Date: 2/25/18 7:45 pm From: kurtcapt87--- via va-bird <va-bird...> Subject: [Va-bird] Rainy Atlas Activities in No. VA
A quick note on Atlas activities this weekend. Some productivity in between rain drops. On Saturday, I reported a well-known eagle nest at the Hallowing Pt area, but was unable to find local hawk nests.
Sunday was a bit better - I found a few old nests in the Rectortown SE block plus one pair of Red-shouldered Hawks actively nest building near the east boundary of the block. I also found a few empty nests - one seemed to be an old Red-shouldered nest and another maybe an old Red-tailed nest. Sometimes its hard to be sure the nests are empty when the weather is a bit wet as the mama raptor will stay low in the nest, unseen to your eyes.
On the way home, I stopped at Pohick Bay Regional Park. With the spate of Red-necked Grebe reports, I figured, given its history, Pohick was a good place to check. No RNGR but two unusual species were seen. The first was a Forster's Tern, diving behind some Tundra Swans on the Fort Belvoir side - another FOTE was perched alongside a Ring-billed Gull and the size difference was very noticeable. (note, a scope was used by yours truly). The other was a delightful male White-winged Scoter. I have always believes that WWSC are a gorgeous species and this fellow lived up to the hype. After floating about for a while, it got up and flew low to the water making a few banking turns for a couple of minutes, showing the white speculums quite well. Wonderful!