Daily Observations

Sunday:
I had a basketball game and stopped by Swan Lake on my way there, but did not spend much time outside otherwise.

Weather:
Temperatures were warmer. There was water on the surface of the ice at Swan Lake, but the lake was still pretty much entirely iced over.

Birds: Mallards and the Cackling Goose were back at Swan Lake. There were a few gulls on the ice. There were only two of the domestic breed Mallards on the lake. I think the other one may have been killed (I’m pretty sure the one that’s missing from when the lake was frozen is the bird that was getting chased and bitten by another one).

Monday:
I did not really get out at all today.
Weather: Warmer temperatures continued and it was breezy.

Tuesday:
I stopped by Swan Lake on my way to pick up Rowan this morning.
Weather: It was rainy today and there was a little bit of hail at various times. Swan Lake was still almost completely frozen. Snow level seemed to be down around 800 feet.
Birds: The usual Mallards and Cackling Goose were at Swan Lake.

Wednesday/Thursday:
I did not get out much these days.
Weather: It was warmer with rain. There was a brief period of clearing Thursday night.

Friday: (Photos)
I went to Swan Lake this morning before picking Rowan up from preschool. Connor and I went to Swan Lake then I walked through Totem Park this afternoon.

Weather: It was quite windy throughout the day. Winds were blowing from the east and southeast. There was little rain. Swan Lake is still 90% or more frozen, but there were several small patches of open water scattered around at the edge of the lake.

Birds: This morning at Swan Lake I saw a Double-crested Cormorant fly over and check the lake out. The Mallards and the Cackling Goose were there as well as a handful of gulls. When I stopped by later with Connor, there were more gulls around. While there this afternoon, I noticed a Bald Eagle across the lake. A little later it flew across and flushed quite a few ducks and a Hooded Merganser from an opening at the edge of the lake. I had not noticed there were birds there (though I had made a brief scan of the upper end of the lake) until the eagle had caused them to scatter.

On the way home with Rowan this morning I noticed a heard and saw a flock of Bohemian Waxwings. I was able to get a better look at them in the afternoon with Connor. They were alternating between a Mt. Ash tree at the corner of Park St. and Biorka St. and the top of a tall alder on Biorka Street.

I noticed quite a few starlings up in the top of conifers in the neighborhood today. I’m not sure what they were doing up there. It was almost like they were finding something to eat, but it’s hard to imagine what it might have been.

At Crescent Harbor there was a Great-blue Heron that flew over. We also saw a couple of Common Mergansers in the harbor.

Along the Lincoln Street Shore and the front of Totem Park I saw, 20+ Barrow’s Goldeneyes, 7+ Buffleheads, 6+ Harlequin Ducks, and 1 Common Goldeneye (a little further out). Out further off-shore, I saw a Pelagic Cormorant. There were a few Mallards in the estuary.

Other Notes: The buds of several shrubs seem far more developed than I would expect for this time of year. Some Rusty Menziesia (Menziesia ferruginea) plants in particular seemed to have buds that were quite swollen. I’ll have to try to remember to keep an eye on them.

Saturday:
I spent most of the day inside.
Weather: Things seemed much calmer after yesterday’s winds. Clouds were low on the mountain and it started raining this afternoon. Temperatures were in the mid to upper 30s.
Birds: I noticed a few juncos in the back yard this afternoon, including the pale junco (which I had not noticed recently). I also saw an Orange-crowned Warbler. It is probably the more yellow of the two I was able to see at the end of November. I did not expect that it would survive the cold snap we had, but apparently it was able to. Perhaps the other one is still around as well.

About matt goff

I am an aspiring naturalist who seeks to learn all that I can about the more-than-human aspects of this place that is my home.
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