Wednesday, July 23, 2008


Well, after about 2 months of work to pick up the last dozen species of so, I finally hit 200 birds for the Bigby year (a number I hit in early May typically), finding a Bonaparte's gull at Tiscornia. The adults start their post-breeding dispersal now, in about a week juvies will start showing up on the beach as well. The bird today was still in full breeding plumage; looking back at my records, July birds are usually about 50-50 between fully hooded birds and others well on their way to winter body plumage. I spent about 3 hours on the beach, where despite NW winds, all I managed were about 1-2 dozen sanderling, a least sandpiper, the Bonaparte's and 3 Forster's terns.

Somewhere along the way home I biked mile #600 as well. My knee is pretty sore from going way too many miles last week (~65 over 4 days) and the hills were pretty tough today. I think I'm pretty much done on long rides (20 miles or more roundtrip). I don't see myself going after least bittern out at Smith Lake. I'm not sure when/if I'll return to Sarett either. Sarett is the best place for black-billed cuckoo as a resident bird, I went last week but all I heard was yellow-billed's repeatedly (though a night-heron did fly over as a nice bonus).
The full-hooded Bonaparte's pic is from almost exactly a year ago at Tiscornia, the moulting bird (with fading legs) is from September of last year. I'll have to see if the half-hooded birds in July also have already faded their legs next time I go.

1 comment:

Jerry Jourdan said...

Congrats on your Bigby list, Matt! Keep biking!