Preliminary Shorebird Festival Summary and some great stories!!
Sunday morning during the Festival event at the lower platform at the end of the FAA Rd, a lynx crossed above the end of Beluga Lake heading toward the platform at the end of the Calvin and Coyle trail! A wonderful opportunity for folks to see a lynx–no one remembers ever seeing a lynx there before in spite of many wildlife viewers in that area over the years. (I am going to attach the video I was sent. I believe this was taken by Lisle Gwynn. I also do not have permission to send it so am on shaky ground there also. It is such a fantastic glimpse of wildlife right here in Homer! If someone else took it, please let me know and I will send out a correction.)
On previous days in that same area, a nesting TRUMPETER SWAN was seen chasing off groups of geese that rest in that area. On four occasions it was reported that the swan would chase the group of geese up into the air and then target one goose to follow. One version of a chase on Saturday said the swan was maybe five feet behind the goose for several circles above the lake, getting closer and closer (the swan with his mouth open at times), seemingly snapping at the tailfeathers of the goose, he said! Usually the chase then went out of sight, the swan returning a while later… and the goose? Some other birder might have seen what happened there or we’ll never know.
It seems interesting that there is a pair of nesting SONG SPARROWS on the top of Gull Island. Never been reported before. (Spit real estate at a premium, perhaps?)
There were 124 species seen during the four days of the Festival. There are still some reports trickling in, so this number may go up. Last minute additions: HORNED LARKS near the Harbor and POMARINE JAEGER and SOOTY SHERWATER at the Anchor River. Overall, there was only one warbler (YELLOW-RUMPED) seen and one owl (GREAT HORNED); no flycatchers, no eiders. A highlight for many was seeing several CASPIAN TERNS on Saturday in the Mud Bay/Lighthouse Village Platform area.