Juneau Nature

Natural & cultural history of Juneau & Southeast Alaska

Juneau Nature - Natural & cultural history of Juneau & Southeast Alaska


Waders, waterfowl, shorebirds, gulls, alcids, etc.

This section is for notes on the diverse group of resident and migrant species we call “waterbirds.” Generally long-lived species, typically portrayed as branches off the lower half of the order Aves. From the perspective of a pilot, these are the families you really don’t want to see up-close on approach to the runway. Here’s some thoughts on the reaction of gulls to smaller, unpeopled aircraft.

Coming home from Hoonah in late April, 2015, Cathy and I (RC) swung out to the Industrial Boulevard wetland access to see how migration was progressing. She brought along her new Kowa 88mm spotscope, and although I was traveling with only the little fixed-28mm Ricoh GR that I bought for drone photography, that turned out to be the perfect combination for “digiscoping.” Although we haven’t purchased an eyepiece attachment, I was able to hold the camera against the lens frame with a rubber band, taking my hands away long enough for some steady stills and video. Very cooperative migrants (straight up from a National Wildlife Refuge?) also helped.

white-fronted geese from Richard Carstensen on Vimeo.

Check out the Waterbirds subpage on heron.