[Tweeters] Tri-Cities Common Terns

Michael Woodruff crazybirder98 at hotmail.com
Mon Sep 29 21:47:03 PDT 2008

On Sunday (9/28/08), my dad and I spent the morning birding in the
Tri-Cities area on the way to move my brother in for college in Walla
Walla. We began in Columbia Park in Kennewick (Benton County), then
birded extensively at Bateman Island and the Yakima River Delta. Then
we moved across to Sacajawea SP in Franklin County before working south
checking a few spots in Walla Walla County.

We had lots of Yellow-rumped Warblers and White-crowned Sparrows so
sort through on the trails at Bateman Island, and we picked out 2
juvenile GOLDEN-CROWNED SPARROWS and a Spotted Towhee. A group of 12
SANDHILL CRANES were a nice surprise as a flyover. From far out on the
island we could look back at the Yakima River Delta where we had 3
Sandpipers among Killdeer. Two different PEREGRINE FALCONS made
appearances, including an adult that perched for an extended period of
time. A getting-late OSPREY was hanging around, and among expected
ducks we had 5 Eared, 3 Horned, and a number of Western Grebes. 8
GREAT EGRETS and 1 Black-crowned Night-Heron were around the fringes of
the islands. On the way out on the causeway we had a 1st-fall "celata"
ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER that really through us with it's near-white
undertail coverts. It was interesting to have along with both orestera
and lutescens for the day.

>From Sacajawea SP in Pasco, we had 4 COMMON TERNS working the Snake

River in both Franklin and WW Counties. A flock of 12 SANDHILL CRANES,
likely the same birds from earlier, circled above us again and also
conveniently crossed the county line into Walla Walla for us.

Headed south at milepost 300, we had a few shorebirds including 1
BLACK-NECKED STILT, 1 Greater and 1 Lesser Yellowlegs, and 6 LB
Dowitchers. Lots of ducks included 1 Ruddy Duck and a female
Canvasback. There was actually some decent mud at the Iowa-Dodd Beef
Ponds, where there was 1 BAIRD'S SANDPIPER, 1 Pectoral, 1 Greater
Yellowlegs, 3 LB Dowitchers, and 5 Killdeer.

The light was against us by the time we reached the Walla Walla River
Delta, but we had a 1st-year FRANKLIN'S GULL and a couple more GREAT
EGRETS. Also on the water was an Eared Grebe and a Common Loon. A
last stop at Madame Dorian Park didn't give us much new although there
were lots of Yellow-rumped's including a very bright Myrtle and a
lutescens Orange-crowned.

A fun time!

Michael and Roger Woodruff

Spokane, WA
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