We may have gone to Fort Flagler to see shorebirds migrating, but that doesn’t mean we didn’t notice all the other birds that were there.
Though I’ve begun seeing them in other places, I have seen more Black Oystercatchers at Ft. Flagler than all the other places combined. On this visit I finally got a picture of one with a catch, a small clam.
A little research revealed that Oystercatchers eat all kinds of shellfish, not just oysters.
A Bald Eagle is also a resident of the park, and, though I would have preferred to not have seen it while birding the peninsula, there he suddenly was.
I suspect Mr. Eagle is the reason there have been so few Harlequin Ducks at Ft. Flagler the last two years, but this pair seems to still be hanging in there.
It’s nearly impossible not to see birds when they’re this close (though a surprising number of the people walking the beach apparently don’t look at them), but, if you look out into the bay long enough, you’re sure to see even more birds offshore, like these three Red-Breasted Mergansers,
and these Bufflehead ducks.
Sometimes you even catch a glimpse of a different kind of wildlife even though you’re just focused on finding birds.
I suspect there might not be as many birds at Ft. Flagler in the summer but I don’t really know since we usually head up to the mountains then, but it has always been an awe-some place to bird when we’ve been there.