Force Lake, etc.

I went over to Force Lake this morning to see if I could find any birds in the fog...

Not much at the lake to start so I walked down the road to the slough... There things were hopping.  I ended up just sitting on the stone wall that was once part of Vanport, the city that drowned, and watching and listening to all the activity...

A harrier flew overhead which I have definitely never seen near there before, a couple of Wood Ducks flew off, and at least three kinds of warblers worked the bushes across the slough...

Black-throated Gray Warbler

While sitting there I watched a couple of kingfishers chase each other up and down the slough, a heron pluck little fishies out of the water, and either a Cooper's or a Sharp-shinned Hawk cruise overhead....  All the while a Red-breasted Sapsucker worked a tree behind me:

I felt like I had the best seat in the house and could have only been made better with a hot cup of coffee in my hands.  Across the slough at the top of a tree, a thrush perched briefly, a Swainson's?

After I got my fill of the slough, I returned to the lake and found a juvenile Green Heron near where I saw one last week. 

I spooked him once and refound him perched on a branch right near a Great Blue Heron... I had never seen them side by side before and man did that greenie look tiny!!

It was a really nice morning of lazy birding... Driving away from the lake I stopped to check out a Red-tailed Hawk being harassed by crows.  He seemed confident but still kept his eye on them above him...

It only took a couple minutes before the crows moved on and so did I.  Good times!


  1. As usual, I love all your pictures. The open-beaked Thrush is lovely as is the pointy-tailed Sapsucker and side by side differently sized Herons. Keep on keepin on!

  2. Jen, looks like you had a great day. I love the birds, especially my favorite the green heron and that last shot of the hawk is awesome. Happy Birding.

  3. You had some great sightings. The hawk is wonderful.

  4. I agree with Birdnerd...pretty cool seeing the two herons side by side.

  5. Great birding! I've got to check out Force Lake one of these days.

    I'd go for Swainson's as well on that thrush. Its breast is very buffy with drab, unclear spotting, whereas Hermit should show a whiter breast with darker, clearer spotting. I don't exactly know when Hermit starts showing up in the lowlands, but I haven't heard or seen any reports of them just yet.

  6. The blog looks better than ever, Jen. I had the good fortune of standing about ten feet away from a Great Blue Heron at the beach once. It was quite a marvel to see the huge bird so close with it somewhat intimidating. When I see the Green Heron by itself, it often has me thinking it's larger than it should be. That Red-breasted Sapsucker would have been the subject of the day for me and would stick with it as long as possible.

  7. The two herons for comparison is great! They sure are different in size.

  8. Love that Red-tailed looking up.


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