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Thursday, January 26, 2012

97, 98, 99.....

As we close in on the end of January (already?!), the year list is closing in on 100's an update.....

While walking home one day before the snow melted, in addition to seeing another pair of Anna's hummingbirds, I also saw my first golden-crowned kinglets (94) of the year. Upon getting home, I could also see that the dark-eyed juncos had been very active on my deck all day:

While making breakfast on Saturday morning, we spotted a small flock of bushtits (95) out the window - the first time I've ever seen this species from the marina. It was a super windy day, but a report of J-Pod on the west side of San Juan Island inspired me to head out to Lime Kiln Point State Park. I missed the whales, but was greeted by more than a hundred varied thrushes in the parking lot - an amazing sight! There have been a lot of varied thrushes and robins all over the island (more than in past winters, I think), and there has been discussion on the local birding listserv about all the varied thrush activity. Seeing so many in one place on Saturday allowed some photo ops of what can sometimes be a very unapproachable bird:

While admiring the thrushes I also spotted a female hairy woodpecker (96). Down along the water's edge there was a lot of wave action. The bird activity was minimal, but I did find some mew gulls and four white-winged scoters (97) riding the surf:

The wind continued, but there was more bird activity to be seen at a friend's house in the middle of the island on Sunday. In addition to the juncos, towhees, and purple finches at her feeders we saw a pair of trumpter swans, a pair of bald eagles, and a great blue heron - all from her yard! Then, right before it got dark, three California quail (98) came through, too.

There have been some more pretty sunrises lately, and while I had the camera out to photograph one, a flock of geese flew by, allowing for the following snapshot to be taken:

While waiting for an appointment in town, I was watching more robins and varied thrushes out the window when I also saw a downy woodpecker (99) in the trees. Nice!

Hoping to find bird #100, I made a short excursion out to Sportsman Lake yesterday, and on the way had to stop and see Mona, our resident camel on the island.

No #100 yet, but with a week left til the end of the month I'm assuming with a little effort it will happen - maybe this weekend? I wonder what the hundredth species will be? Last year it was the common raven, but that's already on the list this year!

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