A Sunny, Winter Day at Theler

Last week was one of the best weeks, weather-wise, I’ve seen since summer. After being stuck in the house most of this week because of inclement weather, I realized just how lucky I was. I went out birding/walking five straight days in a row.

The day after I got back from Fort Flagler, I went birding at Belfair because I couldn’t resist the sunshine. With hunting season still on, I didn’t see a lot of ducks there but there were a lot of songbirds.

I was greeted at the beginning of the walk by this male house finch

male house finch

who’d obviously fluffed up his feathers to protect himself from the cold

As I walked past the pond, song sparrows were flying back and forth like this little guy

Song Sparrow

who amazed me when he didn’t sink to the ground after landing on the dead grass lining the pond.

With gun shots echoing across to reserve, I wasn’t surprised that I didn’t see any ducks or even Canada geese, but on the way back I spied this Bewick Wren darting in and out of the under brush.

Bewich Wren

Although I can’t remember seeing a Bewick’s Wren more than once or twice before in the six years I’ve birded Theler, I’ve seen them repeatedly this winter

There was also a small flock of Golden- Crowned Sparrows in the same area and I managed to get several shots I liked.

Golden-Crowned Sparrow

They were really chowing down on the newly emerging leaves. I wonder how they’re faring this week with 14 inches of snow covering the ground!

As I was about to leave the preserve, a woman stopped and asked me if I’d gotten a picture of the Bald Eagle. She even wanted to go back and show me where she’d seen it, but I told her if it was still there I should be able to spot it (since it is such a big bird).

Bald Eagle

Sure enough, there it was sitting back at the center watching over the preserve, probably another reason I didn’t see any ducks.

One thought on “A Sunny, Winter Day at Theler”

  1. Wonderful – love the puffy finch, so pretty! I hope the birds are OK after that snow. I feel terrible because we just had our first snow of the winter here in NJ and we hadn’t bought any bird seed yet! The Cardinal was out there complaining!

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