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and their habitat on Whidbey Island and surrounding waters.  Visitors are welcome to participate in our events.
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Unusual Bird Sightings and Special Points of Interest
Post an unusual bird sighting| Get emails when sightings are posted.

Reporter's name: Darwin Wile

Sighting Description: solitary lesser scaup on the fresh water pond east of the east dike of Deer Lagoon

Noted because Whidbey check list specifies this bird as only "occasional" in the summer

Location: fresh water pond east of the east dike of Deer Lagoon

Date and time: 6/25/16; 8:15 pm

Above comment submitted Jun 25, 2016

Reporter's name: George Heleker

Sighting Description: For the second time in about a year. I saw an otter at our place. This time it was an adult otter and one about half its size. Our pond is oval in shape and currently only about 20 x 30 feet at its widest points, and it's just inside the edge of the woods. That location is near one of the highest points on the island except for an area at the north end. This area just doesn't seem like a place one would find otters although there are several ponds south of ours that are somewhat larger, and a creek runs from them and through our place on the way north about 6 to 8 months a year. I doubt there are any fish in any of the ponds unless someone is stocking them, but there certainly are frogs around. I took a few photos with my point and shoot camera without any flash, and quickly got out of there so as to not scare them away.

Location: Our home near Holst Rd. and Rolling Hills Rd. southwest of Clinton.

Date and time: 6/25/16- 10:15 a.m.

Above comment submitted Jun 25, 2016

Reporter's name: Ruth Scrivner

Sighting Description: A large flock of American Pipit 20or 30, very difficult to count, are swooping around our house at Dugualla Bay.

Location: Jones Rd Oak Harbor

Date and time: june 27. observed during the last few days

Above comment submitted Jun 24, 2016

Reporter's name: John Schuster

(Editor: Sarah Schmidt)

Sighting Description: On the black and white warbler I reported yesterday it may have been Black-throated Gray warbler. Unfortunatelly I didn't get a photo of it so cannot be sure.

Location: Freeland Wa

Date and time: 6/22/16

Above comment submitted Jun 23, 2016

Reporter's name: Linda Bainbridge

Sighting Description: John, maybe what you saw was a Black-throated Gray Warbler? A Black-and-White Warbler would be very rare on Whidbey, and one gathering nesting material here would be even rarer. If you're sure it's a Black-and-White Warbler, try to get a photo of it.

Location: Response to June 20 siting

Date and time: June 23, 2016, 8:20 am

Above comment submitted Jun 23, 2016

Reporter's name: John/Barb Schuster

Sighting Description: Black and White Warbler gathering nesting material in our vegetable garden. Poative on the siting, looked in the bird book right away.

Location: 2500 Goss Ridge Rd Freeland

Date and time: June 20th 2016 11:30 AM

Above comment submitted Jun 20, 2016

Compiling Data on White Pelicans in Western Washington

Ornithologist Sue Ehler is asking for information on white-pelican sightings. She's already noted the sightings posted here. If you can remember other sightings or if you see white pelicans in the future, she requests that you notify her. Details can be seen here.

Reporter's name: Linda Bainbridge

Sighting Description: Joan, the light gray bird that you saw sounds like a male Northern Harrier. They are common in that area.

Location: Deer Lagoon

Date and time: 10:26 6/18/16

Above comment submitted Jun 18, 2016

Reporter's name: Joan Govedare

Sighting Description: about 50 American White Pelicans at 9:00 AM at the west side of the Dike, June 17th, Friday... as described in earlier posts. They were in the water when I arrived. Then they took off and circled for about a half an hour. Then they disappeared, heading North. I distinctly saw a bald eagle, soaring near the flock. Then I saw an all white, more like a light grey, eagle soaring. It wasn't a hawk, nor was it an osprey. I'm no expert, but it really looked like an eagle to me. I did not have binoculars. I'm wondering if it was an albino eagle? Has anybody else ever seen this?

Location: South Whidbey Island, near Double bluff Beach at the west side of the Dike.

Confirmation: It is supposedly rare for these birds to be migrating on this path. I've never seen them here before. It was a spectacular experience.

Date and time: 6-17-2016, 9:00 AM

Above comment submitted Jun 17, 2016

Reporter's name: Libby Hayward

Sighting Description: Flock of white pelicans circling/flying over Millman Road toward Deer Lagoon this morning aroound 8:45-9:00. Have ID photo of them on 6/13 around 3:15 on Deer Lagoon near Shore Avenue.

