Birding friends and I had been reading about the many good birds at Baskett Slough NWR lately, so a car full (six) of us went today. Unfortunately, the Black Tern, Black-necked Stilts, and Wilson's Phalarope were out of camera range for me from up at the highway lookout. But I did get a few other birds along Coville Road to cooperate.
I thought this fallen tree with its jumbled branches at The Narrows on Coville Road made a scenic picture. A Great Egret was lurking behind it.
An odd-colored Yellow-headed Blackbird was picking at insects (or something) on and near the gravel road at The Narrows. I think this is a female, although it is much more brightly colored than I thought they were. Comments?
Several bitterns were booming and peeking up out of the reeds.
Farther east on Coville Road, a Savannah Sparrow sang for us atop his signpost.
Just before leaving the refuge, eagle-eyed LaVon caught sight of this Horned Lark, singing in a dried-up marshy area not far from the road. It took forever for me to find the bird, but if you look at the back shot, you can see how it might disappear into a mud background.
I'd never noticed the soft brown back of a Horned Lark before: I'm
always focusing on the bright yellow and black front. Maybe I don't see the birds unless I glimpse that bright yellow. I think a
reddish brown back is characteristic of our Pacific Northwest subspecies, the
Streaked Horn Lark.
It was a good day with good birds and good friends.