This week, Sarah and I searched for birds on the Oregon Coast to get a good start on our year list. The temperatures were low and some of our favorite birding sites were quiet, but we managed to find some great species.
This Peregrine Falcon was sitting quietly on the cliff above the Yaquina Head Visitor Center until its mate arrived. The pair made a variety of calls and screams that I have not heard before, circled the parking lot a few times, and then returned to their previous positions. The days are getting longer and love is in the air.
On Monday, we drove out to Fort Stevens State Park near Astoria. Instead of the cold but sunny weather we expected, we were treated to gray skies, wind, and a frigid mist.
We looked for Snowy Owls as long as we could in the morning and then retreated to a local bakery. While drinking coffee, we watched a Townsend's Warbler pick spiders from the edges of the window.
A few hours later, we returned to Fort Stevens, and finally found two Snowies.The owl above flew past the parking lot and landed on a nearby log, but would not look at the camera when we tried to take its picture.
Today we birded the Tillamook area in nicer weather. We birded in the warm sun and found two of the three birds were looking for: a White-tailed Kite and a Northern Shrike. The Palm Warbler will have to wait for another trip.
Winter returned when we crossed the Coast Range on the way home. It isn't raining, but it is much colder and darker than it was on coast. Good weather for working indoors!