Winter Loon

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This common loon swam right by us as we were kayaking in a lagoon just off the Pacific Ocean. While not quite as flashy in the winter as in breeding season, I found this loon to be a beautiful bird nonetheless.

Photographed along the Northern California Coast.

Hop on in.

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A little Sand Piper gives me a wink and motions me to join in their morning yoga class on the beach. Although balancing on one leg proved not too difficult I fell flat on my face trying to hop away on one leg like these characters did when a rogue wave came up the beach just a little too far.

Black Turnstone?

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While hiking around a rock outcrop in an attempt to get a better view of some large breaking waves I came across this guy busy foraging along the rocks near the shoreline. Since we spend so little time along the coast our shorebird identification skills are a bit lacking especially when the birds are dressed in their non-breeding plumage. My best guess is that this is a Black Turnstone albeit not looking very black this day. I welcome correction and tips for identification of shorebirds from costal dwellers.

Northern California Coast.