Category Archives: Bird Talk

Springtime Intensity

Spring has finally arrived. In the Pacific Northwest, this means at least one warm sunny day, plus who knows how many chilly overcast days. Today the weather was warm enough to venture out for photos of a female Red-shafted Flicker we saw from our car yesterday. She had been excavating a nesting cavity in a […]

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A Banded Cooper’s Hawk

Yesterday I visited Magnuson Park in North Seattle. I’ve developed a pretty good eye for noticing raptors in trees, and as I drove around a corner my attention was immediately drawn to a hawk perched ten feet up a tree. Around here, hawks are either accipiters, which have a thin body, or buteos, which are […]

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Hundreds of Cormorants

Last week, a bridge closure necessitated a drive around the north end of Lake Washington. There I discovered over 200 Double-crested Cormorants roosting in trees along the shore. I returned the next afternoon to take photos of them roosting and flying. Double-crested Cormorants are common in most of North America, where they live, breed, and […]

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A Trip to See Snowy Owls

Last week I took 2 days and drove to Boundary Bay in British Columbia, Canada, to see an unusual sight: over 20 Snowy Owls that had journeyed from their Arctic home for a winter respite. Harry Potter fans will recognize them as the same species as Hedwig, Harry’s pet owl and mail courier. Although Snowies […]

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A Rare Bird Sighting: Barrow’s Goldeneye

Yesterday afternoon, with just an hour or two of daylight left, I headed to the Montlake Fill to look for the Barrow’s Goldeneye that Fill-expert Connie Sidles had reported. According to her, this bird has been sighted at the Fill only five times in 117 years (it generally winters along rocky coasts). I asked the […]

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A Day Off

I spent yesterday hanging photos for my February exhibit at Great Harvest Bread Co. in Ballard. I’d designed the installation, framed 14 photos, and then hung them all—a week-long affair ending with a very long day. And so I took some rejuvination time today to kayak around the Union Bay Natural Area Share

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Lunch-Box Birds

I want to call them “lunch-box” birds: those birds I see from my car while parked on some shrubby parking strip eating my lunch. Yesterday I saw several at Marymoor Park, where I drove to sit and enjoy a take-out pint of curry soup. Entering the dirt parking lot, I noticed a small flock of […]

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After the Melt: Varied Thrushes!

My home office overlooks our street, a quiet cul-de-sac in Kirkland. It’s perfect for watching neighborhood going’s-on—including, of course, whatever birds are around. Yesterday morning there were an unusual number of yard birds, happily picking at the seeds and other detritis left by the melting snow. Juncos, Robins, Chickadees, and—most exciting for me—Varied Thrushes. More […]

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When a Bird Hits Your Window

It has happened to me and possibly to you, too: You hear a startling “thud” against a window, then you see a tiny smudge of feathers on the glass. And on the ground below the window, you find a dazed or unconscious bird… All may not be lost, even if the bird is unconscious. Share

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Winter in the Pacific Northwest

The Pacific Northwest region of the U.S. is known for its long, bleak winters.  The cloudy days seem never-ending. And even though temperatures rarely drop below freezing, the rainy dampness is chilling. It’s hard to drag myself outdoors to photograph birds. But I do. And it’s well worth it. There are plenty of birds to […]

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