Friends of Marymoor Park

Report for March 16, 2017                                                                                                                    Birding at Marymoor

We were a bit impatient for spring today, I think. It was breezy, but pretty warm (40’s) and SUNNY, and we wanted spring birds NOW. We only got a couple. But a pretty nice day anyway.


  • Trumpeter SwanMatt heard some pre-dawn, then we saw 7 silent swans fly overhead
  • Anna’s HummingbirdFemale on nest at Rowing Club, males displaying
  • Short-eared OwlOne flying the East Meadow just after 6:30am
  • 4 woodpeckersMissing Hairy
  • Northern ShrikeNice looks, East Meadow
  • Tree Swallow~10, very actively making claims on nest boxes
  • Violet-green Swallow50-60. First of spring
  • “Slate-colored” Junco1 along slough
  • Yellow-rumped Warbler Several, including singing male “Audubon’s”
  • W. MeadowlarkA half dozen west edge of Fields 7-8-9

We searched for, and were unhappy that we didn’t find, Rufous Hummingbird, Say’s Phoebe, or Mountain Bluebird. Next week. They’ll be back next week. Count on it!

For the day, 54 species.

== Michael Hobbs

Three of at least five Wilson's Snipe across the slough.  Photo by Hugh Jennings


Tree Swallows, just back and already claiming nest boxes.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Juvenile White-crowned Sparrow.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Male Red-winged Blackbird.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Northern Shrike.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Anna's Hummingbird on the nest at the Rowing Club.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Green-winged Teal at the Rowing Club.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Report for March 9, 2017                                                                                                                   Birding at Marymoor

Brian, Sharon & I filled in for a traveling Michael today at Marymoor. It was an overcast day, but the rain didn’t really pick up until late in the day, and even then it wasn’t that heavy. We had many hopes for spring arrivals that weren’t fulfilled, but overall it was a birdy day with some nice finds along the way for the 11 of us present.


  • Cackling Goose – flyover flock
  • Wood Duck - one male at Rowing Club - first of year
  • 5 species of gull, including an adult Herring
  • Great Blue Herons - 40+ at heronry in the off-leash area - lots of stick-bringing and posturing
  • Green Heron -still hanging out along slough
  • Barn Owl - adult seen and begging baby heard in windmill, early
  • Western Screech-Owl - heard early along boardwalk
  • Red-breasted Sapsuckers - drumming and calling in the cottonwoods
  • Hutton’s Vireo – singing near windmill — still very unusual at Marymoor, but I think our third sighting this year
  • Bushtit – large flock
  • Townsend’s Warbler – nice male
  • White-crowned Sparrow - 3 total, including one weak pugetensis song - perhaps still from one of the wintering immatures, rather than necessarily a new arrival
  • Western Meadowlark - 8 in the soccer fields, including some singing.

Finches were notably absent for much of the day — finally at the Rowing Club we picked up a small flock of Pine Siskins and a single Purple Finch. No House Finch or Am. Goldfinch to be found anywhere.

For the day, 60 species.

Matt Bartels

Male Belted Kingfisher.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

American Coots. Photo by Bob Asanoma
Mallards (and one Green-winged Teal male, upper left).  The very brown duck, center

Brown Creeper.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Western Meadowlark.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Adult Ring-billed Gull.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Adult Cooper's Hawk.  Photo by Hugh Jennings.

Report for March 2, 2017                                                                                                                     Birding at Marymoor

The rain never got beyond spizzle (sort of a spitting drizzle that barely wetted us), though the overcast was pretty dark all morning. A touch of breeze now and then would have made things cold, but the temps were in the low 40’s, so we were pretty comfortable. It was moderately birdy.


Cackling Goose              Many small to middling flocks flying by
SWAN SP.                    Two in a somewhat distant flyby, probably Trumpeter
American Wigeon           At least 2 below the weir
Horned Grebe                Two well out on the lake
Green Heron                  Very dependable upon the beaver lodge
Bald Eagle                      I believe they lost their nest; building a new one nearby
Red-tailed Hawk            Building a new nest near the site of the old odd-snag nest
BARN OWL                  Matt saw and adult, heard babies inside windmill, early
Great Horned Owl          Heard up the hill west of the entrance
Western Screech-Owl     Matt heard, early, boardwalk
Short-eared Owl             East Meadow – third straight week
Hairy Woodpecker         Had a 4 woodpecker day, missing only Pileated
Tree Swallow                 One seen
Bushtit                            First of 2017 – maybe a half-dozen along slough
Varied Thrush                 Heard and finally seen. First confirmed for 2017
Westerm Meadowlark    Still hanging out around model airplane field

We *might* have seen a Rufous Hummingbird, and Sara though she heard one, but we can’t confirm. This would be about as early as we’ve EVER had one, but it’s plausible. They should be arriving very soon if not already.

