What's New in Our Backyards

Birding Highlights
April 26, 2014 - May 25, 2014

Mara Price - Sightings Coordinator


As the weather warms up more and more bird species are arriving in the Pacific Northwest.  One of my favorites is the Western Tanager.  It was spotted from GraniteFalls to Mukilteo.

Carol and Larry Beason were thrilled to spot 3 Myrtle Warblers in a tree at their home at LakeBosworth.  They had never seen them there before.  Actually Myrtle Warblers are Yellow-Rumped Warblers.  They have a bright yellow rump with blue-gray above and a heavy black breast patch.  They also listed a Black-Throated Gray Warbler.  Their total species count of 48 also included  6 Barn Swallows, a Kingfisher, 12 Black-Headed Grosbeaks, 6 Brewer's Blackbirds, 14 Band-Tailed Pigeons flying over, a Common Loon on the lake, 9 Evening Grosbeaks, a Hutton's Vireo,  14 Northern Shovelers on the lake, 3 Osprey, 2 Red-Breasted Sapsuckers, 2 Ring-Necked Ducks, 7 Song Sparrows, a Varied Thrush, 18 Violet-Green Swallows, 3 Western Tanagers and 2 Wilson's Warblers.

Hilkka Egtvedt also reported Western Tanagers at her home in Mukilteo.  She listed 2 of them, along with 4 American Goldfinch, 3 Anna's Hummingbirds, 4 Band-Tailed Pigeons,3 Black Headed Grosbeaks, 1 California Quail, an Orange-Crowned Warbler, a Pileated Woodpecker, 4 Purple Finch, 2 Red-Breasted Sapsuckers, 2 adult Rufous Hummingbirds with 1 juvenile, Violet-Green Swallows, 2 Steller's Jays, a Spotted Towhee and a White-Crowned Sparrow for a total species count of 27.

Kriss Erickson is happy to report the Mallards near her home in Everett were spotted with their ducklings. She listed 7 adult Mallards and 13 ducklings. Being near the water she spots a larger variety of species.  Her total count of 21 included 10 Western Gulls, 7 Red-Winged Blackbirds, 9 Golden-Crowned Kinglets, 12 Black-Capped Chickadees, 4 Song Sparrows, 10 House Finch, 2 Downey Woodpeckers, 16 Bushtit, 2 Bewick's Wren, 8 Band-Tailed Pigeons, 5 Mourning Doves 2 Spotted Towhees and 3 American Goldfinch.

My backyard in Marysville got really busy this month.  I had a total species count of 28 which included a Western Tanager, 3 American Goldfinch and a Yellow Warbler.  I also listed 6 American Robins (they seem to be everywhere), 2 California Quail, a Common Raven in the woods, 2 adult Downey Woodpeckers and a juvenile. 20+ European Starlings in the field, 4 adult Northern Flickers and 1 juvenile, 3 Rufous Hummingbirds, 6 Barn Swallows in the fields, 7 Black-Headed Grosbeaks, 3 Spotted Towhees, 2 Mourning Doves, 4 Steller's Jays and 3 Song Sparrows.

Many thanks to all the reporters for their continuing support.  If you have any questions or would like to be included in the report, please contact me at pricemara@clearwire.net or leave a message on my cell at 425-750-8125.

Birding Highlights
March 26, 2014 - April 25, 2014

Mara Price - Sightings Coordinator

Looks like another short report as 2 of my Bird Sighters seemed to have dropped out.  The Beasons's are leading again with 44 species.  Reporting from their home on Lake Bosworth Carole and Larry Beason listed 24 American Robins, 4 Brown-Headed Cowbirds (unfortunately, they are back), 17 Band-Tailed Pigeons, 6 Bufflehead on the lake, a Common Raven overhead with Crows chasing it, 15 Evening Grosbeaks, 5 Golden-Crowned Sparrows, 5 Mourning Doves, an Osprey over the lake, 5 Purple Finch, 2 Red-Breasted Sapsuckers, 3 Rufous Hummingbirds, 41 Violet-Green Swallows flying over the lake, 18 Red-Winged Blackbirds and a Pacific Wren.
Hilkka Egtvedt had a good month also from her home in Mukilteo. She reported 9 Band-Tailed Pigeons in her yard along with 4 American Goldfinch, 2 Anna's Hummingbirds, a Bald Eagle flying over, 2 Black-Capped Chickadees, she heard a California Quail in the bushes, 4 European Starlings in the yard, a Fox Sparrow, 3 Golden-Crowned Sparrows, 4 House Finch, 3 Purple Finch,  Red-Breasted Nuthatch, 3 Spotted Towhees, a female Townsend's Warbler and 2 White-Crowned Sparrows for a total species count of 27.
Black-Capped Chickadees abound at Kriss Erickson's Everett location.  She listed 16 at her feeders.  She also listed 9 Golden-Crowned Kinglets, 3 Varied Thrush, 6 Steller's Jays, 6 Mallard in the water, 16 Western Gulls in her yard, 6 Red-Winged Blackbirds at the water's edge, 17 Bushtit in the trees, 12 American Robins, a Bewick's Wren, 4 Band-Tailed Pigeons, 2 White-Crowned Sparrows and 2 Mourning Doves for a total species count of 23.
Wow! Can you imagine 7 Bald Eagles in your yard all at the same time?  Well, they started gathering at Mary Sinker's home in Stanwood.  Her chickens ran for the fully enclosed safe house where they stayed the entire day.  Mary Sinker also had a very good month with 37 species reported.  She listed 17 American Goldfinch at the feeders, 23 American Robins (one female nesting in a tree by her garage), 33 Band-Tailed Pigeons, 18 Black-Capped Chickadees, 14 Dark-Eyed Junco, 6 Downey Woodpeckers, a Great-Blue Heron by the creek, a Great-Horned Owl, 2 Killdeer in the pasture, 3 Northern Flickers, 2 Pileated Woodpeckers, 5 Pine Siskin, 9 Tree Swallows and 4 Varied Thrush still around, but she expects them to be leaving soon.
Well, my report from Marysville is very short.  I don't know why, but I only had 18 species this month.  The best news is that the California Quail returned after a year's absence.  My report of 18 species includes 2 California Quail, 4 American Robins, 5 Black-Capped Chickadees, 4 Dark-Eyed Junco, 2 Common Raven in the woods, 6 European Starling along the road, 3 Northern Flickers, a Pileated Woodpecker, 3 Mallard in the pond, a Red-Winged Blackbird near the YMCA, 2 Song Sparrows, 3 Steller's Jays and a Pacific Wren in the woods.

