Monday, February 1, 2010

Lewis Woodpeckers Jan 23, 2110

We seldom see Lewis woodpeckers in Douglas County, yet this winter at least 20 have taken up residence in the oaks along N. Bank Road. These woodpeckers are distinctive in several ways – they are larger than most woodpeckers, but not as large as pileateds. They are usually found in groups, as are acorn woodpeckers. Their wingbeat is slow and straight, not the undulating flight of most woodpeckers.

At the end of the day we ended up at the large pond near Whistler's Bend Park, Douglas County, Oregon. The sky had turned grey and cool, but it was still light enough to see well. I immediately spotted splashing near the far shore. At first I thought it was a Canada goose bathing, but then I suspected otter. Dale was still parking the car and I couldn't get my binocular on the commotion.

By the time he parked, all was quiet. We checked out the ducks and saw our fourth and fifth bald eagle for the day.

Serendipity was with us. More splashing. This time I could easily see it was two otter. One had a large fish. The adult bald eagle swooped low over the otter, sending him scrambling. Lucky bums! A nearby hunter's blind stood on spindly legs over the water. The otter ducked underneath where we could barely see them. Lots of business under there, but we couldn't see much. Just enough to know they had a safe place to enjoy their meal.

Serendipity continued. A great horned owl started hooting in the trees just west of us. Too dense to see him, but he almost seemed in our lap. Dusk coming. Very light sprinkles or rain. time to head home.

1 comment:

  1. Oh wow Elva, this is a beauty and what a great find and journal page!!