[Tweeters] Seattle Audubon to Whidbey 9 Nov 2019
B P Bell
bellasoc at isomedia.com
Sun Nov 10 09:04:03 PST 2019
Yesterday, Seattle Audubon took a trip to Whidbey Island. As we met, we
hoped the rain would avoid Whidbey, and it seemed like it might. It was
overcast and about 48F when we arrived at the Mukilteo ferry terminal, and
saw a number of birds while waiting for the ferry - GLAUCOUS-WINGED GULL,
ROCK PIGEON, AMERICAN CROW, EUROPEAN STARLING, SURF SCOTER, BARROW'S
GOLDENEYE, WESTERN GREBE, MARBLED MURRELET, GREAT BLUE HERON, DOUBLE-CRESTED
CORMORANT, RHINOCEROUS AUKLET, BELTED KINGFISHER, KILLDEER and a possible
COOPER'S HAWK. We may have had a group of Common Goldenye but just then the
ferry arrived and it started raining, and that was the theme for the rest of
At Clinton we saw SURF SCOTER, PIGEON GUILLEMOT, DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT,
BRANDT'S CORMORANT, and from Clinton Beach Park we added BONAPARTE'S GULL,
GLACOUS-WINGED GULL, PELAGIC CORMORANT (sitting next to a Double-crested so
nice size comparison), BELTED KINGFISHER, ROCK PIGEON, COMMON LOON, BALD
EAGLE, HORNED GREBE and RED-NECKED GREBE - all while hiding under cover from
Deer Lake seemed quiet to start, but we did see HOODED MERGANSER, CANADA
GOOSE, BUFFLEHEAD, PIED-BILLED GREBE, MALLARD, RING-NECKED DUCK and AMERICAN
CROW. Down the road to Rollinghill Road where we picked up CHESTNUT-BACKED
CHICKADEE, BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE, BEWICK'S WREN, SONG SPARROW, RUBY-CROWNED
KINGLET, GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLET (a nice flock), BUSHTIT and SPOTTED TOWHEE -
At Dave Mackie Park and Maxwellton we found MALLARD, COMMON GOLDENEYE,
AMERICAN WIGEON (distant), NORTHERN PINTAIL, BUFFLEHEAD, KILLDEER (a flock
of 14), AMERICAN CROW, DARK-EYED JUNCO, BONAPARTE'S GULL, COMMON RAVEN,
NORTHERN FLICKER, MEW GULL, GREATER SCAUP, RED-NECKED GREBE, EURASIAN
COLLARED-DOVE, AMERICAN ROBIN and BALD EAGLE.
The Ewing Road wetlands finally had water and MALLARD, GREEN-WINGED TEAL,
NORTHERN PINTAIL, AMERICAN WIGEON, GREAT BLUE HERON, AMERICAN KESTREL and
RED-TAILED HAWK (not surprisingly perched with the cold rainy weather),
GADWALL, NORTHERN SHOVELER and RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD.
The tide was reasonably high when we arrived at Deer Lagoon on Sunlight
Beach Rd. and we saw DARK-EYED JUNCO, HOUSE FINCH, MALLARD, GREEN-WINGED
TEAL, NORTHERN PINTAIL, RING-BILLED GULL, GREAT BLUE HERON, GLAUCOUS-WINGED
GULL and probably 3-4 thousand AMERICAN WIGEON crammed into the lagood -
they were everywhere. But try as we might we couldn't find a Eurasian (but
then many of the birds were so tightly grouped that wasn't too surprising).
At the Useless Bay end of the access we found BRANT, BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER,
DUNLIN and SANDERLING. We did make a quick pass at the western part of Deer
Lagoon, but the water was so high it pretty well explained why the birds
were over on the Sunlight Beach side (but we did have two COMMON RAVEN
perched along Millman Rd.
We made our lunch stop (in the cars because of the rain - is the pattern
well established?) - and saw CANADA GOOSE, WESTEN GREBE, COMMON LOON,
BUFFLEHEAD, GLAUCOUS-WINGED GULL, AMERICAN CROW, GOMMON GOLDENEYE, HORNED
GREBE, BARROW'S GOLDENEYE, MALLARD and DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT.
At Bush Point we saw WHITE-CROWNED SPARROW, DARK-EYED JUNCO, SPOTTED TOWHEE
EUROPEAN STARLING and AMERICAN CROW as we arrived, and then braved the rain
and saw ROCK PIGEON, COMMON LOON, BRANDT'S CORMORANT, DOUBLE-CRESTED
CORMORANT, RED-BREASTED MERGANSER, PIGEON GUILLEMOT, BUFFLEHEAD, PELAGIC
CORMORANT, GLAUCOUS-WINGED GULL.
The tide was in and high at Crockett Lake but we did pick up EUROPEAN
STARLING, BALD EAGLE (on the ground consuming something), GREAT BLUE HERON,
several GREATER YELLOWLEGS, a couple of distant unidentified Dowitchers,
GREEN-WINGED TEAL, GLAUCOUS-WINGED GULL, DUNLIN, MALLARD, NORTHERN HARRIER,
BLACK-BELLIED PLOVER BUFFLEHEAD, HOODED MERGANSER and ROCK PIGEON. Down the
road at Keystone there were WESTERN GREBE, RHINOCEROUS AUKLET,
DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT, PELAGIC CORMORANT, HARLEQUIN DUCK, BALD EAGLE,
RED-BREASTED MERGANSER and ROCK PIGEON. We felt ourselves lucky as it was
At Libby Beach it was still misting but we did see more HARLEQUIN DUCK,
DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT, HORNED GREBE, and best of all a small group of
LONG-TAILED DUCK. The Hastie Lake Rd. access had still more HARLEQUIN DUCK
and BUFFLEHEAD. When we arrived at Bos Lake (with the rain resuming) we saw
BUFFLEHEAD, AMERICAN WIGEON, many RUDDY DUCK, GREAT BLUE HERON. On the wires
overhead there were RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD, BREWER'S BLACKBIRD, HOUSE FINCH,
EUROPEAN STARLING and a GLACOUS-WINGED GULL. Along Swantown Rd. there was a
perched RED-TAILED HAWK.
At the Oak Harbor Marina we had a couple of very tightly packed groups of
BLACK TURNSTONES (hard to estimate the numbers) and at least three SURFBIRDS
in with them. Further out in the bay were big numbers of COMMON GOLDENEYE,
BUFFLEHEAD, some GLACOUS-WINGED GULLs, DOUBLE- CRESTED CORMORANT and a
single PIED-BILLED GREBE.
When we turned south from SR20 toward Laconner there was a RED-TAILED HAWK.
Along Dodge Valley Rd. there were BREWER'S BLACKBIRDs and EUROPEAN
We finished the day at the north end of Fir Island with a field of a couple
of hundred TRUMPETER SWAN, SNOW GOOSE and at least one TUNDRA SWAN.
In spite of the rain, cool temperatures and windy weather it was a good day
with a good group. We finished with 73 species.
Brian H. Bell
Mail to bell asoc a t iso me dia dot com
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