MIA end of last week because the rain obscured any migrant returns, if any.
Last night we begin to see the waning of the season. Fairly light across the Metro Region. Most decent returns are along the western flanks of the Cascades.
Ducks are coming out of eclipse plumage. Ruby-crowned Kinglet numbers are up as are the wintering sparrow numbers. Pine Siskins are invading coastal counties. And a first report of a Rough-legged Hawk, also on the coast.
Light but favorable winds over the region last night, especially along the coast.
Again most of the action was in the east Counties along the spine and western flanks of the Cascades. There was a nice, and interesting flight from Vancouver Island that washed down the Olympic Peninsula coast line (LGX radar). I don’t recall seeing such an organized flight in this area before, but don’t hold me to it. On the ATX radar (not shown) it was weird; it seemed there was little movement except at moderate levels restricted to the shores of the Puget Sound.
If i had the day off i would head up to the Cascades and check out Clear and Timothy Lakes. I see the divers are starting to arrive; there have been reports of C. Loons and RN Grebes come in to the review queue this morning. (Timothy Lake)
West flanks of the Cascades had another nice flight last night. Additionally the Metro area had moderate movement as well. Probably Ridgefield, Sauvie Island, and the Vancouver-Smith-Bybee lake complex.
Well now, things are picking up. We’re getting some solid flights that i would categorize as moderate. Plenty of green (around 20dBz) but not widespread. Lots of movement on the perimeter of the Puget Sound, a nice wave of migrants across the Strait, and the west flanks of the Cascades.
The local breeders have dispersed and territorial songs have subsided. Kind of the dog days so it will be good to see if i can kick up some early arrivals this weekend up in the Cascades.
With conditions generally favorable, migration last night was definitely showing the signs of the tail end. Birds are still in the air but only in light numbers. The RTX radar was the only outpost to show any returns above 20 dBZ and then only in pulses.
I really am not sure about the east County concentrations this season. But, it seems to me that the bulk of the migrants were concentrated over there this fall, and i do not recall that being the case in the past. Well, thank goodness somebody had the foresight to archive past radar data for the region. I’ll put that on the list for a dreary winter’s day research project.
The stubborn ridge of high pressure is keeping the local winds out of the north. but i don’t see that lasting too long as another low pressure system is spinning up out it the Pacific. You can see this on today’s wind map.
Over all the southern reaches of our area of concern saw the best migration action last night; again, it was concentrated along the flanks of the Cascades and east of the Willamette. There was a short but heavy flight across the Straight of Juan de Fuca last night as well.
Still haven;t heard of any Swans in the area but the Cranes are on the move in good numbers. They even were reported in Clackamas County — not a common report by any means.