Wednesday March 6, 2013 Falcon, Hawk, and Owls!

Seward Sporadic Bird Report

Sunrise 7:40 am, sunset 6:38 pm, length of day 10 hours, 58 minutes; tomorrow will be 5 minutes and 30 seconds longer.

Weather: Mostly overcast with scattered light rain and calm. Temps just above freezing in the day, dipping down just enough overnight to sprinkle a bit of new snow. Rain/sn'rain/snow and increasing wind in the forecast. It sure seems like the end of winter with so much daylight and warm temperatures. The snow is melting on the edges and slumping in yards, seemingly ready to give up.

All this daylight, of course, is greatly appreciated by the zillions of COMMON REDPOLLS and PINE SISKINS that are draining both the feeders and our wallets. They are like a swarm of bees!

Gas jumped up this week from $4.20 to $4.33/gallon for unleaded.

Nashwoods just off Nash Road reported a GREAT HORNED OWL and a SAW-WHET OWL calling. Also reported a NORTHERN GOSHAWK checking out the banquet of finches at a feeder. It's a wonder there aren't more raptors attracted to the swarms!

I spotted a suspicious-looking piece of driftwood at the tidelands today. Checking closer with my binocs, I discovered a brown, female MERLIN sitting very, very quietly, looking around. She saw me after a bit and took off. Within seconds, so did a small flock of MEW GULLS that didn't like the looks of her determined flight.

The two SHORT-EARED OWLS hunted all along the head of the bay, covering a lot of ground in a short time. When they perched, just like the Merlin, they were very hard to spot. When they flew, their broad white underwings just lit up. The lighter-colored male cruised closer today, at one point flying right towards me. Wow! Such absolutely beautiful, mysterious birds!

This evening around 6:30, I heard the loud, strong, confident, full-on spring song of a VARIED THRUSH. No more wheezing tea-kettle sighs for him! Spring Equinox is only two weeks away and he is ready!

Happy Birding!
Carol Griswold
Seward Sporadic Bird Report Reporter

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