[Tweeters] Nisqually NWR 12/9/04
Scrubjay323 at aol.com
Scrubjay323 at aol.com
Thu Dec 9 17:05:52 PST 2004
Today 2 of us braved the threat of rain and walked Nisqually NWR. The day
started out overcast and it started to drizzle when we got to McAllister Creek
and the rain became heavier by the time we got to the boardwalk. At least it
Highlights included a 4 BITTERN day, loads of NORTHERN HARRIERS and
RED-TAILED HAWKS (didn't see Pale Male, though he'd be welcome here) and a great view
of a SHARP-SHINNED HAWK.
All the BITTERN were see on the way back to the visitor center from
McAllister Creek. The first one was seen on the trail as we turned to head back to
the visitor center from McAllister Creek. He posed on the trail, head up, for a
few seconds and then eased off to the right. When we got about to the spot
where he had been another BITTERN flushed from the left side of the trail.
Another 10 or 15 yards and another BITTERN flushed from the left side of the
trail. Both these birds flew 50 yards or so to the left. the last BITTERN was
seen near the willows on the right side of the trail in the pond across from the
parking lot. We saw a couple of MARSH WREN moving in the reeds toward
McAllister Creek and backed up to get a better look at them When Dawn Bailey
started laughing and said look right in front of you. There was another BITTERN in
the reeds not 10 yards off the trail all hunkered down. We had passed it and
would not have seen it if we had not backed up to look at the wrens. So much
for being a keen bird spotter.
Duck numbers were down although the usual suspects were around. There were
some COMMON GOLDENEYE on the Nisqually River and a few RING-NECKED DUCKS behind
the twin barns. Loads of GEESE, both CANADA and CACKLERS, in the pond across
from the parking lot when were started out.
The SHARP-SHINNED HAWK was in the snag near the Nisqually River overlook as
I came back from the ring dike. As I got onto the boardwalk toward the parking
lots it apparently flew up the river and through the woods and landed on the
railing shortly in front of me for a while, providing a great view before he
flew off into the woods. We also saw an AMERICAN KESTREL on a snag behind
the visitor center. The BALD EAGLES were roosting in the new nest tree when not
scaring up the ducks.
We did find a couple of nice mixed winter flocks of song birds with the
usual CHICKADEES (both), both KINGLETS, DOWNEY WOODPECKER, BROWN CREEPERS, and
one HUTTON'S VIREO.
All told we had 45 species for the day with nothing new for the year.
Mammals seen were GRAY SQUIRRELS and HARBOR SEALS.
Until next Thursday....
scrubjay323 at aol.com
"We were few and they were many, now we are many and they are few."
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