While it was mostly sunny at Reifel this afternoon, that was not the case in other parts of the lower mainland according to some visitors. But seeing the clearing to the west, good numbers showed up at the sanctuary. I was not having much luck with anything on the photo front until checking out the inside grassy trail.
That is when this Brown Creeper showed up in front of me. Not having time to set up the tripod I had to shoot this hand held which can be challenging with the big lens.
From there I made my way to the inside ponds. There were several Bufflehead present and a few were being cooperative. These little diving ducks can be quite flighty at times, so it was a pleasant change having them stay put.
The light was cooperating as well, bringing out the iridescent colours in the head which at times just looks black.
Well it was a gloomy wet day and the lack of visitors at Reifel reflected that when I arrived to help out this afternoon. As I started out down the east dyke trail, nobody else was around. Nobody people wise anyways,
… but this Northern Saw-whet Owl was tucked away trying to stay dry. While I have seen a few this winter, none have been in good spots for being able to get photographs. Today’s Northern Saw-whet Owl was not much better as it was roosting behind several branches. Fortunately I had my 70-300 mm zoom today (to be able to keep the camera under my jacket). It was a little more flexible in getting an angle than the larger lens and tripod would have been.
The other highlight along the east dyke trail was a Eurasion Wigeon in a large puddle along with some other ducks in a field on the Alaksen side. Did chat with a few of the hearty birders that did venture out and there was no other sightings of note. The only other excitement was at the end of the day when I almost got knee capped by a Cooper’s Hawk that blasted by in front of me as I approached the entrance.
Well we had quite the wind storm and accompanying power outages last night. While it had settled down somewhat by the time I headed out to Reifel this afternoon, there was still a cool breeze. With a smaller crowd than normal for a Sunday, it was fairly quiet as I headed out the east dyke.
This Brown Creeper was busy foraging moving from tree to another. There were also some Ruby-crowned Kinglets, but none that were going to cooperate for photos. On reaching the northeast corner,
… I was pleasantly surprised to find one of the Great Horned Owls roosting in a branch a little lower than it has been of late. I set the camera up here for visitors allowing them good close up views.
While showing and watching the owl I took time out to feed the eager Black-capped Chickadees that had gathered looking for handouts.
Then it was back to the Great Horned Owl as it cleaned its talons,
… and posed with its feathers all puffed up.
There were enough visitors coming by and enjoying the owl that I spent the afternoon there.