[Tweeters] Sunshine in Neah Bay Today! (And a tardy Bunting)

Jon Houghton jon.houghton at hartcrowser.com
Mon Dec 12 20:39:16 PST 2016


Hi Tweets - Pumped by the prospect of Cara B's Rustic Bunting, and with the hope of some other good birds in the Sequim area, (and despite the threat of snow along the Strait) I caught the 0640 ferry this morning. Pretty rainy from Sequim to Port Angeles but this soon turned to snow as I headed out 101. By the Neah Bay turn onto 112, there was an inch on the road and a long line of stalled out vehicles (including a loaded log truck) trying to come up the hill from the west. The radar showed less precipitation west of Joyce, so I kept going. A bit dicey for quite a ways, but I got to Neah Bay about 10. There, I found the Olivers and others reporting no juncos and no Bunting since daylight. Bummer! About dozen of us looked up and down Boom Road for several hours with no luck. We gradually dissipated to try and find the flock elsewhere in town. Some juncos were found but none with the Bunting. The usual Bay birds were there, but no one reported seeing any of the recent highlights. Finally, I gave up and booked a room at Butler's, figuring it was worth another day. About 3, I decided to take a last trip out to the Jetty and walked the last couple 100m one more time. Friendly kinglets and Hermit Thrush were about it. Driving slowly back toward the gate, suddenly there they were: about 25 DEJU and 1 RUSTIC BUNTING! I quickly called the Olivers and others who had left but just as quickly, a big pickup motored by and the flock was gone. After Grace, Ollie, and Mary Frances Mathis arrived we searched in vain for about 20 minutes but it was getting dark. Grace and Ollie left to find a room and Mary Frances headed toward the jetty to turn around. Almost immediately, my phone rang and MF called to say the Bunting was right next to her car! She got great looks and I got a shabby photo but a couple of locals trekking out toward the jetty spooked the bird before the Olivers could get back. So...in sum, not as much success today as reported yesterday, but the bird is still here! And we have high hopes for tomorrow. Happy Birding! Jon Houghton. Edmonds

Sent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE DROID
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