Westmoreland Park.

Yesterday afternoon my friend gave me a ride after I dropped my car off at the mechanic yet again.  My friend is obviously too nice for his own good because I somehow convinced him to drive all the way down to Westmoreland Park so I could take a look at a couple of swans.  In the pouring rain.

A couple of Tundra Swans settled in at the park awhile back.  They're not rare swans by any means, but I don't get many opportunities to see them close up, let alone in Portland.

I was also psyched to find an extremely obliging Canvasback, another bird I rarely see at close range. 

Can't go wrong with a couple of Wood Ducks...

Or a handsome merganser...

There were lots of gulls of course, some of which I even considered trying to ID.  I wanted to call this fella a Thayer's Gull, so it's probably a Herring:

These two buddies both make think something along the lines of Olympic, but really I don't know:

There were plenty more gulls but the rain was coming down steadily and my poor nice friend had no rain coat, so I threw in the towel.  I will leave you with a pretty domestic beast:

Good times!


  1. Nice! I hope the swans stick around until the bird walk that Max and I are leading on the 8th.

  2. YEAH..love the swans and the ducks! Hope you get your car fixed up right! I had to get a new tire for the van when it kept losing air I went to have it fixed and the guy said "THIS TIRE IS DRY ROTTED"...yikes, so Im $119 poorer now..:o(

  3. Great shots of the Canvasback! They are hard fellas to close shots of!

  4. Great shots, Jen! It is nice to see all the ducks around now. I love the Canvasback shots and the Hooded Merganer and Wood Ducks are favorites. Happy Birding!

  5. You are so hardcore, love it. =) I ALSO like the look of the rain drop patterns in the water, providing an interesting background for these handsome creatures. Way to go. =)

  6. Hi Jen,

    I can't believe nobody has commented on the "Thayer's" yet. What gives? We'll, in lieu of the experts chiming in, I'll give you my two cents on the bird, which may or may not be worth a darn.

    While I believe it has Thayer's in it, I don't think it's a full or true Thayer's. Here's what I do and don't like about it for Thayer's.

    1. The soft streaking on the head is present in every adult and juvenile Thayer's I've ever photographed.

    2. The size must be good for Thayer's as I'm assuming that's part of what tipped you off on separating it from the others around?

    3. The dark iris fits Thayer's. Herring would have devil eye (light iris).

    4. The bill color is fairly split, with the base half of it showing a nice, light gray color.

    1. While it may be the lighting, the bird's primaries strike me as being just on the gray/black side of black, instead of clear, jet black. This makes me think hybrid.

    2. The bird's bill is appearing a bit large and chunky for Thayer's, and it seems to shore more of a gonydeal angle than what I would expect for Thayer's. Typically, Thayer's bill is short, thin, and fairly sleak.

    Check out these links to two separate Thayer's Gull adults on my Flickr page:



  7. You love birding that park in the rain! And the snow! Where is the Eurasian Wigeon hen? I hope you get to go back when the sun is out to slaughter those swans with your camera.

    You are right about the Olympic Gulls. I agree with Rhett that the first gull is not a Thayer's, although I am not confident it has any Thayer's ancestry.

  8. Jen, would it be possible for me to use your picture of the two Olympic gulls in my high school newspaper peice on gulls? I would of course give you full credit and could send you a copy of the newspaper. :)
    Rosemary Elliot


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