Posted by: atowhee | March 2, 2018


Our Klamath Bird Observatory birding trip began at mid-day after some of us got out of the Sea-Tac traffic and others arrived via I-5.  Nisqually NWR east of Olympia was cold, but not too cold.  Wet but not rainy.  Windy but you could stand up straight.  The Bald Eagles were the headliners.  At one point six adults formed a loose kettle over our heads.  One pair flying in courtship closeness:BE PAIRWe saw a lone Red-tailed Hawk and it was a dark morph. The only other surprise of the day was a small flock of Tree Swallows over the ponds.  This guy also thinks spring is near…he’s wearing his courtship suit with those long, elegant plumes.  It is pathetic that our ancestors murdered these birds for those feathers so they could stick them  women’s hats.GBH PLUMZ2GBHH PLUMZHM-BACKHOMALE BACKCommon Mergansers.HOMER PAIRIMG_4949Female Great Horned Owl on her nest.IMG_4950Peregrine far out on the flats.PER-CHEDSame bird accelerating off a later perch above the mudflats.PEROFF1PEROFF2PEROFF3PW SINGZPacific Wren, above in song.PW-CURing-necked Ducks:RND SLEEPZFrom Nisqually we went to an overlook of the open water and saw both goldeneyes, Eared and Horned Grebe and a small flock of Brant.

Nisqually NWR–Twin Barns Loop, Thurston, Washington, US
Mar 2, 2018 12:20 PM – 2:50 PM.  35 species

Cackling Goose (Branta hutchinsii)  200
Canada Goose (Branta canadensis)  X
Northern Shoveler (Spatula clypeata)  X
American Wigeon (Mareca americana)  X
Mallard (Northern) (Anas platyrhynchos platyrhynchos/conboschas)  X
Northern Pintail (Anas acuta)  X
Green-winged Teal (Anas crecca)  X
Ring-necked Duck (Aythya collaris)  X
Surf Scoter (Melanitta perspicillata)  2
Bufflehead (Bucephala albeola)  X
Hooded Merganser (Lophodytes cucullatus)  X
Common Merganser (Mergus merganser)  6
Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator)  1
Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus)  1
Great Blue Heron (Ardea herodias)  2
Northern Harrier (Circus hudsonius)  1
Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus)  8
Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)  1     dark morph
Greater Yellowlegs (Tringa melanoleuca)  1
Ring-billed Gull (Larus delawarensis)  X
Band-tailed Pigeon (Patagioenas fasciata)  1
Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus)  1     female on nest
Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon)  1
Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus)  1
Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus)  1
Tree Swallow (Tachycineta bicolor)  15
Black-capped Chickadee (Poecile atricapillus)  3
Brown Creeper (Certhia americana)  3
Pacific Wren (Troglodytes pacificus)  1
Bewick’s Wren (Thryomanes bewickii)  1
Golden-crowned Kinglet (Regulus satrapa)  2
American Robin (Turdus migratorius)  X
Golden-crowned Sparrow (Zonotrichia atricapilla)  12
Song Sparrow (Melospiza melodia)  2
Spotted Towhee (Pipilo maculatus)  4

Luhr Beach, Thurston, Washington, US
Mar 2, 2018 3:10 PM – 4:00 PM. 13 species

Brant (Branta bernicla)  X
American Wigeon (Mareca americana)  X
Mallard (Northern) (Anas platyrhynchos platyrhynchos/conboschas)  X
Bufflehead (Bucephala albeola)  X
Common Goldeneye (Bucephala clangula)  X
Barrow’s Goldeneye (Bucephala islandica)  X
Red-breasted Merganser (Mergus serrator)  2
Horned Grebe (Podiceps auritus)  1
Eared Grebe (Podiceps nigricollis)  1
Double-crested Cormorant (Phalacrocorax auritus)  1
Ring-billed Gull (Larus delawarensis)  X
Western Gull (Larus occidentalis)  X
Glaucous-winged Gull (Larus glaucescens)  X


  1. […] Nisqually in Late Winter, includes singing Pac Wren: […]

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