[birding] Central Coast birds Friday including WANDERING TATTLER

DAVID IRONS llsdirons at msn.com
Fri Feb 8 19:13:19 PST 2008

Greetings All,

Today I birded the central Oregon coast from Florence north to Newport.  The best bird I found was WANDERING TATTLER, which was on the rocks right below the parking lot at Strawberry Hill Wayside in northern Lane Co.  

I checked gull flocks at several sites and found mostly Westerns, Glaucous-winged or some combination of the two.  I found a likely Glaucous X Glaucous-winged Gull hybrid at the "gull puddle" along the South Jetty Rd. at Newport.  I also checked the flooded pasturelands along the upper reaches of Beaver Creek Rd. south of Newport.  The best flock was at the very end of Beaver Creek Rd. (where it runs into Elkhorn Rd.).  There was a large flock of American Wigeon (about 500) here that included two Eurasian Wigeon (one male, one female) and also included an odd wigeon like the one Russ Namitz photographed last year.  Russ's bird can be viewed at this website: http://surfbirds.com/albums/showphoto.php?photo=3142&cat=253

The bird I saw was not quite this bright, but it had a similar broad green downward curving "swoosh" on the side of the head.  The area below the green swoosh was a creamy blond color and very crisply marked.  I have seen several photos of American Wigeon that look this way, but have never seen an explanation for this odd appearance.  

Also at the large flooded field at the end of Beaver Creek Rd.  I found one male Redhead, about 65 Ring-necked Ducks, 70+ Bufflehead and a couple Lesser Scaup.

Dave Irons
Eugene, OR
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