Birding Highlights
December 26, 2013 - January 25, 2014

Mara Price - Sightings Coordinator

The beginning of another year for Birding Highlights.  I don't really know when the reports began, but I do have one from March of 1994 in my file from Julie O'Donald. We don't have as many reporters now as some have moved away and some has passed away.  We certainly miss them and all the wonderful information they shared with us about the birds in their reports.
Carole and Larry Beason have been reporting for many years from their home at Lake Bosworth.  Their January report included 4 Anna's Hummingbirds, 2 Brown Creepers, 7 Bufflehead on the lake along with 32 Canada Goose, 11 Common Mergansers and  27 Mallards.  The also reported 22 Dark-Eyed Junco, 15 Evening Grosbeaks, 5 Golden-Crowned Sparrows, 3 Hutton's Vireo, 2 Purple Finch, 50+ Red-Winged Blackbirds in the trees and at the feeders, 3 Varied Thrush and a Sharp-Shinned Hawk for a total species count of 42.
Hilkka Egtvedt spotted 2 Bald Eagles playing in the wind above her home in Mukilteo.  Her report also included 6 Band-Tailed Pigeons, 2 Bewick's Wren, 8 Bushtit, 4 California Quail, 21 Dark-Eyed Junco, 2 Fox Sparrows, 9 House Finch, 1 Pileated Woodpecker,  2 Red-Breasted Nuthatch, a Sharp-Shinned Hawk, 5 Steller's Jays, 2 Townsend's Warblers, a White-Throated Sparrow and a Yellow-Rumped Warbler for a total species count of 28. The oldest report I have from Hilkka is April 1997.
Kriss Erickson has been reporting since February 2006 from her home in Everett.  Her total species count of 18 for January included 6 Golden-Crowned Kinglets, 13 Black-Capped Chickadees, 4 Song Sparrows, 15 Dark-Eyed Junco, 2 Northern Flickers, 19 Bushtit, 3 Spotted Towhees, 4 Mallards, 2 Anna's Hummingbirds, 2 Downey Woodpeckers, 6 Western Gulls, 9 Chestnut-Backed Chickadees and 2 Pacific Wren.
This will be Julie O'Donald's 20th year of reporting from her home in Brier.  Julie's January report included 1 Anna's Hummingbird, 150+ American Crows flying at dusk, a Barred Owl in the Greenbelt, 5 Band-Tailed Pigeons at the feeder, 5 Golden-Crowned Kinglets, 3 Golden-Crowned Sparrows, a Northern Flicker, a Pacific Wren, 2 Red-Breasted Nuthatch, 2 Spotted Towhee, a Townsend's Warbler, 2 Varied Thrush and 2 White-Crowned Sparrows for a total species count of 20.
My first report goes back to May of 2001.  That's a year or so after I moved up to Washington from California.  Joan Lucas started training me to do the reports in January of 2002 before she retired.  So if anyone is interested in writing the reports, please let me know and I can turn all the information over to you.

My report from Marysville includes 30+ American Crows flying over the fields along 100th Street, 5 Black-Capped Chickadees, a Cooper's Hawk that just will not go away, 7 Dark-Eyed Junco, a Great-Horned Owl, 2 Hairy Woodpeckers, 4 Mallard at the pond, a Pileated Woodpecker, 12 Rock Doves on the wires, 2 Spotted Towhees, a Steller's Jay, 2 Varied Thrush and 3 Western Gulls for a total species count of 19.
My thanks to all the reporters for their continuing support.  If you have any comments or suggestions, please contact me at pricemara@clearwire.net or call my cell at 425-750-8125.


Tree Swallow ~ Rex Guichard