper 20s, but the early breezes dissipated as the morning wore on so that the cold temps were tolerable. But, even thought the wetlands are now full to their normal levels, the freeze meant that, once again, only Promontory Pond remained accessible to waterfowl. In addition, numbers of wintering ducks seemed very low on the lake as well.
One positive side of the freezing weather is that the Hawthorn berries have softened enough to offer a winter treat for the birds. Most activity was from the Robins, but in one large hawthorn, I saw several Robins, Cedar Waxwing, Spotted Towhee, House Finch, Red-winged Blackbird, Northern Flicker, Bewick’s Wren, Golden-crowned Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco, even a California Quail!
Other notables included:
Cackling Goose - a couple of flocks flying north over the lake, plus a pair of minima mixed in with the Canadas
Canada Goose - typical flock on the sports field; a bird lacking the white cheek patch was in the group as has happened in the last couple of years
Ring-necked Duck - a single female in the ponds; almost always see at least one female and almost never a male
Greater Scaup - a pair out beyond the swim platform, the only scaup of the day
California Quail - just one bird, quietly sitting in the hawthorn with all the feasting activity going on around it
Sharp-shinned Hawk - while I was standing on one of the meadow trails, I heard this awful scream/screetch call, then a loud flutter of wings as the Sharpie tore past my head and into the scrub about 3 m away. It missed its prey, but sat there for a couple of minutes before admitting defeat and flew up into a small tree
Herring Gull - a couple on the swim platform with the normal coterie of gulls; many Ring-billed Gulls on the lawns
Merlin - female (or young bird?) perched atop the tall cottonwoods along the northern shore; stayed there for at least 20 minutes
Orange-crowned Warbler - Gray-headed: bright yellow breast and vent, olive-yellow back, grayish head with eye line plus eye-arcs that looked almost complete
For the day, 53 species.
Checklist: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26020474 <http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26020474>
Magnuson Park Geography <https://www.google.com/maps/d/edit?mid=zXRxfq3LHS_o.kvemGrlPu-NM&usp=sharing>
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