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Monday, December 5, 2016

Disgusted!

Have to say it.....I'm disgusted!  Here we watch the news and see all the snow in Vancouver and places closer to the coast and....


and that is the total extent of what we got!!!

It is easy to tell the weather is shifting though because this morning was the first in weeks when there were no swans out there....just a few way out there...

there were however...


Bald Eagles.....lots of Bald Eagles.....not to mention gulls


and Hooded Mergansers.....

this fellow....


was especially cooperative.... and one could call this....


a Chehalis Estuary Christmas tree!  It was just one of a number decorated like this.

In the afternoon we wandered over to Harrison Bay...


it was pretty quiet over there and as you can see the snow wasn't far away....

we thought we'd found something pretty exciting...


this guy just looked different....thought it might have been that juvenile Golden Eagle that has been seen in the general area, but no, when I got a good look at the pictures, it is a 2 year old Bald Eagle.

There were a few...


Northwestern Crow scattered through the trees.

Most of the song birds were hanging out by the yard with the bird feeders including...


quite a few of these Eurasian collared Dove.


Varied Thrush and Swan haven!

Although it is going to say this report is for today, it is actually Sunday, December 4ths report.  By the time I went through all the photos and sent in a count to EBird I'd pretty much had it....so thought I'd hold off until this morning.

So the first news is that finally spotted....


the first Varied Thrush of the season.  I'm afraid this is one of those 'proof it was there' photos.  Hopefully with the predicted cooler weather we will be seeing them regularly now.

We started the day....


with some sunshine and Trumpeter Swans right down in the boat launch...


they stayed very relaxed and snoozing the whole time we were there.


there were, of course, Bald Eagles there two like this pair arguing over a salmon.


Quite the variety of ducks too seen throughout the day, these being American Wigeon....


'out there' looked pretty much as it has done for the last while....water levels continue to go down slowly.

So at noon finally got over to the park.  How long has it been?  I'd think pretty close to 6 weeks.



here we are at the log bay...you'll note some interesting weather in the distance there.


Some new signs have appeared.  Going to have to find out how to get some of those as we could use some at this end too!


in the bay we had some American Coots (2 at bottom of photo) and some of the many Barrow's Goldeneye in the area.


A pair of Mallard that kept diving, presumably for fish eggs.



and more Trumpeter Swans.....


some of the young ones were putting on quite the show for the appreciative audience.


with so many strangers around there weren't many eagle in close but did spot this 4 year old in the eagle tree as we were leaving.

Later walked back down to our end....


where there were quite a few eagles....here a couple of female Common Mergansers swim by....


some of a large number of Hooded Merganser with one female Barrow's Goldeneye (2nd from the front)

speaking of large numbers.....


just a portion of the large number of mainly Glaucous-wing Gulls out there yesterday with some upside down Northern Pintail in the foreground

and not to be forgotten....


this is just a portion of a flock of Pine Siskin in the area.  So far they are sticking to the tree tops, if they start running out of natural food and decide to head to area feeders we will all go broke!

Speaking of feeder birds....

we tend to forget about these guys....the Steller's Jay as we see them so often....

and...


Anna's Hummingbirds are now the most reliably seen and heard species in the area!  This young male has laid claim to the feeder in our yard and can be found constantly in the nearby honeysuckle bush.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Another rainy day...

Another rainy day, much like most of them lately....


despite it all the water levels continue to drop....which means the Bald Eagles are starting to feed closer to my viewing area.


Swans were in close too, or at least some of them were...think these are Trumpeters, masses of ducks out there too.  I really need to try to do an actual bird count but there are so many I feel sort of overwhelmed.  Hopefully there will be just as many when the Christmas Bird Count people are here.


Mentioned yesterday that we had found Northern Pintail ducks out there.  This one (a male) was in a bit closer.  That is a female Hooded Merganser behind it.  Sorry, I know it is a pretty poor picture.


Here is another not great photo...it was pouring at the time but this shows a selection of the ducks out there, Barrows and Common Goldeneye, American Wigeon, Mallard, a few Bufflehead...and on and on it goes.

Big flock of little Bushtits in the bushes this morning too.  Also heard a robin but still no Varied Thrush....very strange!


Thursday, December 1, 2016

Bohemian Waxwings!

With the last day of November being one of the wettest, darkest, most miserable days of the year it was a real treat to wake up to some sunshine this morning.


but what was even a bigger treat was spotting a couple of....


Bohemian Waxwings!  This is a species that we don't see here all that often...in fact I think it is 4 or 5 years since I've seen them here...at least to the point I could get a picture.  Thankfully they stayed put while I quickly fumbled my camera free and turned it on.  They did fly before I could get a picture of the two of them together.


they were feasting on these Rose hips.

Down at the estuary.....


the water is really dropping.  I think I could make it over to the park now, started to, but gave up trying to maneuver my little sidekick through all the dead salmon.  I will attempt it in the next day or two.  You can see there were a number of Bald Eagles in the eagle trees this morning....


and out there....think there are at least 33 in that picture.


tons of ducks too and was thrilled when I zoomed in on this to see some Northern Pintails there along with American Wigeon...had been wondering what happened to pintails this year.


still lots of swans out there too.  None in close this morning, at least near where I was.  Unfortunately I wasn't the first person to get down there and not everyone knows, or cares how to move around without disturbing the wildlife.


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Yet more swans

I know this time of the year we should be dealing with eagles....and yes, there are eagles, but it is the swans that are the story so far.  We haven't seen swans like we have this year for years, if ever!


this was the scene this morning....I think, but am not positive that the lead duck there could be an Eurasian Wigeon.  There are so many ducks out there right now it is impossible to keep track of them all.


no doubt that this is a Tundra Swan....note the little bit of yellow at the base of the bill.  That is a female Common Merganser there as well.


there are a lot of Mergansers out there right now.


this pair are Trumpeter Swans....and of course a Bald Eagle in the background.



here is another eagle....


the sun came out briefly this afternoon....notice the water is almost back where it belongs...


the path to the park is becoming visible again.  Maybe we'll even get over to the park again soon, especially if the weather network is right and we get snow next week.  Let's hope!

Shouldn't neglect the small birds...it has just been difficult to photograph them lately as it has been so dull, there was a big flock of Bush tits yesterday but those little guys never hold still at the best of times.  Saw some Chestnutback Chickadees today too....



and then, of course, there are the Anna's Hummingbirds.  This male has staked out the habitat garden out back as his own.  A younger, not quite mature male has staked out the feeder in our yard....and females zip back and forth between them all.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Swans and searches.....

Yet another gloomy day but at least it was dry when we wandered down to the estuary on our morning walk....


and what a treat.....Trumpeter Swans all along the shoreline!  If water levels keep dropping we'll be standing where those swans are soon.  Those are American Wigeon ducks there with these swans.


and behind these two, a Pied Billed Grebe.


Just a gorgeous scene and look at that log in the background with wall to wall Bald Eagles perched on it.

So after lunch we thought we'd take a drive to Deroche and see if we could spot that Golden Eagle.  We didn't.  Mind you we didn't cover very much of the slough.  The dogs were eager for a walk so we drove to the dike along the Fraser River....


that is the Fraser River out there, photo taken from the dike.  Could hear a few eagles calling....


a little further along was taking this picture which is the start of the slough and then turned around....


to take a picture of what was behind me.....what I didn't know was there was a Black Bear there!  Our dogs had been enjoying some off leash freedom....their leads quickly got attached!


a closer look at the bear....who didn't seem too perturbed by us being there.  We decided not to risk it and headed back to the vehicle....besides, it had started raining yet again!