Subject: [Tweeters] Joint Base Lewis McChord (JBLM) Birding - 4-26-2016 - 9 Date: Apr 27 20:40:16 2016 From: Denis DeSilvis - avnacrs4birds at outlook.com
Nathanael Swecker and I birded various areas of JBLM on Tuesday (4/26), starting about 7:10AM and ending about 1:30PM. Most of the areas we birded are described in second edition of "A Birder's Guide to Washington." These areas included Chambers Lake, Johnson Marsh (training area (TA) 10), TA-4, the Muck Creek bridge (Coyote Bridge per the bio folks), and Lewis Lake. We also tried for the Bank Swallow colony that Nathanael found that is on the cliff above the Nisqually River at the border between TA-16/TA-17 (no luck yet.). TA-4, along the Second Division Range Road, was particularly birdy, as usual for this time of year. Altogether, we had 75 species for the day, missing some usual suspects like Bewick's Wren and Evening Grosbeak (about 20 at my home in Roy for the past several weeks).
Of particular note, we found the following:
NINE warblers: ORANGE-CROWNED, YELLOW (3, including a gorgeous singing male at the snaggy area opposite the road to observation post (OP) 10), YELLOW-RUMPED, BLACK-THROATED GRAY, TOWNSEND'S, HERMIT (singing in the wooded area on the east side of Johnson Marsh), MACGILLIVRAY'S, WILSON'S, and COMMON YELLOWTHROAT. Orange-crowned Warblers were singing in every area we visited, and along the roads we traveled.
OLIVE-SIDED FLYCATCHER singing in the distance in TA-4; PACIFIC-SLOPE FLYCATCHERs, and HAMMOND'S FLYCATCHERs were also in this area.
GREAT HORNED OWL calling in TA-4.
PURPLE MARTINs appear to be trying to nest in the snags opposite the road that leads to OP-10. In addition, at Brandenburg Marsh, the 60 nest boxes have a TON of Tree Swallows as well as several Purple Martins.
Several CASSIN'S VIREO'S and two HUTTON'S VIREO'S were in TA-4 and near Johnson Marsh.
A lone TURKEY VULTURE landed in a tree near us on the cliff overlooking the Nisqually valley at the west side of the 91st Division Prairie artillery impact area.
WESTERN MEADOWLARKs were also singing in this area.
HOUSE WRENS were numerous, and singing in lots of area.
The number of CHIPPING SPARROWS, both in the areas we stopped as well as along the roads, was typical. It may be that this species is the single most numerous sparrow around the prairie areas at JBLM, and perhaps the most numerous, period, at JBLM in the Spring/Summer. They are everywhere.
We didn't stop at the Range Control office, or we likely would have picked up Cliff Swallow (colony nearby) and House Finch. Nathanael posted all sightings at the various stops on eBird.
Note: If you want to bird JBLM, you need an Area Access Pass, which you can get at Range Control Mon-Fri. Nathanael's JBLM birding website has complete details, as well as maps, etc., to help you find your way around. See http://jblmbirding.com/ and especially the "Pass" section for clearly defined instructions. You'll likely need a passport, as well as driver license, proof of insurance, and current registration to get a vehicle pass. The Birder's Guide to Washington has clear instructions as to how to access the training areas.
Here's the complete species list (using an older taxonomic listing):