Sauvie Island in the Sunshine

I’m Back and I’m Still Taking Bird Photos

Great news everybody!
I am still taking bird photos!
I am also trying to pump as much content as I possibly can out on the internet.
So far so good.
Right?

On our third sunny day of 2017
I was fortunate enough to not have to work, and I went to Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden.
So, expect lots of duck photos.

But first, a Varied Thrush!

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This was the most cooperative of about six Varied Thrushes in a little grassy area.
He really tolerated me for longer than I thought,
But nowhere near as cooperative as a Robin might be.

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On the exact opposite end of the human toleration spectrum
This Canada Goose sat with me and watched ducks in the pond
I think he wanted chin scratches, but I didn’t want to get bit.
We just enjoyed each others company.

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This little Song Sparrow was singing from the bushes
There were three that were fighting in the same zone
but Sparrow fights are notoriously difficult to capture on camera
I will work on it.

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My original reason for going to Crystal Springs
Besides enjoying the sun
Was to try to get photos of birds in flight
This Goose is making a big jump
They were having canon ball contests.

They seemed to be having a good time either way.
Bathing geese making rainbows in the sunshine

It really is surprising how many photos of geese I take.
I am surprised, at least.
Maybe it is because of their cute little white cheeks
Or maybe I am fascinated by how vicious they can be
They are so loud.

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I though This goose was going to hit me in the head.
I saw two geese flying at me from a distance and was really excited
I started taking their photos
But it seemed like we were on a collision course.
I did not waver in this game of chicken
I did not duck, duck this goose.
He passed about a foot over my head|
And I was rewarded with some out of focus photos.

Probably the most scared I have been getting bird photos though.

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Humans aren’t the only ones that love ducks and geese.
Bald Eagles also love them
Well, they love eating them
Or doing whatever they want.
They’re Bald Eagles!

C’mon!

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Another Bird I am strangely fascinated with.
American coot.
AKA Mud Hens.
They hang out with ducks, but aren’t ducks.
Maybe that is the reason for my fascination?
It is hard to pin down.

They are a type of rail, which is cool
They have giant feet, also cool
They run on the water, yep also cool.

Things they don’t have:
Cute size or shape or coloration
Maybe it is their head:body:feet ratio.
I will do more research.

This is a Wood Duck
Wood Ducks do not have the same problems as coots
They are probably our most glamorous duck.
I used to think they were too pretty for me to take their photo
But I have grown as a bird photographer
I am no longer afraid to approach beautiful duck models

Or as decoy as can be?

Sorry.

Ducks are weird

Just walking to the market on his one day off
Got to pick up a fresh loaf of French Bread, a nice cheese, and a bottle of wine.
Tonight is going to be special.

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It feels good to be blogging again.
I plan on doing more of it soon.

I am surprised how inspiring it is to create content when people are actually paying you to do it. I am a little more than 33% of my way to my first goal of $300 a month on Patreon.com

I am sending out postcards as tokens of thanks to all patrons, regardless of how little they pledge a month.

If you would like to support me, and in turn encourage me to take and post more photos, make more blog posts, and even do videos, please go to: patreon.com/portlandbirder

Thanks, and see you soon!

Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge

Malheur NWR 2016

I came, I saw, I took photos.
A lot of photos
2400 or so…
But I am proud to present
The good ones.
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Burrowing owls greeted us
On our entrance to the refuge
A very nice bird
To see along the highway at 70 mph
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Birds on signs
The bread and butter
of bird photography
This Sage Thrasher was happy to pose
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Due to the Headquarters Closure
Frenchglen was the cool meeting place
Evening Grosbeaks foraged
Outside of the Hotel
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They let me approach on my belly
Then they got too close
My camera can only focus
11.5 feet or further
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Pygmy Rabbits were in the parking lot
How lucky that we get the worlds smallest bunny
An ideal treat for a raptor
Also one of the cutest things I saw on the trip
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At the viewpoint across from the hotel
A Forester’s Tern was hunting
in the tiny creek
I saw it dive but come up empty-beaked
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Great Horned owl
More like Fluffy-Taloned owl
amiright?
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Searching P Ranch for Bobolink
We got this consolation prize
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Family Photo
They wanted to come home with me
but I wouldn’t let them.
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The view from our campground
Uphill from Frenchglen
Unimproved campsite
Didn’t need much improving
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Awoke to Gray Flycatchers
This one was knitting a sweater
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 Our camp buddy
I think a Yellow-pine Chipmunk
Rodents on trip were all adorable
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We had a breeding pair
of Mountain bluebirds
Hunting insects
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And we had a couple insects too
Maybe an Orange-rumped Bumblebee
We also had cool dung beetles
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And now for birds around the refuge
Red-winged Blackbird
At a very birdy Benson Pond
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 Get off my lawn!
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Swallow, Cliff Swallow
Of course short for Clifford Swallow
You know somewhere in the world
Cliff Swallow has to be someone’s real name
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Western Meadowlark
Oregon’s State Bird
Loves to sing at passing cars

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It’s a Willet…malheur-0060
Yellow-bellied marmot
Watching cars go by

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Wilson’s Phalaropes
A pair of real love birds
romantic swims in romantic
jerky little circles
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 Oh man, Baby Horses!
Not a bird or a rodent
But Still Pretty cool
Bonus is behind you
On the road to Diamond
Is a Bobolink on a fence
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This Bobolink!
The only one we saw
and it was brief
He never turned around
And just flew into tall grass
C U next time
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Brown-headed cowbird
Parasitic egg layers
but they are growing on me
such a subtle contrast
and very pretty colors
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Sage Thrasher
Has been thrashed
and is on Sage
Aptly named

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 Malheur Lake
has been wetter

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I have excellent Eastern Kingbird Luck
They like to tussle
Super aggressive
And surprisingly loud
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A moment of stoicism
After defending his territory
I can anthropomorphize anything
Just test me

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Western Tanager
If you fly with your mouth open
Bugs will fly in
Not gross at all
if that is all you eat
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Brown-headed Cowbird
chooses his mount wisely
This Uber driver
Provides snacks
5/5

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Cedar Wax-wing
Has a very modern haircut
Also, such a clean looking guy
Very presentable,
Great interviewer

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Yellow-headed blackbird
Mid exorcism
Great bird
Not a subtle bird

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Mourning dove
I like when the eye-ring
of my bird
matches the background
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Barn Swallow
Perching for photo ops
at eye level
professional bird model
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The Burrowing Owl That greeted us
Also bid us farewell
Very thoughtful little guy
Made a lot of birders happy!