Monday morning was sunny, relatively warm, and looked like the start of a great day for birding. Only five intrepid birders showed up at Petra’s; Lorna, Anne, Rick, Marg and Roger and we were all able to fit in Anne’s van. We started at the foot of the Tsawwassen ferry causeway hoping to find the Willet that has been frequently seen there but, alas, the bird was absent but we did have a good look at where it should have been. A large number of Greater Scaup were on the north side of the causeway and many Pintail on the south side. A walk along the front of the condo complex gave us an excellent view of the hummingbird feeder that is regularly frequented by a pair of Anna’s Hummingbirds but, again alas, they failed to appear as well. However, Bill and Mary did appear and joined us. A small pond at the south end of the complex yielded a pair of female Buffleheads and numbers of Green-winged Teal were also seen. On the east side of the complex more Buffleheads were seen as well as several White, Gold-crowned, Song and Fox Sparrows. As expected numerous GBHs were moving about overhead, on top of the buildings and in the trees. Lorna “bird-alerted” us to a Northern Flicker on top of a bush!
Leaving Tswassessen we decided to go to 96th Street to look for a Harris’s Sparrow that has been sighted recently. After a restroom stop for someone who shall remain nameless (let’s just call her Lorna) we drove to the address we were given, parked, looked out the window and there it was! A juvenile Harris’s Sparrow bathing in a puddle. Unfortunately it flew as we were depressing the camera shutter so our word will have to suffice (Anne will vouch for it). While waiting for it to return we watched a flock of White-crowned Sparrows that the Harris’s seemed to be associating with but without any further sightings.
Moving from 96th we decided to try our luck on the bay at the foot of 104th. Parking at the airfield lot, where it was relatively warm, we walked up on the dike where we were hit by a blast of cold air. The tide was a fair way out but everywhere we looked were thousands of Dunlin and little else. So, after a short walk to the east we decided to call it a day. On the return trip down 104th an atypical Red-tailed Hawk was sighted which Rick managed to photograph.
While the birds seemed to be avoiding us we did manage to see the Harris’s Sparrow and, as usual, a good time was had by all (especially Lorna who never wants to quit). Next week, hopefully with Tom’s return, we will meet at Petra’s at 8:00am for an 8:30am departure to a site to be decided on then.
Look for the day’s shots at http://picasaweb.google.com/dncbirding