[birding] [obol] possible Blue Grosbeak (about 12 miles into Lincoln Co.)

Joel Geier joel.geier at peak.org
Thu Jul 26 12:50:09 PDT 2007

Hi folks,

I'm forwarding this report on from the statewide list. Darrel's place is
a bit north of Hwy 20 at Chitwood (east of Toledo), so about 10 miles
from Benton Co. as the crow flies.

More generally, late summer to be a season when some oddball birds show
up in our region. like last year's Blue-gray Gnatcatcher and Blue-headed
Vireo, or the possible flycatcher at Thornton Lake. Some southwestern
species seem to have northwestward dispersal patterns after breeding
season, and some have suggested that the long-term regional drought
might be pushing them as well, as with Black-throated Sparrows &
Brewer's Sparrows. Or maybe some of these are just spring vagrants that
were not initially detected, never found breeding partners in whatever
obscure spots they tried to nest in, and finally gave up and start to
wander around.

I apologize for not posting on a possible Gray Catbird in the thicket
across from our place about 10 days ago -- I just heard one call and
wanted to check it out but I was too swamped at the time, and never got
around to it. Could've been a Bewick's Wren or a Chat since either can
make some odd sounds, but the first thing I thought of was catbird and
then I was reminded of it when the one showed up in Florence last week.
Gray Catbird does seem to be a species that shows up west of its normal
range in late summer.

Anyway, seeing some of the other reports reminds me that the dog days of
summer need not be the doldrums for local birders. Should be lots of
shorebirds out there too ... has anyone been to McFadden lately? Or has
anyone checked for vireos around E.E. Wilson? I still have a project to
finish but hope to get out more next week.


Date: Thu, 26 Jul 2007 10:15:35 -0700
From: "Darrel Faxon" <5hats at peak.org>
Subject: [obol] possible Blue Grosbeak
To: "Obol" <obol at lists.oregonstate.edu>
Message-ID: <00e001c7cfa8$96a99520$0000a398 at your5rlp3a9516>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"

    This morning at my Thornton Creek ( Lincoln) farm, I heard a loud,
metallic "pink" coming from a clump of willows.  It was an unusual
sound, so I stopped to listen.  The bird called five or six times, and
then flew out of the clump, across the road, and into some streamside
willows and disappeared.  It was smaller than a Black-headed Grosbeak,
and in the brief glimpse I got it appeared to me to be light grayish
brown, about the same color as a young Brown-headed Cowbird.  I didn't
notice any blue or any wingbars, but the view I got was very fleeting.
It might have been a female Blue Grosbeak, but I can't actually report
it as that.  I went back to the house and got my binoculars, but was
never able to relocate the bird.


Joel Geier
Camp Adair area north of Corvallis

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