Tag Archives: great blue heron

Winter Birding

Winter is a great time for birding – especially if you live in a migratory pathway.

Ring-necked ducks
Scaups

We get to see different birds in the winter than in the summer months.  The scaups aren’t too common this far up the Alsea River.  I’m not sure if these are the Greater or Lesser Scaups.

Male Common Merganser
Male Common Merganser

Common Mergansers aren’t as common as their name implies; at least on our section of the river.  I love the stark, contrasting, colors on the male mergansers.

Heron and Hoodies
Heron and Hoodies share a fishing spot

A Great Blue Heron was fishing out in front this morning.  His Hooded Merganser friends did a drive-by to check out why he was there.

I snapped a couple photos through the window; knowing that the heron would quickly leave when I opened the window or door for a better shot.

mallard ducks
Mallards – Bottoms Up!

By the liiiiiiiiight of the silvery mooooooooon….

I hear that song in my head every time I see the mallards feeding 🙂

Birds on the Alsea River

Aside from a peek or two of mom with their babies, I haven’t seen the hooded mergansers since they disappeared to their nesting grounds in April.  It’s nice to see them back!  This male was with a female.  I guess our part of the Alsea is their feeding grounds.  I see he caught a small crawdad.

Male Hooded Merganser
Male Hooded Merganser

Osprey, Pileated Woodpeckers and Great Blue Herons were also scarce over the summer.  They, too are coming back to a favorite feeding spot.

Osprey in flight
Osprey
Pileated Woodpecker
Pileated Woodpecker

Can you see the small burl on the opposite side of the tree from Woody?

Great Blue Heron
Great Blue Heron

The Great Blue Heron looks more grey than blue.  But when he spreads his wings there is a wide band that is the same color as his head; which looks bluish to me.