[Tweeters] Nisqually NWR Wednesday Walk for 2/6/2019

Shep Thorp shepthorp at gmail.com
Wed Feb 6 19:30:48 PST 2019


Hi Tweets,

about twelve of us enjoyed a chilly day at the Refuge with clear skies and
temperatures in the 20's to 30's degree Fahrenheit. Highlights included
WILSON SNIPE, ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER, VARIED THRUSH, very light SONG
SPARROW, LINCOLN SPARROW, BRANT GEESE, SHORT-EARED OWL and WESTERN
SANDPIPER.

Starting out at the Visitor Center at 8am we had two WILSON'S SNIPE
foraging by the spring just to the right of the observation platform. We
also had good looks at RING-NECKED DUCK.

The row of conifers south of the east side parking lot adjacent to the
Education Center had a nice mixed flock with ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER, VARIED
THRUSH, BUSHTIT, RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET, GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLET,
CHESTNUT-BACKED CHICKADEE and BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE.

All the flooded fields were frozen over, so most of the waterfowl had flown
to the estuary, CACKLING GEESE were seen flying out prior to the walk.

The west side of the Twin Barns Loop Trail was good for GOLDEN-CROWNED
SPARROW, FOX SPARROW, NORTHERN HARRIER, and MARSH WREN. From the Twin
Barns we located a small area of open water bustling with AMERICAN COOT and
NORTHERN SHOVELER.

Out on the new dike or Nisqually Estuary Trail, we had great looks at more
sparrow including LINCOLN'S SPARROW and a very white SONG SPARROW that we
suspect is not our local species. Photos are attached to our eBird report,
and for now we are calling it a montana/merrilli type until we figure it
out. There was good numbers of shorebirds on the surge plain and the
Nisqually Estuary Trail and we observed over 1000 DUNLIN, 300 LEAST
SANDPIPER, and a WESTERN SANDPIPER in the mix. We had great looks at BALD
EAGLE, RED-TAILED HAWK, GREEN-WINGED TEAL, AMERICAN WIGEON, NORTHERN
PINTAIL, and GADWALL.

The Nisqually Estuary Trail was good for RED-BREASTED MERGANSER, HOODED
MERGANSER, COMMON GOLDEN-EYE, BUFFLEHEAD, MEW GULL, RING-BILLED GULL,
GLAUCOUS-WINGED GULL, GREATER YELLOWLEGS, SPOTTED SANDPIPER, and BELTED
KINGFISHER. From the Puget Sound Viewing Platform we could see BRANT GEESE
and a SHORT-EARED OWL flying around the mouth of the Nisqually River.

On our return we had COMMON MERGANSER at the Nisqually River Overlook, high
numbers of BROWN CREEPER, and good looks of RED-BREASTED SAPSUCKER.

For the day we had 64 species, with 82 species for the year. Mammals seen
included Columbia Black-tailed Deer, Coyote, Harbor Seal and Eastern Gray
Squirrel.

Until next week when we look forward to doing it all over again, happy
birding.

Shep
--
Shep Thorp
Browns Point
253-370-3742
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