Friends of Marymoor Park


Bird Sightings Week 45
November 5-11*


Rarities for Week 45:

Dunlin 15-Nov-15 Heard only
Horned Lark 05-Nov-03 Reported by Houston Flores - five birds

Horned Lark

Bohemian Waxwing 09-Nov-23 Single bird at the Rowing Club
Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch 10-Nov-14  
Clay-colored Sparrow 07-Nov-13 Compost Piles

...Clay-colored Sparrow

08-Nov-13 Doug Schurman photos

...Clay-colored Sparrow

09-Nov-13 Photos from 4+ people

...Clay-colored Sparrow

10-Nov-13 Reported by Ann Wood

...Clay-colored Sparrow

11-Nov-13 Reported by Matthew Pike
American Tree Sparrow 05-Nov-03 Probably first seen 03-Nov by Grace & Ollie Oliver
Harris's Sparrow 06-Nov-22 One in East Meadow through at least 08-Nov-22

Report for November 9, 2023                                                                                                                   Birding at Marymoor

The weather was much better than last week, but for the first few hours the fog was either thick or thicker.  Once we were past the Lake Platform, though, it thinned out quite a bit.  Not too cold, not windy, and no precipitation, so an above-average day for November.

  • Bald Eagle - Two at the lake, one of which caught what appeared to be an American Coot
  • Merlin - One ENE of the Viewing Mound.  We've had Merlin 8 of the last 12 weeks
  • Black-capped Chickadee - Especially numerous, in flocks of dozens
  • BOHEMIAN WAXWING - One at the Rowing Club, between the boathouse and the dock
  • Purple Finch - First in about a month
  • Pine Siskin - One or two fairly large flocks (~30), after a few weeks of tiny groups or singletons
  • White-throated Sparrow - One near the third Dog Swim Beach
This is only the 4th time we've had BOHEMIAN WAXWING at Marymoor.  There was one in a flock of Cedar Waxwings during Feb-Apr, 2012; two on 2016-12-01; and one on 2021-12-30.

Misses today included Common Merganser, Anna's Hummingbird, Short-billed Gull (though we had a quick flyover flock that looked likely), California Gull (though there were many gulls we couldn't ID in the fog), Northern Shrike, Cedar Waxwing, and Yellow-rumped Warbler.

For the day, 53 species, but about eight of those were heard-only.

= Michael Hobbs

Male Hooded Merganser. Photo by Tony Ernst

White-throated Sparrow. Photo by Tony Ernst

Bald Eagle in the fog. Photo by Tony Ernst

American Coot caught by Bald Eagle. Photo by Tony Ernst

Report for November 10, 2022                                                                                                                   Birding at Marymoor

It was 35 degrees and rather dark and overcast to start, but by the end of the survey it was 45 degrees and mostly sunny.  No precipitation and no noticeable wind.  So, very nice conditions.  Birdy too.

  • Northern Shoveler - Four in flyby, one more at the lake.  First of Fall (FOF)
  • Scaup sp. - Six or eight at the lake, too far for identification beyond Scaup
  • Common Goldeneye - Flock flying north over Dog Meadow was at least 35 birds.  At least one more at lake (FOF)
  • Virginia Rail - Maybe three heard along the slough, one SEEN at Rowing Club
  • Common Loon - One flyby loon, heading towards the lake  A late scan of the lake showed a Common, probably the earlier bird
  • SHORT-EARED OWL - Flew around the Viewing Mound at ~6:45 a.m., giving us great looks.  First of Year (FOY)
  • Falcon sp. - One flew west over the south end of Dog Area.  Size hard to judge, but it flew more like a Peregrine than like a Merlin
  • Varied Thrush - At least one heard, south end of Dog Area.  Two seen south of Mansion
  • White-throated Sparrow - One with Zonos, NW corner of Dog Area
  • Western Meadowlark - Two at north edge of Fields 7-8-9
Just before 7:00, the SHORT-EARED OWL was again seen, this time high over the Viewing Mound trying to maintain a height advantage over a handful of pursuing American Crows.  It kept going higher and higher until finally the last crow gave up, then it presumably then flew away.

No sign of the Harris's Sparrow or Northern Shrike seen earlier in the week.

For mammals, we did have AMERICAN BEAVER and several RIVER OTTER.

