Tag Archives: kingfisher

Oregon Coast Wildlife

The Waldport Osprey chicks are growing fast.

osprey feeding chicks
Osprey brings home the bacon

These young male Mallards will be in full color before you know it.

Young male mallards getting their colors
Young male mallards getting their colors

Pileated Woodpecker finds some grub in the dead tree.

Pileated Woodpecker
Pileated Woodpecker

I spotted the first elk calf of the season!!

elk calf
First elk calf of the season!

I love seeing the ducks with so many chicks.  I can’t imagine how the mom keeps up with them all.

Mallard hen with 11 chicks
Mallard hen with 11 chicks

Can you tell what kind of critter tracks these are in the next photo?

critter tracks
Critter tracks: otters and what else?

There were just otter tracks when I first looked.  But then I caught a second culprit.

Beaver going to get him a blackberry vine

I didn’t know beavers ate blackberry vines but that’s what it went up to get.  It brought it back down to the water’s edge to eat it.  Watch 2 beavers in this video:

[youtube https://youtu.be/i22D5cZIj2E]

The kingfisher kids are learning how to fish.  Mom and Dad still bring them food though – so they can keep up their strength until they get better at it.

3 kingfishers
3 Kingfisher chicks waiting for breakfast

Fishing Lessons – Kingfishers

These Kingfishers are like a morning alarm clock only the Snooze button doesn’t work and we can’t unplug it from the wall.  hahaha  …and it’s not as annoying.

Belted Kingfisher

When a single Kingfisher is working the river it doesn’t make this much noise (watch video below).  So I’m guessing that these Kingfishers are young birds being taught how to fish.  Either the parents are giving lots of encouragement to their young or the children are saying “Wait up!  Wait up!  I’m hungry!  I’m tired!”   Or maybe both?

Whatever is going on, they are fun to watch.  We’ve seen as many as 6 Kingfishers working this part of the Alsea River at one time.  Occasionally they actually splash in the water to catch a bite to eat.

The Opportunistic World

This is the first time I’ve seen a cormorant this far up the Alsea River.  I know he’s here for the food but I wonder if there is a certain type of fish he’s followed up the river?  Chinook are too big even for a cormorant.  Double-crested cormorants are the most plentiful here so that’s probably what he is.


Although I was sad to see this pretty little Kingfisher was dying, I was excited to see one up close.

Belted Kingfisher
Dying Kingfisher

He didn’t suffer very long after I saw him.  I don’t know how long he’d been hurt though.  I didn’t do an autopsy to find out what caused his demise.

Belted Kingfisher
Belted Kingfisher

What a beautiful bird!

brush bunny
Frisky Bunnies

Suspicious and Guilty were chasing each other around this morning.  Maybe we’ll have rabbit for Thanksgiving this year?!   hahaha – just KIDDING!

I’m going to dye them pastel colors and send them to the grandkids for Christmas presents. 🙂

Kingfisher and Brush Rabbit

Since archery season opened last week I haven’t seen 1 elk!

I still see the black-tailed doe with her spotted twins but not as often.  No one is eating the early apples falling from our trees.

So my focus has turned to birds.

Belted Kingfisher in tree
Find the Kingfisher

Hint:  He’s got a black head, white collar and grey back and he is smack-dab in the middle of the photo.

I hear the kingfisher many times during the day.  He chatters as he flies up or down the Alsea River.  He’ll even land in our nearby tree.  But he is SO aware of his surroundings that I cannot sneak out to get a good photo of him.  This photo is when he landed in a tree 40 yards away.  I saw about where he landed and tried to find him in my lens.  I couldn’t see him until I got it onto the computer.  This is a Belted Kingfisher.  They differ from the Ringed Kingfisher in the color of their belly.

I love watching the kingfishers fish.  Sometimes they hover high above the water and then dive straight down into it to catch their prey.  I’ve also seen them dive in at an angle.  But they aren’t like the eagle or osprey; who don’t seem to break stride when they catch.  Kingfishers go under water and seem to struggle under the weight of their wet feathers to fly off again.  I haven’t tried to get an action shot since this one last June.

King Fisher Dive
King Fisher Dive

Another skiddish critter around here is the Brush Rabbit (I prefer Brush Bunny).  The Brush Bunny is an Oregon native and of the cottontail family.  Some people are convinced that the bunnies seen in Tillicum Campground are pygmy rabbits but those only live in the dense sagebrush areas of southeast Oregon. (reference: http://www.dfw.state.or.us/species/docs/rabbit.pdf)

brush bunny
Brush Bunny

Why did the bunny cross the road?

To get to the other side.

Was that joke funny when it was about chickens?  Or was it because I was 6?

Bird Watching on the Oregon Coast

I saw a pileated woodpecker the other day.  He left before I could get the camera but this little Hairy Woodpecker wasn’t as camera-shy.

Hairy Woodpecker

This hawk knows a good fishing spot when he sees it.

Hawk - Fishing
Hawk – Fishing

I’m not real sure what kind of hawk it is if it’s not a red-tailed.

He had enough patience that he finally went after something.  I think he was actually “fishing” for birds.

Hawk Attack
Hawk Attack

There were a couple Belted Kingfishers working the river too.  These are interesting looking birds.  Their head looks out of proportion to their body.

The Belted Kingfisher is the most common kingfisher in North America and it’s the only one north of Texas and Arizona; according to my bird book.

King Fisher
Belted Kingfisher

Then the mallards flew up river, landed in the river and drifted down.  I counted 14 at one time.

Mallards in Alsea Tidewater
Mallards in Alsea Tidewater

I’ve always admired the iridescent green head of the male mallard.

The Surf Scoter is one of my favorite sea birds.  They have the odd-shaped bill with a little orange on it.

Surf Scoter Gaggle
Surf Scoter Gaggle

They were in the Alsea Bay fishing with everyone else; harbor seals and humans.

August on the Oregon Coast

I got a new toy 🙂   35X Zoom!

Cannon PowerShot SX40 HS
Cannon PowerShot SX40 HS

We had to go try it out.  I’ve been trying to catch a kingfisher on camera for some time.  The slightest movement startles them.

With this new camera I don’t have to get as close to get a good shot. 🙂

King Fisher - Lint Slough
King Fisher – Lint Slough

The young osprey, in the nest at the high school, was waiting for his lunch.

Young Osprey-WHS
Young Osprey – Waldport HS nest

Campers made this fogdial on Tillicum Beach.  I’d call it a sundial but we’ve been fogged in for a few days.  The way a fogdial works is, if you don’t see it, visibility is less than 5 feet.


A camper reported an injured bird this morning.  I reported it to the State Parks and they reported it to the Beach Ranger.  Then I went out to see what kind of bird it was.  I couldn’t tell from her description.  It is a common murre.  The lady sat out there by the bird, to ward off dogs, until the Ranger came.  But she had to go to the restroom, and when she came back, the bird had died and a crow was eating it.  The lady was sad and thought the crow was “mean”.  But the crow’s got to eat too.  It’s the circle of life.

Injured Common Murre
Injured Common Murre

She described it as black and white and kind of looked like a penguin.  The common murre even walks like a penguin.