Saturday, August 22, 2009

August 22, 2009: More Whimbrel

As expected, I was greeted at the point by strong north winds this morning-- sustained around 30mph and gusting to near 40mph. With the winds came the best birding day of the fall so far...

Waterfowl: Red-necked Grebes and Common Loons both had their best day of the fall so far with 369 RN Grebes and 51 Loons. Still waiting for the first Red-throated Loon... White-winged Scoters are also beginning to show in better numbers with 17 seen today. A few MAllard, Blue-winged Teal, and DC Cormorants rounded out the group.

Shorebirds: Any day is a good shorebird day when Whimbrels are around. Two flew in during the second hour and remained for the rest of the day. They spent most of their time working the dune grass and other vegetation fairly far from the water. At one point they walked to within 10 yards of the waterbird shack--see the photos above. I was a little surprised to see Whimbrel two days in a row. Also present were 9 other shorebird species including the Piping Plover, a Pectoral Sandpiper, 2 Black-bellied Plovers, and all of the normal Peeps.

Other: A flock of White-winged Crossbills was heard overhead during the afternoon, hopefully a sign of things to come after their epic invasion last winter.
Tomorrow looks like a very pleasant day, we'll see how the birds react...
Tom Prestby
Waterbird Counter

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