25 January 2008

Squeezing in a Shrike

I finished some errands this afternoon at 5:00 and decided to use the last half hour of daylight to try for some more birds. I did a quick loop around the Logan Landfill, including past the Logan Fish Hatchery, to try once again to find a Northern Shrike. This is one of the few remaining species that I know are present in the county right now and which will not be here in a few months, so it was a priority to find this species before it migrated north and out of the county. As I was pishing at some White-crowned Sparrows, hoping for something else (like a White-throated Sparrow), a shrike flew in. The way it was positioned in the shrub provided very poor looks, and it soon took off. Although Loggerhead Shrikes are even rarer this time of year, I didn't get a good enough look to rule that species out. However, after just a minute or so, the same bird flew back closer to me and landed in a nearby tree, giving me great looks at this first-winter Northern Shrike, my first of the year. I even got a few poor photographs in the waning light, but they aren't clear enough and the bird isn't rare enough to bother you with them here.

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