Date: 4/9/17 3:45 pm
From: Joel Geier <joel.geier...>
Subject: [obol] [Fwd: [birding] E.E. Wilson Phainopepla (female)]
Hi all,

While walking our dog around south part of E.E. Wilson Wildlife Area
this morning, I stopped by the old movie theater foundation next to the
central wetland, to check on the BLACK PHOEBE pair that have been
hanging around there since early spring, and might be nesting.

I saw a slightly larger, slim crested bird fly up (apparently) from the
water to perch in the interior of a largish willow shrub that's growing
out of the water. My first thought was waxwing but it looked more
elongated, and I noticed very prominent white edges on the wing feathers
(folded, as it was perched).

So I started to think about more rare crested birds like Phainopeplas,
Pyrrhuloxias etc (since I couldn't specifically recall what females
looked like). It sat very still for about a minute, angled away from me
so mostly I could just see the back. It was generally drab grayish apart
from those wing markings. The crest didn't look as strongly pointed as a
Steller's Jay's (I also gave some thought to an aberrant Steller's Jay).

I tried moving a few yards to the left to get another angle on the bird.
While I was doing that I took my eyes off it for a couple of seconds,
and then I couldn't find it again. So it must have slipped away, deeper
into the wetland, while I was moving.

There are a lot of willow shrubs in that whole area that could be good
for a Phainopepla.

Good luck if you look for it,

Joel Geier
Camp Adair area north of Corvallis

birding mailing list

Join us on Facebook!