Every spring my challenge with this blog is to not geek-out too much on the beautiful wildflowers. My year-round challenge is to not geek-out too much on the birds, especially during fall migration. This year has been especially hard as I have been tracking the types of birds I see throughout the year (my “big year” as it were).
This is one bird that I wanted to share, though, because I had never seen one before. We saw it at the Row River Nature Park this past weekend. And because it blended into the rocks so well, I consider us lucky to have noticed it.
After consulting my guidebook and online resources, I’m going to call this a long-billed dowitcher. The clincher for me is that the long-billed dowitcher is said to feed using up-and-down probing motions with its bill, like a sewing machine, and that is exactly what this bird did.
I love walking down at the Row River Nature Park because it is full of wildlife, especially birds, yet it is right in town. What’s your most exciting find down there? While I always love to see the turtles, my most favorite find has been river otters. Maybe one day I’ll see one of those when I have my camera handy.
UPDATE October 21, 2014: A birder who is much more advanced than I am (Jim who blogs as the Cascade Rambler) has suggested that this bird is a Wilson’s Snipe, not a Long-billed Dowitcher. I debated between the two as I wrote this post because I think a juvenile long-billed dowitcher can look a lot like a Wilson’s snipe. While I may have been wrong in my ID, the fact remains that the Row River Nature Park is a great in-town location to see lots of wildlife, especially birds.