Oregon Coast (Lincoln City- Newport)

Yesterday I dropped the dogs off at my friends' house and then headed off to the coast without them.  I felt a little guilty but I got over it quickly.  My first stop was Taft Waterfront Park in Lincoln City.  A Western Gull welcomed me.


I don't usually stop to watch crows but this guy had some personality and cute blotchy white patches:


It was a gorgeous morning... chilly and windy, but gorgeous...


From the little viewing deck next to Mo's I saw a dozen or so mergansers in some terrible lighting...


My first Red-breasted Mergansers!


Pretty cool.  I drove around to the wayside up the road from there to see if I could get a better angle...  Instead I found both Barrow's and Common Goldeneyes (with a Hooded Merganser)...



  Here's the male Barrow's Goldeneye:


A pair of female Common Goldeneyes...



From the wayside I caught sight of some scoters in the distance...


They looked like White-winged Scoters... I drove closer to the teeny tiny Siletz Bay Park for a better view.  Unfortunately being closer meant horrible lighting..


I think they are all WW but I'm not sure... Some may be Surf?

I watched one trying to eat some kind of shellfish...


He was having some trouble- kept dropping it then picking it up but eventually succeeded.

I stopped at Boiler Bay without much luck... I know people see tons of birds here but maybe my bins just aren't strong enough?  Besides some gulls and Western Grebes really far out I didn't see anything!  I headed to the South Jetty of Yaquina Bay for some loons and grebes....

A few Horned Grebes were among the seals...



Cutie!  Nearby was this Common Loon:


A bunch of Surf Scoters remained floating in the same spot most of the time I was there:


One guy came a bit closer...



 A trio of Red-necked Grebes came swimming in from the west...



There were a couple Pelagic Cormorants in the choppy water also...


As I was leaving the South Jetty I found a female Barrow's Goldeneye swimming along...


My last stop was the nature trail at the Mark O. Hatfield Marine Center.  The wind was the worst here.  Far out in the water were pintails and Brant, but my photos are too blurry to bother sharing.  I did find this gull that I am guessing to be a Mew Gull?

This is only a guess because his neck and head seem too white and I can't find even a faint ring on his bill... But then again, I don't think there's anything else he could be.




That was about it!  Great trip!