Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Another LA Run

I'm back in LA for a few days. I'm starting to go to the same places now that I've been out here a few times. I'm by myself this time which is good and bad. Good that I can do what I want, when I want and take as long as I want to photograph birds. Bad that I don't have company or friends to share with.  I started at Playa Del Rey breakwater. Here are some photos starting with Elegant Terns. They are common on the beach here. I caught this one in flight:

Elegant Tern
It's the start of breeding season so it was fun to see and hear them courting. They would strut around and point their bills up in the air - all with that bushy hair doo!

Elegant Terns - courting
The next birds that got in front of the lens were a few shorebirds. First is Surfbird. They are not quite in breeding plumage yet. You can see this guy is still molting some feathers - one of them is just about to fall out.

Surfbird
Marbled Godwits can be seen on the East Coast, but they are usually pretty far away. Not in California. This guy was literally walking around me on the beach. I love the warm brown/cinnamon color of these birds.

Marbled Godwit
The stars of the show for me on this trip were the Eared Grebes in breeding plumage. Eared Grebes are fairly uncommon on the East Coast and we only get to see them in winter when they look really drab. I was looking forward to finding a few of them in California and I was not disappointed.  Check out those golden "ears".

Eared Grebe
 This guy looks like a Fonzi dinosaur with that big black pompadour.

Eared Grebe
 Here are a pair swimming in the channel together. I was sitting low along the rock jetty and they all just swam by - 8 total.
Eared Grebes - Playa Del Rey California
Wait til you see the warblers and hummers.

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