Newport, etc.

I took a trip to the coast this weekend despite the forecast: 100% chance of rain.   It seriously poured the entire time I was there except briefly Saturday morning where it was just light rain.  I still managed to see some good birds though!

During the brief spell of light rain I walked the HMSC Nature Trail... My favorite bird of the trip was one of the first birds I saw... I've seen lots of Surf Scoters but never has one seemed so interested in me:

From the little covered picnic table I watched some Brant and pintails...

I visited the South Jetty several times over the weekend... Lots of good birds there!  These are from both Saturday and Sunday...

Western Meadowlark

 Common Loon

Red-breasted Mergansers, Surf Scoter

Red-breasted Merganser (male)

Red-breasted Mergansers (female)

 Surf Scoter (female)

Harlequin Ducks!

Of course there were tons of gulls around... I suppose I'll attempt at least a couple of ID's.... Lemme know if you disagree with any!

California Gull

 Glaucous-winged Gull

 Western Gull

 This last one is from the HMSC parking lot.. I thought Herring Gull because of the light eye but the black on the beak doesn't fit and it's not very streaky on the neck... Any thoughts?

 Back to the jetty, there was a lone Sanderling poking around in the gull lot.

I saw him both days, never with any friends. 

And lastly, no trip to the coast is complete without some adorable seal faces....

That was it for Newport..  I stopped at the Boiler Bay wayside Sunday morning to check out the amazing waves...

Taking cover under a picnic table were some Black Turnstones.   It was kinda dark and had to use the flash...

On Saturday I stopped by the little pullout just north of Schooner Creek in Lincoln City.  There were a handful of White-winged Scoters swimming below.

These were the last of the birds from my rainy weekend... It feels so good to not be wearing soaking wet jeans!  The good news is that the rain/wind combo somehow made the dogs super fluffy!  I can't stop petting them because they're soo soft now.   Best grooming job ever.

Oh, and this trip brings my January bird total to 75... Woohoo!  I didn't really have a goal for the month, but it would awesome to hit 100.  Fingers crossed!


  1. I have never seen a Surf Scooter. The male looks very colorful. You really have to want to bird to go out in weather like that.

  2. One of my favorite spots (HMSC & the jetty) - seriously jealous of the meadowlark though! I keep hearing that they're there, but have yet to see one! Nice shot!

  3. Wow, great birds and photos. The Surf Scoters are cool looking birds. And I just love the Western Meadowlark, they are so colorful. Great post.

  4. You can really see the rain splashes in the water, too. You weren't kidding!

  5. WOW 100 in a month that would be totally AWESOME! You had some great birds and made some super shots of them..I love the loon and the harlequins, and what a wonderful aray of gulls--BUT the surf scoter is for me--- a WOW bird!

  6. Nice assortment of birds! Good luck on reaching 100 birds in January. That would be cool! I kind of forgot to reset my counting at the beginning of the year. Thanks for the reminder. March will be my 1 year anniversary and that is what has been on my mind.

  7. They're all good,but the seal and the Meadow Lark are my favourites. Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

  8. You really have some neat birds out there.

  9. Thought this might interest you:

  10. Pure speculation here on what you believe to be Herring Gull, Jen. The bird could be in its 1st year of maturity (4th winter) where it is showing the last of the black on the bill. Sibley notes that the streaking is "usually" extensive on the species.

    NM Nature Nut's link was very entertaining.

  11. You are seeing some great birds-and did a good job getting photos in the rain.Seems like you got pretty close to them too.-Seal face is adorable-We are in totally different places but funny how we are both at 75 about the same time for January. I usually hit 100 but I don't know about this year due to weather.


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