[Tweeters] Snow, Sleet, Hail, Rain, Sun and Long Tailed Ducks

Blair Bernson blair at washingtonadvisorygroup.com
Sun Feb 26 17:33:11 PST 2012

Just returned from a trip up to Semiahmoo
returning through Samish and Skagit Flats. The
weather was totally wacko north of Everett. HEAVY
hail, some snow, some sleet, some rain and some
sun. The hail was so heavy for a few minutes,
people pulled off road because they could not see.
BUT dedication is reward as I finally found some
Long Tailed Ducks pretty close and have some
decent pictures. There were two groups of three
each: one group off the pier a the very top of
the resort and the other a bit down the spit on
the east side in Drayton Harbor. Each group had
one male and two females in winter plumage. Other
birds along the spit included 20 Northern
Pintails, 6 Brant, many Surf and White Winged
Scoters, many Barrow's Goldeneyes, one Harlequin
Duck, 4 Mallards, many Scaup, 10 American Wigeon,
one Peregrine, one Bald Eagle, prehaps a dozen
Black Turnstones, Horned Grebes, Common (and
other) Loons, DC Cormorants, and various gulls
that I frankly paid no attention to (shame on me).

Just south of Semiahmoo at the Birch Bay shore
were at least 500 scoters, slightly more than half
of which were Surf Scoters and all of the others
were White Winged. I looked diligently for a
Black Scoter and found nary a one.

At the flats on the return, the weather had
cleared thankfully and there was actually
brilliant sunshine. I saw at least 30 Bald Eagles
(18 in one two tree combo), 5 Harriers, and only
4 Red Tails and NO Rough Legged Hawks (a target on
the trip). There were ZILLIONS of swans scattered
throughout the area. Seriously, there were over
1000 that I counted. There was also a very large
flock of American Wigeon - at least 500 - and I
scoped carefully and did not find a single
Eurasian mixed in - a surprise. Also I did not
see a single Snow Goose.

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