SAT. PM poss. GYRFALCON SE of Bickleton, Klickitat County
nhojregnilla at hotmail.com
Mon Dec 13 07:05:20 PST 2004
We made a run out to Bickleton in eastern Klickitat County, Saturday
afternoon, to check on raptors, and maybe luck into an early Gyrfalcon
there. Seems they are further south, earlier this winter, so thought we'd
Started the day spending too much time in search of the Black-throated Blue
Warbler at the South Bonneville (Dam) and ODFW Fish Hatchery. No Luck
Possibly saw a/the GYRFALCON at a distance, siloutted against sagebrush
slopes down the draw, beyond the stubble. Otherwise in that light, I'd have
seen nothing. The bird, a large, very light raptor, was in low flight over
the grainfield stubble, about 3 miles SE of Bickleton. It may have been
fleeing to avoid us or perhps headed for the Paterson Unit of Umatilla NWR.
Darn! Guess we'll be back in late winter again this year to see if it can
Also, had a NORTHERN SHRIKE and a pair of NORTHERN ROUGH-LEGGED HAWKS along
Dot Road atop the high plateau, and above the river.
To give you an idea of how late in the afternoon it was, thereafter the
birds were three GREAT-HORNED OWLS!
In Old Lady Gulch along the lower section of Dot Road we had a flock of
WHITE-CROWNED SPARROWS, a gathering of about a hundred AMERICAN GOLDFINCHES
and a sizeable flock of DARK-EYED JUNCO'S. The real suprise was the
metallic 'pink' alarm call responding to 'pishing'. This reminded me of a
recent posting pointing out that this was the alarm call of the SWAMP
SPARROW! It may have been streamside, but it definitely in no swamp!
Couldn't get it in a position to see it. (Same location as the Connecticut
Warbler sighting of a number of years ago now!)
**** ************ ****
John & Loraine Allinger
birding over in Klickitat County, Washington
< nhojregnilla at hotmail.com >
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