Friends of Marymoor Park


Bird Sightings Week 32
August 6-12*


Rarities for Week 32:

Baird's Sandpiper 08-Aug-07 Reported by Rachel Lawson & Penny Koyama
Semipalmated Sandpiper 08-Aug-02 Two birds
Common Tern 06-Aug-15  
Red-shouldered Hawk 11-Aug-16 Continuing bird, first seen 02-Aug-16

Black Phoebe

12-Aug-21 Below weir
Bank Swallow 08-Aug-09 Reported by Grace Oliver
Northern Waterthrush 12-Aug-21 Below weir

Report for August 10, 2023                                                                                                                   Birding at Marymoor

Today featured a high cloud cover, which meant the morning wasn't too cold.  Temps in the 60s all morning, hitting 70 by the end.  The park was audibly quiet; almost no birds are singing, and even calls seemed muted today.  But birds were definitely about.  

The best sighting, though, was Matt Bartels - returned after a three-month absence.  Great to see him up and around.

Bird highlights:
  • Common Merganser - Female with 5 large ducklings fishing the slough and weir area
  • Rufous Hummingbird - Still one remaining in the NW corner of the Pea Patch
  • Virginia Rail - One heard late in the morning, well downstream of the weir
  • LEAST SANDPIPER - 4-5 seen.  See below
  • Red-breasted Sapsucker - One at edge of Dog Meadow
  • Hairy Woodpecker - One or two
  • Pileated Woodpecker - One flew south over our heads, for a 5 Woodpecker Day
  • Warbling Vireo - One along the edge of the Dog Meadow
  • Purple Martin - Still active at both the gourds and in the snags west of the slough
  • Tree Swallow - Getting late for them; two over the East Meadow
  • Violet-green Swallow - Only one !
  • Western Tanager - Male, south end of East Meadow
Pre-dawn I had one (maybe two) LEAST SANDPIPER in a very unexpected place.  It was on the gravel trail along the west edge of the East Meadow.  After possible/probable sightings the past two weeks, it was great to get a confirming look.  Once the walk started, we had one heard and briefly glimpsed downstream of the weir.  Later in the morning, Matt had 4-5 calling and then landing just below the weir.  We've had fewer than 20 confirmed sightings of Least Sandpiper ever at Marymoor.

Misses today included just Barn Owl (easy to see a this time of year if they are breeding in the park, which they didn't seem do to this year), Brown-headed Cowbird, and Wilson's Warbler.

And, of course, we were all missing Brian Bell.

For the day, 62 species.

= Michael Hobbs

Juvenile Red-tailed Hawk. Photo by Michael Hobbs

Rufous Hummingbird. Photo by Michael Hobbs

Report for August 11, 2022                                                                                                                   Birding at Marymoor

A fine sunny day with some birds, including quite a few species with talons.  But not a lot that was unexpected.  Really good to be out birding.

  • Eurasian Collared-Dove - One at Compost Piles
  • Osprey - Young at the ballfields nest may have fledged.  Osprey everywhere all morning
  • Cooper's Hawk - Many, many sightings, but we believe it was all one bird
  • Bald Eagle - Two adults seen from Lake Platform
  • Red-tailed Hawk - At least two
  • Barn Owl - Matt and I saw one nicely, East Meadow, 5:25 a.m.
  • Western Screech-Owl - Matt heard one early
  • Peregrine Falcon - One interacting with swallows, seen from Lake Platform
  • Hairy Woodpecker - Heard three times; 1-2 birds
  • Warbling Vireo - One heard singing from Dog Meadow, after a miss last week.  More should be coming through in migration soon
  • Western Tanager - Two or three across the slough, including a fine looking male
Misses included Rock Pigeon, Vaux's Swift, Bushtit, Red-winged Blackbird, and Brown-headed Cowbird.

For the day, 59 species.

= Michael Hobbs

Report for August 6, 2021                                                                                                                 Birding at Marymoor

Not a bad ‘doldrums’ day at Marymoor! The highlights of the day came in the first hour, when Sandi, first-time Marymoor-walk participant, picked out the first-ever BLACK PHOEBE for the park. It gave brief glimpses then disappeared for  a bit, then started sticking around on visible perches for nice looks. While we were watching, we began hearing a second ‘different’ chip note - after a bit of searching, up popped a NORTHERN WATERTHRUSH! 2nd ever for the park, and first for the Marymoor survey. Like the Black Phoebe, after a bit of waiting, the Waterthrush eventually popped up for great views for all.

We eventually continued with rest of the walk — it was not bad for a mid-august day at the park - lots of weird signing presumably from young birds.

