Friday, September 12, 2014

Temp in the low 50s, mostly cloudy, occasional rain, west wind 25-40 mph.

The high winds and high water levels made birding difficult — passerines stayed low and there was little accessible shorebird habitat. There was practically no kelp (prime shorebird habitat) washed up on the seawall and very little mudflats around Clam Lagoon. Towards the end of the day we saw some lessening of the high water levels, but we have been here before when the water was virtually at high tide 24/7 for a week! We hope this is not one of those times.

The only shorebirds we could find today were three Rock Sandpipers. Here is this trip’s obligatory Rock Sandpiper photo…

Rock Sandpiper, Clam Lagoon, Sept 12, 2014.

Rock Sandpiper, Clam Lagoon, Sept 12, 2014.

The other highlight(?) of the day was at least three Peregrines scattered about the island — one in town and two up at Clam Lagoon (based on plumage and molt).

There is a partial-albino Pacific Wren at the Elfin Forest. It is paler than the others and has at least one completely white tail-feather. I got some so-so photos, but I will hold off posting them in hopes of better.

We have scattered birdseed at the usual locations. It usually takes a few days for the Rosy-finches and Song Sparrows to find it. Then we sit back and hope the feeding activity attracts passers-by — especially Asian ones!

Not much waterfowl around yet, mostly local breeders. One duck of note was a Northern Shoveler. at Sweeper Channel. On the last day of our May trip, we had a pair (M/F) of shovelers at that same location. Did they stay? Did they nest? There is at least one previous nesting record for Adak (2005).

Alas, no “small hawks.” We cruised around town looking for cuckoos or whatever, but no luck. Of course, the weather conditions didn’t help.

More tomorrow.