[Tweeters] King County Big Day SAS fieldtrip report

mattxyz at earthlink.net mattxyz at earthlink.net
Fri May 2 22:23:04 PDT 2008

Hi Tweets -
Michael Hobbs & I just completed our annual Big Day in King county
for Seattle Audubon. Together with fearless participants Sharon
Aagaard, Brian Bell, Curt Black, Tom Mansfield, Katherine Schloemer,
& Ethan Smith, we buzzed around the county trying to see as many
species as possible. While we didn't set a new record for the King Co
big day this year, we did have an excellent day full of great birds
and bad puns.

Route: We started at Juanita Bay Park, then went on to Marymoor Park
before heading over to the Snoqualmie Valley, down to Kent/Auburn,
over to West Seattle, and then finished after sunset at the Montlake

Some highlights:
4 Western Kingbirds! In fact, our only 4 flycatchers of the day were
all Western Kingbirds! We had our first one outside Carnation, just
west of 203 on Carnation Farms road. #2 was .... somewhere in the
Kent Valley. #3 & 4 were in Kent at 204th street off Frager Rd.

For owls, we had one of the Barn Owlets at Marymoor Park and 2 Barred
Owls at Lake Fenwick Park in Kent.

7 shorebird species - Killdeer, Spotted Sandpiper [one at Juanita,
one at Boeing Ponds], Least Sandpipers [several spots], Semipalmated
Sandpiper [Emerald Downs ponds in Auburn], Sanderling [West Seattle],
Dunlin [Emerald Downs] & Wilson's Snipe [Boeing Ponds].

We had a Sora flying by at the Certainteed Marsh, the head of an
American Bittern [persumably connected to the rest of the bird] in
Stillwater, and Virginia Rail brief views at Juanita.

A Bullock's Oriole in the Stillwater Wildlife area was a nice find,
as was a Western Bluebird at Chinook Bend in Carnation, Cinammon Teal
at Sykes Lake in Carnation, Peregrine chicks at Snoqualmie Falls, a
couple Greater White-fronted Geese & Cackling Geese at 204th x Frager
in Kent, Cassin's Vireo singing at Moss Lake near Stillwater w/ a
pair of Hutton's Vireos building a nest right in front of the
Cassin's Vireo.....

Lots of misses that might have been, chief among them being Common
Raven, other flycatchers, Black-headed Grosbeak, Pileated Woodpecker
and some of the saltwater birds along West Seattle.

Overall we ended the day with 121 species - The second most species
I've ever seen in one day. More importantly, it was just fun all the
way, with a gung-ho bunch of participants and many great looks at
accomodating birds.

A good day indeed,

Matt Bartels
Seattle, WA
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