Monday, February 20, 2006

Killdeer portrait

If a Killdeer can be happy, I'm sure this one is today. The recent icy conditions are giving way to western Oregon's usual warm and wet winter weather.

Saturday, February 18, 2006


This Mallard found some open water in a ditch today. Most standing water in northwest Oregon is frozen over right now, making life more difficult for mud-dependent birds. I also watched a Wilson's Snipe probing with its long bill under the edge of a slab of ice trying to reach the mud below.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Wilson's Snipe

A soggy stubble field presents a banquet for a Wilson's Snipe. In McMinnville today this one and more than 50 others were feasting, probably on earthworms, and sleeping it off in the warm afternoon sunlight.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

More reflections on "The Meaning of Birds"

Continuing the quote by Charlton Ogburn, Jr.:

"...voicing in the lost, falsetto cries of the gulls the mood of the beckoning, dangerous sea, in the whiplash calls of the chuck-will's widow the nighttime witchery of the southern woods, in the cathedral-singing of the thrush an intimation of a transcendent purpose in the universe."

Saturday, February 04, 2006

In the strong wind that was blowing in from the coast this morning, the only gliders I found flying near the McMinnville gliderport were two American Kestrels (a male and a female) and a Rough-legged Hawk, but even they did not spend much time in the air. The female pictured here on a fencepost also spent some time using the tail of a glider as a lookout post.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Reflecting on "The Meaning of Birds"

"Birds are translators for us, the intermediaries between the vast world beyond us and our own emotions, expressing in their notes, in tones within our spiritual register, the nature of our common setting..."

Charlton Ogburn, Jr.
as quoted in "The Bird Watcher's Anthology"