[Tweeters] Thoughts on Skamania County Jay and Lewis's Woodpecker migration

Cindy McCormack nwbirder at gmail.com
Fri Sep 29 16:40:06 PDT 2017

Hi Wilson,

It seems there is usually a fairly steady stream of jays moving along the
north shore of the gorge in the late summer/early fall, but not in the
numbers reported last week. I wondered if the smoke/fire had pushed a
larger number together at once, rather than the more steady stream of
migrating jays.

Also, I do remember that Cathy Flick, John Davis and I had over 300 Lewis'
Woodpeckers in the Catherine Creek section of the 2015 Klickitat Fall
Migration Count. They weren't around in those numbers in the other areas
of the counts, nor the following weekend. We figured we hit the timing and
acorn crop just right. However, if I remember correctly, there were lots
of BIG fires in the Pateros-Winthrop-Twisp-Chelan areas that year, all
areas with good numbers of Lewis' Woodpeckers normally.




*_________________Cindy McCormackVancouver, WAnwbirderatgmailcom*

On Fri, Sep 29, 2017 at 1:49 PM, Wilson Cady <gorgebirds at juno.com> wrote:


> After looking at the recent reports from three different days at the St.

> Cloud Recreation Area in Skamania County, I decided to voice some thoughts

> on the amazing movement of jays and Lewis's Woodpeckers seen there. The

> reports came from Sept. 24, 26, and 27th when a total of 87 LEWIS'S


> counted flying east up the Columbia River Gorge. I have seen migrant flocks

> of Steller's Jays in several spots including at our place in Skamania

> County and Vancouver Lake, but never in the numbers at St. Cloud. I cannot

> attribute the jay movement to the still smoldering fires in the Columbia

> Gorge, as in one hour on Oct. 1, 2015, Les Carlson and I counted 336

> Steller's Jays flying east over St. Cloud. The strange thing is that these

> migrant birds are always silent, I only heard a couple of Scrub-Jays

> chattering at St. Cloud but they might be a resident pair. I have no idea

> where these birds are coming from, the Steller's Jays could be from

> anywhere, but my question is where are all of the Scrub-Jays and Lewis's

> Woodpeckers coming from? Since that is a lot of Scrub-Jays for Washington

> and Lewis's Woodpeckers are rare in Western Washington, I can only surmise

> that they are coming north up the Willamette Valley and then perhaps up the

> Gorge to the oak forests around Klickitat and Hood River Counties. And as

> the woodpeckers are traveling with the jays I would assume that the other

> jays are also coming from the south. I need to find out what the acorn crop

> is like up there this year and if that might be drawing them. Does anyone

> else have any ideas or opinions on this movement of birds?



> Wilson Cady

> Columbia River Gorge, WA


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> Tweeters at u.washington.edu

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