Birds of Tomales Bay – Greater Scaup

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Tomales Bay is covered with rafts of ducks lately.

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Venturing north along route 1 one can see numerous groups of diving ducks, huddled, nervous, searching for food.

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If you look closely at the left edge of the image below, you’ll see a pale bird, second from the left with a spray of water kicked up behind it from a bird that just dived under.

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That is a leucistic hen. She lacks pigment in her feathers, hence she is more pale than the rest. Leucism is different than albinism. You can read about that here. And see a wide variety of leucitic animals here.

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Enjoy some more images below. Better yet, head outside and take a gander yourself. There is nothing better than the real thing. As always, click on an image to see a larger version.

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Birders of Tomales Bay – 2016 Christmas Bird Count

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Today was the 47th annual Point Reyes Christmas Bird Count.

Today was the 1st annual Point Reyes Birdcounter Count.

Word at the dinner (unofficial) was 196 species of birds were spotted today.
I saw a few dozen Birdcounters, in a variety of plumage.

Enjoy.

Click on an image to see a larger version.

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Birds of Tomales Bay – White Pelican Style

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Brown Pelicans generally dive from above to find their meal.

The larger White Pelicans generally work as a team, herding their supper.

I could watch either species all day.

Enjoy.

As usual, click on an image to see a larger version.

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Birds of Tomales Bay – The eagle(s) have landed

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Venturing out on Tomales Bay in a boat is a magical thing.

If one sets out early, before the death-wish motorcyclists race their way up and down route 1, and there are no planes overhead, all I hear are birds, waves and wind. With an occasional bugling elk depending on where I am and what time of year it is.

Recently I witnessed an amazing thing.

From first contact with each other, to separation, twenty seconds elapsed.

Seventy-nine images were recorded during this time period.

Below are ten I selected for your viewing pleasure.

They are a bit soft, for which I apologize. I was hand-holding a 400mm lens, in a boat, on the water. And it unfolded quickly.

Enjoy. I did.

As always, click an image to see a larger version.

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©Richard James - coastodian.org

©Richard James – coastodian.org

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©Richard James - coastodian.org

©Richard James – coastodian.org

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©Richard James - coastodian.org

©Richard James – coastodian.org

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©Richard James - coastodian.org

©Richard James – coastodian.org

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©Richard James - coastodian.org

©Richard James – coastodian.org

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©Richard James - coastodian.org

©Richard James – coastodian.org

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©Richard James - coastodian.org

©Richard James – coastodian.org

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©Richard James - coastodian.org

©Richard James – coastodian.org

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©Richard James - coastodian.org

©Richard James – coastodian.org

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©Richard James - coastodian.org

©Richard James – coastodian.org

See more of this pair of eagles here.