Matt also saw American Beaver at the lake platform, pre-dawn.

Misses included Ring-billed Gull, Steller’s Jay, Brown Creeper, Marsh Wren, and House Finch.

For the day, 61 species. I believe we’re at 85 species for the year.

After the walk, we had an Au Revoir party for Grace & Ollie Oliver, who are moving to Poulsbo. We will miss them, and I will greatly miss Ollie’s photographs which have constituted much of the Bird Blog for the last many years.

== Michael Hobbs

Killdeer in slough below weir.  Photo by Hugh Jennings
Wilson's Snipe in slough below weir.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Green Heron on the beaver lodge.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

American Coots.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Male Red-winged Blackbird.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Varied Thrush.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

American Coots.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Nesting Anna's Hummingbird at the Rowing Club.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Report for February 23, 2017                                                                                       Birding at Marymoor

Marymoor today was showing some signs of spring, with many of the birds singing. Overcast and cool temperatures, but no rain. The river is still quite high and water over some of the paths. Short a few ducks, and missed Bushtit, Red-breasted Sapsucker, Pacific Wren and Barn Owl. But did have Short-eared Owl and Western Screech-Owl.

Overall a good day, even if we missed Michael (down in Costa Rica).

Townsend’s Warbler – first of year
Pine Siskin – first of year
Green Heron – at beaver lodge on river
Pileated Woodpeckers – 2

Good Birding

Brian H. Bell
Woodinville WA

Subadult Bald Eagle.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Song Sparrow.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Townsend's Warbler.  Photo by Joanne

Red-breasted Nuthatch.  Photo by Joanne

Red-breasted Nuthatch.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Anna's Hummingbird.  Photo by Joanne

Anna's Hummingbird.  Photo by Bob Asanoma.  Angle changes everything

Horned Lark, 2017-02-19.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Horned Lark, 2017-02-19.  Photo by Ollie Oliver

Report for February 16, 2016                                                                                                                 Birding at Marymoor

Tweets – we had unexpectedly nice weather today, and over a dozen birders. The birds cooperated, making for an excellent day. It was warm, and partly sunny by our start time (though Matt got rained on pre-dawn).

After our recent rains, there was water everywhere. Large puddles in fields and parking lots, water over the paths, water over the boardwalk. It was passible with over-the-ankles boots, but just barely and only with care.

Sadly, we also noticed that the “odd-snag”, a tremendously old Douglas Fir snag that stood just SW of the park entrance, has broken off very short. For at least a couple of decades, RED-TAILED HAWKS nested atop the snag, which featured a “toothpick” spike about 6 feet tall that stuck up from above the broken-off top. The hawks would nest at the base of the spike which I expect it made the nest harder for eagles to predate (though we did once witness an eagle take a baby hawk). A few weeks ago, a Red-tail was seen building up the nest for another year; now they will have to find a new place to nest.


Northern Pintail              One male in a field puddle – First for 2017
California Gull                Maybe 3
Herring Gull                   At least 1; possibly a Thayer’s or two as well
Green Heron                  Continues at Beaver Lodge
SHORT-EARED OWL Matt & Sharon saw two, pre-dawn, East Meadow
R.-breasted Sapsucker   2, possibly flirting, Rowing Club
Pileated Woodpecker     Male (first year?), Dog Meadow
Northern Shrike              Seen several times
HORNED LARK          One on soccer fields west of Fields 7-8-9
- SWALLOWS -          About 6. At least one was almost certainly a TREE. CEDAR WAXWING    A flock of 11, Dog Meadow
Yellow-rumped Warbler Several “Audubon’s”
Western Meadowlark     At least 2 at model airplane field

It was a big surprise to find a HORNED LARK on the grass fields just NE of Lot C (where we meet). This is just our 3rd spring sighting ever for Horned Larks at Marymoor (and only our 18th sighting in all). The two previous spring sightings were 2002-02-15 (only one day off from today’s date!) and 2002-04-17.

It was a good day for animal sightings too. In addition to the usual Eastern Gray Squirrels and Eastern Cottontails, Matt *saw* a BEAVER pre-dawn, and we had at least 2 RIVER OTTERS on the lake. At the Rowing Club pond were at least 3 RED-EARED SLIDERS and 1-2 very bright PAINTED TURTLES.

For the day, 60 species. For the year, I believe we’re at 82 species (plus swallow sp.)

== Michael Hobbs

Dark-eyed Junco.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Red-winged Blackbird.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Double-crested Cormorant.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

The Great Blue Heron nests are very active.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Cedar Waxwings.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Cedar Waxwings.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Pileated Woodpecker.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

See if you can spot the Green Heron on the beaver lodge.  Photo by Rupali

Northern Shrike.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Northern Shrike.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

Male Northern Pintail.  Photo by Bob Asanoma

Male Northern Pintail.  Photo by Hugh Jennings

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