Trip North Today- Birding the Skagit and Samish Flats.

in #birding4 years ago

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Maybe 50,000 Snow Geese Chen caerulescens winter in the Skagit area, and I think I may have seen 20% of them today, huge flocks all over the place are one of the big attractions of birding this area in the winter.

I took today to wander my way north to Bellingham, WA where I am going to a good friend's birthday party tomorrow. On the way I made two stops in Snohomish County hoping to find a Yellow-headed Blackbird and a Harris's Sparrow, but neither was located. I did get plenty of time to bird the Skagit and Samish Flats where raptors were not present in big numbers, but I did get really good looks at the expected species. Only 2 FOY (first of the year) species today, Rough-legged Hawk and Peregrine Falcon, but great weather, and fun taking photos.

RLHA_5370.JPG Rough-legged Hawk Buteo lagopus is our most common buteo as a winter visitor. Red-tailed Hawks breed here and many winter visitors add to their numbers, making them more common all year, but in winter RLHA is fun to see.

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Note the feathering on the legs, the whitish head and tail, and the dark underwing carpal patch and dark belly band on this RLHA.

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I saw two Peregrine Falcons Falco peregrinus today, but neither was as obliging as the RLHAs for photos. Peregrines are near world-wide in distribution, and are an amazing bird. They often hunt by "stooping" from a high flight at extraordinary speeds to kill prey on the fly.

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Here are some of the Snow Geese feeding in a muddy field.

Good birding. Steem on!

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excellent photographs, they are beautiful those geese

This post has received a 34.85 % upvote from @boomerang.

Interesting!!

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