There isn’t much going on bird-wise in mid-summer besides shorebirds. It is nice to have an opportunity to really focus on a single group of birds. Here are a few images from recent weeks.
This Long-billed Dowitcher, to the right of the Killdeer, really caught my eye since she was still in nearly pristine breeding plumage.
The bright cinnamon color goes all the way down through the undertail coverts. This bird was at Jackson Bottom Wetlands.
more Long-billed Dowitchers at Jackson Bottom. These birds are already fading into their duller winter plumage.
Spotted Sandpiper, still in breeding plumage, perched on a spotted log
From the cuteness department comes this fuzzy baby Killdeer. Seeing a young Killdeer with his single breast band this late in the summer might suggest a Semipalmated Plover. But the fluffy plumage and the long legs (not to mentions the tiny wings) let us know we are looking at a fledgling.
Take the time to look at shorebird specimens whenever you have the chance. The first thing you will notice is just how small these birds are. Since we usually look at shorebirds through powerful optics, we tend to think they are actually larger than they are. (A Least Sandpiper is a little smaller than a House Sparrow.) Here we have a nice comparison of a Greater and a Lesser Yellowlegs. Note the differences in the proportions of the bills.
A trip to the coast provided good numbers of Semipalmated Plovers, seen here with a Western Sandpiper.
Several hundred Marbled Godwits spent a couple of weeks at the beach in Fort Stevens State Park.
Dragonflies provide a nice burst of color in the summer. I believe this a Blue Dasher, but please correct me if I am wrong.
This Black-tailed Deer was behind the visitor center at Jackson Bottom.
Shorebird migration will be the big thing for another few weeks, but it will be gull season before you know it.