Date: 4/28/19 3:24 pm
From: Rebecca Hartman <rhartman...>
Subject: [obol] Loon in a tree at New River Nature Center/Coos Migration
Wednesday through Saturday I had a fantastic few days around Bandon,
experiencing my first migration at the coast. I want to thank Phil
Pickering for mentioning the forecast and Jeff Gilligan and Dave Lauten for
recommending Bandon and China Creek.

I was awed by the constant stream of Pacific Loons and Aleutian Cacklers
determined to push their way north. I sat on the beach while flocks of
Western Sandpipers, with Dunlins and Semi-Palmated Plovers (and a few
mystery birds) zipped past, sometimes surrounding me, the tiny sound of
their fluttering wings and peeping calls washing over me. I watched the
sun rise at Bandon Marsh and marveled at the thousands of birds coming and
going over the course of nearly three hours. I learned the importance of
tide tables! And I couldn’t complain when two Peregrine Falcons made a
lightening strike into the birds at Haystack Rock, disrupting my close-up
study of Black Turnstones, a bird I had never seen before.

From others' posts, nothing I saw was out of the ordinary, but it was all
incredibly special to me.

But I’m bothered and curious about the loon. I’m hoping someone can help me
understand what I saw. On Friday afternoon, I visited the New River Nature
Center, where the last part of the road down to the river is closed to
vehicles because of the Snowy Plovers. As I walked that last bit of road,
a bird flushed from one of the pines and flew about 20 feet, into the pines
on the other side of the road. It turned out to be a Pacific Loon. It
perched on a horizontal limb, facing away from me and keeping an eye on me.
I watched it for a bit, then tried to slowly reach for my phone to get a
picture, but when I did, it flew again. I decided not to try to locate it
again, because I thought only injury or some sort of stress would explain
its presence in a tree. Why would a loon be in a pine tree? This was
maybe a few hundred yards from the river.

Rebecca H.


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