  • Pied-billed Grebe - adult & imm close to the viewing platform - after being only far far away or absent all summer, nice to have closer looks.
  • Eurasian Collared-Dove - 1 fly-by from East Meadow viewing mound
  • Mourning Dove - 1 fly-by in dog area
  • Caspian Tern - one, again. Tenth straight week, and 12th of last 13 weeks
  • Green Heron - one imm at Rowing Club
  • Osprey - still have 2 active nests
  • Willow Flycatcher - still many fitz-bew-ing families around
  • Black Phoebe - park first
  • Warbling Vireo - 3 together at Rowing Club, after missing all day earlier and last week
  • Northern Waterthrush - park 2nd, first for survey
  • Yellow Warbler - none seen, but still a couple singing
  • Vaux’s Swift - only got them from the  Rowing Club, near the end of the walk
  • Great Blue  Heron - did we really only see one all day? I think so
  • Purple Martin - overhead we heard a few , but none at the gourds after having 4 in a gourd last week.
  • Swainson’s Thrush - only heard them at Rowing Club- none earlier
  • Black-headed Grosbeak - only one  found
Misses included: Band-tailed Pigeon [tho we had 3 species of pigeon/dove]; most woodpeckers [only had Downy and N. Flicker], swallows [only had  Purple Martin]; Brown-headed Cowbird [we really haven’t had many this summer.

Overall though, can’t complain after an outing like this.

For the  day, 56 species [including gull sp.]

Matt Bartels

Black Phoebe. Photo by Jordan Roderick

Northern Waterthrush. Photo by Jordan Roderick

Report for August 6, 2020                                                                                                                 Birding at Marymoor

For a while this morning, we were calling today’s walk the Marymoor No Birds Survey.  It was cloudy, breezy, and dark.  By the time we got to the Lake Platform, it was raining steadily and wetly.  No mere drizzle.  And the birds were very, very quiet and very hard to see.
  • Vaux’s Swift – one of the few birds in the skies.  At least a dozen
  • American Coot – lone bird continues
  • Caspian Tern – two over the lake
  • Green Heron – adult at Rowing Club pond
  • Barn Owl – probable juvenile flew the East Meadow periodically, with last sighting at 5:41 a.m.
  • Western Screech-Owl – Matt heard one very predawn
  • Western Wood-Pewee – family group(?) along slough trail
  • Purple Martins – two juveniles (at least) in each of 3 of the 4 gourds a the Lake Platform, plus several adults.  Our only swallows
  • Black-headed Grosbeak – one seen distantly (not a breeding male)
Misses today included Hooded Merganser, Pied-billed Grebe, Rock Pigeon (did have 2 “pigeon sp.”), Spotted Sandpiper, any identifiable gull (had about 5 total, at least 1 with definite black wing tips – California?), Violet-green Swallow, Barn Swallow, Marsh Wren, Swainson’s Thrush (may have heard one, but it was not definitive), Red-winged Blackbird, Yellow Warbler (may have seen one), Black-throated Gray Warbler, and Wilson’s Warbler. 
We managed just 45 species, plus the pigeon sp. and the gull ssp.  To make things worse, seven of the birds we did report were Heard Only, and another nine or ten were represented by single individuals.
All of which is to say that you’re glad you stayed home.

== Michael Hobbs

Eastern Cottontail. Photo by Bob Asanoma

Report for August 8, 2019                                                                                                                 Birding at Marymoor

We met under dark misty skies, and it took forever to get even slightly brighter.  It was very quiet, and we had to work hard to find birds.  But although this is the “doldrums”, birds are beginning to be on the move.
  • Gadwall – female in slough, amazingly our first Gadwall since early June
  • Green Heron - 2+, with a juvenile seen well above the weir
  • Osprey – chicks getting very large.  Also saw an adult with a HUGE fish; probably a cutthroat
  • Barn Owl – one near model airplane field, 5:30ish
  • Western Screech-Owl – 2 or 3 heard, adult seen very well at 5:20am south of East Footbridge
  • - Five woodpecker day -
  • Pacific-slope Flycatcher – three sightings, prob. at least 2 birds
  • Purple Martin – gourds appeared empty.  Did see ~6 birds flying to the SE
  • EVENING GROSBEAK – female flew overhead calling
  • CHIPPING SPARROW – two juveniles at the south end of the East Meadow
  • Black-throated Gray Warbler – nice adult male at south end of Dog Meadow
Around 5:45 a.m., Matt and I heard what sounded like two calls from a shorebird, possibly a Least Sandpiper, but we never saw the bird, nor heard it again.
Misses included Rock Pigeon, Vaux’s Swift, Killdeer, Violet-green Swallow, Cliff Swallow, Bushtit, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Marsh Wren, Red-winged Blackbird, Wilson’s Warbler, and Black-headed Grosbeak (though we may have heard one). 
Throughout the day there were birds that “got away”, either heard or seen too indistinctly for positive ID.  Still, we managed 56 species.

