Highlights: Pretty slim pickings for a highlight, I would say BLACK SCOTER and RED-THROATED LOON.
WEATHER: It was windy today... really windy. The gale-force winds (up to 45 mph) were ripping out of the north the entire count producing some enormous waves and lots of blowing sand. Numerous rain showers passed through and along with cool temperatures (6-10 Celsius), it made for a rather brutal experience if you weren't prepared for it. Visibility was limited due to rain but also... waves. Some of the giant waves offshore would actually block my view!
OVERALL MOVEMENT: Although the diversity of species was never huge, the movement was pretty thick during the morning hours; almost 1000 Mergansers were seen in the first hour alone. Numbers eventually dwindled late in the count. Only one species was seen every hour: Red-breasted Merganser. The most numerous species was Long-tailed Duck with almost 1400 seen.
DUCKS & GEESE: The only dabblers seen today were MALLARD (nearly 100) and AMERICAN BLACK DUCK (15). Less than 60 Aythya were counted today. Scoter numbers seemed average; 50+ WHITE-WINGED SCOTERS, 5 SURF SCOTERS, and 5 BLACK SCOTERS were seen. With the winds out of the north, it was another good day for LONG-TAILED DUCKS; the day ended with almost 1400 seen. Also counted were COMMON GOLDENEYE (25), BUFFLEHEAD (70+), and RED-BREASTED MERGANSERS (1200+).
LOONS & GREBES: Less than 15 COMMON LOONS were seen along with a lone RED-THROATED LOON. Over 80 RED-NECKED GREBES passed by in addition to a couple HORNED GREBES.
SHOREBIRDS: No shorebirds were seen today.
GULLS: A small group of BONAPARTE'S GULLS zipped by in the second hour. In fact, I don't think I've ever seen any gull flying faster than these were.
RAPTORS: A juvenile RED-TAILED HAWK and juvenile NORTHERN GOSHAWK were seen from the waterbird shack.
Some of the other species seen from the waterbird shack included SNOW BUNTING, HORNED LARK, and COMMON REDPOLL.
A HOARY REDPOLL has been reported from the gift shop feeders.
WEATHER FORECAST FOR TOMORROW: Rain showers are likely along with moderate winds out of the northwest. Forecasted high of 41 F. Bring your rain coat!