Kamloops Big Day May 26, 2019

Each year the Kamloops Naturalist Club organizes a competition where teams of birders see if they can spot more species on the south or north side of the Thompson (and South Thompson) River.  Glenn and I worked together for as many birds as possible from 5:30am – 4:00pm on the south side.  Together we covered Goose Lake Road, Separation Lake, as well as some other higher elevation sites.

Several highlights of the day:

-a strange looking hawk that we thought was a Ferruginous Hawk but later turned out to be a funky Harlans Red-tailed.

-A Sabine’s Gull at Separation Lake that I snapped a few photos of as it flew right above us.  Some explanation is needed here: I was engrossed in a Western male Merlin in full colours that I had never seen before and had it in the scope.  Glenn yelled out that there was a gull.  A quick glance revealed that it had a black hood and so I assumed it was a Bonapartes.  I snapped some photos as it flew right over us not showing the diagnostic contrasting wing pattern of a Sabines because the sun was directly behind it.  It wasn’t until the next day I finally got around to looking through the photos and went white sitting behind my computer screen!  This was within a few minutes of learning that our hawk was confirmed as not being Ferruginous.  Quite a whirlwind of emotions and I was a mess.  Sad that we hadn’t found a Ferruginous, embarrassed that we couldn’t make out a breeding-plumaged Sabines Gull in the field!, and then elated that we had found a Sabines Gull at separation Lake.  It’s moments like these that make birding so entertaining sometimes.

-several new species for me in the Kamloops area for the day

-84 species for Goose Lake Road (a personal record) from Highway 5A to Goose Lake.  We did cover a bit of the road below Goose Lake but didn’t record any new species there.

-not seeing one Swainson’s Hawk the entire day despite covering almost all of the Knutsford areas well known for them. (Glenn saw one from his backyard the next day ofcourse)

-confirming a long held principle in birding:  if something looks interesting, take photos first and ask questions later!  Without this, we would have falsely reported a Ferruginous and completely missed Sabines Gull.  We also would have had 2 Hermit Thrushes instead of 1 Hermit and 1 Swainson’s Thrush.

A big thanks to Glenn for great company throughout the day, his local knowledge, and for driving.

Kamloops–Goose Lake Road, Thompson-Nicola, British Columbia, CA
May 26, 2019 5:37 AM – 11:15 AM
Protocol: Traveling
10.0 kilometer(s)
84 species
Canada Goose  8
Blue-winged Teal  2
Cinnamon Teal  5
Northern Shoveler  7
Gadwall  1
American Wigeon  3
Mallard  30
Green-winged Teal  2
Ring-necked Duck  6
Lesser Scaup  16
Bufflehead  9
Barrow’s Goldeneye  8
Ruddy Duck  12
Ruffed Grouse  1
Pied-billed Grebe  1
Horned Grebe  1
Horned Grebe llk3
Calliope Hummingbird  2
Calliope Hummingbird jjg3
Sora  1
American Coot  5
Killdeer  3
Wilson’s Snipe  4
Spotted Sandpiper  4
Common Loon  1
Northern Harrier  1
Bald Eagle  1
Red-tailed Hawk  2
Short-eared Owl  1
Red-naped Sapsucker  2
Hairy Woodpecker  1
Pileated Woodpecker  1
Northern Flicker  14
American Kestrel  2
Merlin  1
Western Wood-Pewee  3
Western Wood-pewee hj3
Hammond’s Flycatcher  2
Dusky Flycatcher  10
Say’s Phoebe  1
Eastern Kingbird  1
Warbling Vireo  4
Black-billed Magpie  3
Clark’s Nutcracker  1
Common Raven  3
Northern Rough-winged Swallow  1
Northern Rough-winged Swallow
Tree Swallow  8
Violet-green Swallow  2
Barn Swallow  3
Barn Swallow lkhhj3.JPG
Black-capped Chickadee  2
Mountain Chickadee  4
Red-breasted Nuthatch  2
House Wren  12
Marsh Wren  4
Ruby-crowned Kinglet  5
Mountain Bluebird  1
Townsend’s Solitaire  1
Swainson’s Thrush  1
Swainson's Thrush hhke (2)
Hermit Thrush  1
American Robin  8
Gray Catbird  2
European Starling  25
Red Crossbill  10
Pine Siskin  175
Pine Siskin fgf2
American Goldfinch  4
Chipping Sparrow  8
Clay-colored Sparrow  10
Dark-eyed Junco  2
Vesper Sparrow  15
Savannah Sparrow  6
Song Sparrow  8
Spotted Towhee  3
Yellow-headed Blackbird  1
Western Meadowlark  14
Bullock’s Oriole  3
Red-winged Blackbird  12
Brown-headed Cowbird  9
Brewer’s Blackbird  13
Orange-crowned Warbler  5
MacGillivray’s Warbler  1
MacGillvray's Warbler kghk3.JPG
Common Yellowthroat  6
Yellow Warbler  5
Yellow-rumped Warbler  2
Townsend’s Warbler  2
Wilson’s Warbler  1
Western Tanager  3
House Sparrow  1
Separation Lake, Knutsford, Thompson-Nicola, British Columbia, CA
May 26, 2019 11:42 AM – 12:05 PM
Protocol: Traveling
1.0 kilometer(s)
28 species
Canada Goose  20
Blue-winged Teal  1
Northern Shoveler  2
Gadwall  3
American Wigeon  2
Mallard  3
Redhead  5
Ring-necked Duck  2
Lesser Scaup  14
Bufflehead  1
Barrow’s Goldeneye  10
Ruddy Duck  6
Pied-billed Grebe  1
American Coot  5
Sabine’s Gull  1
Sabine's Gull hhk3
Sabine's gull ljhk4
Bonaparte’s Gull  1
American Kestrel  1
Merlin  1
Common Raven  1
Cliff Swallow  10
American Robin  1
Clay-colored Sparrow  1
Vesper Sparrow  3
Savannah Sparrow  2
Yellow-headed Blackbird  7
Western Meadowlark  4
Red-winged Blackbird  2
Brewer’s Blackbird  4


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