[Tweeters] Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually NWR, Aug 2, 2017

Eric Slagle hannaslagle at comcast.net
Thu Aug 3 09:58:16 PDT 2017

Hi Tweets,

There were 21 of us on the Nisqually walk this Wednesday. Dave Richardson and I led the walk, with Dave leading the majority as I turned back around 10. Dave's eBird report follows this narrative.

There was a low tide of 0' 11" at 9:01am, with the high tide in the afternoon at 4:42pm.
Generally we had a lot more bird activity than we had expected, especially early in the walk. We figured it was a combination of the birds beating the later day heat, as well as some early migrants passing through.

At the visitor center sightings included a female WOOD DUCK with young, adult and juvenile CEDAR WAX-WINGS, and AMERICAN GOLDFINCH.

The access road behind the parking lot was exceptional with sightings of five WARBLING VIREO, YELLOW WARBLER, BLACK-THROATED GRAY WARBLER, WESTERN TANAGER, AND MACGILLIVRAY'S WARBLER. A couple of WESTERN WOOD PEEWEES were also very active in this area.

At the Education Center deck we had WILLOW FLYCATCHER, DOWNY WOODPECKER, BAND-TAILED PIGEONS, PURPLE FINCH, AND YELLOW WARBLER. We saw a juvenile SWAINSON'S THRUSH at the riparian overlook. There was less bird activity as we continued down the river side of the boardwalk.

Sightings from the dike and boardwalk included VIRGINIA RAIL, SORA, WILSON'S SNIPE, MERLIN, WESTERN SANDPIPER, GREATER YELLOWLEGS, CASPIAN TERN, MEW GULL, and a raft of COMMON MERGANSER (see Dave's eBird notes on this sighting).

Total species for the day: 58

Until next week when Phil and Shep return.

Eric Slagle
Olympia, WA

Sent from my iPad

Dave's eBird Report

> Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually NWR, Thurston, Washington, US

> Aug 2, 2017 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM

> Protocol: Traveling

> 4.2 mile(s)

> Comments: This was the Wednesday, Nisqually walk. Shep & Phil were away. Erik Slagle and I led the walk. A warm day, 88 degrees by 2 PM when we stopped birding. Heavy smoke giving from the fires in British Columbia gave everything a subdued look. Good beginning to the day with early Fall migrants working the cottonwoods in front of the Visitor's Center.

> 58 species (+2 other taxa)


> Canada Goose 6

> Wood Duck 6

> Mallard (Northern) 56

> Mallard (Domestic type) 1

> Green-winged Teal (American) 3

> Hooded Merganser 1

> Common Merganser 150 A huge raft of mergansers seen from the end of the outer boardwalk, east of Lure Point. Initially we thought they could be guillemots, but way too many. Then scaup because of the white side and then wigeon because of the white in the wing but the weren't quite right. Until they floated close enough and we could pick up all the field marks at the great distance. We spent 20 minutes to half an hour viewing them with the scope from 20x - 60x to pick up all the field marks. Initially The white sides, the white wing patch especially as they sat back and flapped their wings and chased one another, the deep red feet as they sat back and sputtered across the water in a very active way, the orange heads and even a few green heads from the breeding season. Red-breasted was our initial id but it's too early and the kicker was the big white sides of the males that were still in breeding plumage.

> Pelagic Cormorant 1

> Double-crested Cormorant 4

> Great Blue Heron 47

> Osprey 1

> Bald Eagle 4

> Red-tailed Hawk 1

> Virginia Rail (Virginia) 5

> Sora 2

> Killdeer 6

> Western Sandpiper 80

> Wilson's Snipe 3

> Greater Yellowlegs 2

> Mew Gull (American) 1 Viewed in scope from the 2nd observation deck, 20 - 40 x. It was with ring bills but clearly had the petite smaller yellow bill with no black ring. Slightly smaller than the ring-bill which is what initially drew our attention as we were scoping all the gulls. Yellow legs. Adult breeding plumage.

> Ring-billed Gull 60

> Glaucous-winged Gull 8

> Western/Glaucous-winged Gull 2

> Caspian Tern 25

> Rock Pigeon (Feral Pigeon) 8

> Band-tailed Pigeon 6

> Rufous Hummingbird 1

> Belted Kingfisher 1

> Downy Woodpecker 1

> Northern Flicker (Red-shafted) 6

> American Kestrel 1

> Merlin 1

> Western Wood-Pewee 12

> Willow Flycatcher 8

> Warbling Vireo (Western) 7 There were 5 together in one tree just west of the parking lot. Great activity from these guys in the early morning.

> American Crow 10

> Northern Rough-winged Swallow 2

> Purple Martin 6

> Tree Swallow 4

> Violet-green Swallow 1

> Barn Swallow (American) 50

> Cliff Swallow 4

> Black-capped Chickadee 10

> Brown Creeper 1

> Bewick's Wren 2

> Swainson's Thrush 12

> American Robin 14

> European Starling 60

> Cedar Waxwing 17

> MacGillivray's Warbler 1 seen at the service

> road to the fields by only one person, but couldn't be found by the rest of us.

> Common Yellowthroat 4

> Yellow Warbler (Northern) 14

> Black-throated Gray Warbler 1 Great views by nearly everyone in the group. First year bird, likely a female. Seen while we were all searching for the McGillvarys Warbler.

> Savannah Sparrow (Savannah) 2

> Song Sparrow 8

> Spotted Towhee (oregonus Group) 10

> Western Tanager 1

> Red-winged Blackbird (Red-winged) 22

> Purple Finch 3

> American Goldfinch 20


> View this checklist online at http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist/S38455872


> This report was generated automatically by eBird v3 (http://ebird.org)

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