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wetland

Anhingas - Snakebirds

In the black water of a Louisiana bayou, the water ripples where a slender form glides just beneath the surface. It appears to be a snake, but look closer at the long, narrow spike of a beak. It’s a Snakebird, a colloquial name for the Anhinga, swimming with just its head and neck above the water... read more »

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Blackbirds' Strange Music

Blackbird songs have a strange music. The Red-winged Blackbird can be heard in nearly every marsh on the continent — bold, brassy, and piercing. The songs may not seem musical, but they definitely get your attention. Brewer’s Blackbirds, which live in open habitats like farms and grasslands, make... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  vocalization

Northern Harriers in Winter

Photographer Gregg Thompson captured these photos of Northern Harriers on the Samish Flats in northwestern Washington State.The female...And the male...Thanks, Gregg!###Listen to BirdNote stories about Northern Harriers:Sky Dancing - A Rare SightHow Birds' Names ChangeNorthern Harrier and Barn... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  photography

Glossy Ibises on the Move

Some birds stay put all year. Some migrate with the seasons. And some, like this Glossy Ibis, are dispersing across new regions. Glossy Ibises breed on all the continents except Antarctica. But they were almost unknown in the US, even in the 19th century. Glossy Ibises crept slowly into the... read more »

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Great Blue Heron - Lunch and a Bath!

Dine and dash? Nope, dine and splash!Photographer Mike Hamilton spotted this Great Blue Heron as it ate -- and then cleaned up.Patiently watching, waiting...Taking a stab at it...Nailed it - a tadpole!But now, what a mess!Soak it...Shake it off!Lunch and a bath... Life is GOOD!***Listen to... read more »

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White Ibis's Tricky Nesting Schedule

For many birds, breeding and nesting are tied closely to spring. But for a bird like the White Ibis — one of the most abundant wading birds in the Southeast — the timing of nesting has to do with water. White Ibises forage in shallow pools of fresh water, especially for crayfish and small crabs.... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  nesting

Red-winged Blackbirds - Denizens of the Marsh

It’s spring, and a male Red-winged Blackbird brandishes his red epaulets to warn away other male Red-winged Blackbirds from his patch of cattails. At the same time, he sings to lure the females into his marshy territory.        The female blends right in with the cattails, as... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  nesting

Strike, Shake, and Gulp

Everett Marina, Everett, Washington –While out taking photographs last week, Gregg Thompson was able to catch a Great Egret in action. He writes:I seem to have gotten caught up in shooting sequences of behavior.I especially like having a situation where a certain behavior is repeated many times,... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  photography

Black-crowned Night-Heron - Night Stalker

 The enigmatic Black-crowned Night-Heron is an intriguing predator. During the day, this easily overlooked bird does nothing at all except stand perfectly still, while resting on a half-submerged log. Unlike its more active relative, the pterodactyl-like Great Blue, a giant among herons, it... read more »

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