Misses today included Cackling Goose*, Western Grebe, Short-billed Gull, Ring-billed Gull, Northern Shrike*, and Pine Siskin.   *Starred birds were seen by me earlier this week

For the day, 62 species

= Michael Hobbs

Small flock of scaup on the lake.  Photo by Michael Hobbs

Peek-a-boo view of Virginia Rail at the Rowing Club pond. Photo by Michael Hobbs

Report for November 6, 2022                                                                                                                   Birding at Marymoor

A little after 11:00 a.m., this message was posted to the Tweeters newsgroup:

Hi folks,

My partner and I just found a juvenile Harris’s Sparrow at Marymoor, first feeding on the ground near the trail intersection at (47.6566378, -122.1094966) and it then hopped into an apple tree. Has appeared a couple times in and out of the bushes. Per eBird this looks to be the first in King this year.

Still looking for that WTSP though :)

Jason Zolle

It didn't take long for birders to show up, searching for this bird.  The Harris's Sparrow did pop up now and then, but it seemed particularly shy sometimes.  Harris's Sparrow was a new bird for Marymoor Park, the 20th species of sparrow seen here.

Peek-a-boo view of the sparrow.  Photo by Michael Hobbs

Great shot.  Photo by Jennifer Hansen

Report for November 11, 2021                                                                                                                      Birding at Marymoor

The weather matched the weather forecast this morning, which wasn’t too bad at all.  From 7-10, we had mist and mizzle, and maybe a minute or two of drizzle, but nothing more severe.  Not windy either.  For a while after that it rained a bit harder, but then it stopped again while we were at the Rowing Club.  So the weather was definitely better than last week.  The birds were pretty good too.
  • Cackling Goose – maybe 1000+, including large flocks on the ground
  • TRUMPETER SWAN – two flew close over the Viewing Mound
  • Virginia Rail – one responded along the eastern section of the boardwalk.  Our first detection in six weeks
  • Bald Eagle – adult SWIMMING in the lake.  Later it pulled out on the floating dock and began eating whatever it had caught that was too heavy to take off with
  • NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWL – Matt heard one just south of the East Meadow, very early.  First of Fall (FOF)
  • Downy Woodpecker – might have had 1-2 from the Lake Platform. *Did* have one at the Rowing Club.  First in 3 weeks
  • Merlin – very quick flyby – some gliding made us wonder if our ID was correct, but the wing length seemed right.  And we’ve had Merlin 8 of the last 9 weeks
  • Varied Thrush – nice male at south end of Dog Meadow
  • Cedar Waxwing – at least one flock of about 20
  • American Pipit – one flyover across the East Meadow
  • Lincoln’s Sparrow – I had at least two east of the East Meadow
  • White-throated Sparrow – one very tan-striped bird as we approached the weir
Two RIVER OTTERS had been on the floating dock just before the Bald Eagle climbed out on it.
Duck diversity should increase starting next week, judging by previous years.
Missing birds today included Western Grebe, Northern Shrike, Bushtit, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Brown Creeper, American Goldfinch, and Yellow-rumped Warbler.
Despite all of those misses, we still managed 57 species, nine more than last week.  Admittedly, many of those were heard-only and/or seen or heard by one or a few of us.
= Michael Hobbs

Report for November 8, 2018                                                                                                                 Birding at Marymoor

What we mostly had was FOG. The morning started out at a brisk 33 degrees and foggy, and warmed up 10 degrees, but we didn’t start losing the fog until 11:00 a.m. Often we couldn’t see across the slough; at the Lake Platform, we could only sort of see where the apartment docks were. So there was a lot we probably didn’t see.


  • Cackling Goose – Flock of more than 1000 inside the ballfields near the east park entrance
  • Gadwall – pair in slough below the weir; first since August !?!
  • Green Heron – Obscurely seen at Rowing Club pond
  • Western Screech-Owl – Matt heard one hours before sunrise
  • Red-breasted Sapsucker – great looks near park office
  • Hairy Woodpecker – One at the Rowing Club
  • Bewick’s Wren – no sign nor squeak of them last week; this week, totally back to normal
  • Cedar Waxwing – some large flocks
  • Lincoln’s Sparrow – Matt saw one
  • Western Meadowlark – Four
  • Townsend’s Warbler – I saw one, south edge of the Dog Meadow; First of Fall

Unsurprisingly, we missed several normally-common birds: Western Grebe, Rock Pigeon, Double-crested Cormorant, Steller’s Jay, Northern Shrike, Pine Siskin (though we almost listed them based on what we were hearing sometimes), and Yellow-rumped Warbler (also, may have heard).