== Michael Hobbs

Adult Great Blue Heron at the weir
Photo by Bob Asanoma

Osprey in the morning sun
Photo by Bob Asanoma

Report for August 9, 2018                                                                                                                 Birding at Marymoor

A beautiful day today at Marymoor, with a pretty good number of post-breeding visiting species to keep things quite interesting. Little actual singing, of course, and many hatch-year birds seen. A delightful 60 degrees pre-dawn, it warmed up to nearly 80 by the time we were done. Fairly birdy overall.


  • Common Merganser – female with 4-5 ducklings at the weir
  • Rock Pigeon – flyover flock – first since early May!
  • Vaux’s Swift – 20-30 in flock at Rowing Club. Migrants?
  • Rufous Hummingbird – still one at Pea Patch
  • Spotted Sandpiper – apparent juvenile at weir
  • California Gull – 3; ID verified during late lake scan
  • Caspian Tern – 1
  • Green Heron – juvenile
  • Barn Owl – juv. heard in windmill, 1-2 glimpsed in East Meadow fog pre-dawn
  • Western Screech-Owl – one heard pre-dawn near East Footbridge
  • Hairy Woodpecker – across slough from Lake Platform
  • Pileated Woodpecker – male in firs NE of mansion
  • Willow Flycatcher – still abundantly singing
  • Warbling Vireo – adult and juvenile
  • RED-EYED VIREO – great looks near last Dog Beach – first since 2013!
  • Purple Martin – most have fledged; many birds overhead, at least 1 still in a gourd
  • Cliff Swallow – seen during late lake scan; may have seen one over East Meadow earlier
  • Swainson’s Thrush - 2+ heard calling just before sunrise; no others detected
  • Savannah Sparrow – only 1-2, East Meadow
  • Common Yellowthroat – MANY, but I didn’t see/hear any adult males
  • Yellow Warbler – 2-3, at least one a singing male
  • Black-throated Gray Warbler – one, west edge of East Meadow
  • Wilson’s Warbler – One in Cottonwood Forest
  • Black-headed Grosbeak – Only 1 or 2

RED-EYED VIREO were previously summer residents at Marymoor, with 1 or 2 singing males, and successful nesting noted some years. They were dependably reported 12+ weeks each summer, from late-May through early September, every year from 1995 (when I learned their song from Brian Bell) through 2008. Then they suddenly became scarce.
     2009: 6 reports
     2010: 2 reports
     2011: 1 report
     2012: 4 reports
     2013: 2 reports
And then no more reports after that before today (though there is one ebird report each from 2014 and 2015).

Misses today included Hooded Merganser, Red-tailed Hawk, Violet-green Swallow, and Marsh Wren.

For the day, 60 species. For the year, adding RED-EYED VIREO, the park list is at 144.

== Michael Hobbs

Sliver of a crescent moon, 4:30am.  Photo by Michael Hobbs

Juvenile Green Heron.  Photo by Jordan Roderick

Hatch-year Willow Flycatcher.  Photo by Jordan Roderick

Juvenile Warbling Vireo.  Photo by Jordan Roderick

Red-eyed Vireo.  Photo by Jordan Roderick

Song Sparrow about to feed Brown-headed Cowbird chick.  Photo by Jordan Roderick

Some kind of band-winged grasshopper.  Photo by Michael Hobbs

Report for August 10, 2017                                                                                                                 Birding at Marymoor

We’re at the heights of Summer Doldrums, but we’re beginning to get the chance for something to “turn up”. They day, though, was rather airless. It started out foggy, and quickly became hazy. The sun was very orange at sunrise, though the moon wasn’t that colored at moonset, so it seems the smoke is worse to the east. Birds were quiet for the most part, and not a lot was flying overhead before about 8:30.


  • Common Merganser – group at weir – family? First in five weeks
  • Virginia Rail – one heard along slough – only 2nd since April
  • Cooper’s Hawk – several sightings
  • Barn Owl – one over East Meadow, early; looked like a juvenile
  • Pileated Woodpecker – Seen well at Rowing Club
  • Purple Martin – at least 2 babies in gourd at Lake Platform
  • Yellow Warbler – a couple at least
  • Yellow-rumped Warbler – a couple of VERY drab juveniles
  • Black-throated Gray Warbler – very nice male, and at least 1 more drab bird
  • CHIPPING SPARROW – adult, with juncos, near the windmill. Only our 3rd or 4th fall sighting ever

Though we ended up with 57 species, several were notably represented by only single birds. This included California Gull, Red-tailed Hawk, Violet-green Swallow, Swainson’s Thrush, and Red-winged Blackbird.

