[Tweeters] Bohemian style

Jill Rucker jillrucker at sbcglobal.net
Thu Dec 2 14:07:17 PST 2010

Meep, Meep, Tweeters,

Yesterday proved very fruitful for viewing the BOHEMIAN WAXWINGS at Magnuson
Park eating berries, catkins, and crabapples, and for seeing other birding
enthusiasts doing the same exact thing. I found easy access to Magnuson Park
via University to Sand Point Way then turned right on NE 65th Street simply
following park signs to Kite Hill. I parked near the boat launch & Kite Hill
and walked down to the beach near the lifeguard stand & floating dock to
view shorebirds first. Among the waves were a large raft of COMMON
upon closer inspection was in fact a drake in eclipse plumage. A pair of
GADWALL swam close to the boat launch as did several MALLARDS, AMERICAN
WIGEON, and a quad of PIED-BILLED GREBES could be seen diving for mussels.
Among the Glaucous-winged & mix of hybrid Gulls on the floating dock I
spotted a lone HERRING GULL, and a dozen SANDERLINGS in winter plumage. I
continued birding north along the paved trail toward the submarine field and
suddenly spotted and heard the characteristic "zee", "zeet", and "scree",
"zirr" from flock of 12 mixed CEDAR & BOHEMIAN WAXWINGS fly NE overhead to a
crabapple tree along the southwest side of the path. A few remained in the
tall poplar trees next to lower NE walk path approximately 100 yards ahead
of me northwest of the submarine field just to the west of the out buildings
along the gravel service drive. Upon approaching, I could see two fellow
bird enthusiasts I had seen & spoken to back at the Kite Hill Parking lot,
one was attentively using binoculars & the other changing camera lenses
apparently capturing images of the few birds left atop the tree. I
approached the other birders to discuss the departure of the flock as we
caught the last glimpse of them flying overhead. The undeniable "scree" and
"zirr" could be heard as they departed. We bumped into two more birders as
we headed back to our cars. I wish to thank all those who gave detailed
reports on location - much obliged.

"Watch the birdie."

Jill Rucker

Seattle, WA

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