Tuesday, April 30, 2019

RED-LEGGED FROGS AT THE POND

In the 1990's Noelle and I worked on a survey of amphibian life in the Lost Pond in the West Duwamish Greenbelt.  We noted Red-legged Frogs, Long-toed Salamanders, Western Red-backed Salamanders, and Ensatina Salamanders.  The Long-toed Salamanders and the Red-legged Frogs require calm water to breed while the other two salamanders are terrestrial and lay eggs on land.  At the conclusion of the survey at the end of the 90'S we continued to check on the pond life yearly but never again saw and evidence of Red-legged Frogs except for a few egg masses that did not appear to be viable.  We were not sure the frogs were still in the pond.  On a visit to the pond last week I noticed a dead frog in the pond and returned with Noelle the following day and to our surprise we located 7 live and healthy looking frogs.  So if they were ever gone....they are back after 2 decades of being AWOL.  Long-toed Salamander larvae were also observed.



Noelle - The Frog Whisperer








Saturday, April 27, 2019

Alligator lizards have a new guest in condo, Northwestern Garter Snake

Northwestern Garter Snake in Lizard condo

Northwestern Garter Snake

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

WEST DUWAMISH GREEN BELT SPRING UPDATE and MORE

A large group (25) Transient Killer Whale were in the Seattle area of Puget Sound this week.  There were a number of young whales with the group.  A 39 foot male Gray Whale died this week on the Seattle waterfront.  In the greenbelt all 4 Barred Owls have left their non-nesting season perches and groves.  We have been unable to locate the nesting area.  Cooper' Hawks have been seen and heard but are not nesting yet.

Spring Oyster Mushrooms have been plentiful in the greenbelt and are providing lots of good meals.....along with some Morels that came up in Gretchen's garden.   Northern Alligator Lizards are coming out to sun on the rocks....if there is any Sun.  March saw temps in the 70's but nothing more than 60 for April with lots of clouds and some rain.  Introduced Grove Snails are active especially in one small Cottonwood tree where almost all of the snails have be seen.  They are great climbers....unfortunately they are not native.  A Bushtit nest was found in the process of being built.   The Keyhole Limpet population on local beach has exploded due to lack of Sea Star predators following the major Sea Star die-off which began in 2013.  Locally some recovery of Purple Stars has been observed and a survey will be completed later this month for Constellation Marine Reserve in West Seattle.  

Five Bald Eagle Juveniles were on Alki Beach feeding together on crab.  Crows were anting in Greenbelt, one Lizard was out and one Bunny.
















Wednesday, February 20, 2019

ALL 4 WEST DUWAMISH GREENBELT OWL SEEN THIS MONTH

All 4 Barred Owls from the West Duwamish Greenbelt on Pigeon Point have be seen in the last week.  Today Sleepy and Yahoo were seen in the respective Spruce and Cedar groves.  Fluffy has not been seen for 6 days...unusual.  Yahoo and Spitter have been seen over the last week.   Heavy brush was blocking the trail due to heavy snow last week...that has been cleared out. Lots of bird activity today....Robins, Towhee, Song Sparrow, Junco,   Hummingbird, Wilson Warbler, Flicker were seen.  No activity at Cooper's hawk nest.


Spitter from the Cedar Grove

Saturday, February 9, 2019

BIG SNOW DUMP ON SEATTLE.....MORE TO COME EARLY NEXT WEEK.

Seattle picked up 8" of snow on Friday night and Saturday....most I've seen since 1996 when 21" fell on the city.  Have been Seeing 3 of the 4 Owls in the WD Greenbelt during the last few weeks...Fluffy and Sleepy are together again and Yahoo is around but no sign of her mate of last year Spitter.