|Mt Baker from Skagit County - finally a sunny day of birding this year!|
It was so awesome to be birding with relative beginners. They've been brushing up in class, but there are still so many birds around them that they are really seeing and hearing for the first time. I can remember nearly all of the moments when I got my 'lifers' (okay, maybe not the first crow...), and it was a treat to get to be there for so many of those moments.
|Trumpeter Swans at the Conway exit off of I5|
They'd been looking over swans pretty carefully before arriving, so they pretty quickly nailed the swans we saw off of the Conway exit as Trumpeter Swans. They let me know about the characteristics of size, bill shape and color that got them there, and were just dead on. We had about 30 of them there, and were also treated to views of an American Kestrel, and a few Red-tailed Hawks. As we quickly hit the bathrooms at the gas station across the street, we had a falcon of some sort (we gueeeesssed Peregrine, but really weren't sure) fly over our vans.
On to Wylie Slough, in hopes for a Black Phoebe, or at the very least, some good songbirds. One outta two ain't bad! Apparently, we missed the show that the Black Phoebe had put on earlier in the day, and it had decided to take a little nap - ah well (I have said ah well too many times in my posts.... Is it almost March, and I've added no new birds to my life list, or to my state list? hmmmm....)
We did get over 20 species here, though. I don't usually list them out, but we had fun putting together the list in the van as we went, so: Black-capped Chickadee, Bewick's Wren, Brown Creeper, Golden-crowned Kinglet, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Spotted Towhee, Dark-eyed Junco, Song Sparrow, Golden-crowned Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrow, Mew Gull, Glaucous-winged Gull, Double-crested Cormorant, Pine Siskin, Tree Swallow, Bald Eagle, Mallard, Great Blue Heron, American Robin and Red-tailed Hawk.
There may be more pictures coming... my camera died when we got to Wylie Slough! Some students were shooting though, and I may add. Here are the others I took that day, though:
We finished with Snow Geese. Got directions to where someone saw them, then we watched as a cloud of geese in the distance rose up... moved a mile south... and landed. Easy at that point to figure out which way to go! So nice to see them again, and closer than my previous visit with them back in January.
We finished the trip with a quick rundown of the list, and with licorice ice cream at the Conway Market. My favorite flavor of ice cream. Hands down. Available only in the middle of beautiful places, from my experience, and this continued that trend. I thought I had left the county short of 39 species, but checked the list over again when I got home... 39 for the year! Bird number 39? Once again - a coot!