A couple of us saw a Raccoon right around 6:00, our first for 2017.

== Michael Hobbs

American Goldfinch.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

American Goldfinch.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Adult Cooper's Hawk.  Photo by Hugh Jennings


Report for August 11, 2016                                                                                                                    Birding at Marymoor

Michael was away to Albuquerque, so Matt, Sharon and I substituted for him. It was a very pleasant day, cool to start and warming nicely at the close. Light to no winds today, singing has really dropped off, but there was lots of calling.

65 species today – a very nice day for August

The highlights today were:

  • Western Screech Owl – seen and heard early (5 a.m.) on river trail
  • Red-shouldered Hawk – relocated today early on regular walk
    – we did a major break of route to track it down and get confirming looks – immature bird

Notable today:

  • Yellow Warbler singing
  • Black-throated Gray Warbler
  • Wood Duck
  • Common Merganser
  • Hooded Merganser
  • Spotted Sandpiper – juvenile
  • Green Herons – three
  • Red-winged Blackbirds – first in some weeks
  • Northern Rough-winged Swallows
  • Cliff Swallow
  • Tree Swallow – 1
  • Violet-green Swallow

Brian H. Bell

Woodinville WA

Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Juvenile Spotted Sandpiper.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Common Mergansers.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Osprey.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Osprey.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Willow Flycatcher.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Western Wood-Pewee.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Vaux's Swift.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Male Purple Martin with dragonfly.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Male Purple Martin.  "All clear?"  Photo by Ollie Oliver

"Clear.  Proceed to depart."  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Northern Rough-winged Swallow.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Red-eared Slider and Green Heron at Rowing Club pond.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Report for August 6, 2015                                                                                                                    Birding at Marymoor

Marymoor is a really good place to go birding, as we were reminded today. It was not the best day; we had a couple of hours of mist, mizzle, drizzle, and even light rain this morning, and birds were quite hard to find. But the weather cleared, and the birds came out. Best highlight was a COMMON TERN seen from the Lake Platform.


Common Merganser                     Juvenile at weir again
Green Heron                                Juvenile at Rowing Club – 4th week
Osprey                                         Many overhead
Cooper’s Hawk                           Juvenile going after crows, Pea Patch
COMMON TERN                      One at lake
Barn Owl                                     Great looks, Viewing Mound, after 5:30 a.m.
Red-breasted Sapsucker              4-6 juveniles
Pacific-slope Flycatcher                1, south end of Dog Meadow
Purple Martin                               3 babies still in gourd nest
Brown Creeper                            Maybe 6
MacGillivray’s Warbler                1 just south of heronry
Common Yellowthroat                  Many, incl. 1 feeding cowbird
Yellow Warbler                            Multiple males singing, plus female
Yellow-rumped Warbler               2 birds NE of mansion
Black-throated Gray Warbler       At least 3 birds
Townsend’s Warbler                    Female at Rowing Club
Wilson’s Warbler                         One south of heronry
Western Tanager                          Several seen, heard

While it was still cloudy, we had our first big excitement when a LONG-TAILED WEASEL popped up in a hawthorn just south of the heronry. Many birds crowded around to keep an eye on the weasel, and that’s where the MACGILLIVRAY’S WARBLER showed up. We got to watch the weasel for about 5 minutes.

The COMMON TERN at the lake is just our 2nd sighting ever! Our only previous sighting was two birds back in August 25, 2004.

While the gourd nest still has 3 juvenile PURPLE MARTINS sticking their heads out, waiting to be fed, I suspect many of the other nest boxes (NE corner of the lake) have fledged their young. After the sun came out, there were many PUMAs overhead, mixed with BARN SWALLOWS.

The Rowing Club featured a great mixed flock that included four of the seven species of warblers that we had today, including both a male and a female BLACK-THROATED GRAY, and the female-type TOWNSEND’S WARBLER. Mixed in were chickadees, our only BUSHTITS of the day, plus probably a half-dozen other species.

Our last birds were our only RED-TAILED HAWK in a conifer north of the Rowing Club parking lot, and four ROCK PIGEONS at SR-520 at the NW corner of the park. For the day, we had 66 species.

== Michael Hobbs

Juvenile Common Merganser at the weir.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Long-tailed Weasel caused avian consternation.  Photos by Ollie Oliver

Common Tern over the lake.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Common Tern over the lake.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Common Tern over the lake.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

From left. Wood Duck, Mallard, Hooded Merganser, Green Heron, Red-eared Slider.
Photo by Ollie Oliver

Juvenile Red-breased Sapsucker just beginning to get red head.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Juvenile Brown-headed Cowbird.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Anyone care to identify this worn, molting adult gull?

