Golf Course Kestrel and Passing Killer Whales

Broken clouds with some sun this morning. Quite breezy. Overcast in the afternoon, with rain beginning early evening. (This was all somewhat contrary to my understanding of the forecast, which I thought had implied rain would start much earlier.)

I stopped by the golf course this morning. Just after I arrived, I saw a possible kestrel fly by, but I wasn’t sure. I spent an hour there, but it was pretty quiet overall. Among other things, I did see a young Sharp-shinned Hawk, a spread wing (Lestes disjunctus), and some mystery tracks/trails in the dirt.

At Sandy Beach I watched for a bit from my car. I noticed a juvenile gull begging from a couple of different adults which just flew away. A bit later a different adult chased a young bird away (I’m not sure if it was the same young bird). Some Sanderling were still there.

I stopped at Sea Mart for groceries, and happened to come out around the time a pod of Killer Whales was going by. I learned later I had missed some excitement downtown a little earlier. They had apparently gone after at least one sea lion in Crescent Bay. I’ve heard of this happening a couple times, but have yet to witness it.

A young Rhinoceros Auklet not far off the shore was unexpected. I had seen what I thought was one further out from Sandy Beach moving towards town. I suspect this one was the same bird, but much closer shore than I usually see this species.

I revisited the Lower Gavan trail to revisit some mushrooms I had not attended to sufficiently when there on Monday. In addition to those, I noticed a couple new ones.

I heard what may have been a Merlin calling, but I’m not familiar enough with their calls to be sure.

Driving where I could see the water this afternoon, I was a little surprised to see how high the tide was. I checked and saw it was predicted to be in the high 10s, but with some atmospheric effect it topped out over 11. I think it’s been a fair while since I’ve seen the tide so high.

I did go back to the golf course later this afternoon. This time I saw the kestrel was there. It seemed disinclined to stay on a perch a couple of times when I got close. At one point, had I been better able to minimize my disturbance, I could have probably gotten pretty nice photos of it perched (where it had gone a little lower to get out of a heavier bit of rain).

I did observe a couple of jays briefly interacting with the kestrel.

When a heavy rain shower plus wind came, the kestrel seemed to hunker down a bit.

The kestrel disappeared for periods. I think it may have been hunting adjacent neighborhoods, but I’m not sure.

My iNaturalist Observations for Today

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