[Tweeters] Nisqually NWR Wednesday Walk for 9/9/2015

Shep Thorp shepthorp at gmail.com
Thu Sep 10 08:54:04 PDT 2015


Hi Tweets,

approximately 35 of us had an exhilarating day as our highlight was
relocating the NORTHERN WATERTHRUSH previously reported by Whittier Johnson
and relocated by Donna on the inside of the west side of the Twin Barns
Loop Trail just north of the last double bench overlook and south of the
Twin Barns cut-off. The Northern Waterthrush was foraging on mud and
fallen sticks along the waters edge protected from the shade of Willow Tree
shoots, bobbing it's rear as it walked and ran in and out of view. As we
approached the overlook I heard several call notes,
bright/wet/ascending/firmly ending, "spink" or "spik". While enjoying two
foraging WILSON'S SNIPES, thanks to many sharp eyes the bird was spotted.
With patience our entire group was able to enjoy observing the waterthrush
feeding over a 20 minute period, what a treat!

<a data-flickr-embed="true" href="
https://www.flickr.com/photos/124216888@N03/21097392760/in/dateposted-public/"
title="Northern Waterthrush. Nisqually NWR."><img src="
https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5811/21097392760_66a7b25837_z.jpg"
width="361" height="640" alt="Northern Waterthrush. Nisqually
NWR."></a><script async src="//embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js"
charset="utf-8"></script>

The morning was cloudy, and the afternoon sunny. Temperatures were in the
60's-70's degrees Fahrenheit, and there was a Low 0'7" Tide at 9:51am.

Meeting at the Visitor Center Pond Overlook, we had nice sightings of PIED
BILLED GREBE and NORTHERN FLICKER.

We checked out the Orchard and had great viewing of FOS LINCOLN'S SPARROW,
other noteworthy sightings included PURPLE FINCH, GOLDEN-CROWNED SPARROW
mixed in with WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW, and a late sighting of BLACK-HEADED
GROSBEAK.

Along the Access Roads we observed RED-TAILED HAWK, NORTHERN HARRIER,
COOPER'S HAWK, AMERICAN GOLDFINCH, BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE, SONG SPARROW,
SPOTTED TOWHEE, DARK-EYED JUNCO and EURASIAN COLLARED DOVE.

The west side of the Twin Barns Loop Trail initially seemed slower then
last week, although the NOWA certainly made up for that. Species seen
included WOOD DUCK, MALLARD, GREEN HERON, GREAT BLUE HERON, VIRGINIA RAIL,
WILSON'S SNIPE, LONG-BILLED DOWITCHER flying over the fields, STELLER'S
JAY, WESTERN SCRUB-JAY, COMMON YELLOWTHROAT, YELLOW WARBLER, WARBLING
VIREO, CEDAR WAXWING, DOWNY WOODPECKER, RED-BREASTED SAPSUCKER, BROWN
CREEPER, and BAND-TAILED PIGEON. At the cut-off to the Twin Barns Loop
Trail we observed WILLOW FLYCATCHER, BARN SWALLOW and VAUX'S SWIFT.


>From the Twin Barns Overlook we picked up SHARP-SHINNED HAWK, PURPLE

MARTIN, and either VIOLET-GREEN SWALLOWS or Tree Swallows (white throated
and bellied swallows flying high) with many Barn Swallows.

Out on the Nisqually Estuary Trail or new dike we had nice sightings of
PEREGRINE FALCON, RED-TAILED HAWK, BALD EAGLE, OSPREY, COOPER'S HAWK,
MALLARD, AMERICAN WIGEON, NORTHERN PINTAIL, GREEN WING TEAL,
BLUE-WINGED/CINNAMON TEAL, WILSON'S SNIPE, RING-BILLED GULL, GLAUCOUS
WINGED GULL. SAVANNAH SPARROW, LINCOLN'S SPARROW, and MARSH WREN. The
waterfowl are starting to move in, and we observed our FOS AMERICAN PIPIT.
Both SORA and VIRGINIA RAIL were heard.

On the boardwalk or Nisqually Estuary Boardwalk Trail, we debated and added
COMMON MERGANSER and RED-BREASTED MERGANSER to our list. The juvenile
foraging COME can look a lot like RBME. Bill Langford was able to relocate
a LONG-BILLED CURLEW on the mud flats. We had nice observation of
CALIFORNIA GULL, LEAST SANDPIPER, SPOTTED SANDPIPER, CASPIAN TERN and
DOUBLE CRESTED CORMORANT. PILEATED WOODPECKER was heard across McAllister
Creek.

As we returned the tide was coming in, and along the new dike we
observed/heard PECTORAL SANDPIPER flying into the fresh water marsh. Jim
Neitzel spotted a small flock of SEMIPALMATED PLOVER that also had a
SEMIPALMATED SANDPIPER in the group. A few dozen WESTERN SANDPIPERS were
observed flying around the mudflats.

On our return we had nice sightings of DOWNY WOODPECKER, HAIRY WOODPECKER,
AMERICAN ROBIN, SWAINSON'S THRUSH, BROWN CREEPER, CHESTNUT-BACKED
CHICKADEE, and BEWICK'S WREN.

For the day 82 species, I've got approximately 166 species for the year on
the Wednesday Walk. Mammals seen included 5 singing Coyotes, Cotton-tailed
Rabbit, Harbor Seal, and Columbia Black-tailed Deer.

Jon Anderson and I returned to the new dike after the walk to catch the
high tide push. We relocated the LONG-BILLED CURLEW and added 5 WHIMBREL
to our day. Another 500 WESTERN SANDPIPERS were roosting on the waters
edge.

Until next week, happy birding.

Shep Thorp

--
Shep Thorp
Browns Point
253-370-3742
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