Location: Millman Road, Deer Lagoon

Date and time: 6/13, 3:15 and 6/17, 8:45

Above comment submitted Jun 17, 2016

Reporter's name: Carla Corin

Sighting Description: A black swift flew over our house, heading north.

Location: West Beach and Barque Rd., Oak Harbor.

Date and time: June 15, about 11:00.

Above comment submitted Jun 17, 2016

Reporter's name: Darwin Wile

Sighting Description: The pelicans were still there at 12:30 pm.
I estimate there were 55-65 birds. I could only find 5 or 6 of them with breeding protuberances. But there were another 8-10 or more who seemed to have remnants of a protuberance on their upper mandibles. Many more of them who did not have protuberances did have a blackish cast to their white heads suggesting they were adults who had lost their protuberances. There were also quite a few birds with grayish wings and backs, suggesting to me they probably were sub-adults. So, unless someone corrects what seems to be logical to me, this is a mixed flock of breeding and sub-adult birds.
The fact that white pelicans are listed as accidental on our check list begs a few questions: Why does such a large flock including mature and immature birds show up apparently substantually out of their breeding grounds? Why are so many adults not on the breeding grounds? White pelicans migrate in mixed flocks of adults and juveniles, but, I think, by this time they have separated into groups of breeders and non-breeders, the breeders nesting and the non-breeders off foraging somewhere else.
Obviously, I am not an expert on pelicans. I would appreciate any help anyone can pass along. Darwin Wile, dardrifter@gmail.com

Location: west of the west dike on Deer Lagoon

Date and time: 6/15/16; 12:30pm

Above comment submitted Jun 15, 2016

Reporter's name: Ann Casey and Bruce Livingston

Sighting Description: About 60 American White Pelicans at Deer Lagoon can be seen from the west dike. Clustered together on the fresh water side of the lagoon toward the west end, closer to the back of the homes along the beach road.

Location: Deer Lagoon west dike, fresh water side of lagoon

Date and time: 6/14/16 5:30pm

Above comment submitted Jun 14, 2016

Reporter's name: Barbara Paul

Sighting Description: a flock of large white birds, moving funny,like head down and up in a wave like movement.Did not have my binocs., but clearly saw black wingtips when they were flapping their wings

Location: deer lagoon,

Date and time: June 13, 7:30 pm

Above comment submitted Jun 13, 2016

Reporter's name: Craig & Joy Johnson

Sighting Description: Female Hooded Merganser with eight chicks at Earth Sanctuary.
Was able to get some video footage. Video still shot is being uploaded.

Location: Earth Sanctuary, Freeland

Date and time: June 9, 2016

Above comment submitted Jun 9, 2016

Reporter's name: David Parent

Sighting Description: My co-worker, who is a beginning birder, perfectly described a male Bobolink in the meadow at the Greenbank Farm. No photos. If anyone gets over there, keep your eyes open!

Location: Greenbank Farm, on the slope leading to the vegetable garden

Date and time: June 8, 10am

Above comment submitted Jun 9, 2016

Reporter's name: Debbi Williams

Sighting Description: I was walking home in our neighborhood (Sierra) and saw a huge flock of birds flying south to north overhead. As I looked closer I identified them as American White Pelicans! Once they passed me, they formed into a straight line and began moving in a wavelike action, much like when they fly over the ocean waves. They continued north in this formation until they were out of sight. Absolutely amazing to see!

Location: Sierra neighborhood off the south end of West Beach Road.

Date and time: 06/06/16 @ about 2:30 pm

Above comment submitted Jun 8, 2016

Reporter's name: Tillie Scruton

Sighting Description: A few weeks ago, a friend of mine watched a pair of Bald Eagles take down a Great Blue Heron. The heron met its end over water, and it was too heavy to carry through the air, so one of the eagles rowed it ashore before consuming it on the beach (the other eagle was driven off). This was at Sandy Point beach, near Langley. Last week, we watched an eagle harass and nearly take another heron, this one at the Langley marina. This time the heron got away, but the predatory intent was pretty clear. Later as we watched there was another try, two eagles this time, one (loud) heron. Have other people seen eagles take herons around here before?

Location: near Langley

Date and time: Weds May 25 2016

Above comment submitted Jun 5, 2016

Reporter's name: Dave Parent

Sighting Description: Nice sighting, Dr Swanson! White Pelicans are quite uncommon in Washington, especially the west side,but large flocks have been seen lately. I believe this is the first Whidbey sighting of this year.

