[Tweeters] Okanogan (again)

Jonathan Houghton jonbirder at comcast.net
Mon Dec 20 16:52:57 PST 2021

Hi Tweeterdom - (I note some strange punctuation quirks in that last post - seems like the Tweeters software puts in an "!" and line break if it thinks I've been too windy??) Just a couple more stories of chickens doing unusual things: 1. Coming down into the Foster Cr. drainage off of the W'ville Plateau, just above Howard's Ranch (same Howard that owns Howard's Inn in Pateros - nice place to stay if you're in the area), I saw several large birds in a small tree along the creek. Too big for Sharp-tailed Grouse, it proved to be 9 male Ring-necked Pheasants distributed out in two small trees like ornaments - which they certainly are. It seemed like maybe they were trying out the Sharpie practice of budding?!?
2. The second chicken incident was along lower Chesaw Road, not far above town. I was doing my creekside walk (16 degrees) looking for the elusive Ruffed Grouse in thick riparian veg where I'd seen them before. As Kathleen drove up to save me from frost bite, I noticed she was gesturing wildly toward the snowy sage slope on the other side of the road. I finally got on two Ruffed Grouse escaping uphill! I'd never seen, nor had I expected to see this species in the sage!?! I'd be curious to hear from anyone who's witnessed this before. OK - That's the end of my story (for now). Jon Houghton, Edmonds
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