This doesn’t really fit within the main purpose of this blog, but what the heck, it’s my blog. A lot of birders have a life list of species that they have seen. I’ve never been much of a list-maker or -keeper, but it would be nice to have some place to jot down the new species I see, and this is as good a place as any. So with that in mind, today I saw my first Pigeon Guillemots. I spotted them flying low over the water at Brackett’s Landing Park right near the Edmonds Ferry Terminal. In amongst the ubiquitous gulls, they were clearly NOT gulls, and so I followed them back and forth with my bins as they went back and forth to their roosting place under the docks. I doubted my attribution. I think of guillemots as birds that nest in massive colonies on forbidding rock cliffs. I never expected to see any so close to an urban population, with trains, cars, trucks, buses and ferries all coming and going just feet away. Checking myAudubon guide, it really couldn’t be anything else: black auk-like silhouette with white wing patches. But I still doubted until I got home and checked online to find that Pigeon Guillemots are indeed a common sight around the beaches and marshes of Edmonds. Whoohoo!
Another new one for me was the Spotted Towhee. I got a glimpse of one on the PAWS campus, rummaging through the leaves behind the picnic tables. I had assumed that the noise was coming from a squirrel or even a rat (which are plentiful there), but the person I was talking to said “check out the Towhee making all the noise”. So I turned around, and there was this red-breasted beauty. Also apparently quite common. Will have to keep an eye out for more.