Stop and Look

Like most people, I’m prone to dismiss common birds with, “That’s just a …” without ever really looking at it. If I were just a “birder,” I don’t think I would have taken pictures of the birds that appear in this blog entry.  They are all so common that they hardly get noticed; I suspect that if I hadn’t been looking through my camera I wouldn’t have even noted them.

Luckily, I was carrying my camera because these are probably my favorite shots of the day.  There were a lot of American Coots in the Sacramento NWR when we were there, but this one was extremely close and was too busy feeding to scoot away.

American Widgeons might be the commonest duck in the Pacific Northwest during winter, but I love this shot of a male rising up and displaying his wings.

Northern Pintails aren’t as common as Widgeons, but they’ve always struck me as one of the more elegant ducks.

Red-winged Hawks are everywhere, but this one seemed particularly beautiful in the early morning sunshine.

There’s beauty all around us. Sometimes, we just have to pause long enough to see it.