Today must be Raptor Day in the Central Hillside. Around noon I stepped outside briefly and saw at least five (and probably more, it was hard to keep track) bald eagles circling overhead, coming over the hill and drifting slowly up the shore. Two of them flew directly over my house, so I can now legitimately add "bald eagle" to my yard list. There was also one red tailed hawk, although he did not come close enough to my property to count for the list.
Later, I was working on the computer when I heard a high-pitched whinny outside, which tickled at the back of my brain: "I know that, that's a Good Bird." But it took hearing it a second time, and seeing a fast-moving shadow flash by my window to recognize it as a merlin. I had a merlin very briefly in the yard last November, but haven't seen one since. I got off the computer and went outside with my binoculars, but although I could hear him in the neighborhood, I couldn't see him.