Location: Coupeville

Date and time: Today

Above comment submitted Jun 5, 2016

Reporter's name: Stephen Swanson MD

Sighting Description: A formation of about 30 very large quiet sea birds with pure white breast and most of wing area and black primary wing feathers just flew over our home at about 70 ft near the Coupeville ferry. They had their long neck folded back along the body and a long yellowish bill. We have lived here 16 years and have never seen these birds before. They looked like the brown pelicans I have seen off Tattosh Island while fishing but slightly larger and pure white instead of brown. Are they white pelicans? They seemed to circle near Crockett Lake as if looking for a night resting spot. Has anyone else seen them. It happened so fast I didn't get to my camera.

Location: 15203 SR 20
Coupeville WA

Confirmation: This is a likely a rare sighting AND THE BIRDS ARE NOW LOOKING FOR NIGHT LODGING

Date and time: 6/5/2016 @6:20 pm

Above comment submitted Jun 5, 2016

Reporter's name: Steve Ellis

Sighting Description: A Wandering Tattler was on the rocky portion of the beach at Partridge Point (Libbey Beach). It flew and landed a couple of times, pushed on by people and dogs. The last I saw it was flying along the beach into Ft Ebey St Park.
Tattlers have only been seen on Whidbey once or twice before (as far as I know).
Also present 3 Black Oystercatchers; 1 large sea lion.

Location: Partridge Point, end of libbey Road

Date and time: 5/30/2016 3:12pm

Above comment submitted May 30, 2016

Reporter's name: Sarah Schmidt

Sighting Description: MacGillivray's Warbler at the bird bath at 12:50 - my first Whidbey sighting of this "rare" species! A beautiful male: yellow warbler with gray head grading to black on throat, black line through the eye and crossing over the bill, and white arcs above and below the eye. Stunning! Somewhere in my birding life I've seen the species before, but this is my first since moving to Washington 17 years ago. We must have a migration fallout at our house!

Location: Rhodena Drive, Coupeville

Date and time: 5/25/2016, 12:50 PM

Above comment submitted May 25, 2016

Reporter's name: Sarah Schmidt

Sighting Description: Nashville Warbler at our birdbath this morning -- my first Whidbey sighting of this "occasional" species. Gray head, white eye-ring, yellow-green back, yellow beneath.

Location: Three miles south of Coupeville.

Date and time: May 25, 10:15 AM.

Above comment submitted May 25, 2016

Reporter's name: Marianne Thawley

Sighting Description: Handsome male Black-Headed Grosbeak in my back yard

Location: Summit Loop, Coupeville

Date and time: 5/21/16 4 pm

Above comment submitted May 22, 2016

Reporter's name: Darwin Wile

Sighting Description: interesting flock of shore birds on Deer Lagoon this evening---about 30 whimbrels, 1 black-bellied plover, 1 spotted sandpiper, 7 dowitchers (distance and poor light prohibited exact identification)

Location: Deer Lagoon

Date and time: 5/18/16, 8:05 pm

Above comment submitted May 18, 2016

Reporter's name: Jay Adams

Sighting Description: Two Pectoral Sandpipers

Location: Off the path to the West Dike at Deer Lagoon.

Date and time: May 14, 2016 at about 10:45 a.m.

Above comment submitted May 14, 2016

Reporter's name: Ruth Scrivner

Sighting Description: 19 Trumpeter Swans flew over my house at Dugualla Bay .

Location: Dugualla Bay Oak Harbor

Date and time: approx. 7:30 am

Above comment submitted May 14, 2016

 Upcoming Events 

Get emails when updates are posted.

Birding In The Neighborhoods - Weekly Field Trips

South Whidbey
The trips are every other Thursday and the meeting time varies with the season. If you would like to be notified of the events, contact Phyllis Kind (email).

North Whidbey
The trips are on the 2nd Wednesday of each month. If you wish to be notified of the events, contact Marcia Lazoff (email).

Sunday, September 18: Special Event
Bird in the Hand
Sharing the Whidbey Audubon Bird Specimen Library. Noon to 3 p.m. at the Bayview Farm and Garden Nursery, 2780 Marshview Avenue, Langley. Check back for more details or for possible changes.

Whidbey Audubon Society
PO Box 1012
Oak Harbor,Washington 98277

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