Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Reifel regulars

The second installment of Reifel Island photos, in no particular order:

Coot and his shadow.

I looked up voice recordings of the coot, on All About Birds (Cornell), because I was wondering how to spell the call I hear most often. Surprisingly, they have seven separate recordings, of various squeaks, clicks, and squawks, "krrps" and "priks", but not the note I was looking for; a hollow "glop" sound, sort of like a cork popping out of a wine bottle, or a like a booted foot, stuck in ankle-deep mud, reluctantly released;, a backwards "plop". That doesn't quite do it justice, though; the other calls are grating. This one is almost musical, a nice rounded tone, suddenly being cut off mid-note. Have you heard it? How would you describe it?

Cross-eyed eagle. Not his fault; he had a branch in his eye and I took it out.

Ma Wood Duck, showing off her many petticoats.

"Hurry, hurry! Someone has goodies!"

I am always surprised at the sharp hearing of the ducks. Even against a constant chorus of "Quack, quack, quack, oh quack-quack-quack-quack-QUACK!", as soon as someone a couple of ponds away rustles a bit of paper, ducks from all over drop what they're doing and race to the source. This time, all I had to do to wake up a hundred sleepy mallards was to slowly slide the bag of seeds out of my pocket.

Fat little towhee in a wild cherry tree. Or are those small crabapples?

Three more wood ducks and reflections.

More to come, tomorrow.


  1. The wood ducks are so colourful. Almost unnaturally so. - Margy

  2. The light was great that day; everything was shiny.


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