A late scoping of the lake after the walk (with the fog lifted) supplied only a Belted Kingfisher. Bald Eagles may be chasing some of the birds away from the north end of the lake.

For the day, 56 species; not at all bad, given the conditions.

== Michael Hobbs

So foggy, we could barely see across the slough.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Mallards.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Bald Eagle.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Bald Eagle.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Red-winged Blackbirds.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Brown Creeper.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Report for November 9, 2017                                                                                                                  Birding at Marymoor

Another morning where the weather could have been much worse. No wind and mild temperatures made the drizzle and occasional rain easily tolerable. And probably at least a third of the morning was completely free of precipitation. We even had a moment of sunshine and a touch of blue sky! Okay, there was lots of mizzle and drizzle, but at least it wasn’t snowing :) Birds were abundant, though diversity was fairly low.


  • Virginia Rail – 2-3 were heard
  • Green Heron – On beaver lodge across from Dog Central, a favorite perch
  • Sharp-shinned Hawk – adult bird in Big Cottonwood Forest
  • SHORT-EARED OWL – Flying the East Meadow, 6:45 a.m., and again at 9:45 a.m. Great looks.
  • Northern Saw-whet Owl – Matt had one near east end of boardwalk, very early
  • Pileated Woodpecker – two, probably a pair, heard often, seen in Big Cottonwood Forest
  • Northern Shrike – juvenile, east edge of East Meadow
  • Ruby-crowned Kinglet – especially numerous today; ~20
  • Cedar Waxwing – flock of 30-40 at Rowing Club
  • PINE SISKIN – many large flocks – perhaps 250 birds total.

The SHORT-EARED OWL flew around for a couple of minutes as we traversed the trails along the East Meadow, and then seemed that it resettled on the ground somewhere east of the Viewing Mound.

We spent quite a bit of time trying in vain to find a Redpoll among the Siskins. The Cedar Waxwings were probably too far away for reliable ID, but we couldn’t find a Bohemian amongst them either. It was a quiet day for waterfowl, with only 1-2 species of goose (a distant flock was *probably* Cacklers, but we couldn’t be sure), and just three species of duck, though we had a couldabeen sighting of a pair of flying ducks that I thought were Goldeneyes. Sparrows were moderately plentiful, but we had just the most expected six species.

I was out at Marymoor on Tuesday and did have Bushtits and a lone Western Meadowlark, but no other additional species.

For the day, at least 51 species.

== Michael Hobbs

American Coots. Photo by Bob Asanoma

Sharp-shinned Hawk. Photo by Bob Asanoma

Sharp-shinned Hawk.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Red-tailed Hawk.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Report for November 10, 2016                                                                                                                 Birding at Marymoor

Another otherwise gorgeous day beset by heavy fog. This week was probably worse than last, though both weeks we were mostly out of the fog by the time we got to the lake. I think it was thicker today, though, and our lake viewing was still slightly hampered. Besides not being able to see birds, sound seems to travel differently too, and we had a lot of thought-I-heard-but-can’t-be-sure moments. Sometimes we were able to dig out a confirming glimpse, or at least hear the bird again. Others...? Well, lots of might-have-beens today.


G. White-fronted Goose      1 juvenile with Cacklers
Cackling Goose                   About 1000 on grass ballfields
Trumpeter Swan?                Maybe heard 1; later,7 distant flying swans
- loon sp. -                          Distant swimming bird on lake, prob. Common
Northern Harrier                  East Meadow area
Sharp-shinned Hawk            Nice close flyby
Cooper’s Hawk                   Crisp adult on Viewing Mound fence
Pileated Woodpecker          One heard from Rowing Club dock
MERLIN                             Close flyby at Viewing Mound, distant looks later
Northern Shrike                   North of Fields 7-8-9 today
American Pipit                     Several flyovers
Orange-crowned Warbler    1 at Pet Memorial Garden with Yellow-rumps

After the walk, I did a quick 2nd walkthrough, adding only BROWN CREEPER. Sunny but quiet for the second loop. As I drove out, there were three ROCK PIGEONS to finish the day’s list.

Misses today included Killdeer,Lincoln’s Sparrow, and Red-winged Blackbird.

For the day, an even 60 species.

