For some reason I have been dragging my feet about getting this trip report done. Maybe because in spite of spending three days in the basin I did not find many birds, certainly not many new birds. I did take the time to explore around Klamath Marsh which is very beautiful but not many birds near the roads and I think I saw more cattle trucks than birds and almost got flattened by one on a narrow stretch of unpaved road.
Ah well, I did have a couple of goals for the month. One was to find a grebe with young ones riding on its back. This was accomplished though it looked like Mom might be kicking the kids off any day now. I also saw some eared grebes with riders but it prove challenging to photograph the dark birds against the bright water. Still plenty of grebes around without chicks.
There were also still plenty of Mama ducks with broods. Some were starting to look more like ducks and less like fluffy toys.
Another goals was to work on birds in flight. I got a couple of shots of Great Egrets but still no prize winners. I followed one group of egrets all the way up the canal at Lower Klamath but for the most part they were too fast for me given the need to drive the car and juggle the camera at the same time.
I also took the time to head into Lava Beds National Monument where I learned that if you aren’t into caving it is really not worth the price of admission. But there are some nice views into Tule Lake outside the admission booth. I also did a few practice shots of Mt Shasta which is always hard to resist.
I did get one nice shot of a Cormorant stretching its wings.
And somewhat surprisingly at this time of year, a flock of geese practicing flying in formation. Perhaps the parents were getting the youngsters ready for a trip south in the fall.
Finally in the eleventh hour I decided to check out the viewing kiosk where I found shore birds aplenty. Killdeer, American Avocets, Black-necked Stilts and some long billed dowitchers all offering previews of coming attractions as the shorebird migration starts to heat up next month.