Thursday, April 7, 2016 Ruby-crowned Kinglets!

Seward, Alaska

Sunrise 7:02 am, sunset 8:58 pm, for a total daylight of 15 hours and 25 minutes. Tomorrow will be 5 minutes and 28 seconds longer.

Brilliant blue sky and sunshine! At least two RUBY-CROWNED KINGLETS belted out their impossibly oversized song this morning. I managed to track one down, flitting from one branch to another, as erratic as a warbler. None have been reported this year, so these are First of Season. Fittingly, a ROBIN sang its sweet song in the background. A pair of STELLER'S JAYS exchanged gifts of dry grass, presumably for nesting material. What a great way to start the day!

As the temperature rose from 37ยบ to the mid 50s, a Milbert Tortoiseshell Butterfly emerged from its winter hideaway to warm up in the sun. This species overwinters as adults, and so is the first butterfly seen in the spring.

The four TRUMPETER SWAN cygnets popped up at the Lagoon in town; snoozing in the sunshine. It is so wonderful to see them again.

Four CANADA GEESE were reported spending the night and departing around 8 am this morning.

Ava reported a PEREGRINE FALCON on April 2, not seen since.

Last year, RUFOUS HUMMINGBIRDS showed up on Nash Road just outside Seward on April 15. It’s time to find, clean, and fill your hummer feeder with fresh sugar solution. One part white granulated sugar to 4 cups boiling water. NO red food coloring; it’s not needed and may cause tumors. I like the wide-mouth Audubon glass feeder as it’s easy to clean and fill.

Have you purchased your $25 2016 Federal Duck Stamp yet? USFWS uses the proceeds to purchase and protect habitat for wetland conservation. Interesting interview on the proposed changes to add non-duck species to appeal more to birders and gain support at:

More sunshine in the forecast for Friday then back to rain; stay tuned to see what shows up next!

Happy Birding!
Carol Griswold
Seward Sporadic Bird Report Reporter

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