Ridgefield & Motorless birding

On Monday morning I spent a few rainy hours up at Ridgefield hoping for some more signs of the seasons changing, but really only found the winter usuals.

 Marsh Wren

Never get sick of birds pooping...

This little grebe was making funny faces at me:

Did I mention it was raining??

 Northern Harrier

Four soggy coyotes were hunting the fields on the way out...

I finally remembered to check out the new Bald Eagle nest too- it's in a big tree on the right when you're on the last leg of the auto tour.   Hard to miss...

The rain seems like a distant memory now- the last few days have been sunny and warming up to almost 60.  Yesterday morning I decided to work on my motorless list and headed out on my bike to Force Lake, Heron Lakes Golf Course, and Smith & Bybee Lakes.  I added exactly one bird: the Tree Swallow.  Ah well, saw lots of good birds anyway...

Force Lake was full of Ruddy Ducks, Mallards, Coots, and some Canvasbacks...

At Smith & Bybee Lakes it was apparently school field trip day.  Good for the kids, bad for me and my limited patience.  I found two varieties of Hermit Thrush including the regular variety:

And the marshmallow variety:

There was no shortage of Ruby-crowned Kinglets...

In another area of the park that was not very birdy was a bird that I am trying to turn into a Hutton's Vireo but not sure if I can.  It was quiet and not hyper at all which made me think it was not a kinglet, but I only got one photo and it's not super helpful:


I rode my bike home with just enough time to grab the dogs and head to work... Good times!


  1. That Eagle's nest is massive!

  2. It's a kinglet...vireos would appear thicker-billed and longer-tailed (slightly).

    That first coyote shot is pure hilarity.

  3. Great birds, Jen! I love the Grebe and the first Coyote is awesome. The marshmellow wren is cute. Great outing, Happy Birding!

  4. The last coyote pic is wicked. The rain actually makes it for me. As to your mystery bird, I think it's a kinglet, too, but someone else's blog I read just mentioned Hutton's so I'll pass along the link: http://debdrex-drawing.blogspot.com/2012/03/name-that-bird.html

  5. COOL shots rain and all...Love the "yotes" and the Kinglets, hard to get a Still enough shot of one, you done good girl!!

  6. - I agree with Steve about your kinglet (thin, needle-like bill).

    - Your new camera lens is quite obvious as your shots appear closer, more colorful, and sharper. I can't wait to see what you capture next with it.

    - I've never had a Marshmallow Hermit Thrush, nor have I even heard of them. Are they winter only, or perhaps early spring arrivals? Do they breed here? What other field marks are you looking for other than them looking exactly like marshmallows?

    1. Marshmallow thrushes breed in Alaska but unfortunately many of their young are lost to poachers who sell the mini-marshmallows to General Mills for their popular cereal, Lucky Charms. It's a real shame.

  7. Oh my God! I love Lucky Charms! Thank you, little Marshmallow Thrushes, for sacrificing your lives so that lazy bums like me don't have to cook in the morning. I love this subspecies. Oh yeah, it is a shame though...


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