This afternoon after work I took a couple of hours to walk around one of my favorite spots - Clay Myers Natural Area at Whalen Island. In the meadow, saw a MARSH WREN - first one I've seen there, although the habitat seems ideal.


In the distance, a DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANT was standing like a statue with wings outspread -- going to have to read more ab0ut this behavior - very odd looking. Two hours later, it was in the same spot in the same position (moving infrequently). Hmmm.


The AMERICAN ROBINS were everywhere, interspersed with at least a dozen VARIED THRUSH - a gorgeous bird! Scattered throughout the walk were CHESTNUT BACKED CHICKADEE, a WRENTIT, a HAIRY WOODPECKER, and more. On the water a BELTED KINGFISHER fished noisily - while a RED TAILED HAWK looked on. As Jen mentioned, I also heard an unusual call - I was in the deeper part of the woods with the larger trees, and it was about 4pm PDT so I was losing light. The call sounded like a horse whinny, only not as loud or brash. I posted a question on OBOL about it , with a link to a nearly identical call (an Eastern Screech Owl) - no replies yet!

Bird List

Whalen Island, OR

Nov 10, 2011

Common Name Scientfic Name Count Action
Bufflehead Bucephala albeola 19 ---
Western Grebe Aechmophorus occidentalis 1 ---
Double-crested Cormorant Phalacrocorax auritus 1 ---
Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias 4 ---
Great Egret Ardea alba 4 ---
Red-tailed Hawk Buteo jamaicensis 1 ---
Ring-billed Gull Larus delawarensis 1 ---
Western Gull Larus occidentalis 40 ---
California Gull Larus californicus 40 ---
Belted Kingfisher Megaceryle alcyon 1 ---
Hairy Woodpecker Dryobates villosus 1 ---
Northern Flicker Colaptes auratus 5 ---
Steller's Jay Cyanocitta stelleri 1 ---
American Crow Corvus brachyrhynchos 6 ---
Chestnut-backed Chickadee Poecile rufescens 3 ---
Marsh Wren Cistothorus palustris 1 ---
Golden-crowned Kinglet Regulus satrapa 1 ---
Wrentit Chamaea fasciata 1 ---
Swainson's Thrush Catharus ustulatus 1 see note
American Robin Turdus migratorius 100 ---
Varied Thrush Ixoreus naevius 12 ---
European Starling Sturnus vulgaris 10 ---
Song Sparrow Melospiza melodia 2 ---
Dark-eyed Junco Junco hyemalis 2 ---

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Jen Sanford
by Jen Sanford on November 11, 2011 at 06:05 am

I believe that cormorants are often found posing with their wings spread to help them dry off after swimming/fishing. But there might be other reasons in addition to that one. p.s. I saw your post on OBOL about the horse-sounding bird... Funny I recently heard something similar but never figured out what bird was making the sound. Let me know if you get any feedback on it!

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