When time is limited or weather is sketchy, I appreciate having Commonwealth Lake close to home for a quick birding fix.
Some of the dogwoods still had a few berries, and this Hermit Thrush was taking advantage of this seasonal food.
It was a treat to see this species sitting out in the open, rather than skulking in the undergrowth.
So nothing too exciting this trip, but it is enough to ward off insanity/crankiness until the next outing.
A couple of Black-crowned Night-Herons has been hanging out at Koll Center Wetlands recently. This spot is strictly parking lot birding (pull up, get out of the car, and scan the pond), but it has attracted more than it’s share of interesting sightings – like Black-crowned Night-Herons.
Other recent celebrities at this site include a group of up to six River Otters. These are such neat animals. It is a treat to find them in such an urban setting.
Common Mergansers, like these two males, are some of the many species of waterfowl currently using the wetlands.
female Common Merganser
I walked through Smith and Bybee Wetlands after an unsuccessful gull chase in northwest Portland. Here are a few highlights.
A pair of River Otters were in the slough. It is always a treat to see this species.
There were actually a few birds around. I ran into several mixed flocks of small birds that defy point-and-shoot photography.
Raptors were well represented by Bald Eagles, Red-tailed Hawk, and Red-shouldered Hawk, none of which wished to be photographed. Despite the rainy conditions, it was a productive trip.
Early May is always a good time for seeing returning migrants and other signs of spring. Despite our cool damp weather, spring continues to slowly make inroads. Here are some random images from the past week.
Black-headed Grosbeaks returned this week. After a winter of little finches, these birds make a bold impression when they appear at the feeder.
Like most birds, this grosbeak brings his leg up over his wing to scratch his head. I would think it would be easier to go under, but it seems to be working for him.
Two Northern River Otters have been hanging out at Koll Center Wetlands in Beaverton, so I went out this morning to see them. Otters are always a treat, but it is especially nice to see them thriving in such an urban setting.
Here is one of the two otters munching on a fish. Check out those teeth.
After breakfast, it is time to wrestle,
and then wrestle some more.
Then they were off to find something else to do.
Good numbers of birds use this little wetland, as well. Here is a Northern Shoveler. How do they hold those massive bills up?
Two Killdeer feed within a flock of Long-billed Dowitchers. This flock flew off when a Cooper’s Hawk flew by.