[Tweeters] Magnuson Park, 6 December 2019

Scott Ramos lsr at ramoslink.info
Fri Dec 6 22:59:16 PST 2019

This was one of those days for which the understated term ‘birdy’ would apply. First, the swim platform was standing room only. Well, it’s usually the case that the gulls that gather there are standing, but it was literally so crowded that when more gulls tried to land, they gave up and lit on the water instead. Heading north, a cacophony of bird conversation grew louder and louder as the trees were festooned with dozens and dozens, no, make that hundreds, of birds of color—Cedar Waxwing and American Robin—and those not quite so colorful—European Starling. With the recent freezing weather and subsequent thaw, the hawthorns must be at their peak attractiveness. Even House Finch, Spotted Towhee and a couple Golden-crowned Sparrow were enjoying the berry bonanza. All the while, the Robins were flying back and forth as individuals or small groups, while the Waxwings were doing the same, but in groups of 30, 40 and more. Impossible to count but … hundreds. Oh, and there were a couple other nice sightings today.

Cackling Goose - a small flock far to the north, calling
Red-necked Grebe - a few; first of fall
Western Grebe - the typical flock, of just 300 or so, mid-lake. Every time I see this large flock, they are just loafing and preening; when do they eat?
Anna’s Hummingbird - at least a dozen, taking advantage of the warmer weather after none were out in sub-freezing temps last week
American Coot - just 1, in the ponds; the large flock(s) must be up north at Matthews Beach
Barn Owl - one in a day roost
Pacific Wren - a couple; one was about 20 feet up in a Doug Fir, rare to see them off the ground!
Cedar Waxwing - hundreds; here is one:
Pine Siskin - small group heading north
Cooper’s Hawk - while I was watching a few sparrows in one of the dried ponds, an immature Cooper’s Hawk flew in and landed on the bare ground. It proceeded to run around, intensely looking for something. While it was hunting, a couple White-crowned Sparrows, a Bewick’s Wren and a Junco flew up into the bushes at eye level and began to watch carefully what the hawk was doing. The following video shows the young bird trying to find something, presumably a meal, but not getting any satisfaction. This went on for several minutes before it flew out and over to the next pond.

For the day, 51 species.
Checklist: https://ebird.org/checklist/S62103763 <https://ebird.org/checklist/S62103763>
Scott Ramos
Magnuson Park hotspots: http://tinyurl.com/mvftzl6 <http://tinyurl.com/mvftzl6>

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