== Michael Hobbs

Pacific Wren.  Photo by Ollie Oliver
Sharp-shinned Hawk.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

One form of male, domestic-type, Mallard. Photo by Hugh Jennings

Male Bufflehead.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Adult Mew Gull.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Northern Harrier.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Merlin, flying away.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

With buffy undertail, and with brightly contrasty underwing spotting, this may be a "Taiga" subspecies Merlin.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Cooper's Hawk.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Distant Northern Shrike.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Juvenile Greater White-fronted Goose (right).  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Orange-crowned Warbler.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Gadwall, with male stretching his wing.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Female Ruddy Duck, 2016-11-07.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Dark-eyed Junco, 2016-11-07.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Bewick's Wren, 2016-11-07.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

American Goldfinch, 2016-11-07.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

American Goldfinch, 2016-11-07.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Report for November 5, 2015                                                                                                                    Birding at Marymoor

Cloudy with rain threatening? Bwahaha. We never had more than a brief bit of mizzle. Instead, we had birds. Lots of activity, lots of species, lots of surprises.


SWANS                        2 adults, probably Trumpeters, flew overhead, silent
Hooded Merganser        After a 5 week hiatus, 6 at Rowing Club
Common Loon               1 well out on lake
Western Grebe               2 well out on lake
DUNLIN                       Matt & I heard one at the Lake Platform
Band-tailed Pigeon         1 over Dog Meadow. Getting late for Marymoor
Barn Owl                        Several pre-dawn sightings
SHORT-EARED OWL 1. Great looks from Viewing Mound, before sunrise
N. SAW-WHET OWL  Matt heard from boardwalk, long before sunrise
Pileated Woodpecker     Near East end of boardwalk
MERLIN                        South end of East Meadow, and SE of there
PEREGRINE FALCON Flew across northern part of park at 7:05 a.m
Northern Shrike               Juvenile east of East Meadow
WILSON’S WARBLER Male in Pea Patch with flock of juncos

The last BARN OWL was about 6:30 a.m. The SHORT-EARED OWL flew around, on and off, from 6:40 to 6:52, giving us really nice looks. Where did it go then? According to Matt, it flew to Duncan Rodents for an Apple Critter.

This is VERY LATE for WILSON’S WARBLER. We’ve only had four sightings ever in October, and today’s is notably later than the previous record late date of 27-Oct-04. Any sighting after mid-September is late.

After the walk, I scoped the lake one more time. There were 15 GREATER SCAUP that would have been easily visible from the Lake Platform. Amongst them was a first-year male GOLDENEYE, though I couldn’t determine the species. Both are First of Fall sightings.

For the day, 63 species, with DUNLIN being new for the year list.

== Michael Hobbs

Swans, probably Trumpeter.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Male Bufflehead.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Very distant Merlin, which later made a hunting pass in the East Meadow.
Photo by Ollie Oliver

Very brown juvenile Northern Shrike.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Golden-crowned Sparrow.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Juvenile Cooper's Hawk in the Pea Patch.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Wilson's Warbler.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Hooded Mergansers at the Rowing Club.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Beaver Lodge opposite Dog Central.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Nearby beaver workings.  This tree is toast.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Fall color.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Report for November 10, 2014                                                                                                                     Birding at Marymoor

On a quick late-afternoon trip down to the park, I was stunned to find a GRAY-CROWNED ROSY-FINCH at the Compost Piles.  This was a very unexpected new species for the park.  Luckily, Grace & Ollie Oliver were able to get down there quickly, and Ollie managed a couple of photos.     - Michael Hobbs

Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch, 2014-11-11.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch, 2014-11-11.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Report for November 6, 2014                                                                                                                     Birding at Marymoor

We had WEATHER today, some of it nice (warm sunshine, rainbows), mostly blusteringly awful (heavy rain, sometimes blowing horizontally), and just about everything in between. Lots of great clouds to look at. Lots of dark, threatening clouds too. The saving grace was that it was warm, so wet hands weren’t freezing. The downside was warm, so we were steaming inside our rain gear. The birds just weren’t visible or detectable during the downpours and squalls, but they tried to make up for that during the nice moments.


Cackling Goose                 175-225, virtually all minimas, NE corner of park
Gadwall                             10 at lake. Only our 2nd sighting for this fall
American Wigeon               Lone female at lake, after none in October
Western Grebe                   Two on the lake late
- gulls -                              Big flock on grass fields, but no rarities noted
Barn Owl                           One after 6:30
N. SAW-WHET OWL      Matt had 1 (maybe 2) from the boardwalk, 5:30ish
Pileated Woodpecker         One heard, Big Cottonwood Forest
Merlin?                               Matt glimpsed a falcon
Northern Shrike                  Juvenile near Compost Piles late
American Pipit                    Four on grass/gravel area near Cacklers
Wh.-throated Sparrow        Juvenile with WCSPs, GCSPs at Pea Patch

This is just the 6th definite NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWL report for Marymoor, and Matt even managed a glimpse at this one. He may have heard a second as well. He first heard it/them(?) at the bend in the boardwalk.

