....exactly 4 years to the day from the first Spring BLSW migration I
witnessed at Confluence!
Today after about 1 1/2 hours walking through the woods at the park,
Geoff Tischbein and I walked out into the open and soon became aware
that there were swifts, BLSWs, soaring and twirling over us. They are SO
I did a very quick count and believe that there might have been between
60 and 70 flying while we were watching. They were leaving as we
watched, so there may have been more before we saw them.
The other time I saw them on May 29th during Spring migration 2004 I was
on a CFO field trip. We saw less than 100, I believe, at Sweitzer SP and
then just four of us went to Confluence where we saw hundreds.
I called Coen today because I thought the dates might have been the
same, and indeed they were! All of the area Spring migration sightings
have been on the 29th, 30th or 31st. Since this year and the last year I
saw them were both leap years, I think Coen said that would make the
30th date, not during a leap year, correspond to the 29th in a leap
year. [Mea Culpa if I mutilated that Coen?].
Clearly, if you want to experience this wonderful event for yourself,
you have a pretty darn good chance if you're at Confluence Park in Delta
on the morning of the 29th, or on the 30th if the former didn't work.
The third time I saw them in migration was in October 2004 at Confluence
Park. That was one of the most thrilling birding experiences I have ever
had. There were hundreds of BLSW swirling around against a
storm-blackened sky. Rich Levad called to tell me that no one in the
world had ever reported a Fall migration before. Because of that it had
been assumed that the birds migrated individually.
How fortunate am I?!
At Sweitzer I saw a pair of Clark's Gebes run across the water with 2
pairs of Western Grebes, but no other evidence of breeding.
I also saw a Eastern Kingbird at Sweitzer, the third one I've seen in
Delta County in 2 weeks.
That made it the third species of kingbird that I have seen [in almost
the exact same place] at Sweitzer during this Spring migration.
At Fruitgrowers the wind was blowing so hard I didn't want to take out
my scope. Thanks to Tom Peace for showing me the Pied-billed Grebe's
nest with eggs to the w. of the canal. There was a nest there last year