Subject: [Tweeters] Stanwood Snowys today (11/28/11) - 3 Date: Nov 29 13:14:47 2011 From: Barbara Deihl - barbdeihl at comcast.net
I and quite a few others, saw some Snowys today - some mentioned 3, others, like I saw only 2. One I saw on the dike west of Thomle Rd and the other to the north of the end of Boe Rd (that leads to the Port Susan Bay Preserve). Both were sitting on the side of a dike in the grass. The Thomle owl stayed put all afternoon, until about 4:40, when Hans Feddern and I thought we saw one fly along the dike, and then looked to see that the one that had been next to the slanted stump had disappeared. The Boe Rd. owl may have moved west a bit on its dike between 3 and 4 p.m. When I last looked at it, I was looking at a different place. As I left the Thomle site at a little after 5 p.m., I saw a very large whitish owl flying first along the dike to the east of the dike, and then it crossed the road and headed out into the field to the west - I think it was likely a Snowy Owl and not a Shortear - it was too large to be an SEOW. But, no one else was around to confirm or deny my sighting, so... When I redrove that piece of road again, I saw another, much smaller whitish bird flying across the road and to the west - fast wingbeats (NOT a Shortear) - it flew laterally and didn't flop its wings. I will venture no guess on that one, although I'm tempted to "wing it" and guess Wilson's Snipe just for the heck of it! As I was driving, I couldn't both keep out of the ditch and watch either flying bird - where was my spare pair of eyes when I needed them? Only saw SEOW flying at dusk - harriers were out in small numbers earlier, in that area. A couple of Bald Eagles were around and some Western Meadowlarks made an appearance when we were on Boe Rd. A light Rough-legged Hawk and a Red-tailed Hawk perched in the area at the end of Boe Rd. and there were thousands of Snow Geese flying around in the vicinity of Port Susan Bay - they headed north in great masses, along with thousands of ducks. There were 15-20 Trumpeter Swans in a field on the right, just after you turn west onto Boe Rd., from and an American Kestrel was seen briefly on a power line along Boe Rd. Golden-crowned and Song Sparrows bipped around in the brambles and a Marsh Wren played hide-and-seek in them and the grasses as well. An occasional Great Blue Heron was seen flying over field or water. And, there were a few moments in the day when one could leave off a layer of clothing, due to some radiant energy absorbed into our bodies - by around 4 it was again time to layer up, and put on the hat and gloves. Nice to see a sunset again.
For mixed photos from the afternoon/evening, the owl ones designed to make you feel much better about your own photography, see:
http://flic.kr/s/aHsjx3EfAT - and, for some superb photos of today's Thomle Two (Snowys), check with Greg Hensen the next
time you run into him - he seems to be a regular at the Stanwood sites and is always happy to share what he has seen or photographed, as well as give directions to where the birds are.
'Til next time...
North Matthews Beach - NE Seattle
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