Tim Boyer Photography

Small Groups, Cool Birds, Fun Locations

Bird Quest 2014 #14

Bird PhotographyTim Boyer

Mating Avocets, Wilson's Phalaropes and Black-necked Stilts all in an 18 hour, 554 mile run through Eastern Washington.  

American Avocets on the County Line Ponds west of Othello, WA.
American Avocets on the County Line Ponds west of Othello, WA.

Saturday morning started out with a bitter cold wind, which kept the birds down and the light horrible for photography.  So we kept driving, trying to find a place we could photograph some Eastern Washington birds.  Finally towards the end of the day in the Othello area we hit Para Ponds and then the County Line Ponds. The weather changed to a warm pre-summer breeze, as if it was a different day all together.

Black-necked Stilt just after landing.
Black-necked Stilt just after landing.

The Avocets and the Stilts in the County Line Ponds are starting to mate, and we spent a couple of hours just sitting in one location, watching and photographing.  It was finally warm with a little bit of evening light, and we didn't leave until after 7 PM.

Wilson's Phalarope
Wilson's Phalarope

There were fewer Black-necked Stilts at the ponds then in past years, but there were a lot more Wilson's Phalaropes.  The female Phalaropes were very bright and the smaller, less brightly colored males kept pretty close to them.

Say's Phoebe at Soap Lake State Park.
Say's Phoebe at Soap Lake State Park.

We stopped at Soap Lake in the morning when the windy was still up, but did manage to find a Say's Phoebe in a wind protected gully.  A long but rewarding day as we got to watch the Avocets, Stilts and Phalaropes for a couple of hours.  This brings the year total to 66 birds photographed.

Enjoy!

Thanks

Tim