15 September 2017 – PNW Migration Update

Another solid night of migration with returns into the 20+ dBZ range.  More noticeable migrants pile out of the Nisqually Basin and into the Vancouver Basin.

Reports of more Cackling Geese, first Hermit Thrushes on the valley floor, Fox and Golden Crowned Sparrows as well.  We are well into the season and trips into the field this weekend should yield plenty of FOS birds.  The Chapman School Vaux’s Swifts are still piling into the chimney by the thousands each night.

Barn Swallows continue to roost and fly-out at dawn along the Willamette River in Yamhill County.  The evening roost flight was particularly dense last night.

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28 August 2017 – PNW Migration Update

Slow but steady.  Mainly shorebirds on the move but the ducks should be showing up soon.

The Vaux’s swifts at Chapman School in Portland are returning in good numbers; around 3000 were counted last night.

01 May 2017 – PNW Migration Update

And then there were birds!

Big weekend for the Pacific Flyway.  I have the Friday/Saturday loop, but left in on another computer; it looks pretty much like today’s Sunday/Monday loop.  Saturday/Sunday was muted by weather.

More arrivals: Western Kingbird, Western Tanager, Lazuli Bunting, Black-headed and Evening Grosbeak,  Bullock’s Oriole, Sora, Empids, Wilson’s and Nashville Warbler, and Cassin’s and Warbling Vireo.  All five Swallows have now been reported as well as Vaux’s Swift. Big numbers of the early migrants as well, House Wren, Yellow-rumped and Orange-crowned Warblers.  Pelicans and Purple Martins are more widely reported on Sauvie Island.

Many birds are already on, or building, nests and even some fledglings are being seen.  I even saw a Green-winged Teal male transitioning to eclipse plumage this weekend.

I haven’t seen or heard a Ruby-crowned Kinglet in a while; Golden-crowned Sparrow numbers are down, Migrant Fox and Lincoln’s Sparrows are pretty much off the radar.  Water Fowl numbers are dropping as well.

Let’s see, what’s left?  From memory (so don’t hold me to this) Swainson’s Thrush,  Yellow Warbler, Western Wood Pewee, Red-eyed Vireo (rare but annual nesting resident) Willow Flycatcher and ……?

I really should change the title of these posts.  The Pacific Northwest is a big place and i don’t keep tabs of much outside of the Portland/Vancouver Basin and the Willamette Valley.  So, for example, when the Puffins return to the coast, i’ll miss it by a couple of weeks to a month, they’re back, but i’m not sure of when they arrived.

24 April 2017 – PNW Migration Update

Personally, i am really tired of: 1) being time constrained due to obligations during the work week and 2) RAIN.

I only have one static image from Friday/Saturday, when it wasn’t raining for most of the night, that shows a really nice flight up the Pacific Flyway.

But birds are finding a way to push north.  Lots of new arrivals: American White Pelican, Black-headed Grosbeak, Warbling and Cassin’s Vireo, Wilson, Yellow, Hermit and Nashville Warblers, all expected Empids, Western Tanager, Vaux’s Swift, Cinnamon Teal, Sora, American Bittern, Bullock’s Oriole, Western Kingbird and in San Diego Lazuli Bunting.

A lot of these birds are slightly ahead of schedule

21 April 2017 – PNW Migration Update

Well, a relatively clear night with light winds out of the south and you would expect a surge of migrant activity.  But it was really rather muted.  We did get a smattering of 20+ dBZ returns; i just expected a much deeper and widespread response.

Arrivals, or increased reporting: Vaux’s Swifts and Wilson Warblers.

Two notes — another well organized low is headed our way (read, more rain) and there was a pretty interesting flight path down the Columbia and out to the coast that can be seen in last night’s loop; i don’t recall seeing that before.

30 March 2017 – PNW Migration Update

We can see a few birds on the move darting and weaving between rain cells last night.  At least it’s something!

New arrivals being reported: Vaux’s Swifts, Common Yellowthroat, and now all five swallows.

18 April 2016 – PNW Migration Update

It’s been a non-stop bird fest throughout the weekend.  We’ve had heavy migration with more new arrivals being reported in the Region: Vaux’s Swift, Nashville Warbler, Yellow Warbler, Wilson’s Warbler, Western Tanager — all come to mind and i’m probably forgetting a few.

Notable departures: Sandhill Cranes are WAY down on Sauvie Island, it’s hard to come by any more than a few straggling ducks except residents and Green-winged Teal.  I haven’t seen a Pintail in a week or so.  Junco’s are back up in the hills and Varied Thrush have disappeared as well.

Full regional coverage today.  The weekend looked about the same.