[TN-Bird] NE Tenn: no Sabine's

  • From: Charlie <cmmbirds@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: tn-bird@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 9 Sep 2003 18:10:54 -0700 (PDT)

Hi folks,

Tuesday Sept 9, 2003.  Johnson, Sullivan, Cocke, Sullivan, Jefferson,
Carter Counties.

Despite the negative posts last night, I just had to try.  I had some
time coming to me at work, and nothing too big on the desk that it
couldn't be pushed off the other side and hidden by the bookcase.  So
I played hooky today and went to Musick's Campground, a couple of
dams, and finally to Rankin Bottoms.

First, I have to say that the TOS website was very valuable in giving
directions to all these locations.  Thanks to James Brooks who wrote
them, and Chuck Nicholson who posted them.  I recommend that people
go to www.tnbirds.org whenever planning a trip.

As expected, I did not find the immature Sabine's Gull that Rack,
Sammy and Ed told us about. (Great pictures, guys)  In fact, Musick's
Campground was pretty slow during the 2.5 hours I spent there this
morning, over 2 visits.  Great Egret, Great Blue Heron, Green Heron,
Spotted Sandpiper, Canada Goose, Mallard.  I drove around to
different boat ramps, both those suggested in James' writing, and
ones marked on my Delorme map.  I did run into a small migrant wave
on the Virginia side of Painter Creek:  Baltimore Oriole,
Yellow-rumped Warbler, Chestnut-sided Warbler.

Rankin was abuzz with dragonflies:  Widow Skimmer, 100's of Common
White tails, Common Green Darner, Black Saddlebags, and many I don't
know.  I believe I had a Golden-winged Skimmer, too.  Not one I've
seen before, but the description, season and picture all seem to fit.

There were only about 70 shorebirds at Rankin, and the majority were
too far for me to ID.  I did have a single Semi-palmated Plover, one
Sanderling, at least 3 Least Sandpipers and one Killdeer. Most of the
unknown were peeps.  Great Egrets and Great Blue Herons were much
more numerous than 2 weeks ago: at least 50 herons and 150 egrets. 
One adult Black-crowned Night Heron and one Green Heron, with a
smattering of Spotted (but no Solitary) Sandpipers kept me

One interesting thing happened, for those of you still
reading...Sometimes my wife makes fun of my always carrying a knife. 
Today I'm very glad I had it.  At one point, just after the coal
tipple, I saw a Killdeer.  I was surprised when it started to do a
broken wing display this late in the season.  Then I realized it
wasn't displaying.  It was all knotted up in fishing line, complete
with lure and tackle. It was easy to catch the bird since one leg was
stuck essentially to it's head, and the left wing primaries were all
tied together an inch from the end of the wing.  It took about 20
minutes, but I was eventually able to free the bird of all offending
matter.  It was very rewarding when I opened my hand and the bird
flew away.  I haven't handled a lot of shorebirds, mostly passerines.
 But this bird struck me as remarkably calm in the hand.  It didn't
appear too badly hurt, and didn't seem too thin - even had a bit of
fat in the furiculum.  Just calm.

Good birding!


Charlie Muise, Senior Naturalist
Now living in Maryville, TN
Still working in Great Smoky Mountains 
National Park

"Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm"
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! SiteBuilder - Free, easy-to-use web site design software
=================NOTES TO SUBSCRIBER=====================

The TN-Bird Net requires you to sign your messages with
first and last name, city (town) and state abbreviation.
To post to this mailing list, simply send email to:
To unsubscribe, send email to:
with 'unsubscribe' in the Subject field.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Topographical Maps located at http://topozone.com/find.asp
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
     Visit the Tennessee Ornithological Society
          web site at http://www.tnbirds.org
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
    TN-Bird Net Owner: Wallace Coffey, Bristol, TN
        jwcoffey@xxxxxxxxxx      (423) 764-3958

Other related posts:

  • » [TN-Bird] NE Tenn: no Sabine's