[Tweeters] Western Tanagers galore

Thomas M Leschine tml at uw.edu
Wed May 19 14:01:07 PDT 2021

For the past two days it has seemed that Western Tanagers are ever present around where I live on West Queen Anne, in Seattle. I live in a 4th floor condominium unit that faces west. I have a small balcony between a very large copper beech and a grove of maturing maples, the two separated by about 50 yards with a parking lot in between. From this vantage point I am able to see well the mid- and top levels of these tall shade trees. I first noticed tanager calls and song on Sunday, May 16, though was absent for several days before that.

The birds, mostly female, are actively flying back and forth between the copper beech and the maples, and mostly disappearing quickly into or through the foliage, making counting difficult. I have on several occasions observed 5 or more different birds in just a few minutes though, at around mid-day on each day. The birds seem to become active around 8 am or so. I’m sure there have been at least a dozen birds each day, possibly several dozen over the past two days.

These are probably mostly migrants working their way north, though a few may breed in the neighborhood. I have lived here for more than 10 years and typically sight one or two tanagers around this time of year, but never anything like this.

Tom Leschine

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