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Alaska Rare Bird Alert » Blog Archive » RBA St. Paul Island July 28th-August 3rd: Gray-tailed Tattler, Slaty-backed Gull, Tundra Swan

RBA St. Paul Island July 28th-August 3rd: Gray-tailed Tattler, Slaty-backed Gull, Tundra Swan


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Hello Birders, this is the St. Paul Island bird report for the week of July 28th-August 3rd, 2014, sponsored by St. Paul Island Tour. The following sequence of sightings is in taxonomic order; an asterisk denotes a species of less than annual occurrence or one of particular note.

 

2014 Species count: 123

Weekly Species Count: 46

 

Birds Mentioned:

 

TUNDRA SWAN (ssp. bewickii and columbianus)

Mallard

Greater Scaup

King Eider

Bufflehead

Pacific Loon

Short-tailed Shearwater

BALD EAGLE

Pacific Golden-Plover

GRAY-TAILED TATTLER

Wandering Tattler

Ruddy Turnstone

Rock Sandpiper (ssp. tschuktschorum)

Pectoral Sandpiper

Red Phalarope

Parasitic Jaeger

Long-tailed Jaeger

Herring Gull

SLATY-BACKED GULL

Glaucous Gull

American Pipit

Common Redpoll

 

WEATHER

 

The warm temperatures and high pressure continued to dominate this week with the continuation of a light weather period for the Pribilofs.  Daily temperatures were consistently five to ten degrees above average with highs of 60 or above on the 31st and 1st, a very rare event for the islands.  The rest of the week continued in normal fashion for these types of weather patterns with light winds (south early in the week and north later on), no rain, and generous amounts of fog at times.

 

WATERFOWL

 

The only new arrival this week was a Mallard found on the 3rd with continued sightings of seven TUNDRA SWANS, Greater Scaup, King Eiders, and the lone female Bufflehead rounding out the migrant waterfowl list for the week.

 

SEABIRDS & GULLS

 

A slight increase in jaegers was noted on the 1st and 2nd with a couple Parasitics and five or six Long-taileds seen over those two days.  Large gull numbers have continued to increase with sightings of Herring Gull on the 29th, 1st, and 2nd, SLATY-BACKED GULL on the 30th and 2nd, and Glaucous Gull on 29th, 1st, and 2nd.  The first movement of Short-tailed Shearwaters occurred on the 2nd, though light, with a few hundred seen that day.

 

SHOREBIRDS

 

Migrant shorebird numbers dwindled this week with two-plus GRAY-TAILED TATTLERS seen on the 2nd and 3rd being the highlight.  Other migrants included the continuing large numbers of early Pacific Golden-Plovers with up to 10 seen on the 31st, numbers of Wandering Tattlers with up to 10 on the 2nd, a handful of Pectoral Sandpipers which continued from previous weeks, a non-Pribilof Rock Sandpiper on the 28th, and building numbers of Ruddy Turnstones with a daily high count of 300 on the 2nd.  The first large concentrations of Red Phalaropes were also noted this week with 5,000-15,000 birds noted between Marunich and Northeast Point from the 29th-31st.

 

LANDBIRDS & PASSERINES

 

The first fall migrant passerines were noted on the 2nd when a pair of American Pipits were found, these add to continuing sightings of Common Redpoll and Bald Eagle as the only landbirds found on St. Paul for the week.

 

Breeding or resident species currently present on the island:

 

Northern Pintail

Green-winged (and Common) Teal

Harlequin Duck

Long-tailed Duck

Northern Fulmar

Red-faced Cormorant
Pelagic Cormorant

Semipalmated Plover

Least Sandpiper
Rock Sandpiper (ssp. ptilocnemis)

Red-necked Phalarope
Black-legged Kittiwake
Red-legged Kittiwake
Glaucous-winged Gull

Common Murre
Thick-billed Murre
Pigeon Guillemot

Ancient Murrelet

Parakeet Auklet

Least Auklet

Crested Auklet

Horned Puffin

Tufted Puffin

Pacific Wren (ssp. alascensis)
Lapland Longspur
Snow Bunting
Gray-crowned Rosy-Finch (ssp. umbrina)

This is Scott Schuette, Cory Gregory, and Glen Davis, the 2014 St. Paul Island Tour guides, wishing you good birding. For tour information or to make travel arrangements visit our website http://www.alaskabirding.com or call 1-877-424-5637.

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