Monday, October 18, 2010

Sometimes the best birding memories aren't the birds

Humpback WhaleHumpback Whale, off Newport, Oregon on 2 October 2010 by Greg Gillson.

 

On a recent ocean bird watching boat trip we enjoyed many seabirds and marine mammals. Now, I've seen humpback whales about 35-40 times. But in all those encounters I've never seen such active whales... continuously-repeating full breaches, and tail lobbing--how exciting!

This got me thinking. Watching birds has taken me to nearly every corner of Oregon--open ocean, sage deserts, rain forests, mountain tops... Crater Lake, Fort Rock, Multnomah Falls, Steens Mountains, Cape Arago. Likewise, I've birded in many scenic places throughout the West, and just tasted a couple of the unimaginably wide variety of birds and locations across the planet.

Sometimes the highlights of the birding trips are not the birds. Sometimes it is some other animal--like the humpback whales seen in the accompanying photos. Sometimes it is the fantastic scenery. It may be a historic place. It may be the people I meet at a new locale, or the people I travel with--birders or not.

Birding is a great way to see (and appreciate) the world and meet new people!


Humpback Whale
Humpback Whale
Humpback Whale
Humpback Whale

3 comments:

  1. Great series of shots! I envy you the oppportunity.

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  2. Amen to that! I remember seeing Humpback Whales in Hawaii. My wife and I scheduled a whale-watching cruise so I could look for pelagic birds. I enjoyed the whales a lot and hardly saw any birds.

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  3. Incredible! I've got to get out to the coast at the right time to witness this.

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