Pretty Pictures

Generally I try to convince myself that my photographs simply show off the beauty of the birds themselves. Occasionally, though, I share shots because they strike me as pretty pictures and not because of the way they show the birds.

These three pictures all struck me as pretty pictures,

partly because the bird is reflected in the water,

and partly because of the color from the boats is reflected in the water.

Port Orchard Birding Shots

On my last trip to Port Orchard I captured a shot of a female Scaup that looked like this

and noted that I spent a considerable amount of time trying to identify it. On this visit I saw this duck and immediately recognized it as a Male Greater Scaup.

I’m used to getting great shots of Baird’s Goldeneyes at Port Orchard, but I seldom see Common Goldeneyes like this male

and when I do they are usually so far out that I can’t capture this kind of detail.

I also had good luck capturing this shot of a female Hooded Merganser with the sunlight behind her for a change.

A Great Blue Heron Kinda Morning

Our last walk at Theler Wetlands started just as most of our latest walks there have started, in a heavy fog, plus high tides. This Cormorant appeared to be walking on water in the middle of a lake, though it was really just standing on a log in the middle of the Union River.

We managed to get really close to this Great Blue Heron, so close that all I could fit into my camera frame was its head.

As we backed away, he continued to track prey, apparently oblivious to us.

Later, we startled another Heron close to the riverbank.

Not sure if we scared these female Green-Winged Teal,

but I liked this shot.

Unfortunately, this shot of a startled male Common Merganser isn’t as clear,

but it’s the first time I’ve spotted a male Common Merganser this Winter, so I was bound to include it here.

I Couldn’t Ask for Anything More

Although it’s the Harlequin Ducks that draw me back to Ft. Flagler and Port Townsend year after year, I’m also attracted by the shorebirds, like these Black-Bellied Plovers in non-breeding colors.

It’s the only place I see Brant regularly,

though they can be found throughout the Puget Sound during the winter.

I see Belted-Kingfishers nearly every time I visit Theler Wetlands, but none of them are nearly as accommodating as the one at the Fort Worden marine center.

Throw in an excellent restaurant or two, a few art galleries, and yarn and bead stores, and that’s what I’d call a special weekend.