Mew?  Ring-billed?  California?  Two photos by Ollie Oliver

Female Black-throated Gray Warbler.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Townsend's Warbler.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Western Wood-Pewee.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Brown Creeper.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Report for August 7, 2014                                                                                                                     Birding at Marymoor

We had a really nice morning; comfortable temps, white clouds and blue skies, no wind, and some good birds.


RED-NECKED GREBE        Two at lake
Great Blue Heron                   One nest still has 2 babies. 2nd clutch?
Green Heron                          Juvenile at Rowing Club pond
Barn Owl                               Good looks after 5 a.m. from Viewing Mound
Red-breasted Sapsucker        Matt & I saw one, NW corner of Dog Meadow
Pileated Woodpecker            One or more; several looks / hearings
AMERICAN KESTREL       One over Rowing Club
Purple Martin                         A couple overhead
Tree Swallow                         Still 2 around; adult and juvie, I believe
Orange-crowned Warbler      One, south end of Dog Meadow
Black-throated Gray Warbler One, south end of Dog Meadow
Wilson’s Warbler                   Young male, south end of Dog Meadow
Western Tanager                    Female / juvenile, south end of East Meadow
Evening Grosbeak                  Heard overhead

Our earliest prior fall RED-NECKED GREBE was August 31 (2007), and our latest spring bird was May 28 (1998), so August 7 is a very unusual date for this species at Marymoor. It’s also just our 19th sighting of the species at the park.

Similarly, the AMERICAN KESTREL was the earliest fall sighting for this species; our previous first fall date being August 18 (1994).

This was also an early fall date for EVENING GROSBEAK.

Conversely, we’ve only had two later sightings for TREE SWALLOW: August 8 (2001) and August 11 (2011).

Lots of babies at the park, including WESTERN WOOD-PEWEE feeding young (and feeding a young BROWN-HEADED COWBIRD)

Also, a LONG-TAILED WEASEL (I know, not a bird, but it preys on them), was pretty high up in an Oregon Ash tree near the south end of the Dog Meadow. At first I thought it was a Douglas Squirrel (a species we’ve only had three times at Marymoor), but then it came out into the open near the trunk, and we got great looks at the weasel romping around and poking its nose into any likely looking nook or hole as it made its way down the tree. At one point it was hassled by an American Robin which took a flying swipe at the weasel.

For the day, 60 species, despite missing Pied-billed Grebe, Rock Pigeon, Violet-green Swallow, and Cliff Swallow.

The RED-NECKED GREBE and AMERICAN KESTREL were new for the year. I believe that gets us to 142 which is still low...

== Michael Hobbs

Why would anyone get up long before sunrise, ever???.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Wood Duck in the slough.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Long-tailed Weasel searching high in an Oregon Ash tree.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Female Pileated Woodpecker.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Red-necked Grebes on the lake. Two photos by Ollie Oliver

One bird is clearly an adult; the other may be a juvenile. Note they swapped positions

Song Sparrow feeding a young Brown-headed Cowbird.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Song Sparrow feeding a young Brown-headed Cowbird.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Young Black-capped Chickadee.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Adult Painted Turtle and juvenile Green Heron at the Rowing Club pond.
Photo by Ollie Oliver

In this pose, one might think "accipiter", though the wings are a bit too pointed.
Note also the line of contrasting dark primary tips, which no accipiter would ever show.

The flared tail, showing solid rust with a black terminal band, makes the identification
as American Kestrel trivially easy.  Two photos by Ollie Oliver

Report for August 8, 2013                                                                                                                              Birding at Marymoor

A gorgeous summer day, and it was distinctly birdier than last week. Still not huge numbers of species, but there some post-breeding movements of birds noticeable.


Spotted Sandpiper                Two sightings: lake, slough
California Gull                       About 10 at 6 a.m.
Barn Owl                              At least 2, East Meadow, last sighting 5:25am
Black Swift                           Several over the park despite the nice weather
Rufous Hummingbird             One in Pea Patch
Orange-crowned Warbler     One, SW corner of Dog Meadow
Common Yellowthroat           Abundant
Yellow Warbler                     Male, singing, another feeding young
Black-throated Gray Warbler SW corner of Dog Meadow, + Rowing Club
Wilson’s                                Warbler SW corner of Dog Meadow

We had 55 species on the 8th, and just 50 on the 1st, but the two week total was 64 species!

