Yesterday was a beautiful day in Gambell, and those are hard to come by. Even though we didn't have west winds, the winds were very light and somewhat variable, which can be just as good as west. Any time the wind dies is good.
The excitement started when Gary Rosenberg and I found 2 "flava" Horned Larks, along with a light faced bird that may be an "arcticola", or some sort of young, weird looking "flava". I'm not familiar with these subspecies, and Paul has never had a light-faced bird in the fall here. Interesting to say the least.
A "flava" Horned Lark
The light faced Horned Lark.
Things got even more exciting when Gary flushed an interesting, silent Pipit that took short flights and was extremely skulky. With diligent birders stalking the bird, we got good looks and pictures, clearly showing a Pechora Pipit. This species is proving to be annual on Gambell in small numbers.
Keeping with the "asian bird" theme, here is a picture of a nice adult Slaty-backed Gull found earlier in the week. They seem to be quiet sporadic this year, although I've seen a handful since my arrival.
Winds continue from the NE for the near future, and they may become quite strong. Seabirds should be picking up (eiders, loons) so I may do more seawatching. As always, more later.