Matt also heard a COYOTE early in the East Meadow. At the Rowing Club, we had a rare November sighting of a RED-EARED SLIDER turtle. Pacific Tree Frogs were also heard all morning at various spots.

For the day, despite the conditions, 54 species.

== Michael Hobbs

Ollie had to wait for a break in the weather to even begin getting his camera out.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Dark-eyed Juncos.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

American Pipit.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Male Cackling Goose, @20, hatched in 2010 or earlier.
Banded 07/26/2011 near Chevak, Wade Hampton Census Area,
Yukon Delta NWR, Alaska, ( LAT: 61.41278; LON: -165.47778 )
First noted at Marymoor on 11/08/2012.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

American Crow.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Red-tailed Hawk.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Not only did Ollie photograph this White-throated Sparrow, he found it for us.

White-throated Sparrow in Pea Patch.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

FIrst-winter Pied-billed Grebe at the Rowing Club.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Mourning Dove, 2014-11-01.  Photo by Lillian Reis

Report for November 8-11, 2013                                                                                                                     Birding at Marymoor

I went down to Marymoor Park late this morning, to see if I could relocate the spizella sparrow I’d glimpsed yesterday. Sure enough, after about 10 minutes, I was able to get some great looks at a CLAY-COLORED SPARROW at the Compost Piles.

Given that I also glimpsed a spizella that I thought was a CCSP on October 17th, I wonder if there’s any chance this bird has just been hanging out the whole time???

The Compost Piles are immediately west of Lot G, the “Interpretive Lot”. The bird was seen between the Viewing Mound and the concrete bins full of leaves and branches.

== Michael Hobbs


There were sightings each day from November 8 through November 11, and the Clay-colored Sparrow has not been reported since.

Clay-colored Sparrow, 2013-11-08.  Photo by Doug Schurman

Clay-colored Sparrow, 2013-11-08.  Photo by Doug Schurman

Clay-colored Sparrow with Savannah Sparrow, 2013-11-08.  Photo by Lillian Reis

Clay-colored Sparrow with Savannah Sparrow, 2013-11-08.  Photo by Lillian Reis

Clay-colored Sparrow, 2013-11-09.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Clay-colored Sparrow, 2013-11-09.  Photo by Scott Ramos

Clay-colored Sparrow, 2013-11-09.  Photo by Scott Ramos

Lincoln's Sparrow (left) and Clay-colored Sparrow, 2013-11-09.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Female Red-winged Blackbird, 2013-11-09.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Northern Shoveler, 2013-11-9. Photo by Ollie Oliver.  Note the lamellae – small, comb-like structures on the edge of the bill - that act like sieves

Northern Shoveler, 2013-11-9.  Photo by Ollie Oliver.  This male shows his bright tri-colored speculum while preening.

Northern Shoveler, 2013-11-9.  Photo by Ollie Oliver.
Note how the speculum disappears as the wing is refolded.

Northern Shoveler, 2013-11-9.  Photo by Ollie Oliver.
Except for a trace of pale blue, the speculum is invisible when the wing is tucked.

Lincoln's Sparrow, 2013-11-11.  Photo by Gregg Thompson

Lincoln's Sparrow, 2013-11-11.  Photo by Gregg Thompson

Lincoln's Sparrow, 2013-11-11.  Photo by Gregg Thompson

American Pipit, 2013-11-10.  Photo by Lillian Reis

Report for November 7, 2013                                                                                                                     Birding at Marymoor

We certainly didn’t dodge the wind and rain this morning. We got pretty much soaked, and there was one tremendous squall with towering black clouds and gusty winds and a downpour. This was no mizzle. We did have about an hour of time scattered through the morning when it didn’t rain, but the rest of the time it was decidedly wet. And dark. And windy. We did see some birds however.


