Birds are clearly the stars in my 2019 roundup of favorite photos. To me, these captures reveal the grace, beauty, power and stunning adaptability of our avian co-creatures.
Brown Pelicans rest in the surf on their way north in early June.
Walking south along the beach, I couldn’t tell if what I saw in the distance was a pole or a pole with an eagle on it. What a treat to get closer and see there was a pair resting together.
A day later, I came upon these two Immature Bald Eagles, getting their bearings on logs and stumps at the edge of the dune. They appear to be around two years old.
Practice landing – imagine being a big bird alighting on top of a slim branch.
All the eagles in the above gallery were photographed at Long Beach during the middle of May, 2019. My goal is to get close enough to take a tolerable photo with my Panasonic, Lumix, FZ47, without intruding upon and disturbing the birds. Unruffled was perched right where I enter the beach from the dune path. Jello knows she’s not allowed to chase birds, so I was able to get close-up before it flew away.
Sanderlings work the shoreline all year, in large and small flocks, with other shorebirds, and on their own. The reflection and symmetry of this one makes it a winner.
The Western Snowy Plover is listed as Threatened under the Endangered Species Act, and as Endangered by Washington State. At the northern tip of the Long Beach Peninsula, Leadbetter Point State Park hosts a nesting population of about 78 Snowy Plovers. Humans are not welcome there during nesting and brooding season. Being just six miles south of Leadbetter Point, once in a while I see these lovely birds on the shoreline.
On a spring walk to the beach, a Savannah Sparrow serenades from a tree top.
Western Gull tête-à-tête
Caspian Terns swarmed onto the beach in early June. They can be quite aggressive, but in my usual “get used to me” style, I screeched back, and they left me alone.
This breeding adult Ruddy Turnstone is the only one I’ve ever seen. In mid-May it was flipping debris on the beach to uncover insects and small crustaceans – likely on its way to breed in the arctic tundra.
Since not everyone is a bird-nerd like me, the rest of my “Best Of” shots will be photos that have received praise from you, and/or that I am compelled to spotlight.
Super low tide at Long Beach, WA – Thank you, Ann-Christine for loving it in the Layered Challenge #68
From the southern edge of Fort Columbia State Park Washington, in early March, the flowering trees show tones of cherry and plum upon a slate-green surface of water at the mouth of the Columbia River. In the distance the Astoria-Megler bridge and Saddle Mountain Oregon. Thank you Amy for your praise of this photo from Challenge #37: History.
Though the sun and clouds create the atmosphere, it’s the couple on an afternoon walk that make this photo a favorite.
Heavy easterly winds ruffle the crests of late-afternoon breakers, as they surge and charge. A lone adult Western Gull stays grounded in place, serving as a shoreline sentry where other birds might (and often will) gather.
October sunset from the deck of our condominium, The Breakers 128 – Long Beach, WA
Can’t do a year-end round-up without at least one gorgeous sundown shot!
A Columbia Black-tailed Mule Deer, grazing in the cold morning dune, is on high alert.
As 2019 slips into the history books, Jello and I wish everyone “happy trails” in 2020. We so enjoy sharing our corner of the world with you through this weekly Photo Challenge, kindly offered by Lens-Artists collaborators: Patti, Ann-Christine, Amy, and Tina. Kudos and cheers for the new year.🐾