While the bird diversity has thinned out considerably in the past couple of weeks, I had some nice views of the summer residents at Tualatin River NWR. The resident Bald Eagles still have one youngster in the nest. He is expected to fledge any day now.
The Columbia River Gorge is not a terribly birdy place. You can hear some of the common species, and see a bird or two on any given hike, but there are better places to see the birds of the western Cascades. Occasionally, however, I remind myself that there is more to life than birds. Recently I left my binocular at home and took a couple of hikes in the gorge. Here are some highlights, minus the shortness of breath and sore calves.
I did a point count at Oak Island on Sauvie Island today, then birded several other areas. Migration is starting to pick up with large numbers of Purple Martins and several warblers and shorebirds on the move. I also saw four Sanhill Cranes, which seemed a bit early.
Western Wood-Pewees are everywhere, and still very vocal.
This California Quail spent some time on top of a corral fence, before disappearing into the blackberry brambles.
Here is a very distant shot of two Red-necked Phalaropes in front of a Cinnamon Teal. Notice the big blue patch on the extended wing of the teal.
A Brush Rabbit, not a bird, nor uncommon, but still cute.
Pacific Treefrog. It is amazing how such a tiny animal (about 1 inch from snout to vent) can have such a loud call.