Thursday, June 26, 2014

Purple Martins!!!!

Yesterday we finally got the canoe in the water and set out for a paddle....

headed over towards Eagle Point Park....this is where the path is when it isn't covered with water.

there was a pair of adult Bald Eagle on the piling that sits at the entrance to the first bay...

one then flew to this piling where swallows....and it turns out Purple Martin's were dive bombing it.

this is the first year in quite some time that I've been on the water at this time of the year and I was thrilled to see that all of the martin boxes that were erected a number of years ago were occupied by Purple Martins!  How exciting to see that a population is in the process of being established in the area.  The bird on the left isn't a martin....looks suspiciously like a female House Sparrow...but every other box had a collection of youngsters in it.

here is a closer look at one of them, either a female or a juvenile...not sure which.  I'd only taken my oldest, slowest camera as we were introducing my new puppy to canoeing and one never knows what might happen...didn't want to take chances with my better camera.

continued on down towards the golf was such a beautiful calm morning!

spotted something swimming near the turned out to be this River Otter that wasn't terribly happy with us, judging from the noises it was making!

turned around and headed into the vegetation on the far side of the estuary opposite our boat launch.  Could hear Red-wing Blackbirds, Yellow Warblers, Common Yellow Throat and a Pied Billed Grebe..... know there are Canada Geese out there but they are in their molt stage and very good at hiding...also saw a couple of ducks sneaking through the bushes but staying out of sight.

the other exciting find was this Eastern Kingbird!  In fact I'm sure there were two of them.  It isn't the first time I've seen Eastern Kingbirds here but they definitely can't be considered common.

so with a successful maiden voyage for young 'Dempster' we'll be trying another one shortly, hopefully making it up the Chehalis where there is usually lots to see.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

It's summer

Hello has been a while!  Now it is officially summer....

and as is usual for this time of the year, the entire estuary area is under water.  What isn't usual is the fact that the water levels peaked early and levels are already dropping...

the north end of the estuary is re-emerging, levels must have dropped a couple of feet already so it will be interesting to see how it plays out the rest of the summer.

We drove over to Kilby this afternoon...

there is no beach at the moment...between the number of people, the heat and the mosquitoes all it did was serve to remind me why these next two months are my least favorite out of the entire year!

there is a view of the Harrison River, taken from just before the bridge...hopefully we'll get out in the canoe in the next few days to see if we can find anything of interest.  There is a pair of Osprey nesting on a piling on the other side of the river, we did see some crows, a flicker, a robin, some Barn Swallows, a hummingbird and heard some chickadees while dodging mosquitoes at Kilby.