Scaup sp.(p.?)                 First of Fall; definite Greater, maybe Lesser, at lake
Hooded Merganser         A dozen at the Rowing Club pond, all flirting
Cooper’s Hawk              VERY wet adult landed at south end of Dog Meadow
Mew Gull                        First big flock of fall (150+)
Northern Shrike              Very brown juvenile seen late
HORNED LARK           Brian found one ~7 a.m. in NE corner of park
Spizella SPARROW      Viewing Mound
White-crowned Sparrow Two, after 2 week absence
Western Meadowlark      One glimpsed near Compost Piles

I got about a 2 second look at a Spizella SPARROW at the Viewing Mound. In my brief look, I’d say probably CLAY-COLORED or AMERICAN TREE SPARROW. We were unable to relocate it. After our Rowing Club visit, the rain had let up, so I went back to the Viewing Mound and Compost Piles and tried again. May have glimpsed it again, but I can’t be sure that time. My attempts to find it were hampered by the presence of a very curious, very brown-colored juvenile NORTHERN SHRIKE.

For the day, we managed 53+ species. Not bad, considering the weather. The HORNED LARK was new for the year.

== Michael Hobbs

Horned Lark.  Photo by Ollie Oliver
Horned Lark.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Displaying Hooded Mergansers at Rowing Club. Photo by Ollie Oliver

Displaying Hooded Mergansers at Rowing Club. Photo by Ollie Oliver

Female Bufflehead.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Red-tailed Hawk.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Bobcat, immediately west of Marymoor near Tosh Creek (near the Rowing Club),
2013/11/03.  Photo from Barbara Dickson

Tree down across boardwalk extension, 2013-11-03.
Photo by Michael Hobbs

Report for November 8, 2012                                                                                                                             Birding at Marymoor

A frosty by nice morning today. With no wind, a little sun, and with the temperature rising from 32 to 43 throughout the day, it was a nice day for a walk. And while it didn’t feel that birdy a lot of the time, we kept finding interesting stuff.

The most interesting, though, happened at about 5:15 a.m. Matt Bartels had a NORTHERN SAW-WHET OWL respond from the west end of Snag Row, along the northern edge of the Community Gardens. This is just the 2nd record for Saw-whet at Marymoor!

Other Highlights:

Greater White-fronted Goose    Two with ~250 Cackling Geese
Green-winged Teal                    Male at Rowing Club pond
Ring-necked Duck                    First of Fall this week, 2 today
Western Grebe                         Well out on lake
Merlin                                       Ho hum, another sighting... :)
MOURNING DOVE               Two, NE corner of East Meadow
Barn Owl                                  One after 6:30 a.m.
Pileated Woodpecker               One near fields 7-8-9
Northern Shrike                        More than 1, I believe. Vocalizing
Varied Thrush                           One near windmill
Yellow-rumped Warbler           Only 1-2
Townsend’s Warbler                1 near mansion
“Slate-colored” Junco               At least 2, male & female, Compost Piles
Western Meadowlark               1, NE corner of East Meadow
Red Crossbill                            Near mansion

The leucistic HOUSE FINCH was at the Compost/Dirt Piles again today, among a horde of compatriots. Also, there had to be at least 60 DARK-EYED JUNCOS, which may be a new high count for the park.

Matt had Mule Deer early, and we had two COYOTES in the middle of the East Meadow right before sunrise.

No real rarities today, but an amazing 65 species (and only 9 of those were ducks and gulls)! That’s our 4th straight week of 60+ species, and this is late-October/early-November !!!

== Michael Hobbs

Red Crossbill in the early morning sun, above the Mansion.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Pine Siskins in a Red Alder.  Photo by Lillian Reis

Female "Slate-colored" Dark-eyed Junco

Leucistic House Finch, seen from Viewing Mound.

Golden-crowned Sparrow.  Photo by Joe Sweeney

Snow in the Cascades

Cackling Goose with adult (left) and juvenile Greater White-fronted Geese.
Photo by Ollie Oliver

Here the juvenile (no breast bars, no white around the bill) is the center bird.
Photo by Ollie Oliver

Michael scans the flock of ~250 Cackling Geese.  Two had yellow neck bands; the birds were hatched prior to 2010, and banded in 2011 near Chevak, AK, in the Yukon River NWR.  At least one of the two collared birds was seen at Marymoor last winter.
Photo by Ollie Oliver

Male Green-winged Teal with Hooded Mergansers at the Rowing Club

American Tree Sparrow, 2012-11-03.  Photo by Lillian Reis





MP3 file of Northern Saw-whet Owl tooting, 2012-11-08.  Recorded by Josh Adams

Report for November 10, 2011                                                                                                                           Birding at Marymoor

It was chilly this morning, and foggy until we got to the lake. The birds seemed somewhat slow to get going this morning (I don't think it was just us...) There were a big group of people, though, and we eventually found some birds.


