Friday, August 30, 2013

Birding on the Kiski

Last weekend we tried out the new kayak we recently bought. We started out at Roaring Run trail and went the whole way to Rivers Edge canoe and kayak rental.
We saw countless Canadian Geese and Mallard Ducks, as well as four or so Green Herons, one Osprey, two Bald Eagles, and four Belted Kingfishers.

At the first bridge, near the railroad bridge in Apollo, we saw this guy,

It was right after we tried out a new anchor.. right where the river is at its' swiftest.. a bad idea on our part as we almost sunk the kayak. But, luckily we recovered and turned back to make another pass at this guy. That's about the time my dad lost his cellphone in the river (it's waterproof!).
My husband and I came up close to the heron and he saw us and immediately went into the brush and pretended to be a stick.. raising his head high and staying very still. I took a few pictures and then we turned and headed up river to give him some confidence to come out of the brush again.
After about 10 minutes, he decided we weren't a threat and came out to do some fishing,

Shortly after catching a (somewhat small) fish, he looked up into the sky and stuck his neck out and stood really still. I took the camera away from my eye and saw what he was looking at

 A bald eagle!! I've never seen them so close to home before! Amazing. Here's the look on the Greenie's face:

I'd probably look like that too if I thought I was going to get eaten.

So we watched the Green Heron stand around and preen and cool himself off for about 30 minutes then we continued our travels downriver. We fished along the way, and that's when we saw the Osprey. I didn't get a shot of him, because my camera was in the drybag and I was holding my fishing pole, but he was still a sight to see nonetheless.

Farther down river we saw more green herons flying by and geese and mallards, as well as a few belted kingfishers, who would never stay still for a good shot.

There she is! I did see her try to catch a fish though, she hovered above the water and then dove down, but she didn't catch anything. Maybe next time!

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