Diving Ducks

Herring season continues, though the activity has primarily been away from town. I heard there would be an opening this afternoon which might be at least partly visible from town. As it turned out, the opening was only barely visible and was not considered a success. While driving out to check and see what we could see, I did notice a small patch of herring spawn near the high water island that is a bit south of Halibut Point.

On the way back in to town we stopped at the north end of Halibut Point Recreation area after noticing a sizable number of birds on the water. I estimated there were over 200 Surf Scoters, 75 Harlequin Ducks, and about 30 each of Common Goldeneyes, Barrow’s Goldeneyes, and Greater Scaups. There were also a handful of other birds including Common Merganser, Bufflehead, and White-winged Scoter. There did not appear to be any spawn in the area, so I am not sure what was attracting the ducks.

The ducks came pretty close to shore, but were quite wary. When we walked along the road (which is actually up from the beach quite a bit), they swam away and some even flew to get out further. Connor and Rowan sat along the embankment and watched the ducks return while I went further down and found a place I could watch without being so easily seen. Unfortunately, the branches that served to conceal me also made it difficult to get a good view of the birds. I did get a short video of bird diving, but as soon as they came back up, they all flushed off. I wasn’t moving or making noise at the time (trying to hold the camera steady). Perhaps one caught sight of me after surfacing and spooked, thereby prompting the rest of them to take flight as well.

The weather turned out better than forecast. It was a little breeze and overcast this morning (I saw on the radar there was some pretty good rain south of here), but the forecast rain never really showed up in town. By this afternoon, the clouds had started to break up and it ended up being partly sunny.

(pictures to come)

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