[Tweeters] some post-nesting birds show up in Tenino

Paul Hicks phicks at accessgrace.org
Tue Aug 3 16:19:17 PDT 2010

Tweets, I was excited to hear (from indoors) a calling (not singing) vireo
in my yard near "downtown" Tenino (about 2 hours ago); proved to be a
CASSIN'S VIREO- showing very little color or contrast. Some BROWN CREEPERS
were calling from somewhere nearby (perhaps they were loosely associated?).
Creepers are a regular but infrequent occurrence, a few times a year when
they're on the move, but I'd guess it's been 10-15 years since a Cassin's
Vireo has passed through detected. Monday morning I MAY have had an ORCHARD
ORIOLE at the Mull St marsh east of town. It shared a powerline for a
surprisingly long duration with 5 species of swallow, including a young
PURPLE MARTIN (unusual at this location). At first I assumed it was a
tanager but it didn't quite look "right." The yellow (greenish-yellow) bird
showed strong/contrasty wingbars, elongate structure, agile long tail, round
head, non-bulky bill. Body size was barely larger than the swallows
(side-by-side comparison). Impression-wise (structure, size and behavior) it
struck me more like a long-tailed flycatcher (eg, Pacific-slope, minus any
crest) than a tanager, partly because of its more erect posture than I'd
expect from a tanager (though I don't see a tanager on a wire everyday!).
The view was not as close as I'd like (70 ft?); I was afraid of flushing it
if the swallows took flight. However, it stayed on the wire through several
comings-and-goings of its swallow companions, and even returned to the same
spot once after a brief foray into a small ash tree below. (No, it was not a
flycatcher.) Probably too early for an Orchard Oriole to show up, but
interesting nonetheless. Good birding!
-- Paul Hicks / Tenino, s. Thurston Co / phicks AT accessgrace.org

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