Yesterday was one of those final sunny fall days in Seattle. A trip to the local beach was in order. The sound of the waves was so soothing to my election jitters.
As I walked down the beach I could see a huge raft of ducks. They were hanging out near where a log made a nice cove for them to feed in. This video gives you a view of how they were strung out from the cove and down the beach.
Check out how they were all up in the cove taking turns feeding.
That slimy green seaweed or grass was attracting them and this photo shows one with a salad bit handing from his beak.
As I was standing next to that big log poking into the sound I heard a ruckus up in the alder tree on the bank. This is the nursery tree where crows bring their babies when they first fledge. No crows at the beach today but there was tons of little birds. They were feeding on the alder cones and little bugs that seem to have popped out in the sunny warmth.
While I was watching a bunch went flying off over the water. I think those where bushtits. My binoculars zoomed in on the remaining birds showed they were some kind of finch. At first I thought they might be purple or house finch or American Goldfinch.
I was leaning towards the goldfinch because I would see little bits of yellow on their bodies. Now that I have the luxury of the computer and bird books, I changed my mind. My best guess after pouring over my photos is they were Pine Siskins. It is the pointy beak versus a chunky finch beak was the clincher.
Here is a slide show of the best photos I could capture.