Date: 5/28/19 9:29 am From: Eric Ellingson <abriteway...> Subject: [Tweeters] Sabine's Gull, 93 out from Birch Bay
Until I got home and looked at my day's shoot on my camera I thought just another nice day out in Georgia Strait.
The usual Pigeon Guillemot (10), Common Murre (10), Rhinoceros Auklet (8), Pelagic Cormorants, Western Grebes (50) and Glaucous-winged Gulls were seen on a few hour excursion from Birch Bay toward Sucia Island. One highlight was 100 Pacific Loons in breeding plumage. A beautiful sunny warm day to cruise about with Marcia and Phil Calise. On the way out we saw a flock of what we presumed were Bonaparte's Gull as that is what I expected to see out on the water. The tight formation of the flock in the air and the seemingly sharper contrast made me consider these might be something different. But again, assuming Bonapartes, I took a few photos, they watched thru their binocs and then off we went without getting close enough to get good enough looks to really understand what we saw.
It was not until I got home and looked at some photos on the viewfinder of my camera that I went, ... dang. I've got something different here. According to eBird for Whatcom County, this is the 4th recorded sighting in Whatcom.
Also, I took a 'wide' angle shot of the flock in the air before they settled, printed this, then counted from a printed sheet, the number of individuals should be nearly 100% accurate.