Thursday, June 2, 2022

Temp in the 40s. partly sunny in the AM, overcast in the PM, Wind light East

I designated this to be my “slow” day.

I would drive 5 mph instead of 15, and linger longer at each stop. Just to see if it made any difference.

No so much…


Being here only in May and September slants my impression of Adak’s birdlife.

When I arrived a week-and-a-half ago, I was excited (maybe that’s too strong a word) about there being 4 Pine Siskins here.

Well, I just learned from Lisa (the refuge manager here) that flocks of Pine Siskins have been wintering regularly on Adak for a number of years now! But they usually depart before birders start arriving in May.

So siskins on Adak aren’t rare, just the timing.

And there are both males and females here. At least one has set up territory over at the High School Spruces.

So we may be adding a new breeding bird to the island.

Two were still visiting my feeder today.

I found the Tufted Duck today, after missing it yesterday. Here is a nice comparison shot with a Greater Scaup. You can figure out which is which…

Tufted Duck and Greater Scaup, Airport Ponds, June 2, 2022

The godwits are all still here. They were on Clam Lagoon this morning and Palisades Beach in the afternoon.

There is a pond just across the road from the West Lookout at Clam Lagoon.

This morning, there was one of the Common Mergansers there.

Common Merganser, near Clam Lagoon, June 2, 2022

When I came by this afternoon, a female Greater Scaup unexpectedly allowed me to get its photo.

Greater Scaup, near Clam Lagoon, June 2, 2022

Most of the waterfowl up here fly when you get within 100 yards. They are so pursued by hunters all winter that they are REALLY jumpy!

Also, pretty much all of the scaup are paired up now. So this lone female out on the Clam Lagoon flats caught my eye at first. It then flew over to this pond where I got the photo.

Three Buffleheads on Shotgun Lake are a bit late.

The Mount Sitkin volcano (30 miles east of Adak) has been active the past couple of years. It is now building a new lava dome (the black area), as can be seen in these comparison photos.

Mount Sitkin, May 22, 2016
Mount Sitkin, June 2, 2022

The trip list is stuck on 67.

Today’s total list can be seen at