Bar-tailed Godwit
Necanicum Estuary, Gearhart, Clatsop C. OREGON

I managed to get video of what turns out to be a very tame and cooperative godwit. After failing to find the bird at around 1100hr Monday morning, I had pretty much written it off. Steve Warner called me at 1730hr to tell me the bird had been relocated. I video taped the bird from 1815hr to 1830.  When I left the bird was still happily working the surf line.

These captures are of less than premium quality, because they are captured from a VHS copy which allowed me to quickly capture individual frames. I will try to get some direct captures tomorrow.

Subject: RBA: BAR-TAILED GODWIT at Gearhart
Date: Sun, 20 Aug 2000 21:23:05 -0700
From: Todd Thornton & Moria Golub <mandt@SEASURF.NET>
To: Multiple recipients of list OBOL <OBOL@BOBO.NWS.ORST.EDU>

Not knowing that Paul Sullivan was also at Gearhart, I also saw the
juvenile BAR-TAILED GODWIT, form 1700-2000hrsom 8/20/00 on Gearhart beach.
The bird was actively foraging along the tidal line near the mouth of the
Necanicum. It flew on several occassions allowing for good views of the
barred tail (Baueri race).

Here is a brief compilation of my notes, more forthcoming :

Upperparts brown w/bright buffy edging, tertials notched with buff. Long
black primaries, white belly and underparts, short tarsus.

Prominent supercilium and eye stripe.

Neck and breast washed in buff with fine streaks.

Barred tail: white and brown. Underwing whitish in tone, barred brown.

In flight only part of the toes extended beyond tail.

The bill was slighty upturned and relatively short for a godwit, (my guess
is that the bird is a male). Bill coloration was primarily black with a
fleshy pink base.

Todd Thornton
Astoria, OR

Subject: Thoughts about the Bar-Tailed Godwit
Date: Mon, 21 Aug 2000 18:56:12 -0700
From: "Sullivan, Paul T" <paul.t.sullivan@OPBU.XEROX.COM>
To: Multiple recipients of list OBOL <OBOL@BOBO.NWS.ORST.EDU>

Just a few notes to add to Todd's fine description; my 2 cents:

I think the Bar-tailed Godwit is a winter adult.  I think the bird lacked
the bright edging on the upperparts shown on the juvenile on plate 49 in
Hayman, Marchant, & Prater.  I would say the upperparts were brown with
off-white edging. I think the bird was almost completely lacking in rusty or
buffy tones; it was basically brown, gray, and off-white.  The breast lacked
the streaking shown on the juvenile pictured in Paulson.  The bill was much
brighter than the juvenile pictured in Paulson, a bright pink on about half
the bill.

I studied the bird standing among loafing Caspian Terns.  With its head up,
it was shorter than a standing tern.  It was a medium sized shorebird with
steely gray legs.  The crown was brown, the whole side of the head
off-white.  The rump was white with lots of speckles, the tail barred.  The
upperwing showed white at the base of the dark primaries in flight.  The
underwings were as Todd described.

Hope it stays until the OFO Birding Weekend next Saturday!

Paul T. Sullivan
Oregon Field Ornithologists