Tuesday, July 25, 2017

AK - Barrow

Red Phalarope - Barrow, Alaska. June 18th, 2017.


After meeting up in Anchorage on June 15th, the Birdfinders tour of  Alaska really got underway with a three day trip to Barrow. Some shorebirds, including Red Phalaropes and Pectoral Sandpipers appeared to be abundant in certain patches of wet tundra and a White-rumped Sandpiper in breeding plumage was a highlight for some. Tundra predators such as Snowy Owls and Long-tailed Jaegers seemed to be in short supply this year but, as usual, the eiders were very much the highlight of a visit to Barrow with Spectacled, Steller's and King Eiders all seen well along with larger numbers of Common Eiders migrating over the Chuckchi Sea. Red-throated and Pacific Loons were also present in decent numbers and there was a fly-over Yellow-billed Loon for a lucky few within our group. 

Spectacled Eider (first-summer male) - Barrow, Alaska. June 18th, 2017.


Spectacled Eider (adult male) - Barrow, Alaska. June 17th, 2017. 


Spectacled Eider (adult male) - Barrow, Alaska. June 17th, 2017. 


Steller's Eider (adult male) - Barrow, Alaska. June 17th, 2017.  


Steller's Eider (adult female) - Barrow, Alaska. June 17th, 2017.  


Red throated Loon - Barrow, Alaska. June 18th, 2017.



Red Phalaropes - Barrow, Alaska. June 16th, 2017.


White-rumped Sandpiper - Barrow, Alaska. June 18th, 2017.
We enjoyed point-blank views of this bird courtesy of a High Lonesome/Rockjumper tour - thanks Stephan and Forrest!






Tuesday, July 18, 2017

AK - grouse on the Denali Highway

More highlights from the recent Birdfinders tour of Alaska. We had excellent luck with grouse on the Denali Highway seeing Spruce Grouse in two different spots and a family of Willow Ptarmigan on the highway near Cantwell. 


Willow Ptarmigan chick - Denali Highway, Alaska. June 25th, 2017. 


Spruce Grouse - Denali Highway, Alaska. June 23rd, 2017. 


Spruce Grouse -  female, Denali Highway, Alaska. June 23rd, 2017. 


Willow Ptarmigan pair - Denali Highway, Alaska. June 25th, 2017. 



Willow Ptarmigan male - Denali Highway, Alaska. June 25th, 2017. 


 Willow Ptarmigan female - Denali Highway, Alaska. June 25th, 2017. 


Saturday, July 15, 2017

AK - Fork-tailed Storm-petrel



Fork-tailed Storm-petrel - Webster Overlook, St. Paul Island, Alaska.

One of the highlights from the recent Alaska tour with Birdfinders. We discovered this bird just beyond the surf in the North-eastern part of St. Paul Island during an evening of westerlies. I've seen quite a few Fork-tailed Storm-petrels over the years but nothing quite so close as this one. We even had it flying over the beach!