[Tweeters] Imbolc

Gary Bletsch garybletsch at yahoo.com
Fri Feb 1 07:09:54 PST 2019

Dear Michael,
Perhaps because I haven't had any coffee yet at this early hour, reading your Marymoor report had me trying and trying to figure out what "Imbolc" meant. I figured it must be one of those Internet acronyms. I knew that "imho" was "in my humble opinion," so I figured that "Imbolc" must be one of the acronyms that start off with "in my!"
"In my b_____ of looking c_____?" Hmm, what would the noun be, starting with B, and what on earth could the phrase end with, starting with C? "In my brashness of looking cross-eyed?" It can't possibly be THAT!
Finally I google it, and was so surprised to find a Gaelic holiday instead of an Internet abbreviation!
The Song Sparrow at my place just started singing a few days ago, so that certainly matches up with your observations.
Thanks for teaching me something new!
Yours truly,

From: Michael Hobbs <birdmarymoor at frontier.com>
To: Tweeters <tweeters at u.washington.edu>
Sent: Thursday, January 31, 2019 9:50 PM
Subject: [Tweeters] Marymoor Park (Redmond, King Co.) 2019-01-31

Tweets – Our last survey before the cross quarter, Imbolc, halfway between the Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox, ~Feb. 2.  What I’ve found is that this correlates pretty well with the time of year when many of our resident birds really begin to sing.  On a very nice morning today, there was indeed a lot of singing.  Some of the songs were, perhaps, half-formed, but it was singing nonetheless.   Highlights:
- Wood Duck – Pair in slough near the lake
- Green Heron – Seen a couple of times along the edge of the slough
- Cooper’s Hawk – gorgeous and large adult, in tall tree near the lake
- Barn Owl – Matt heard one shriek and snap its bill, long before sunrise
- Western Screech-Owl – Matt heard one, also early morning, near the East Footbridge
- Woodpeckers – nice looks at Downy, Hairy, Flicker, and Pileated – the same 4 species we’ve had the last 7 weeks now
- Northern Shrike – seen in the Dog Meadow and again (presumed the same bird) near the lake, from the boardwalk!
- Western Meadowlark – 9 seen at the north end of the Dog Meadow
- Yellow-rumped Warbler – two at the Rowing Club area
- River Otters were seen at the end of the morning looking towards the lake from the Rowing Club dock
Singing birds included Anna’s Hummingbird, Black-capped Chickadee, Pacific Wren, Bewick’s Wren, European Starling, House Finch, Purple Finch, Fox Sparrow (I think; very brief), Song Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrow (pugetensis song), Golden-crowned Sparrow, Dark-eyed Junco, Red-winged Blackbird.  I’m probably forgetting one or two more.  Flickers were calling long and vigorously. Twice we had very close looks of DOWNY and HAIRY WOODPECKERS sharing trees next to us.  Great to have side-by-side comparison, followed by one-over-the-other comparison :) Matt and I were there quite early and had beautiful looks of VENUS and the MOON very close together, with JUPITER just a little further away above and to the right.  In other non-bird news, a couple of INDIAN PLUM (OSO BERRY) were blooming! Barn Owl, Western Meadowlark, and Yellow-rumped Warbler were new for us for 2019, bringing our year total to 69 species.  Our day’s tally was 57 species. == Michael Hobbs
== www.marymoor.org/birding.htm
== BirdMarymoor at frontier.com   _______________________________________________
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