May 8: Morning at the Marsh

Observations by Michelle Michaud:

I was a little worried about coming this morning to the marsh.  At my house the wind was howling.  Did I want to venture out in to the windy weather?  Would I be able to hear the songbirds?  Would my scope be useful or would I have to hold constantly it to prevent the wind from tipping it over? 

I finally decided “Why not?”  I arrived to mostly overcast skies and some winds, but nowhere near as windy as at my house.  And the songbirds were singing away, although there didn’t seem to be as many as the previous day.

Every day at the marsh is a new day with new birds added to the mix.  Cliff swallows were working the lake along with Tree and Violet-Green swallows.  Fun to watch them dip in their effort to catch bugs.  A Yellow-rumped warbler was singing in the trees and several of us (six people showed up over the two hours I was at the marsh) got great views of a Dark-eyed junco flitting about the in the spruce trees. 

We once again had Mallards, Northern pintails, and Green-winged teals.  Shorebirds included Wilson’s snipe, Short-billed dowitchers, Least sandpipers, and a single Pectoral sandpiper

Wilson’s Snipe

You wouldn’t know the Least sandpipers were there unless they flushed.  The vegetation is growing and the little peeps are able to feed in obscurity.  Songbirds observed included American robins, Fox sparrows, a Lincoln’s sparrow (in his favorite singing tree), Dark-eyed juncos, and Ruby-crowned kinglets.  In total, 24 different species were observed or heard at the marsh this morning. 

Lincoln’s sparrow

This is a great place to bird at any time of the day, although mornings and evening are best. Remember – it’s always a great day to bird. 

Michelle Michaud is an avid birder who enjoys traveling the world in search of birds. In Homer, she participates in citizen science projects, including the Kachemak Bay Birder’s Shorebird Monitoring, Alaska Grebe and Loon Monitoring Project, and COASST