Yard birds/ Scappoose Bottoms

Things have been tense in the yard this weekend.  The scrub-jays have been fighting.  The crows have been fighting.  And the starlings?  They want to murder each other.  It's made for some good couch birding.

The starling fights usually start off like this:

Then the two birds start fighting in the air until either one breaks away, or they both land on the ground and continue their disagreement.  The latter has happened at least four times this weekend. 

Intense stuff, but all the birds seemed to fly away completely fine.  Yesterday before the starling fights started a crow came by and made me laugh...

Crow fail.

Today the scrub-jays came by for their peanut fix.  One bird decided to just hide the peanuts all around the yard including in this Fred Meyer bag:

Anyway, enough of the yard stuff.  I went up to Scappoose Bottoms yesterday afternoon to see if the Rough-legged Hawks were still around.  I found one perched on a fence post pretty far away, but as some crazy winds picked up he decided to show off for me.

In the distance were a pair of Bald Eagles perched with flocks of Snow Geese flying in behind them... I have no sense of direction so they may have actually been on Sauvie Island or even Ridgefield. 

I stopped to pick up some cow bones for a friend, interestingly right in front of a cow crossing sign...

One of my favorite things about the day was seeing two different male harriers hunting- I so rarely see the males that they always seem special... Unfortunately it was raining pretty hard when I saw this guy:

Still cool.  Good times!


  1. Those Starlings seem to have quite the blood feud. More and more they remind me of mafia families, the way they just kinda muscle into neighborhoods and then take over the place while wearing somewhat gaudy clothing.

    Looks like some Mountain Bluebirds got that cow. Poor bovine...

  2. It must be in the air, this weekend my daughters were acting like your Starlings.

  3. Wow, that is some Starling brawl! Glad no one was injured. That reminds me of the fight I saw on my run yesterday, without my camera, between a Mockingbird and a Red-bellied Woodpecker. Interesting.

  4. Wow, cool series on the starling fighting. I have never seen them fight, not like you witnessed. Cute capture of the jay hiding the nuts, but what a place to hide them. It could have found a better place, you think. Love the Rough legged hawk shots, just awesome. Looks like another great day for you. Happy Birding, Jen!

  5. I FInally got back I started reading this post the other day, my connection took a DIVE for an hr and now Im finally back to leave my comment...WHAT A KDDO those starlings were having I feel like doing that to my X...lol
    and you were up to the RAPTORS in birds of prey. Excellent soar shot of the RL...and what you gonna do with the cattle bones?


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