Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Ridgefield NWR.

It was a pretty typical day at the refuge yesterday- grey and a little rainy, but birdy and entertaining. And there were even some signs of spring...


It was a good day for wrens...

 Bewick's Wren


Marsh Wren

Can't go wrong with Sandhill Cranes, especially when practicing kung fu.





I was watching a Peregrine at one point and looked down and found a bittern about six feet in front of me.  I think I actually jumped.


Always lots of harriers around..


One thing that really stood out at the refuge was the complete lack of Tundra Swans.  I saw a few pairs fly overhead and that was it.  Spring is coming, yes?  On the last leg of the route I came across a coyote hunting and was psyched to get some close-up looks (especially after drooling over Michele's recent photos over at Nature Nut Notes!). 


I do wonder sometimes if people who don't have dogs really appreciate coyotes as much as the rest of us... There's just something about watching a wild animal do all the exact same things (stalking, pouncing, marking, rolling, socializing, etc) as my dogs.  This guy came across a dead vole and had a blast rolling around on it...


I think Jake was jealous.  Dead stuff is his specialty, though horse poop is his favorite cologne.  Anyway, this coyote was catching voles left and right- haven't seen one this successful in a long time.


Good times!!

13 comments:

  1. Those voles do look delicious, I'd role around on em' too. I like the Kung-Fu Cranes and that lovely camouflaged Bittern.

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  2. Those cranes are crazy! Never seen them do that before. Great shots.

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  3. Great birds - I'm particularly blown away by the Bewick's and Marsh pics, but those cranes pretty much define awesome and then the bittern is just a cherry on top. Totally appreciate coyote/fox behavior as a dog owner! I find it funny when Scoobs pees on top of where her wild counterparts 'out back' have marked their territory, but she gets all scared when she hears them yipping. She also loves to roll in the dead stinkies, and considers horse poo a delicacy...makes having baby wipes on hand a necessity!

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    1. Haha my dogs aren't scared of coyotes, but sea lions are apparently terrifying!

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  4. Awesome Cranes in action! We have a lot of Sandhill Cranes here, but I haven't seen them performing Kung-fu before, must be a west coast thing:) I can certainly appreciate the dog rolling thing; my dog rolls in anything and everything that is foul.

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  5. Hi Jen, wonderful birds! the wrens are cute and I love the Bittern. cool sighting of the coyote. My dog like to roll in Fox poop, it must be like a perfume for them. It does stink. I enjoyed your post and your photos. Happy Birding!

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  6. You and your bittern shots! Drives me crazy. Cool Coyote pictures of course.

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    1. Me and my bitterns... aka my new children's book.

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  7. WOW those crane moves are something!! Wrens remind me of cute little squeaky toys--awesome bittern and COYOTE too!!!

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  8. I was actively looking for Bitterns and Wrens on Sunday---and you found them! Thanks for the coyote compliment. You have taken so many nice shots of them. I agree about comparing them to pets. I find them facinating. Sadly, when I googled to find out how much they eat, I was appalled to see a bunch of hunting sites come up. I had no idea and can't believe people hunt them for sport!! Those cranes are awesome!

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    1. Ew I didn't know that either, but sadly not very surprised- especially in light of that Snowy Owl being shot recently. People will shoot anything.

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  9. Wow the bittern blows me away... no wonder you jumped. And mmm voles. Great post chock full of goodies.

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