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The Winter in Photos
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The Winter in Photos

The Winter in Photos

posted from Seattle, WA on February 22 2024

By Ed Newbold

Delia and I were up in the Skagit/Samish surge plain in the last week, that’s were we saw the Barn that is the cover shot for this blog. Another shot shows it obscured by flying Snow Geese.

Thankfully, it’s a good year for Short-eared Owls, and this was one we encountered in the Samish Flats.

We crossed the seas to Kingston on the Ferry, which made it the other side! This was the Olympics in clouds over Kingston on Feb 17, 2024.

Down in Westport we located this celebrity bird that was there, a Clark’s Grebe. Grebes are beautiful.

Some Redpolls were at Green Lake again. Others got wonderful photos and this is not one of those, but it does give that rosy-red glow that Redpolls are known for.

We found many Eurasian Wigeons; this one was at Green Lake with American Wigeons, as usual.

This was the Point Wilson Lighthouse in January with Mt. Baker barely visible in the mist and haze.

This little Snowy Plover, one of our most threatened birds in Washington, was hanging out with hundreds of Sanderlings, Dunlins, Semipalmated Plovers, Western Sandpipers and others of its own species on the outer coast, which was eroding fast under the onslaught of high seas this winter and sea-level rise. Because we get down there every year, we could see how much was washing away. As always, its complicated by other factors. The dams on the Columbia have reduced the outflow of silt that used to wash north and replenish the beaches of Willapa and Gray’s Harbor County. The road to Tokeland looks quite precarious these days.

This Yellow-billed Loon has been living off the coast of Edmonds WA for much or all of the winter and it finally came close enough to shore for Delia and I to see it. The World’s largest Loon, it is about to moult into it’s beautiful breeding plumage.

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