May 12, 2015

Watering Holes

Red Crossbills had been reported in my neighborhood a few weeks ago and I wondered why they weren't visiting my hospitable garden. Well, last week they showed up three days in a row. On one sunny morning I enjoyed their bathing and feeding.

As I was watching the crossbills I noticed a hummer decide to take a bath too. He really gets into that bubbler!

May 04, 2015

Weekend Sounds

All the migrants are moving back into the area and they are singing their little heads off! Cooper Mountain is a great place to go to experience birdsong overload. Yesterday we visited the park and spent four hours watching birds. But mostly we were listening to all the songs.

This morning we headed out bright and early to go to Ridgefield NWR. We arrived before 7:30am and were treated to great light and lots of birdsong.

 And of course I found my lil green frog.

And if these aren't enough you can go to my Soundcloud page and hear more.

Listening enhances nature more than I ever could have realized.

April 30, 2015

Catching Up

I just haven't been carrying my camera around as much. It's nice to bird light and not have the distraction of photography. Maybe I see more without the camera? I'm not sure.

Here are some photos from Steigerwald NWR on one sunny evening:

Gotter Prairie Savannah Sparrow

Anna's Hummingbird nest with one baby

My backyard White-throated Sparrow that stuck around for 21 days straight.

I set up this bubbler and have been able to snap some shots through the window. Lots of birds are loving it.

These two Anna's hummers spend a lot of time feeding near each other or chasing each other around. I suspect they are this year's offspring. They took to the Hum-Button feeder quickly. See the video below for some Hum-Button action!

Spring is here!

March 09, 2015

County Birding

Yesterday afternoon we walked around Fernhill Wetlands. It was an unusual 72 degrees and sunny. The expected birds were there. The trails are open again and there are some muddy spots for shorebirds and dabbling ducks.

But lets get on to the good stuff. Things were exciting over on Milne Road. Evidently its the place to be these days as we ran into a couple of familiar faces.

First off: Horned Lark in the road!!!!!!!! This super hard to find county bird is my county lifer #190. It was just hanging out watching the sun set. Later it flew and another one popped out of the short grasses and followed it.

Last year for the Big Year, we visited Milne for Short-eared Owls and saw some, but not very well. We went back a few weeks ago and had the same experience. I grumbled "I'm never coming back to to this stupid place", but here I was again. Finally some owls were about!

They made their appearance shortly after 6:00. They were flying around with the harriers and hunting for rodents.

You can count on a nice sunset out there!

March 02, 2015

Sauvie Island and More

Sunday we visited Sauvie Island. All the usual suspects were accounted for. Cranes were out in full force although I didn't manage a decent photo. On Rentenaar Rd. there was the expected sparrow flock, but alas, someone dumped corn on the south side of the road. People: dump it on the north side!! So we watched the backlit birds and didn't take any sparrow photos. There were mostly Golden-crowned anyhow.

Sunshine and a hunting harrier!

A heron rookery had possibly 50 herons hanging out. And a Bald Eagle in the top middle.

At the same stop was an amazing display of soaring raptors. At one point we figured there were eagles, a Red-tailed Hawk, an accipter, and a harrier. I counted over 7 eagles later.

At Cedar Mill Wetlands this morning it was slightly ho-hum.

This sapsucker in the greenery made me happy though.