== Michael Hobbs

Male Yellow Warbler. Photo by Ollie Oliver
Sometimes you only get a partial look at a bird, which can make ID difficult.
But note the yellow goes all the way to the tip of the tail, and you can see
some faint red streaks at the top of the breast, two great ID points for Yellow.

Great Blue Heron.  Sometimes you just have to scratch.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Black-throated Gray Warbler.  Note white chin on this bird.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Western Wood-Pewee.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Juvenile Song Sparrow.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Rufous Hummingbird.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Rufous Hummingbird.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Black-throated Gray Warbler.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Black-throated Gray Warbler.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Spotted Sandpiper.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Muskrat at Rowing Club pond.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Report for August 9, 2012                                                                                                                             Birding at Marymoor

It was a nice, sunny, comfortably cool morning, with just some thin high clouds after the low early-morning fog cleared. It was pretty quiet, but we managed to find some stuff. Still, this is the August Doldrums, when not much is wandering, not much is singing, and juvenile birds vie with molting adults for rattiest looker awards.


Cooper's Hawk                       At least 2 juveniles
Anna's Hummingbird                Six would be a conservative count
Rufous Hummingbird                1 in Pea Patch, harassed by Anna's
Pileated Woodpecker              2 in a snag far to the northwest
Cassin's Vireo                          Lillian Reis photographed one
Orange-crowned Warbler        1 east of 3rd dog beach
Yellow Warbler                        2, one singing
Black.-throated Gray Warbler  Maybe 3 along slough riparian
Western Tanager                     1 heard below weir - "pre-dic"
Brown-headed Cowbird          All unaccompanied juveniles
Purple Finch                            8-10
Pine Siskin                              At least 2 in mansion area

Matt saw a COYOTE as he left.

A juvenile COOPER HAWK made several swipes at an AMERICAN CROW that was hopping along the grass looking for grubs or such. It wasn't clear if the hawk thought the crow might be edible, if a bit large, or if it was unclear
about the mobber/mobbie relationship.

Several times this summer, we've thought we heard PINE SISKINS at the top of the firs around the mansion, but this was the first time we could confirm since the first week in June.

For the day, I believe the group total was 58 species, though I don’t think any one person saw more than about 52.

== Michael Hobbs

Two Pileated Woodpecker about a half-mile to the west of the mansion.
Photo by Ollie Oliver

Adult Spotted Towhee gathering food.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Black-throated Gray Warbler.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Black-throated Gray Warbler.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Willow Flycatcher.  Photo by Lillian Reis

Cassin's Vireo.  Photo by Lillian Reis

Vaux's Swift. Photo by Ollie Oliver

Barn Swallows.  Photo by Lillian Reis

Juvenile Spotted Towhee

Juvenile Spotted Towhee.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Juvenile Cooper's Hawk.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

American Coot.  Note the lobed feet.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Beetle photo by Hugh Jennings

Report for August 11, 2011                                                                                                                           Birding at Marymoor

Brian Bell & I subbed for Michael Hobbs today on a cloudy august day at Marymoor today. Birding was noticeably slower than in recent weeks, with stretches between the flocks of birds. In the end we came up with 58 species for the day, with some signs of fall migration mixed in.


Green Heron -2 adults - no sign of the young 'uns, but there was lots of rowing traffic.

Cooper's Hawk - 1 adult w/ a full crop -- a park worker mentioned seeing it catch a mammal of some sort

Merlin - our 4th week straight for Merlin

Spotted Sandpiper - it has not been a good year for them at Marymoor [often we have scattered summer sightings] - today we saw one from the viewing platform then one [same or different?] on the slough by the windmill

Barn Owl -2 adults hunting in the east meadow & at the model airplane field, and sounds of one baby in the windmill, all early.

Western Wood-Pewee - feeding a Brown-headed Cowbird

Willow Flycatchers - still many around singing, along with a pretty high count of Pewees.

Purple Martin - 2 were at the gourds, male & female - 2nd clutch?

Tree Swallow - last week and this week, we've had adults feeding young in one of the east meadow nest boxes -since most of the swallows have left, this is a late double clutching , we assume.

Orange-crowned Warbler - 2 , presumably moving through

Black-throated Gray Warbler - one immature male, presumed migrant

Common Yellowthroats - many family groups around, w/ 10+ young seen

On the 'other' front, Brian saw our first Coyote in a long time, early. And we had a big crawfish off one of the dog launches.

