[Tweeters] Buffleheads and crows, West Seattle

Tucker, Trileigh TRI at seattleu.edu
Mon Nov 21 12:57:51 PST 2016

Hi Tweets,

A week ago I began noticing Buffleheads off of Lowman Beach in West Seattle. For some reason these little ducks always make me smile - a nice touch of good cheer in dark autumn days.

While I'm writing, I'll also report that last week I heard a small number of crows fussing in my yard, but made the poor decision not to check it out, on the assumption that since it wasn't a huge crow mob, it probably wasn't about a nearby hawk. Finally, as I was on my way out the door to a meeting, I heard a Steller's Jay join the complaining and finally took a look. A coyote had been hanging out in our yard, probably working over the raccoon remains we discovered a couple of days later. Perhaps because coyote encounters aren't that common around here, I hadn't thought that crows would fuss at them. I have to remind myself regularly now that I'm rarely sorry when I check out what crows are talking about.

And speaking of crows, I laughed out loud alone in my car on Saturday when, as I was driving along a West Seattle arterial, a crow dropped something in front of my car. I slowed down to avoid hitting the crow-then made sure to aim carefully at the dropped thing as I drove through. It squashed nicely, and two crows came down to enjoy the results of their own careful aim: plum paté. Of course, I can't be sure with one anecdote that they intentionally aimed the plum so I would run over it, but I know they do this elsewhere, so I'll be on the lookout for repeat behavior by these particular crows.

This morning I completed the U of M's survey of eBird users, and one of the questions was about what you'd do instead if you couldn't do birdwatching. Whatever that might be, it couldn't be nearly as much fun as paying attention to birds.


Trileigh Tucker
Pelly Valley, West Seattle
Blog: Naturalpresencearts.com
Photos: Flickr.com/photos/trileigh
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