For those who just can't wait for the suspense to end, I post the following photo of, I believe, a surfbird:
The joke, for there must be a joke, is that for the longest time we looked at the bird below, convinced that it was the rare surfbird, hiding out amid a flock of black turnstones:
This bird, you see, was smaller with an all-white belly and pink-orange leg whereas the other larger, more numerous birds were more speckly, with yellow legs, and different eyes. The more numerous birds we knew to be black turnstones, for that is how I recorded them after our walk on New Years Day.
So we came home and checked the bird books to learn that our surfbird was, in fact, a young black turnstone while our flock of ho-hum turnstones were, in fact, the surfbirds in which we had gone in pursuit. Scott had suggested early on on our walk that I could claim "intermediate" status in the birding world, having successfully defended two "rare" sightings recently. I'm pretty sure the whole getting my birds entirely backwards here cements my rank beginner status.
|At least I realized this was a lovely quartet even when they were "just turnstones."|
But I continue on, nothing daunted. We also saw both common and red-breasted mergansers, both common and Barrow's goldeneyes, some buffleheads and western grebes, and, I am saying, a pelagic cormorant.
|What I'm calling a pelagic cormorant until convinced otherwise.|
All in all a fine outing, even if the roof of my mouth is *still* damaged from the would-be restorative hot chocolate purchased at the Marination Ma Kai.