[Tweeters] WOS Kittitas trip on 3-28-2018
bellasoc at isomedia.com
Fri Mar 30 19:24:33 PDT 2018
On Wednesday, WOS took a trip to Kittitas County for Sage and Spring birds.
We were a bit late in starting, so we had enough light to add some birds at
the Tibbetts P&R in Issaquah - MALLARD, RING-NECKED DUCK, GADWALL, AMERICAN
ROBIN, SONG SPARROW, AMERICAN CROW and VARIED THRUSH. It was overcast and
about 43 F to start. The start of the drive over I-90 was really slow with
no birds showing up. This continued at Snoqualmie Pass, where we usually
have Common Raven. Further down the east slope we did pick up COMMON RAVEN
and CANADA GOOSE. At the ponds alongside I-90 at Elk Heights we saw CANADA
GOOSE, BUFFLEHEAD and RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD. Around Thorp we saw NORTHERN
HARRIER and RED-TAILED HAWK. At the ponds alongside I-90 near Ellensburg we
added COMMON MERGANSER, RED-TAILED HAWK, CANADA GOOSE, probable TUNDRA SWAN
(their heads were underwater so we couldn't verify), and GREAT BLUE HERON.
We also added strong winds, about 10-15 mph - usually not a good sign.
Out in Kittitas we saw AMERICAN CROW, HOUSE SPARROW, EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVE,
and EUROPEAN STARLING. Turning onto Caribou Rd. we found HOUSE FINCH,
EUROPEAN STARLING, BLACK-BILLED MAGPIE, RED-TAILED HAWK, and AMERICAN ROBIN.
As we drove along the Vantage Hwy, the car rocked in the wind, but we still
managed to see BLACK-BILLED MAGPIE, EUROPEAN STARLING, RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD,
BREWER'S BLACKBIRD, AMERICAN ROBIN, WESTERN MEADOWLARK and KILLDEER. Turning
onto Parke Creek Rd. we picked up MALLARD, GREEN-WINGED TEAL, AMERICAN
WIGEON, CANADA GOOSE, RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD, HOUSE SPARROW, EUROPEAN STARLING
and calling WILSON'S SNIPE. For the first time in three visits we did not
see or hear Yellow-headed Blackbird!
Back on Vantage Hwy we picked up CALIFORNIA QUAIL (just as we turned onto
the hwy), MOURNING DOVE, HOUSE SPARROW, WESTERN MEADOWLARK, COMMON RAVEN,
AMERICAN ROBIN, and MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRD (a pair at a nest box). Our usual good
spot at the entrance to Wild Horse Wind Farm was just that - windy!!! Down
the road we saw NORTHERN HARRIER. At the Quilomene we had another NORTHERN
HARRIER, COMMON RAVEN, MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRD and after much coaxing we heard a
At Recreation Drive there were a big group of Mountain Sheep and ROCK WREN,
WESTERN MEADOWLARK, DARK-EYED JUNCO, AMERICAN ROBIN, AMERICAN KESTREL,
KILLDEER, GREATER SCAUP, HORNED GREBE, VIOLET-GREEN SWALLOW, COMMON
MERGANSER, and SAY'S PHOEBE. A couple of Yellow-bellied Marmots scurried
around. Up the hill by the Gingko Interpretive Center a pair of Say's
Phoebe's had built a nest by the door to the Center in the period since last
Friday. TREE and VIOLET-GREEN SWALLOWs flew around. A bunny sat. The wind
had grown stronger, so we began our return to the west.
At the pond along I-90 past the Kittitas turn, there was a large group of
COMMON MERGANSERs, GREATER SCAUP, RING-NECKED DUCK, and BLACK-BILLED MAGPIE.
As we came into Ellensburg we saw a BALD EAGLE. Along Hwy 97 we picked up
WESTERN MEADOWLARK, GREAT BLUE HERON. As we turned to continue on 97 where
SR10 departs we had a GREAT HORNED OWL on a nest. Further along 97 we had
another GREAT HORNED OWL on a nest with 2 young, and a RED-TAILED HAWK on
On Swauk Prairie Rd. we managed DARK-EYED JUNCO and NORTHERN HARRIER. On Lay
Rd. we saw NORTHERN HARRIER, BUFFLEHEAD, AMERICAN COOT, CANADA GOOSE. Along
Ballard Hill Rd. we saw RED-TAILED HAWK, and BLACK-BILLED MAGPIE. On Red
Bridge Rd. we found AMERICAN ROBIN, AMERICAN CROW, BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE
and RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD.
A quick trip down SR10 did not give us a hoped for American Dipper, but we
did finally see a TURKEY VULTURE. In South Cle Elum we had ROCK PIGEON, and
TURKEY VULTURE. At a hummingbird feeder in Cle Elum we saw AMERICAN CROW,
DARK-EYED JUNCO, RED-BREASTED NUTHATCH, BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE, STELLER'S
JAY and WHITE-BREATED NUTHATCH.
We finished the trip back in Issaquah with an expected ANNA'S HUMMINGBIRD
It was a good day, in spite of the wind, with much clear weather,
temperatures up into the 50s and enjoyable companions! We finished up the
day with 49 species.
Brian H. Bell
mail to bell asoc a t iso me dia dot com
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