Wood Duck                    Male and female seen
Bufflehead                       Maybe 10; First of Fall
Common Merganser       One male flew upslough
Green Heron                   Adult at Rowing Club (south pond)
Peregrine Falcon             One flew north along east edge of park
Red-breasted Sapsucker One at Rowing Club
Northern Shrike              One north of fields 7-8-9
Townsend's Warbler       One in cedars near windmill again

There was also a RIVER OTTER on the lake, and maybe some distant Western Grebes, though we didn't count them.

For the day, 58 species.

== Michael Hobbs

Great Blue Heron.  Photo by Dasha Gudalewicz

A murmuration of European Starlings.  Photo by Dasha Gudalewicz

Adult Red-tailed Hawk.  Photo by Dasha Gudalewicz

Northern Shrike.  Photo by Dasha Gudalewicz

Northern Shrike.  Photo by Dasha Gudalewicz

Male House Finch.  Photo by Dasha Gudalewicz

Green Heron at the Rowing Club, hidden well.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Cooper's Hawk, 2011-11-06. Photo by Marc Hoffman

Adult Greater White-fronted Goose with Cackling Goose,  2011-11-05.
Photo by Ollie Oliver

Report for November 11, 2010                                                                                                                          Birding at Marymoor

We had good weather for our walk this morning, as the rain held off until the afternoon.  At times, it was even sunny, and it warmed from the low 30's to the low 50's during our walk.  Many of our regulars were out of town today, but our group was supplemented by a large number of people who had Veteran's Day off from work, and it was nice to see some of our infrequent visitors, as well as a few new people.

The birds were fairly cooperative, so we had a pretty typical "good" winter day.


Green-winged Teal            Pair at Rowing Club - First of Fall
Bufflehead                         15 or so at the lake - First of Fall
Green Heron                      Once again, at RC on beaver lodge
Northern Harrier                Flying the lake edge
Sharp-shinned Hawk         Great looks near Dog Central
Cooper's Hawk                 A couple of different birds
Virginia Rail                       Had many respond to clapping
Red-breasted Sapsucker    Rowing Club
Pileated Woodpecker        Nice flight views
Northern Shrike                 Distant views, northeast corner of park
Pine Siskin                         Flock of about 50

We had a big mixed flock of gulls on the grass fields at 7:30, comprising the usuals: MEW GULL, with a few RING-BILLED GULL, a couple of CALIFORNIA GULL, and some GLAUCOUS-WINGED GULL.  The fog lifted just enough at sunrise that things came in and landed.  We also had a large flock of CACKLING GEESE in the northeast corner of the park all morning.

Sparrow numbers seemed low.  But we still managed 58 species for the day.

== Michael

Pileated Woodpecker.  Photo by Bryan Matthew
American Goldfinch.  Photo by Bryan Matthew

American Robin.  Photo by Lillian Reis

Ruby-crowned Kinglet.  Photo by Bryan Matthew

Northern Harrier near the lake.  Photo by Bryan Matthew

Sharp-shinned Hawk.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Steller's Jay.  Photo by Bryan Matthew

Cedar Waxwing.  Photo by Jessica Lee

Cooper's Hawk juvenile in the Community Gardens.  Photo by Lillian Reis

Adult White-crowned Sparrow at the Compost Piles.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Report for November 5, 2009

Weird weather was the most notable thing this morning.  It was overcast to start, and fairly warm.  Just before 8:00, we had ten seconds of dramatic sunlight streaming down on the last of the beautiful fall foliage, but with deep, dark clouds in the background.  We had moments of sprinkles, but the rain held off until 11:00.  Between 8:00 and 10:00, we were periodically hit by puffs of incredibly warm air, occasional puffs of cold air, and sometimes both within seconds.  The wind picked up gradually, though it faded about when the rain started, thankfully.

A lot of the birds might have been battening down the hatches, I don't know. Things were pretty quiet for a long time.  We did have a huge set of flocks (~500) CACKLING GEESE overhead, with some landing.  And later we had an enormous mixed flock of BUSHTIT, BLACK-CAPPED CHICKADEE, one or two CHESTNUT-BACKED CHICKADEE, RUBY-CROWNED KINGLET, GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLET, and a couple of YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLERS and BEWICK'S WRENS.  That flock, or other(s) with identical constituents, seemed to follow us around (or we them) for quite some time.


