[Tweeters] Rock Sandpiper and Yellow-billed Loon.

K Ingalls kayliningalls at gmail.com
Fri Jan 20 17:01:14 PST 2017

Hello Tweeters!
I had an awesome trip to Rosario Head today around 11:00am. After getting
out of the car and walking to where the land narrows and starting to scope
a pair of birders came by and told us they had the Rock Sandpiper with some
Surfbirds on the rocks to the north of the head. Thanks to their super nice
information (thanks SO much!) we were able to locate the Rock Sandpiper
with said Surfbirds, Black Turnstones and Black Oystercatchers!!! The
Sandpiper was smaller than the surrounding Surfbirds, but gray, with an
orange based down-curved bill and bright orange feet. Awesome! After
chilling there for a while and watching the hundreds of Red-throated Loons
stream by, along with a pod of Porpoises, I spotted a tiny football shaped
bird flying by towards the south with super quick wingbeats rocking back
and forth in flight. I had to time to see gray wings and what looked like
white on the face of the little guy before he got out of site. My initial
thought was this was a Murrelet, so Marbled, but with a bit more of a look
I thought it could have been an Ancient. This would be very uncommon, and I
didn't get a good enough look to rule out winter plumage Marbled Murrelet,
but keep an eye on the sound.
Anyway, we were just getting done when my mom spotted the Yellow-billed
Loon not super far out like we had been looking, but only 40 or so feet
away! It swam closer giving us a great look at it's yellow bill, more
yellow at the tip, high size and black and white plumage. Not often I get 2
lifers in a day around here!

In other news we checked Padilla bay but saw frustrated Falacated searchers
and lack of birds in the water so headed back out again without spending
much time there.

Good luck chasing!
-Kaylin Ingalls
Kirkland WA,
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