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Showing posts from November, 2009

the coast.

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yesterday i drove out to the coast with jake to check out cape meares and look for birds.   i walked jake along the bayocean spit and saw some buffleheads as well as some hunters.  it was pretty.



next we headed to the cape meares scenic viewpoint to check out the wildlife refuge (ie the rocks in the water).

it turned out to be a pretty nice day..  without binoculars it was hard to see the birds on the further rock..

signs suggest there are a variety of cormorants, pigeon guillemots, common murres, and puffins... i'm not quite sure what i can see in this photo...

next we stopped at a little wildlife area i had visited once before.. i forget the name, but there is this big watefall and a rocky beach...
a rocky ledge with some gulls..

an oystercatcher.

a dead pelican..

next i drove further down the road towards netarts and came across a couple of mule deer:

they didn't seem to mind me taking pictures or even jake barking like crazy... another car came up behind me and they wandered o…

nisqually nwr

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yesterday i decided to head up to the nisqually national wildlife refuge just north of olympia, washington.   i got distracted for a bit near the cowlitz river... a tree full of chickadees was fun to watch...

i finally arrived at the refuge,  and i was really afraid it was going to be terrible because it was practically on the highway and there were a million people milling around.. i made my way up the first trail i came across.. and this guy popped up about 30 feet in front of me to cross a main trail:

i don't remember ever being this close to a coyote outside of my car... that was pretty cool.
the gravel trail winds around a corner past two old barns (the twin barns) and the landscape opens up.  i spotted this guy close to the barns:
a third year bald eagle!

further up the trail a mother and her son (maybe 12 years old) were setting up a scope and camera.. the boy was scanning for maybe 30 seconds when he found this scene:
towards the right is a great blue heron and to the left si…

coots

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a bunch of american coots at smith and bybee lakes yesterday...

ankeny nwr

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this morning i headed down to the ankeny national wildlife refuge just south of salem.  it turned out to be a great time despite a couple downpours and some crazy wind.

right away i spotted this guy:
a peregrine falcon!

then i pulled off the road to check out the "rail trail" which is an extremely slippery wooden bridge-type walkway over some wetlands to a viewing blind.  it was like walking on ice, and the rain that started falling did not help.

i managed a picture of a spotted towhee:


looks like a winter wren to me!

and then there was this guy....

i watched him from the car for a long time- he was right in front of the walkway i had JUST been on... the whole time i was watching, jake was whining like he wanted to go play with him.  right.  ok one more picture of this fat cutie....

next i took the much shorter slippery wooden walkway to the viewing blind at pintail and egret marshes... rain started to dump on me and the wind really picked up causing the shutters on the blind …

tualatin river nwr

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i spent some time at the tualatin river national wildlife refuge this afternoon.. what a great place!  i don't think i've ever seen so many birds in one place.  i started with the overlook by the refuge headquarters..

mostly canada geese and ducks and that one white and grey goose... i'm not actually sure what it is- snow goose?  here's a zoomed in pic:
wish i knew what it was...

a bunch of canada geese.

damn that's a lot of birds.

here are a billion ducks. mostly northern pintails but at least one mallard in there...

flying geese.


a dark-eyed junco:

luckily a nice fellow pointed out this western screech owl to me!  wow!  i never would have noticed the little guy... he said he's been hanging out there for a few weeks now.


and that was pretty much all i saw... well, i saw an eagle but it swooped down and out of sight before i could get a good picture.