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Blues-Wenas-Hardy Chuckar

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  • Rich712@aol.com
    Chirp, In the past two weeks, the year-to-date fledge total for bluebirds on the Vredenburgh Bluebird Trail (N. Wenas/Umtanum Roads) has climbed to 450.
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 31, 2008
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      Chirp,

      In the past two weeks, the year-to-date fledge total for bluebirds on the
      Vredenburgh Bluebird Trail (N. Wenas/Umtanum Roads) has climbed
      to 450. Despite the cool spring and slow start, 2008 will certainly rank
      as one of the more successful years.

      There were also 108 nestlings in the boxes; if the parents persevere
      against the elements of nature, most could fledge in the next ten
      days.

      I did stop at Wenas Lake, driving down the old resort road where just
      a bit of mud is beginning to show. The lake remains high with water
      right up to the willows that stretch from the concrete boat ramp to the
      old resort road. Other than a handful of Killdeer, the only shorebirds
      were a Spotted Sandpiper and a lone Long-billed Dowitcher in a small
      pond created by the slowly* receding lake. *By slow, my hairline seems
      to be receding faster.

      Also at the lake were four Double-crested Cormorants and at least
      two Eastern Kingbirds.

      Hinting that 2008 may be one of the more successful breeding years
      for valley birds were the multitude of birds that flushed from the road-
      side and fields as I drove along. I didn't make a big effort to identify
      most but did see Western Bluebirds, Vesper Sparrows and House
      Finches.

      My biggest chuckle of the day came when I was exiting Hardy Canyon
      at the western drive through gates. In the willows inside the inner
      gate, a small covey caught my eye. Appeared larger than quail and
      turned out to be Chukar...nine in all. They scampered in front of the
      vehicle sticking to the road like an elementary school field trip under
      strict adult supervision. At both gates, most of the birds elected to
      fly over the widely spaced bars but immediately came down on the
      far side. Great looks (orange-red bills with matching hose) as they
      crossed the paved roadway and started hiking up the steep shrub
      steppe slope. I reckon hunters could tell us for sure, but I suspect
      these birds have mighty tough drumsticks. Flying up that hillside
      surely would have been easier than legging it out..or is that just
      my age showing?.


      Birding the Blue,
      R. A. Repp
      Rich the Bluebird Snitch
      Wenas Wanderer





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