Gyrfalcon observed today

Ruth Sullivan GODWIT at
Sun Mar 17 19:02:32 PST 2002

Hello Tweets,

Today my mother and I observed the gray-morph GYRFALCON from two vantage
points in the Meadows area,starting at 11am immediately upon our
arrival(where we were joined by Keith Brady, then soon later by Kraig
Kemper)along the north end of Wagner Rd. sitting atop it's presumed favorite
snag at close range. The bird remained at this location until about 12:30pm
then it flew straight out to west and hunted over the large open field until
it caught an unknown prey then flew over and perched atop a nearby fencepost
to consume the prey then rested for awhile. The bird then flew to a
telephone pole further north in the field,where it remained until about
1:30pm. The bird was observed through the morning by additional observers as
mentioned by Larry Heinz, as well as others present, but the bird was not
seen,despite extensive searching after 2pm,but possibly by others during the
afternoon by other observers that searched for the bird. The conditions were
great during our entire stay allowing great looks at the bird from several
vantage points,but best viewed from the snag close to the road at the end of
Wagner Rd. It is advised that observers respect the landowners along Wagner
Rd., if attempting for the Gyrfalcon and to retain good relations with them,
if they they are present.

During our stay we noted relatively good raptor numbers as noted on the
15th, including up to 8 Turkey Vultures, of which 6 were viwed from the end
of Wagner Rd. at one time, with the other 2 from Meadows Rd. to the north.
We also managed to observe 2 male RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRDS and up to two Red
Crossbills at a residence along Wagner Rd. On our way home we stopped by the
Nisqually NWR where 5 WESTERN BLUEBIRDS were noted at the entrance of the
refuge foraging along the fenceline that borders the large,open grassy
field,just north of the entrance gate.

Good birding,

Ruth and Patrick Sullivan

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