Thursday, June 08, 2006

Common Mergansers

Don't let that name fools you. Took a week to find this so-called 'common' bird.

The last of my Life Birds for the trip turned up out of nowhere. We had passed this spot on the way into the area and only saw a Brown Creeper and Spotted Towhee. On the way out, running low on birding time, 8 Common Mergansers were just hanging out in a little bend in the Nisqually River.

The females were resting along the pebbles lining the river while the males cruised up and down in front of them. The rapidly changing light and lack of time, plus the birds being fairly far away, didn't allow for much time to get the exposure as nice as I would have liked, but...

This first shot was from the film camera and had a better overall tone.

Common Merganser

Still, it didn't capture the greenish hue on the male's feathers like the digitals did. The digitals were overexposed, though.

Common Merganser

As you can see here, one of the females joined the males in their single-file back and forth.

Common Merganser

A nice way to end the Washington birding for us. Even though we never found those Snowy Owls which turned out to be hiding not too far away.

Next time.

Still not the end of the birds from Washington here.

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