Greater White-fronted Goose        2 with Cacklers near the climbing rock
Cackling Goose                            ~500, including non-minima subspecies
Band-tailed Pigeon                        Flock of 14 - unusual for November
Barn Owl                                      Matt & Scott had several sightings early
Northern Shrike                            Prominent in East Meadow
Winter Wren                                 Singing east of weir
Varied Thrush                               First of Fall - landed in large cottonwood

Mallard was our only species of duck!  (Though there were a couple of flybys that might have been Northern Shoveler and Common Goldeneye respectively). We had none of the recent "good" birds - Horned Lark, White-throated Sparrow, or American Tree Sparrow - all seen in the last week.

For mammals, besides the usual Eastern Cottontail and Eastern Gray Squirrel, we had a Raccoon asleep in a tree near Dog Central, and a dead Townsend's Mole near the windmill.

For the day, 52 species.

== Michael


Our dramatic 10-seconds of sunshine

At least 20 Cedar Waxwings near the weir

Cackling Geese

Cackling Geese, but not of the minima subspecies

Raccoon near Dog Central

Dead Townsend's Mole near the windmill

Ollie's photo of the White-throated Sparrow, 2009-11-02

Ollie's photo of the White-throated Sparrow, 2009-11-02

Anne Lawrence's great shot of the White-throated Sparrow, 2009-11-02

Ollie's photo of a male Bufflehead at the Rowing Club, 2009-11-02

Report for November 6, 2008

It was rainy and windy and dark, though not as bad as it might have been.  There were several hours where it wasn't raining much, and it wasn't too, too cold, and the wind and the rain tended to stay away from each other somewhat.  So while my hat was soaked through, the rest of me did pretty well.  The water level in the lake is up about 5 inches since last week.

We were joined by a nice couple,  the Gurka's from Massachusetts, who stuck  it out through the whole loop, and managed to add to their Washington State lists.  With them, I think we were about 10 people.

The birds seemed to be hoping the weather would blow over and the day would revert to yesterday's perfection.  If so, they were disappointed.  But the result was a whole lot of not much, especially early on.  Not much flying, not much chirping, not much hopping around, not much sitting on exposed perches.  We had a grand total of 7 geese, all Canadas.  We did manage 5 species of duck, but 3 of those were seen only in flight.  No surprises all day.


Bufflehead                      First of Fall, flyby
Common Merganser       2 flying over Dog Meadow
Wilson's Snipe                Pea Patch and Rowing Club
Barn Owl                       Matt and Scott keep finding these early
Townsend's Warbler       One near the windmill
Fox Sparrows                 More ubiquitous than usual
Western Meadowlark     2-3 with starlings in NE corner of the park
Purple Finch                    In hard-to-see ash trees south of Dog Meadow

The best highlight were the three RIVER OTTERS at the Rowing Club main pond, giving us outstanding looks.  It appeared to be an adult and 2 young.

We managed 51 species.

== Michael

Hooded Merganser pair at the Rowing Club.  Photo by Ollie Oliver, 2008-11-07

Hooded Merganser females at the Rowing Club.  Photo by Ollie Oliver, 2008-11-07

Report for November 8, 2007

It was gray and misty, but it was warm and it didn't rain, and the fog was high enough that we were under it. It was windless, and the air had that heavy, damp quality which makes road noise carry and birds to skulk. There were long stretches where we only got glimpses of birds, without any good looks. But it ended up being a pretty nice day.


Cackling Goose              Outnumbered Canadas - maybe 250
COMMON LOON       One WELL OUT on the lake
Northern Harrier             Matt had one early, East Meadow
Wilson's Snipe                One bobbing below the weir, + 2 elsewhere
Barn Owl                        Matt had one early, East Meadow
SHORT-EARED OWL  One flushed from East Meadow ~11 am
Hairy Woodpecker          One buried deep in a willow, East Meadow
Western Meadowlark      5 or more at Compost Piles
PINE SISKIN                Our first fall flock of 50+

Duck numbers are still way down. We had less than 10 Mallards, maybe 5 Bufflehead, and 4 Hooded Merganser, plus 1-2 probable Goldeneyes. That was it for ducks.

For the day, 58 species

== Michael

Hard to even tell what it was from these photos, but that dark lump that moved
was a River Otter, on the new dock visible from the lake platform.

Yellow-rumped Warbler at the Compost Piles.

Nicely, it showed it's yellow rump...

Marsh Wren, East Meadow.

Fox Sparrow south of the windmill.


Bird Sightings Week 45
November 5-11*
*adjust by 1 day in leap years



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