We were just walking up the small hill on the road justs outh of the parking lot when several flycatchers caught my eye. I assume they were all migrating. they seemed quite tame, and as near as I could tell, they were Easyern Phoebe’s – which I understand is the last of the flycatchers to migrate. Here’s one cute little dude. Notice the yellow tinge – hat would make him an immature – the first of our “teenagers” for this day.
We saw our third and fourth monarchs in the past week, but they were too fast for my lens. The problem with all flying things is the autofocus has difficulty picking them out and I have difficulty switching to manual focus, especially if I have a dog leash in one hand 😉
The water didn’t contain much action today, perhaps because of a strong northwest wind that seemed to be gusting at 15-20 mph. But I did see a couple double-crested cormorants just west of the parking lot. With the first there was no doubt – the second, however, another teenager as it turns out, had me thinking I had spotted a loon. Here’s the mature commorant.
Now notice the different in color – both feathers and beak- of the immature.
Finally, while photographing the cormorants I could resist this handsome guy – another teenager – but in this case a black-backed gull. Note the black trimming to wings and tail, the fully black bill, and whitish head.
Am I sure? NO! Help from the more knowledgeable birders is always welcome. Just use the comment form. Seems to me it’s not easy to separate the first winter versions of the Laughing Gull, Lesser Black-backed and Great Black-backed. But my best assessment here is Great Black-backed.