Good birding,

Matt Bartels

Juvenile Belted Kingfisher.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Male Belted Kingfisher.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Warbling Vireo.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Juvenile Black-headed Grosbeak. Photo by Hugh Jennings

Female Purple Martin cleaning the nest gourd.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Female Purple Martin.  Photo by Ollie Olive

Male Purple Martin.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Juvenile Spotted Towhee.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Willow Flycatcher.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Red-breasted Nuthatch.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Long-tailed Weasel, 2011-08-08.  Photo by Marc Hoffman

Three juvenile Green Heron along slough, 2011-08-06.  Photo by Marc Hoffman

Report for August 12, 2010

We had a small group today (lots of people are traveling) under a dark sky.  It was neither warm nor cold, though it certainly wasn't summery. Kind of dead, really, but we found a few birds to look at.

Green Heron                 At least 3 juveniles, lots of sightings
Cooper's Hawk            One over the weir
Barn Owl                      Matt had 2 calling, East Meadow, early
RED-EYED VIREO     2 south of Dog Central
Purple Martin                Lots of activity at the gourds
Or.-crowned Warbler   2, west edge of Dog Meadow
Yellow Warbler             Still many, including singing
B.-throated Gray Wblr  2 or so south of Dog Central
Wilson's Warbler           1 male singing near east footbridge

Summer birds linger in small numbers.  Actually WESTERN WOOD-PEWEE and WILLOW FLYCATCHER were still singing all over, but SWAINSON'S THRUSH were down to a couple of glimpses and several whits.  And we only had one BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAK, and no Warbling Vireos.

For swallows, we had only PURPLE MARTIN, and VIOLET-GREEN and BARN SWALLOWS.

And we had 1-2 RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRDS in the Pea Patch, but we didn't have any the past 3 weeks.  They're pretty much done around Marymoor for the year.

Big misses included Bushtit and European Starling.  And where the heck are the Spotted Sandpipers???

For the day, 55 species.  For the year, I think we're at 131.

== Michael

Male Common Yellowthroat.  Photo by Ollie Oliver.
Four of at least six Purple Martins seen at the gourds.

Juvenile Spotted Towhee just getting a few rufous feathers.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Barn Swallows, with a few Violet-green Swallows and House Finches.

Barn Swallow with unusual white markings.  My soft-focus portrait...

...and Ollie's sharper one

Rufous Hummingbird in the Pea Patch.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Female Mallard with turtle, in the slough near the windmill

Osprey misses a fish...

...and shakes himself dry.  Photos by Lillian Reis, 2010-08-06

Western Wood-Pewees.  Photo by Lillian Reis, 2010-08-07

Photo by Hugh Jennings

Report for August 6, 2009

About a dozen of us met this morning at 6:00 a.m. to bird a rather quiet Marymoor under heavy overcast skies.  There wasn't much about, but the more we scoured the bushes, the more we found.  We proceeded slowly, because there were lots of unfamiliar bird calls and song fragments.  In most cases, these were traced to various juvenile birds trying out their voices.  We had BEWICK'S WRENS making barely recognizable broken fragments of songs and calls, a BROWN-HEADED COWBIRD juvenile sounding like a calling Black-headed Grosbeak, and other vocal oddities.  It made for slow going, as we kept having to ask ourselves "what the heck was that???"


Osprey                                   5 minimum, maybe several more
MERLIN                               One in the Community Gardens
Spotted Sandpiper                  4 on the railing of the lake platform, 1 at weir
CASPIAN TERN                  Over the lake, our latest sighting ever
Barn Owl                                Scott had one in the wee hours
Hairy Woodpecker                 One heard and glimpsed near the weir
Pacific-slope Flycatcher          One bird along west edge of Dog Meadow
Purple Martin                          Parents feeding 3 young at nearest gourd
Brown Creeper                       4-5, including begging young following parent
Swainson's Thrush                   One obvious juvenile, several others
Yellow Warbler                       Two across from Dog Central, singing
Black-throated Grey Warbler   2-3 along west edge of Dog Meadow
Wilson's Warbler                     3-4
Western Tanager                     2-3 males - First of Fall

At one point, there were two OSPREY perched in large firs near the mansion, calling incessantly.  Juveniles?  Two more Osprey flew northward, ignoring the youngsters.  Then another Osprey came flying north with a fish, again ignoring the two in the tree.  At least 1 Osprey was at the nest platform for much of the day, and multiple birds were seen over the lake.  Hard to count...

Before 6:00 a.m., Matt and Scott had a falcon fly by the east end of Snag Row.  They tentatively identified it as a Peregrine, though Matt was second-thinking that ID after the definitive Merlin sighting at the Pea Patch.   Scott also thought he had a NORTHERN HARRIER near the Compost Piles, but nobody else got more than glimpses of the bird.


For the day, 60 species (not counting the possible harrier and/or peregrine).  Not bad at all for the August doldrums...

