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Showing posts from August, 2014

This week in birds.

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Thursday morning I set out on a five mile walk to Whitaker Ponds in hopes of adding a bird or two to my motorless list.  My first birding destination along the route was the section of slough bike path that parallels NE Alderwood Road. 


This section is only about half a mile long, but I have always had luck with birds here.  This area was part of a Columbia Slough Bank Stabilization project funded by Port of Portland after a flood in 1996, and a lot of native species thrive here.  Some non-natives flourish here as well, like this spotted jewelweed:


On this day I came across a feisty mixed flock of Black-capped Chickadees, Bewick's Wrens, Bushtits, Cedar Waxwings, and a lone but ballsy Black-throated Gray Warbler.  The trail ends at NE 92nd Ave and the Alderwood Trail picks up for another short stretch.  It was near this second trail that I felt a sharp pain in my foot and found this guy stuck through the sole of my sneaker:


Ow.  As I continued up Alderwood I noticed some crows ha…

Broughton Beach, etc.

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Yesterday morning I decided to take a long walk out to Broughton Beach on the slimmest of chances that a certain Arctic Tern would still be hanging around.  It was not, but I had a good walk and added at least one bird to my motorless year list.


Osprey were out fishing which, as I'm sure I've mentioned, is one of my favorite things to watch.  They are just SO good at it.  Except when they're not.


This seemed like a regular plunge at first, but the Osprey did not fly back up, fish in talons.  Instead it sort of flopped about, swimming kind of,  awkwardly wrestling what turned out to be a pretty big fish. 


It was fairly close to shore so after some more "paddling" and fluttering, it hopped up onto some rocks with the fish.


Once on the rocks, there were was still much debate about what to do next.  A flyby Bald Eagle caused a brief disturbance during which I thought the fish was lost.  It was not.  The eagle flew back across the river and the Osprey returned.


Af…

Timberline.

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Timberline Lodge.  You've seen The Shining, right?  Well I didn't head out to this historic Mount Hood lodge yesterday to hunt for ghost twins or rub noses with Jack Nicholson.  I just wanted to check out the trails that lead up the mountain from the lodge and maybe see a few birds along the way...


Wildflowers were a big highlight with hot pink paintbrush, lupine, aster, and many more I have yet to identify brightening up the landscape.

Paintbrush

Aster

Penstemon?

Lupine

While hiking up a thick fog rolled in and the mountain completely disappeared for awhile. 


What mountain? 


Oh right.  Birds.  There were some of those too.  A young Horned Lark surprised us in the fog...


Later on after the fog passed and the sun came out I found a couple of adults as well.


The most abundant bird of the day was the juvenile Chipping Sparrow.  They were everywhere.  Never saw a single full-blown adult.


With the sunshine came much better views of... well... everything.

Early morning skiers

Ok back to bi…