May 15 – Adak, Day 1

We arrived 5:40 am (4:40 Adak time) in the pouring rain, but the rain let up soon after we got our stuff to the rental house where we are staying. Our flight went over beautiful island views, and we saw one volcano sending up some steam, but not the one (Pavlov) that has been sending up a bit of ash lately since it was apparently hidden in the clouds.

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This trip is a Wilderness Birding Adventures trip led by Aaron Lang and Scott Hauser.

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After dropping our luggage off at the house, we went out birding (of course). As our two trucks caravanned along the mostly dirt roads, we scared up some ROCK PTARMIGANS. We are likely to see many more and eventually I’ll get pictures.

Soon after we started birding, we came to a lake where there were both Great Scaup and 4 TUFTED DUCKS. It was good to see them together and to realize that even at a distance the black back of the Tufted Ducks was clearly different than the grayer back of the scaup.IMG_9415

Maybe 10 minutes later, a low-flying GYRFALCON came out of nowhere and flew away across the hills and disappeared.

Other birds seen today were the common Gray-crowned Rosy-Finches and Lapland Longspurs, Green-winged Teal and Wigeon  (both Amercan and Eurasian of each), Mallards, Northern Shovelers and Northern Pintail, Red-breasted Mergansers, Bald Eagles and a Common Raven.

Other rarities have recently been seen on Adak, but were not seen today by our group or by others as far as I know.

181 species so far

 

 

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