Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Seaside Cove

Odd looking sea duck at Seaside Cove - there seems to be too much white on the face for a White-winged Scoter.(Still image above, animated GIF below.)

Here is the bird as it opens up and flaps its wings. The white areas on underwing and top of wings look right for White-winged Scoter. (Still image above, animated GIF below.)

Another look at the bird floating on the water. (Still image above, animated GIF below.)

The Cove is a popular spot for surfers, especially when the surf is like it was today, with the east wind.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

Red-shouldered Hawk

Juvenile Red-shouldered Hawk, with streaks on all of chest and underside; black tail with narrow white bands. It was calling extensively, with 5 or 6 repeated squeals each time, as it moved through thick stand of trees south of the sewage ponds. Eventually it silently flew into some dense, deciduous trees near NW sewage pond.
Pale crescent across outer primaries can be seen in photo of bird taking off. "All plumages show distinctive pale translucent crescent across outer primaries (by far the most important field mark to watch for on a flying bird)." - Sibley

Friday, October 12, 2018

Lapland Longspur

Lapland Longspurs appear around this time of year at the South Jetty of the Columbia River. I counted 27 in a flock today.

When the birds land, they practically disappear into the vegetation. They also have a habit of secretly moving away from the point where they touch down as soon as they land, making it hard to re-find them.

The 27 tiny black dots just above the jetty rocks are a flock of Lapland Longspurs.

Friday, August 24, 2018

Common Murre

Common Murre fledgling sitting near the water's edge at Del Rey Beach, north of Gearhart.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

OBA Field Trip to Haystack Rock and Ecola Forest Preserve

We had near-perfect conditions for viewing Tufted Puffins at Haystack Rock starting at 7am this morning, with sunshine, almost no wind, and one of the lowest tides of the year. Up to 10 Tufted Puffins could be spotted sitting out in the grass on the upper north side of Haystack Rock at any one time, while others flew out over the ocean and back.

On the south side of Haystack we got nice views of Pigeon Guillemots, 2 Black Oystercatchers, and Western Gulls with fuzzy spotted babies. About a dozen Harlequin Ducks were swimming among the rocks south of Haystack, with at least one male still in breeding plumage. Brown Pelicans glided low over the waves. There were many Common Murres and Pelagic Cormorants.

Brandt's Cormorants with their bright blue chins were sitting on nests on the south side of Haystack and on one of the Needles.

Ecola Forest Preserve was the next stop for the 16 Oregon Birding Association members participating in the field trip. Swainson's Thrushes were singing and "weep"-ing all around us. We kept trying to see one of the many, vocal Pacific-slope Flycatchers and finally succeeded. We heard one Hermit Warbler - the OBA logo bird! Band-tailed Pigeons were displaying. We saw Western Tanagers and Black-headed Grosbeaks. We heard and then saw 2 Wrentits, a highlight for everyone to see.

Thanks to Ken Chamberlain for setting up this field trip!
Here is the description of the trip from the OBA website:


TRIP LEADERS: Diana Byrne & Ken Chamberlain

WHEN: 7 am - 12 noon, Saturday July 14, 2018

WHERE: This trip will be based in Cannon Beach, Oregon. We will meet at the mid-town public parking lot located S. Hemlock and Gower Ave at 7 am. We will first bird Haystack Rock (part of the Oregon Islands National Wildlife Refuge), followed by birding several sites in Cannon Beach and nearby.

BIRDS AND SITE CONDITIONS: The primary target species of this trip is the Tufted Puffin. We will be visiting during a 2 ft. minus tide allowing relatively close viewing. There will be emphasis on slow birding and bird photography during this portion of the trip. We should have good photographic opportunities for the puffins and other seabirds, both perched and especially in flight.

Other species found at Haystack Rock include Harlequin Duck, Common Murre, Pigeon Guillemot, Black Oystercatchers, our three species of Cormorants, and nesting Western Gulls.

We will follow up with birding for passerine species at upland sites around town and nearby. We will wrap up at noon.

Public restrooms are located near the SW corner of the parking lot, on the west side of Hemlock St. We will walk about 1/2 mile from the parking lot and along the beach to reach Haystack Rock.

Walking at other birding locations will include gravel roads and paths that are level or slightly sloped, with distances up to 2 miles. Coffee will not be available at 7am in Cannon Beach, so please bring your own.

HOW TO REGISTER: This trip is limited to 16 Oregon Birding Association members. If you are not a current member, you can join online here. There is no fee for this field trip; however, preregistration is required.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Cannon Beach Settling Ponds

Wilson's Warbler

Jewell area birds

I went looking for Evening Grosbeak for my Clatsop County life list near Jewell on a beautiful summer morning.

Can you find the Hermit Warbler in the photo above? It was singing away from the top of a tree, see close up below.

Western Tanager

Hamilton Creek Prairie 45.9536,-123.5731
Park at yellow gate about 4 miles west of Jewell on Hwy 202 (east of Lee Wooden Fishhawk Falls County Park), and walk up gravel road.

Northern Goshawk, seen near 3 mile point on Beneke Road 6/30/18. Long tail and broad wings of an accipiter, but very large, and broader body and head than a Cooper's Hawk. No bands on underside of tail. Underside of primaries lighter color than rest of wing. Steady fight, above tops of trees and across an opening in the forest.