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Author Topic: Heron Rocks Nest - 2013-2014 season  (Read 21573 times)
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PamNY
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« Post / Reply #15 on: January 05, 2014, 12:04:57 PM »

Wren and Booni -- love the photos and info!
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boonibarb
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« Post / Reply #16 on: February 06, 2014, 09:40:36 AM »

 
Last sunday feb.2 we paddled past Heron Rocks in a wind, sleet, hail, snow & rain storm!
i could barely have my eyes open as we were paddling right into the wind & precipitation.
So my camera got wet, but that is all i got.
As we paddled past Norris Rocks, there were still a lot of Sea Lions hanging out there.
But on one of the rocks there were at least a dozen Eagles of all ages hanging out!
Three were tussling over a food item.
i saw definite pairs in all the territories, even in this one, so these were all *spare* Eagles hanging out there.
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wooohoooo!
winterwren
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« Post / Reply #17 on: April 28, 2014, 09:42:39 PM »

Sunday April 13 it was my turn to paddle around this territory!
I started from Ford Cove, the territory of Nest 32; the photos from that part of my trip are here.

At Heron Rocks too there was an eagle perched right by the nest.
April 13, 5:10 pm



The nest looks as if it's been added to. It is taller than last year, and I tried photos from all kinds of angles and distances but could not see if anyone was sitting in it.
This nest tree is really growing in all directions.
5:11



I could hear a female eagle gulling, but she was far away, on Toby Islet, and nobody was paying attention to her. She could have been Mom Heron Rocks, which would mean a third year off for those eagles... But my impression is that she was an unattached passer-by. She was there for a really long time, and I think I may have seen her on a tree nearer to Ford Cove on my return.



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winterwren
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« Post / Reply #18 on: April 28, 2014, 10:07:48 PM »

As I approach Toby Islet, a Sea Lion surfaces really close in front of me, and looks at me from the corner of his eye.

April 13, 5:15 pm



Not too much stress here...




The gulling eagle is still sitting on that same huge driftwood log, one foot partly tucked up.
5:18



As I get abreast of her, with the early wildflowers and wind-twisted trees of Toby Islet in the background, she looks as if she is standing in a painting by Van Gogh.
5:21






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OpieK
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« Post / Reply #19 on: April 29, 2014, 01:03:28 AM »

stunning photo Wren - thank you!
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winterwren
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« Post / Reply #20 on: April 30, 2014, 09:56:09 PM »

Continuing past Toby Islet, I approach the actual rocks that are called Heron Rocks; they are just around the corner from the Heron Rocks nest, between it and the Olsen Farm nest.

Nearby, a Common Loon in beautiful, fresh summer plumage shows off huge wings!
April 13, 5:23 pm







Heron Rocks are the closest on the left in this next photo. Norris Rocks are in the distance... And that is where I am headed.
5:24



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winterwren
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« Post / Reply #21 on: April 30, 2014, 10:33:53 PM »

On the open water between Heron Rocks and Norris Rocks, I spot this lovely little Bonaparte's Gull, also in fresh breeding plumage.
April 13, 5:38 pm



Now talk about a lucky shot...




Bonapartes are very buoyant and cannot dive at all. They pick whatever they can from the surface of the water, or pounce as in the previous picture to get a few inches down.
This one caught a little fish!






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idahowa
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« Post / Reply #22 on: May 01, 2014, 08:35:43 AM »

What a great canoe trip, photo opportunity and photos!   Any chance they'd take the big canoe out during hiptrip and let us go?  nope  The canoe trip alone would be amazing.
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winterwren
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« Post / Reply #23 on: May 02, 2014, 10:25:29 AM »

This trip was a solo kayak adventure, Ida. We'll have to see about a canoe trip, there are a lot of variables in that particular equation.

So I finally reached Norris Rocks after various stops along the way.

There were a few cormorants around, representatives of all three species that we see here, all lounging together on the biggest islet.
April 13, 5:45 pm


The Double-crested in the middle has some of those ridges reminiscent of teeth that Booni mentioned here. That Double-crested Cormorant also has the beginning of a crest. The one with the red face is a Pelagic, much smaller than the others, and also sporting some white plumes on the neck and white pompoms on the hips. The rest are Brandt's, one adult with the white plumes and some youngsters in brown with paler cheek patches.


Here we see more Pelagics with the red faces and iridescent necks; adult Brandt's with the white plumes on the cheeks and back, and immature Brandt's, in dark brown with the larger light-brown cheek patch.
5:49



A few of the Pelagics had thread-like white plumes down their necks and backs. I had never seen that before. The Pelagics also have prominent crests at this time of year. The young Brandt's on the right has his eye on me and is trying to decide if I'm something he should be flying away from.
5:49



Brandt's on the left, Pelagic on the right, both in full breeding regalia. A lot of the cormorants had down clinging to their bills. I must have interrupted a heavy-duty preening session.
5:52


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« Post / Reply #24 on: May 02, 2014, 11:28:34 AM »

Thank you for these photos of the different cormorants...from a distance they all look just black, but these closeups show their true colours!!  Thanks for sharing your kayak trips!
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« Post / Reply #25 on: May 02, 2014, 09:50:51 PM »

Still cruisin' around Norris Rocks at the far edge of the Heron Rocks territory on April 13.

Oystercatcher twins, out for an evening stroll, so elegant.
5:55 pm



Just below them, Black Turnstones camouflaged against a nearly vertical rock face.




One of them obligingly stands against a different background, so we can actually see him. For which I'm grateful.



One lovely Dunlin, starting to moult into breeding plumage. I love the lustrous curved bill.
5:57



Another Dunlin, preening. Black Turnstone in the background.




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winterwren
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« Post / Reply #26 on: May 03, 2014, 10:21:24 PM »

Around the corner, another flock of Turnstones takes flight. I'm entranced by the bold rhythm of light and dark on their wings and back.

Click on the pictures and find the Dunlins among them!
Norris Rocks, April 13, 5:57 pm










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winterwren
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« Post / Reply #27 on: May 03, 2014, 10:33:51 PM »

Harlequin Ducks are difficult to photograph well because their eyes are as dark as their faces, and also because if they're at rest they usually are on the variegated conglomerate rocks, which don't contrast well with their improbable colours.

I surprised this one as I slowly drifted on the current around a low rock. So he had late-afternoon light on him, and already-dusky water behind.
Norris Rocks, April 13, 6:01 pm








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gmadeb3
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« Post / Reply #28 on: May 04, 2014, 01:45:44 PM »

I am with out words as to what i am feeling seeing these photos.  Thank You, Thank You smile   Very soon I am going to give you a big hug - I just love following you around the island  heart
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« Post / Reply #29 on: May 04, 2014, 07:29:44 PM »

Those are wonderful pictures, Wren!
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