Laz in the Grass

Lynn & Carol Schulz linusq at
Fri Jun 8 11:30:21 PDT 2001

Hi Everyone:
Yesterday I was scouting south King County from south of Auburn to the
fields near Enumclaw. It seems like I was hearing Lazuli Buntings near
wherever there was tall (greater than a foot high) grass. I started south
of the Adventist Academy near the Auburn-Enumclaw Rd. and ended up on 456th
Way in the fields west of Enumclaw. They would sing in the grass, and
occasionally pop up to a fence, bush, tree, or telephone line, very often
near a farmhouse w/ trees. Mainly they hid in the grass and sang their loud
sweet song that sounds like a cross between Yellow Warbler and Goldfinch.
I'm pretty sure they would respond to tapes.
A friend tells me these birds love the hay fields before they are mowed.
When they cut the fields, the birds disperse. Warning, they are starting to
cut the hay. I was birding in midday, on a beautiful warm sunny day. I
noticed they had stopped singing later (about 5PM).
Here's where I heard them:
Auburn Adventist Academy Airport:
Go south from Auburn on SR 164 (S Auburn Way). Go up the hill past the
Muckleshoot Casino about 3? miles, & turn left at the main entrance to the
Academy (32nd St) and follow it back & around to a Nursery w/ Greenhouses on
the left. Walk in back of the Greenhouses toward the trees and thru a gate.
You are next to a school grounds. Some of the tall grass is mowed to allow
you to walk back toward the trees. People walk their dogs and hike back in
Lazuli singing in trees near the tall grass.
456th Way:
Go south toward Enumclaw on SR 164 which is the Auburn-Enumclaw Hiway. You
will come to a straight East-West section which is about 5 miles west of
Enumclaw. Turn right (south) on 208th, a small, paved road. This road
meanders a bit eventually becoming 212th. A friend says he looks for
Sparrows, Meadowlark, Flicker, Red-tails, Kestrel, etc in the fields. Go
south until it reaches a T at 456th Way. If you turn right, on the right
side of 456th, there is a huge field. My friend sees Short-eared Owls over
this field at dusk. On the left is a wooded ravine. The White River is
down in the ravine. There are birds down in the woods, but the roads are
privately owned. You must ask permission at the farms to go down into the
Now go left on 456th Way. This is Laz country, especially when you take a
right at the Y where a sign says 452nd St but it's really an extension of
456th Way. It ends at 244th St. The birding ends here, but you can turn
left at 244th St to go back north to the Aub-Enum. Hiway. The Lazuli
Buntings were singing in the fields on 456th Way, especially near the farms.
Listen for that loud, but sweet song.
Yours, Carol Schulz

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