Highs and lows
Spring, spring, spring! Migration is happening and I’m still slowly recovering from ankle surgery. The cast is off, the boot is on, but I still can’t walk. Yet. But that doesn’t mean I can’t look at birds. At least those accessible from flat ground.
Which is why I was so happy to get a message from my friend Eric alerting me to Western Bluebirds at his local (flat) patch last week. Luckily, it was on the way home from the medical supply store so I could convince Tomas to make a stop.
If I stood out birding before with binocs and a huge camera lens, I’m pretty much a beacon now with crutches, binoculars, and a boot.
But it was totally worth it because we got the birds! Two Western Bluebirds, a new county bird for me. Since I can’t carry a camera and crutches at the same time, Tomas used a video camera to get diagnostic evidence.
And we got a bonus Say’s Phoebe, peeping and calling.
It was a good stop. Another bright spot in my week was a text from Jen giving me a heads up on a tiny owl in the neighborhood. I was at work, and since I still can’t drive and am mostly reliant on Tomas for transportation I waited patiently until we were both off of work. This time I took along my knee scooter I’ve rented to get around the office more easily.
Not meant for off-roading, I took it along a paved road as far as I could before crutching the last little bit.
The blisters were worth it, because at the end of the trail we found the sleepy little Northern Saw-whet Owl. Tiny owls make the pain go away.
I’ve had to get creative to see some things, and I’ve missed out on others, like a county Mountain Bluebird that migrated to Powell Butte that is way to steep for me to scoot or crutch up. Hopefully I’ll get another chance. But I’m super thankful for the tips my able-bodied friends have passed along. I even got a tip from a coworker of an Anna’s Hummingbird nest in the park outside our office!
So adorable. I’d love to get some photos in better light before the tree leafs out.
Lastly, today’s adventure started when Sarah texted me about a Sabine’s Gull in Salem. I almost didn’t go, but I happened to have the day off so I decided last minute to get a Lyft ride to her house. From there, Max, Sarah, and I went to Salem and easily got the gull.
Flying around with Tree Swallows like it’s totally normal for a pelagic bird.
Such fun times! Even while on crutches. A few lows, but mostly highs thanks to my supportive friends and Tomas for getting me out of the house.
Hobbles and scoots,
[…] It’s been determined that both of Eric’s birds are males because of their bright blue color. Pretty incredible to have two birds as the first state record and two males at that! This spot is where Eric has found Say’s Phoebe, Western Bluebirds (and now eastern), and an Eastern Kingbird. I last visited in March not long after my surgery while I was still on crutches and a knee scooter. […]