Joan Carson

BIRD WATCH: Size, silhouette and all that slang

WHEN YOU TRAVEL to different countries or different places in this country, it’s easy to pick up local slang. After two weeks of birding in… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Halloween heralds owl sightings on Peninsula

THE MORNING PHONE call was one of those surprises that rouses your curiosity. Neighbors sometimes call, but most of our visiting is done “over the… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Welcome waxwings unique in both voice, appearance

THE SOUND COMING from somewhere on the outside of the house was one homeowners never want to hear. Was a woodpecker poking about on the… Continue reading

CARSON BIRDING: Brush up on gull identification to stave off confusion

“YOUR GULLS COULD eat ours!” That’s the impression our glaucous-winged gulls made on friends visiting from Australia. I think Don was only half-joking. Australia’s common… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Mysteries of migration produce surprise visitors

WHEN A GOOD friend arrives and it has been several months since you last saw them, it’s a happy day. Two such “friends” arrived this… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Predators provide glimpse of nature in the raw

STRANGE SOUNDS IN the walls or the attic are never good sounds, especially at this time of the year. When some rather muffled “thuds” were… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Expecting the unexpected with our local visitors

THE SOUND IN the garden was as pleasant as 10 fingers scratching their nails on a chalkboard. It wasn’t being made by a human. After… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Texas birding makes for lasting memories

I LOVE TEXAS. I’ve considered it special ever since childhood. You can’t grow up crazy about horses and cowboys without giving part of your heart… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Kingfishers carry their dogfights into yard’s territory

THE YARD HAD gone totally quiet. There wasn’t a breath of air. The 2017 eclipse was underway, and then a familiar sound was heard. A… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Heading north to Alaska yields several surprises

North to Alaska THE PASSAGE OF43 years will see momentous changes in most areas. That’s how long it has been since I visited southeast Alaska… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Tough to pick a favorite of the season

THERE ARE ALWAYS birds that seem to go with a particular season in the way some plants and flowers do. When the red currant begins… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Species’ introduction heralds change for non-native country

THE IRRITATION SOME experience when a crowing rooster greets the dawn is being directed at another avian vocalist. Eurasian collared-doves begin “cooing” at first light.… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Water provides the action for bird activity

I HOPE EVERYONE reading this has a birdbath in their yard or in another spot where it can be observed on a regular basis. That’s… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Bumper crop of luscious plums prompts orgy-like antics

BEFORE REFERRING TO something taking place in my garden, I thought it prudent to see Webster’s definition of an “orgy.” One definition for this word… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: ‘Inland Sea’ ideal and easy place to enjoy birding

SOMETHING ABOUT THE lone gull perched on top of the ferry landing’s dolphin was different. It looked smaller than the familiar glaucous-winged that are so… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Water brings many bird sightings

THANKS TO OUR cold, wet spring, the weeds took over various parts of the yard. One of those was the manmade waterfall and its stream… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Sunbathing birds can turn heads

THE PICTURE WASN’T very clear but the description that went with it was. The writer was concerned about a Steller’s jay in her yard. It… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Growing numbers of osprey indicative of better habitat, food availability

NEWLY FLEDGED BIRDS mean more and more action from late spring to midsummer. Later this month, the cries of young osprey will make things interesting… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: A history of the bothersome house sparrow

“OH, THAT’S A pretty little bird! I wonder what it is.” It’s almost impossible to realize I once said that when I saw my first… Continue reading

BIRD WATCH: Attention, birding hikers: We need your help

IF THERE WERE more serious hikers who were also serious birders, we would have better data on the birds in the Olympic Mountains. I recall… Continue reading