Thursday, April 24, 2014 Late Red-breasted Sapsucker Report

Seward, Alaska

I received an email today about a male RED-BREASTED SAPSUCKER discovered on April 3 at Bear Lake near the Iditarod Trail. It stayed at least a few days, but has not been seen since. Keep an eye out for this showy woodpecker; hopefully it's still around. The last time I documented one in Seward was on May 1, 2005.

ARCTIC TERN numbers have greatly increased to at least 50, probably many more, parading around with hapless herring and other small fish. What a joy to watch their exuberant energy! Their wings seem to operate their riotous voices; they just can't seem to keep quiet while airborne.

The pilings off B Street by the Greenbelt are popular perches for DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANTS to preen and snooze. There aren't enough pilings for all the new arrivals, so many swim around nearby, fishing while they await their chance. The fancy plumes of the adults are mostly white, but close observation reveals some black plumes as well. I read that the white plumes are more common in birds of the Pacific Northwest and Alaska. This is truly an impressive and beautiful bird, especially up close.

A big storm is approaching this evening with dark clouds. Often, these fronts bring birds so we shall see!

Happy Birding!
Carol Griswold

Sporadic Bird Report Reporter

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