Pigeon Guillemots at Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge

After I canceled my 3-day trip to the Columbia Gorge, I decided Leslie and I should spend the next sunny day at the beach. We ended up spending two days at the beach, not one. We spent the first day at the Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge, more for the beach than for bird watching.

However, I did know that Pigeon Guillemots nest there, and I was hoping to get some shots of them nesting. The first thing we saw when we reached the beach was Guillemots, quite close to the shore.

Pigeon Guillemot

Looking up at the protected cliffs where they nest, I saw lots of birds landing on the crumbling banks.

Pigeon Guillemot

It soon became clear we were too early to see chicks, that we had arrived in the middle of the courting rituals.

Pigeon Guillemot

More often than not, however, the ritual seemed to end with both birds sliding down the bank and flying off.

Perhaps this couple was a little more experienced because they were cuddled up talking to each other in a more stable environment.

Pigeon Guillemot

It was a fascinating experience.

What do you think?