Date: 2/28/17 6:38 pm
From: Fred Atwood <fatwood...>
Subject: [Va-bird] Belated Report: King George and Westmoreland Counties, Feb 26
Dear VA Birders
I am sorry for this delayed report, but I thought it might still be of
interest to some of you.
It was a gorgeous day Sunday Feb 26, and rather than dashing all over the
place I took my time savoring every moment of it, visiting only two
locations at King George ponds (LaGrange Lane and one private location),
Washington's Birthplace in Westmoreland, and 2 private locations in
Leedstown (Westmoreland). There was a good diversity of waterfowl, though
goose numbers were way down compared to my last visit. Tundra Swans were
still present in good numbers at Birthplace where I spent a good long time
just scanning them with my scope and enjoying their wonderful calls. There
were a couple new spring arrivals, including Tree Swallows, Blue-winged
Teals and some very early Pectoral Sandpipers. Pine Warblers were singing
in a couple locations but no Ospreys were back yet. A Merlin and some
singing and foraging Rusty Blackbirds were in Leedstown. A flock of
kinglets. and pine and yellow-rumped warblers were foraging for insects
among the red maple blossoms in full bloom. A few violets were in bloom and
one blueberry bush had a few blossoms. During the very mellow sunset, a
Virginia Rail grunted in the marsh in Leedstown where two harriers were
hunting and scores of ducks were foraging or flying in for the night.
Barred and Great Horned Owls were hooting away as the light faded. And one
last stop at Mothershead (RapRivValNWR) in Leedstown had 7 woodcocks
peenting and doing their flight displays. There were also singing Spring
Peepers as well as Leopard and Pickerel Frogs at several locations, and
just one of the vernal pools had a couple of salamander egg masses so it is
still too early for them.

Here are some of the 94 species of birds I found that day.

1068 Canada Geese at 5 locations
328 Tundra Swans at Lagrange, Leedstown and 306 at Birthplace
38 Wood Duck (36 at my property in Leedstown)
158 Gadwall at 3 locations
14 American Wigeon at LaGrange and Leedstown
64 Mallards 3 locations
5 Blue WInged Teal (FOY in Leedstown
28 Shoveler in Leedstown
10 Pintail in Leedstown and Lagrange
135 Green WInged Teal in 3 locations (115 in Leedstown)
79 Canvasback at Birthplace and King George
10 Redhead at Lagrange (9) and Birthplace
226 Ring-necked Duck at 4 locations
Scaup: 25 Greater and 76 Lesser
48 Bufflehead at 3 locations
1 C Goldeneye King George
22 Hooded Merganser at 2 locations
5 Common Merganser (Leedstown)
3 Red-breasted Mergansers (Leedstown)
960 Ruddy Ducks mostly males at Birthplace, mostly females at LaGrange
1 Red-throated Loon Birthplace
7 Pied Billed Grebe at 3 locations
1 Great Egret a LaGrange
3 Harriers in Leedstown
1 Coopers Hawk in Leedstown
15 Bald Eagles in 6 locations
1 Virginia Rail Leedstown
35 Coot LaGrange
16 Killder
2 Pectoral Sandpiper Leedstown
3 Snipe LaGrange and Leedstown
7 Woodcock Leedstown
2 Bonaparte's Gull Birthplace
2 Great Horned and 5 Barred Owls in Leedstown
2 Kestrel Leedstown
1 Merlin Leedstown
1 Phoebe
2 Horned Lark King George
4 Tree Swallow LaGrange
2 Brown Creeper Birthplace
1 Winter Wren
1 Hermit Thrush
1 Catbird
6 Pine Warblers
3 Fox SParrows Birthplace
27 Juncos
29 white-throats
4 savannahs
2 Swamp Sp
6 towhees
23 Rusty Blackbirds Leedstown
1 male Purple Finch along the road to Birthplace. Appeared stunned on the
side of the road. When I stopped to check on it it flew up and spiraled
back down again as if dizzy. After doing this a few times it flew off and
disappeared.

All the best
Fred Atwood
Oakton, Fairfax Co
Leedstown, Westmoreland Co
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