[Tweeters] Nisqually NWR area sightings 4-10-05

Ruth and/or Patrick Sullivan godwit at worldnet.att.net
Mon Apr 11 09:45:34 PDT 2005

Hello Tweets,

Yesterday afternoon(April 10th)my mother and I birded the a portion of the Nisqually NWR,then made a brief visit to nearby Luhr Beach with a few notable sightings to report. Good numbers of both Violet-green and Tree Swallows swarmed the skies low overhead just north and west of the main parking lot at the Nisqually NWR,primarily over the flooded areas to the Twin Barns. Of additional note a single individual Tree Swallow was noted flying over the flooded area just south of the Twin Barns that showed extensive white areas on the head,as well as along the back and sides. This individual could be the same individual bird that Jason Paulios reported last spring near this same location.Large numbers of Cackling Geese remain along the grassy margins of the flooded areas with one bird observed banded by a yellow collar. As we walked the trail to McAllister Creek and also north of the main parking lot to the Twin Barns good numbers of Yellow-rumped Warblers(of both subspecies)were ncountered,as well as singing Marsh Wrens,Common Yellowthroats and Savannah Sparrows. Next, our visit to Luhr Beach was worthwhile during incoming tide,although we did not locate any returning Purple Martins and are sure to arrive any day soon. Good numbers of waterfowl(primarily Am.Wigeon and Green-wingged Teal)were observed foraging along the edges of the Nisqually Delta,as we scoped from the covered dock.

A list of our main highlights from both locations follows below:

Nisqually NWR 12pm-3pm

1 Pied-billed Grebe
1 Am.Bittern(heard only)
6 Greater White-fronted Geese
1 pair of Wood Ducks
12(6 pairs)of Cinnamon Teal
5 Bald Eagles
3 Northern Harriers
1 Sharp-shinned Hawk
1 Merlin
1 Virginia Rail(heard only)
8 Greater Yellowlegs
1 Wilson's Snipe
2 Band-tailed Pigeons
3 Great Horned Owls(1 adut with 2 juvenile birds observed in an obscured deciduous tree east of the Twin Barns along the boardwalk,as previously reported by several observers)
6 Rufous Hummingbirds
1 Downy Woodpecker
5 Northern Rough-winged Swallows
40+ Cliff Swallows
18+ Barn Swallows
3 Common Ravens(with one bird observed be harrassed by 3 Am.Crows along the trail to McAllister Creek,then 2 birds flying together southeast of the McAllistser Creeek trail over 1-5 and continuing eastward)
1 Ruby-crowned Kinglet
2 Am.Pipits(observed foraging together in the heavily grazed area just north of the McAllister Creek trail,but at trimes difficult to see in heavy vegetated areas)
12 Golden-crowned Sparrows
1 pair of Purple Finches

Luhr Beach 3:45pm-4:15pm

2 Common Loons
15 Horned Grebes
6 Eared Grebes
104 "Black"Brant
5 Eurasian Wigeon
8 White-winged Scoters
6 Greater Yellowlegs
500+ Dunlin
2 Western Gulls
350+ Bonaparte's Gulls
1 Savannah Sparrow

On our way home while passing the Nisqually NWR along I-5 we observed a pair of Turkey Vultures on the ground in a corn stubble field,perhaps feeding on something(east of I-5 along the Nisqually Cut-Off Rd.).

Good birding,

Ruth and patrick Sullivan
godwit at worldnet.att.net

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