As I noted earlier, we skipped the Ridgefield National Wildlife Refuge on the way home from Arizona because I was tired and knew I had an upcoming dental appointment in Vancouver. When I have a dental appointment, I usually leave around 6:00 A.M. and spend the morning at Ridgefield. Things got rearranged on this trip because Leslie had to lead a Tai Chi class at 7:00 A.M. We ended up eating lunch when we got to town and took a relatively short walk at Salmon Creek. We ended up seeing amazing birds up close in a very short time.
I guess this Scrub Jay knew we hadn’t photographed one in California, so he was at the entrance greeting us.
as was this Oregon Grape in bloom.
Best of all, a small pond/wetlands next to the trail was full of ducks. This male Ring-necked Duck, in particular, caught my attention because we had sighted several at Sacramento NWR but never got close enough to get a good picture.
There was also a female in the pond. It looks quite different, but that beak is quite distinctive.
The Ring-necked Ducks we saw in Sacramento NWR would always swim away from us, no matter how far we were away, but this guy headed straight toward us, looking rather aggressive, if I do say so.
Pretty sure someone had been feeding the ducks, and as soon as it discovered there was no food to be had it drifted off, allowing me to get a great profile shot.
It’s always a good feeling when you get a photo of a bird that you missed earlier, and it’s surprising how often that happens. A missed shot is simply the first step in getting the shot you want.