Saturday, September 24, 2022

Jumpin’ Jupiter!

Temp in the 40s to low 50s, mostly cloudy, wind NW 1-20 mph

As I was making the rounds filling feeders in the pre-dawn twilight, Jupiter (and several of its moons) were low in the western sky.

I have rarely seen planets (or stars for that matter) up here, as it is so often overcast.

It took me the better part of a week to see my first Laysan Albatross of the trip, and then this morning I had 4 within ten minutes or so as I was scanning near the Sweeper Cove breakwall!

Over the last several days, as I was approaching the Warbler Willows road, I flushed a snipe from beside the road.

Each time it was too quick to get a good enough view to determine the species.

Today, I saw it on the road before it flew and was able to get my binos on it as it flew off. I could see that it was a Wilson’s.

Where Airport Creek flows into Kuluk Bay (just north of the Landing Lights) a flock of mergansers and Eider were having a small feeding frenzy.

Among this flock was also an Common Loon.

Common Loon, Airport Creek outflow, Sept 24, 2022.

Up at the Blue Building, I finally ran into a Brambling — although a very uncooperative one.

Brambling, Blue Building, Sept 24, 2022

There appear to be several on the island, as Aaron has heard/seen at least two, and maybe three, others.

But the most excitement of the day was mid-afternoon (just before the flight arrived).

I had just returned to the town area when I got a call from Aaron saying that they just had a Naumann’s Thrush at the High School Spruces!

I arrived in a minute and got to see it and get one poor photo.

Naumann’s Thrush, High School Spruces, Sept 24, 2022

Aaron got many more photos (standing and in flight) and after reviewing them and then checking an ID reference while sitting at the airport, was confident it was that species and not a Dusky/Naumann’s hybrid.

He was going to do more research and reach out to other experts, so I will let you know the conclusion as he posts it.

See Aaron’s post at for more info.

This is a lifer for me!

My trip list is 50 (average fall trips is 54).

My eBird list is at