Whidbey Audubon Society

Unusual Sightings

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Reporter's name: Rob and Traci York

Sighting Description: At 9:55 am while walking along the NE portion of the Pratt Loop trail, adjacent to the barbed wire fence line in Coupeville, we counted 65 yes,, sixty-five Killdeer! They were in the area that has a crop coming out of the soil about 2 in. We have never seen more than a few Killdeer at any one time here on Whidbey until today.

Location: Pratt Loop Trail

Date and time: 13 January 9:55am

Comment submitted Jan 13, 2019

Reporter's name: Dave Parent, Joe Sheldon

Sighting Description: Just a "keep your eyes open" post!
Christmas Bird Count - I got a distant scope view of a very large, heavy bodied, blue-grey falcon flying low to the ground, powerful slowish wing beats. I saw the face for a split second and it had faint mustaches. The rest of the sighting was a back view. This bird flushed and then chased a flock of 26 Cackling Geese. As the geese frantically flapped, the falcon kept up the steady, powerful flight. The wingspan of the falcon was longer than the cacklers. The hunt was unsuccessful and the falcon peeled off and out of sight. My first impression was Gyrfalcon, a bird I have seen on numerous occasions. I am still about 90% confident it is a Gyr. Maybe someone out there can confirm!

Location: The large farm field bordered by Mutiny Bay Rd, HWY 525, Cameron and Bush Point Roads.

Date and time: December 29, 3pm

Comment submitted Jan 2, 2019

Reporter's name: Carla Corin

Sighting Description: Northern Shrike perched in willows byedge of Marsh.

Location: Freund Marsh, Oak Harbor

Date and time: December 31, 2018, around 11:30 a.m., still there when we passed by again a bit after noon.

Comment submitted Dec 31, 2018

Reporter's name: Carla Corin

Sighting Description: Male Canvasback with a flock of Greater Scaup and Surf Scoters along City Beach in OakHarbor. I've never seen a Canvasback there!

Location: City Beach,Oak Harbor

Date and time: 12/21/18 around noon

Comment submitted Dec 22, 2018

Reporter's name: Shirley hendricson

Sighting Description: For the past 3 weeks, American Goldfinch in beautiful non-breeding colors have been enjoying my backyard feeders. Started with 1 and now have 12-16 feeding and bathing every day. Anyone else seeing these? This is a first for my backyard in winter.

Location: Lagoon Point on the bluff, Greenbank, WA

Date and time: 12/19/18

Comment submitted Dec 19, 2018

Reporter's name: Traci and Robert York

Sighting Description: Female Short Eared Owl

Location: West side of Crockett Lake on a metal T post -photo taken through binocular lens.

Date and time: 12/10/18 @ 2:45

Comment submitted Dec 10, 2018

Reporter's name: Vincent Hagel

Sighting Description: 46 Black Oyster Catchers feeding along the shoreline.

Location: Oak Harbor City Beach in front of the new sewage disposal facility. Spread about two hundred yards.

Date and time: Today, Saturday, December 8 at about 2 p.m.

Comment submitted Dec 8, 2018

Reporter's name: Vincent Hagel

Sighting Description: Update to all white ring-billed gull posting. I was much closer to the bird again yesterday. The bill is a pale yellow, with the clearly marked black ring around the end of the bill. The legs and feet are pink, not black. It is a much larger gull, at least 15-20% larger than the dozen immature ring-bills it was traveling with, so large that it seemed like a giant next to them, like a seven foot basketball player walking among six footers. It walked around the grassy area with them, but they would not quite mingle with it on land. They flew to a nearby pond, and the dozen immatures swam together, but the all white gull had to swim around the pack at about twenty feet away. If it swam toward them, they would move away slightly, keeping their distance.

Location: Whidbey Golf Course

Date and time: 12/1/2018 at about noon.

Comment submitted Dec 2, 2018

Reporter's name: Vincent Hagel

Sighting Description: Around noon today, Nov. 30th, I saw a completely white gull. ALL of its feathers were white. The bill was very pale, almost white, with a black ring, like a ring billed gull. The eyes were black, not pink, and I couldn't get a good look at the legs, but I "feel" like they were black. The bird was fairly elusive, though it was walking about and feeding with some immature ring billed gulls. I was about forty or fifty yards from it. A friend who was with me today said he saw the same bird yesterday at a different location on the golf course.

Location: Seen at the Whidbey Golf Club

Confirmation: I only list this as rare, not because it's a ring billed gull, but I've been an avid birder for forty years and have never seen an all white gull before today.

Date and time: 11/30/2018 at about noon.

Comment submitted Nov 30, 2018