[midvalleybirds] Willamette Park Red-necked Grebe

Don Boucher donaboucher at gmail.com
Sun Jan 20 15:35:25 PST 2019


Lisa and I led a Naturalist Adventure at Willamette Park this morning. The
biggest surprise was a Red-necked Grebe out on the river.

Lisa described it on eBird: (https://ebird.org/view/checklist/S51876739)
"On small river inlet about 600 ft south of Crystal Lake Sports
Fields/public boat ramp parking lot. Everyone in field trip group heard a
gravelly braying call that none of us recognized. A grebe was diving in an
area of calm water. The large, almost loon-like dark yellow bill was nearly
the length of the head, and its light gray cheeks & breast, black cap, wide
black stripe down the back of the neck and two-tone gray body also seemed
to rule out all other grebes. Seemed to be a first-winter bird due to the
round head and lack of white mark behind the cheek."

We didn't post any photos. Randy Comeleo took a shot with his pocket camera
but it didn't have sufficient telephoto capabilities.

More than a half mile south, Lisa heard a hoot of a male Great Horned Owl.
Once we got too close to wherever he was perched, we watched him fly to a
perch further away. When we got to the riverbank, we spotted a Western

The rainy weather prevented a typical amount of forest bird activity but we
encountered few mixed flocks of Golden-crowned and Ruby-crowned Kinglets
and Black-capped Chickadees. One flock at the disc-golf course came close
enough to see the Golden-crowns' orange crests. We also had two Hairy
Woodpeckers, a Downy Woodpecker and one White-breasted Nuthatch.

At the disc-golf course, we noticed a Gray Fox scat that was carefully
deposited on the top of a covered pile of wood chips.

Don Boucher & Lisa Millbank


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