[Tweeters] CBC fever: Graysmarsh 12/20

Scott Atkinson scottratkinson at hotmail.com
Wed Dec 22 16:57:46 PST 2004


Tweeters and Anne:

You've seen Bob Boekelheide's note on initial results of the
Sequim-Dungeness CBC, which once again enjoyed excellent weather,
participation, and birds. True, we didn't have any Siberian vagrants, but
had an exceptional day, with at least 93 species and several rarities,
including two species never before recorded on the CBC. For first-time
readers, this is a private property just north of Sequim (there is a pubic
beach access but parking is tough). Looking at the species list, it was
almost more like birding in mid-October than mid-December. Speaking of mild
conditions, I actually caught a garter snake near the Everett STP on
Saturday, the first I've ever seen in the region this late.

We could not relocate the Mountain Chickadee I'd had in late October, or
find a Bittern, but we had:

(includes heard-onlys on regulars)

Pacific Loon 130 (record high count)
N. Shoveler 101 (record)
CINNAMON TEAL 1 (female)
BLUE-WINGED TEAL 2 (females, Greg Englin)**
White-winged Scoter 173 (record)
Red-breasted Merganser 204 (record)
Bald Eagle 9 (record, 6a, 3i)
Virginia Rail 9
Sora 1
Am. Coot 79 (record)
Com. Snipe 10
RED PHALAROPE 4 (scope study, far offshore just after dawn)
N. Saw-whet Owl 2
N. Pygmy-Owl 1 (1-2 present since Sept)
BARN SWALLOW 3 (silent birds, a possible 4th also 15 minutes later, first
for CBC)
Marsh Wren 44 (a bit higher than normal)
N. Shrike 1
Orange-crowned Warbler 1 (Honey Hole)
YR Warbler 2
PALM WARBLER 1 (surely the same as the Oct. 24 bird, seen/heard at exact
same site, CBC first)
251 sparrows of 8 species, including: Savannah Sparrow 33, White-throated
Sparrow 1,
Swamp Sparrow 2.

**In addition to these teals, Greg & I spotted a bird we felt on the basis
of silhouette, bill, and general gizz was another Blue-winged, but it was
washed out/backlit and we did not see it in flight, and Greg had a third
bird with his two Blue-wings that sounds as though it was another, but was
not seen as well and seems was likely a Blue-wing but could have been either
Blue-wing or Cinnamon.

Finally, if this were not enough, we had plenty of Red Crossbills around,
getting very close views near the beach, and at south Graysmarsh just before
lunch we had 3 flyover birds that sounded on approach similar to COM.
REDPOLLS, but were associated with Red Crossbills--only seen from below
looking size-wise and by coloration to be female Reds, but directly overhead
gave unmistakebly tinny notes and, for all the world, sounding
like--WHITE-WINGED CROSSBILLS.

So there you have it, another stellar day at Grays, with the Olympics in the
background too.

Scott Atkinson
Lake Stevens
mail to: scottratkinson at hotmail.com





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