Rare Bird Alert!

“Rare Bird Alert” is what a coworker said to me when passing in the hallway.

“What?” was my response.

“There’s a Rare Bird Alert”. “There was a Blue Grosbeak sighting just around the corner”. My coworker, a true “birder”, knew all about it and he was pretty excited. According to him, there had been only 8 recorded sightings of this bird in Oregon prior to this.

Two days earlier I’d seen a couple of guys holding cameras with long lenses standing on the corner looking up into the trees across the street. The last time I’d seen something like that was when there were several Blue Heron nests in the nearby pine trees.

Now it all made sense.

It just so happened that I had my camera with me that day. And since I hadn’t taken the time to get pictures of the Blue Heron nests when I had the chance, I decided to see if I could possibly find the Blue Grosbeak after work.

I really didn’t know where to look so I headed for the location where I’d seen the men with the cameras. But how do you find one special bird in an area with lots of tall trees and lots of birds?

You get lucky…

I saw three birders with binoculars working together, looking for the bird. They seemed to know what they were doing, so I started following them. After a little while one of them motioned to the other two and started pointing toward some trees west of us.

I still hadn’t seen the bird, but I followed them to get closer and finally caught a glimpse of him on a tree brach. I started taking some picture, always staying a little bit behind, carefully trying not to offend or interfere with the birders who had become my involuntary guides.

When the Blue Grosbeak finally landed on the ground next to a tree, we were able to get a little closer. And that’s when I took the picture below.

I’m glad I followed my intuition and decided to make the effort. I’ll probably never have that opportunity again.

And yes, there really is a “Rare Bird Alert” site for Portland Oregon:
http://audubonportland.org/local-birding/mrare-bird-alert

Cheers – DJD
Rain since last posting: 7.0 in. 2015 year to date: 19.0 in.

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Explore posts in the same categories: Birds, In Our Back Yard, Nature, Photography

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