[Tweeters] No Shrike, no Swamp Sparrow at Fill, however...

Brett Wolfe m_lincolnii at yahoo.com
Sun Apr 13 10:53:18 PDT 2008

Good morning tweets,

Woke up well before dawn and walked to the Union Bay Natural Area (aka UBNA or The Montlake Fill), and was birding by 6:20 with a 6:23 sunrise. I didn't get to see or hear all of my target birds, but after I got home and tallied up, I had 60 species this morning! I thought there was a lot moving around! And that is just at the Montlake Fill area, altogether on my walk through Cowen Park and Ravenna Park on the way to UBNA, I had 67 species this morning. I do so love the diversity this time of year, as the winter residents move on, the spring residents start arriving, and the year-rounders shake off their winter doldrums and start singing, drumming and carrying on!

All told, I had seven sparrows: White-crowned, Golden-crowned (surprised they are still here), Lincoln's (ditto), Savannah (now the most numerous sparrow out there), Song, Fox, and House (I almost said The Lowly House, but decided against it. Who am I to judge their stature and status in the bird community?).

Some of the better stuff I saw were: Common Yellowthroat, American Pipit, Western Meadowlark, both sub-species of Yellow-rumped Warbler, excellent close-up views of Virginia Rails (many folks got to see them this morning), a lone Dunlin, a pair of Greater Yellowlegs, a quick early fly over by an Osprey, a pair of Bewick's Wrens at their nest cavity, a pair of Bushtits building their nest, many Red-winged Blackbirds, including a very visible nest, and a pair of Black-capped Chickadees at a new hole they are excavating - fun to watch those little guys work!

My favorite sighting of the morning though was a wonderful look at one of the coyotes that frequent the area! I have been out to the Fill over 150 times since the start of 2007, and I have seen scat and heard many tales (tails?) of the coyotes in residence, but this was the first time I actually saw one myself. Looked like a nice adult, full luscious cut, very healthy animal. Also saw beavers, muskrats, nutrias, black rat, some type of mouse and some type of vole. All in all, a fabulous early spring morning!

Brett A. Wolfe
Seattle, WA
m_lincolnii at yahoo.com

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