My Montana

My Montana
My Montana

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Bear Island: Birding Hotspot

As Laurel and I ventured farther afield, we still wanted to arrive at first light. When we visited Bear Island, we wanted to catch the swans before they flew out of the refuge to forage. So we had to leave at 5:30 A. M. We rushed straight to the pond that holds the tundra swans to catch them before they got away.  We were rewarded with TWO sunrises.  The sun rose, went behind a cloud and started another sunrise.

Our first view of the dawn over the pond that held the swans

We drove 100 yards down the road, then stopped to watch the sky and the birds near us

Avocets in the pink

The color kept spreading

Meanwhile the resting wood storks were too dark and far away to get a good picture of them

Tundra swans were starting to wake up


These avocets lined up for just a minute

It was time for the resting birds to go out to forage - these were some of the white pelicans

The swans went in a different direction

Across the road this little blue heron was still in his bed hair

One of two the great egrets was busy grooming while the tri and the other egret dozed a little longer

The morning sunlight gilded the water and this gadwall pair

This was kind of my consolation prize after falling in a hole while trying to capture blue wing teal - I think I was still stuck in the hole when I took this- these are glossy ibis.

Finally I found some nearby ducks that would sit still until I could get my pictures

The day was so warm, we found lots of anoles about

We caught this double crested cormorant getting all warm and dry after catching breakfast

We watched one immature eagle kiting over coots but this one was closer -  on a nearby electric pole

One of the most interesting birds we found, but could not get a picture of, was an anhinga.  It was a very good morning with more birding and hiking scheduled for the afternoon.