Ridgefield NWR 08-01-10

I went up to Ridgefield this morning to see what was going on... 

First of all there were tons of swallows in the road...
I saw at least three different kinds- Cliff, Tree, Barn... Not sure what they were doing.

Next up: ducklings!  Never get sick of 'em!

Never get sick of young coots either...

And when the two combine, it's just cuteness-overload.

At first it seemed like some kind of Ugly Duckling story going on... The Mallard mama had adopted the coot as one of her own.  But no, he was only hanging out until the Mallards swam away and his siblings came to join him..

Across the road in the other waterway was another family...

I headed out on the Kiwa Trail armed with zero bug spray... Amazingly it wasn't too bad!  I watched this little Marsh Wren take a dust bath on the trail...

He was really getting into it... On the side of the path was this pair of birds... 

 I'm pretty sure it's a pair of Western Wood-Pewees. 

The swallows were quite active on the trail... 

Baby Tree Swallows?

There seemed to be more snakes than usual on the trail- I was constantly scaring them off, though one let me get a photo before slithering into the grass.

Here's a little mystery bird I caught two photos of before it disappeared... My first thought was a female yellowthroat but it looks like some wingbars?

At the end of the trail where the path crosses over the water I heard some splashing and rustling in the bushes.  I tried creep in to take a peek at whatever was making the noise.  Then I heard growling.  I mean, I wasn't THAT scared because I knew it wasn't like a bear or wild African dog or something, but I was a little startled.  I crept around from a different angle.  A-ha!

A raccoon family was hanging out by the water presumably snacking on berries and gettin a drink..

Alright, here it is, the obligatory Ridgefield heron shot of the day:

Alright, moving on...

Did I mention they mowed a bunch of the fields?  The vultures seem happy about it....

Some goldfinches and yellowthroats rounded out the morning...

Good times.


  1. Great collection of photos.I like the dust bath moment you caught with the wren.I've never seen any kind of wren take a dust bath.-raccoon photo and ducklings are cute-good job with the heron flight shot too.

  2. What a good representative series of photos - esp like the raccoons - and unexpected bonus. Swallow migrations are awe inspiring.

  3. Snakes and alligators. It's always seemingly something to distract ones attention from looking upward.


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