Friday, January 6, 2012

Better day…

Today, at least so far, has been a better day…

still a gray day

still cloudy and gray, and cooler than it has been…but at least it was dry so I took advantage and went out with my camera twice…the first time, in the morning, by myself…

Juvenile eating

was just approaching the edge of the estuary when I spotted this juvenile Bald Eagle up in a tree intent on eating it’s breakfast…

Digging in

The sun even came out momentarily (the only time all day!) to shed some light on him…a promising start to the walk!  There were quite a few eagles around and all were being very vocal…of course we have to remember that eagles nest very early so there are probably some hormones starting to flow.  Bald Eagles mate for life, but no doubt there are mates to defend and young birds searching for their life mate…

Red-wing Blackbirds

Over at the log bay the activity was astonishing!  Masses of Red-wing Blackbirds and some Steller’s Jay and even a Northern Flicker, bathing…

Dark-eyed Junco

all kinds of Dark-eyed Junco down on the ground feeding, as well as bathing…we tend to forget about these little guys we see them so often…

Dark Eyed Junco

and for some reason they are difficult to get good pictures of…so I’ll put two in today.

The reason I had walked over to the bay was to see if there were any swans in close while the water level is still up, because already it is dropping…

Song Sparrow head on

The swans weren’t in close…but the  Song Sparrows were…Towhee’s too but didn’t get a picture of one of those…

Male House Finch

a very bright red House Finch….

Common Red-poll

and while I was there the flock of Common Redpoll touched down for a couple of seconds.  This is the only photo I got and the darn thing turned it’s head but you can just make out the hint of red on the edge of the forehead.  I’d say this is probably a young one.  Today there are 2, possibly 3 good sized flocks of Pine Sisken in the area, one of which has been taking over my feeders again, but from what I can see, the Redpolls are staying in their own smaller flock.  I saw them again on my second walk, but that time I couldn’t get any picture at all – there were too many twigs between me and them.

Family with Mallards

They hadn’t been in close during my ‘alone’ walk, but when Shantz and I returned…this family was right in close to the bank at the log bay…we were very careful to stay back so they weren’t disturbed and were rewarded with some of the best Trumpeter Swan pictures I have to date!

Trumpeter Swan 



Adult on right, with youngster…was interested to see that, like Mew Gulls, the adults paddle with their feet to stir up the mud on the bottom to get feed.

Adult with Mallard pair

Adult with pair of Mallard

Mom and youngster

another look at the youngster with one of the adults.  They knew we were there but Shantz sat quietly, we stayed well back (thank you 35x zoom!) and they stayed relaxed and went about their business.

All in all a pretty darn good day!  Now if only those Redpolls would co-operate.  Should mention there were all kinds of Golden-crowned Kinglets by the viewing platform (which is also where the Redpolls were on the second walk)…the Kinglets didn’t co-operate either – but then you can’t have everything!

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