Posts

Showing posts from April, 2011

Ridgefield, Fernhill Wetlands

Image
I went up to Ridgefield the other morning to see what was going on.  Nothing new really, besides even more goose babies.  Here the mom or the dad had just chased off another goose and was really pumped...



I saw two pairs of Redheads that morning.


I saw a Lincoln's Sparrow get chased by a Yellow-rumped Warbler.  I don't think I had ever seen a Lincoln's there before.


I had a Myrtle Warbler pose nicely for me...


I never get sick of Cinnamon Teals...


I saw two more sets of goslings that morning...


A Yellow-headed Blackbird actually let me get some decent photos...


That was about it for Ridgefield.  This morning I went over to Fernhill Wetlands for a few hours...  The resident domestic ducks were a bit frisky (the white one in particular).


There were swallows everywhere... Peeking out of nest boxes...


Bringing home new furnishings...


Discussing how to get the new furnishings inside the house...


I was hoping for a better variety of warblers, but I only saw Yellow-rumped, yello…

Those crazy coots...

Image
I went over to Vanport yesterday morning hoping to see the Vermilion Flycatcher that was seen the day before... No luck there so I walked over to Force Lake.  From a distance things seemed pretty calm but right as I walked up two American Coots began a 3-minute long battle royale... It was intense!

At first they just seemed to be dancing...



Then things got fierce.  They were each trying to put their feet on the other's belly to push them down...


A third coot came in at one point mostly just yelling at them...



The third coot retreated to a branch nearby to yell some more.  A pair of Mallards came by to watch for a bit...


I thought this fight was never going to end.  Every time it seemed to slow down it started up again...


At times they were both underwater...


I seriously took about 200 photos of this spectacle... It was so crazy to watch.


Eventually a fourth coot joined the fuss and the third coot returned to yell some more.


The fourth coot is the one on the left in the photo above…

Yard birds.

Image
This morning I went out to check on the progress of the chickadees.  It seems they've done a dandy job excavating and hopefully will be moving in soon, if they haven't already. 


I haven't seen the chickadees near the nest today but they were at the feeders, along with a couple other cool birds:  My White-crowned Sparrow returned today!


Also out there was the first Yellow-rumped Warbler my yard has seen this year... An Audubon's (how appropriate on his birthday).

Chickadee Nest Excavation

Image
A couple of hours ago I noticed a Black-capped Chickadee digging into the tree directly in front of my kitchen window. 


There are two chickadees out there and they appear to be taking turns excavating. 


I have read in Sibley's and online that the male and female will both work to excavate the nest cavity but then the female actually builds the nest.  It can take up to two weeks to complete.  I haven't noticed these guys working here before so they may have just begun. 


Looks like a lot of work!  I hope they don't change their minds and move to another tree.  It would be awesome to watch this family grow!

Weekend Birds...

Image
It's pouring rain now but this weekend was pretty nice... I hit up a few spots to check out the birds.  Saturday morning I wandered around the Force Lake/Vanport Wetlands area.  At the lake the Redhead pair were out and about:


All of the nest boxes around the area seemed to be occupied.  I saw some Tree Swallows flying in and out of one right on the lake.


I tried for a decent photo of a Rufous Hummingbird, but failed...


Oh well!  There were some turtles catching some rays on a branch...


I had the urge to ID these guys and found a great Oregon Turtle website.  The turtle on the left is a native western painted turtle but the other two are non-native red-eared sliders.  Interesting!

On my walk along the road to Vanport I stopped to look at a bug on a dandelion...


It appears to be a spotted cucumber beetle.  Cute.

On my walk I met a fellow birder named Bruce who informed me his wife, Christie, had been the one to create the Friends of Force Lake group. I was unable to make it to thei…

Cooper Mountain Nature Park.

Image
I visited Cooper Mountain today for the first time and boy is my spring fever back!  It was an absolutely gorgeous day and I made sure the dogs got tired out at work in the morning (one of the many benefits of working at a doggie daycare) so I had my whole afternoon free to look for birds...

From the parking area at the top of the trails is a stunning view of the Tualatin River Valley...


I think I managed to check out all of the trails during my three and a half hours (!) at the park.  The first fifteen minutes or so of walking was nearly bird-free but luckily that changed. White-crowned Sparrows were the first birds I noticed in numbers...


Ruby-crowned Kinglets were by far the most common bird of the day.


I found a pair of beautiful Western Bluebirds flying around a field near the main trail. 



So pretty!  Also pretty were all the little butterfly type things flitting about... Most would not stay still for a photo but this little fella did:


Learning more about butterflies is on my lon…