== Michael


Male Western Tanager in a Black Cottonwood

Bushtit in a European Hawthorn, part of a large flock

Baby Purple Martins looking glum because they haven't been fed in AT LEAST ten seconds

Female Purple Martin stuffing bugs into one gaping maw


Red-winged Blackbird looking for bugs under the lily pads

Osprey "riding a fish"

Brown Creeper on a Western Red Cedar near the mansion

Scott Ramos saw a Common Opossum in the early morning hours

Scott's photo of a juvenile Green Heron

Report for August 7, 2008

A dozen of us had a nice stroll today.  It was sunny, warm (but not too hot), and the early morning wind died down quickly.  The only thing missing were the birds.  Oh, there were some. Just not a lot, and we didn't get great looks all the time either.

Still, there were a few things to look at:

Matt and Scott enjoyed a BARN OWL early over the East Meadow.  Early, BTW, translates to shortly after 5:00 a.m.  I don't think I'd even made it to the shower yet.

CEDAR WAXWINGS were everywhere, with several juveniles noted.  Sharon reported possible nest building, though.

A WILLOW FLYCATCHER chased one of those waxwings off a birch branch, then sat there singing.  Fitsbew started to sound more like F You...

Actually, everything was chasing everything.  ANNA'S HUMMINGBIRDS were very apparent all over the park, often chasing one another, and often chasing off other birds.

We had pretty good looks (at least some of us did) at a RED-EYED VIREO, as well as WARBLING VIREO, along the southwest edge of the Dog Meadow.  We also had a female WESTERN TANAGER and a very yellow ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER, looking entirely different from the gray-headed ones last week.

At the lake, an OSPREY with a fish was pursued by 3 BALD EAGLES.

Near the mansion, we had a juvenile COOPER'S HAWK that appeared to be thinking about going after a BROWN CREEPER.

And at the Rowing Club, we had a slinking GREEN HERON, a juvenile, on the far shore of the pond.  Also, an adult male BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAK, so they're not all gone yet.

For the day, 53 species.

== Michael

We don't see these as much now as in '90's

Took us a while to decide this was a juvenile White-crowned Sparrow

A few of the multitude of House Finches

Juvenile Red-tailed Hawk

Marsh Wren in the East Meadow

Marsh Wren in the East Meadow

Anna's Hummingbird in the Community Gardens

Red-eared Slider turtles opposite the windmill

Report for August 9, 2007

Ten of us enjoyed a rather quiet, overcast day yesterday.  We had hopes of refinding the Least and Baird's Sandpipers that had been found on Wednesday, but we had only one flying unidentified shorebird that was certainly "of interest" but that's all we could say.  Despite that disappointment, the morning was pleasant.


Osprey                                    2 young close to fledging
Sharp-shinned Hawk               First in months, over Snag Row
Green Heron                           A couple of nice looks
Spotted Sandpiper                  Flock of 6 on lily pads at lake
Vaux's Swift                            Numbers much higher (20+) than usual
Warbling Vireo                       Adult feeding young south of Dog Central
Red-eyed Vireo                      Still 2 singing in Cottonwood Forest
Black-throated Gray Warbler  2 seen south of Dog Central
Western Tanager                     First of Fall, 1 male

Now a few comments about 2007 versus previous years:

Gadwall sightings at Marymoor used to be very common, but 2007 continues a recent trend of Gadwall eschewing the park.   Plenty of them elsewhere, but not at Marymoor.

Pied-billed Grebe have at least attempted nesting at Marymoor every summer from 1994-2006.  They have been completely absent from Marymoor this summer, our last sighthing being from late April.

Red-winged Blackbirds have taken a leave.  For the 2nd Thursday in a row, we've failed to find a single one (though Matt had some a week ago).  My long-term data does show, however, a brief period of time in late August where sightings drop off regularly.  Why?  Where do Red-winged Blackbirds go in August?  They are rock-steady the rest of the year (albeit with a chance that there's a statistically significant dip at Halloween as well).

Conversely, it is very clear that Anna's Hummingbirds have become completely established at Marymoor.  Our first sighting was in November of 2003.  We've seen them almost every week this year, often multiple birds, with pretty clear evidence of breeding.  The only time they seem to be absent from Marymoor now is during the absolute coldest months when the untended hummingbird feeders freeze up.  (Marymoor, down in the valley, is often colder than the surrounding hillsides. On many winter mornings, the only place we see frost is at Marymoor)

Anyway, for the day, 57 species.

== Michael

Green Heron in slough near Dog Central

Great Blue Heron from lake platform

Common Mergansers at lake

Sharp-shinned Hawk over Snag Row


Bird Sightings Week 32
August 3-9*     *adjust by 1 day in leap years


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