The original plan was to come to Juneau a couple of days before the Wilderness Birding Adventures Gulf of Alaska trip, which starts on Sunday. So this morning, my friend Lena and I flew to Juneau from Anchorage after a very short night of sleep because her late flight into Anchorage had gotten there after midnight.
Although we did not have a lot of energy, we did walk most of the Mendenhall Wetlands dike trail, looking for little birds (sparrows and warblers) and shorebirds.
A very vocal Common Raven welcomed us at the beginning of the spruce portion of the trail.
Out where the wetlands were flooded were many Green-winged Teal, fewer Mallards and a handful of Northern Shovelers. There were not too many shorebirds – just a few peeps that took off never to reappear and five Greater Yellowlegs. We did see one of the latter bite off more that it could chew.
We had quick glimpses of an Orange-crowned Warbler, Yellow-rumped Warblers and a handsome female Common Yellowthroat.
Sparrows were much more numerous and many of them were scruffy splotchy confusingly-plumaged youngsters. Sometimes we just had to guess at their identity or just give up. Sparrows seen included Savannah, Song, Lincoln’s and a White-crowned (not photographed).
After an afternoon rest we went to the Brotherhood Bridge trail where we got more beautiful views of the Mendenhall Glacier. We added Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Steller’s Jay and Wilson’s Warbler to our day list.
Tomorrow we head out to Ketchikan for the day. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s account of what I hope will be a birdy day.
289 species so far