Scaredy Coots

posted Oct 17, 2009, 8:32 AM by Richard Sevenich   [ updated Oct 24, 2009, 10:10 AM ]

Eli and I rolled our kayaks to 3rd Avenue Pier and launched. Once the lake's pool level is drawn down to approximately 2056', this launch site is marginal - the kayaker friendly sand devolving into the infamous boot-sucking mud. We'll not use 3rd Avenue again until spring brings the pool level back above 2056'.

Before launch, the thousands of coots skittered away fearful of the unfamiliar predators, i.e. our kayaks, one yellow over white and the other blue over white. My attempts to emit friendly coot sounds failed.
Photo: Coots Away

As we paddled we passed the usual Canadian geese, some now resident year round. We also saw loons, a few buffleheads, perhaps a dozen cormorants roosting on piles, various ducks (e.g. mallards), and grebes. The closest encounters were with one loon and a pair of the graceful western grebes. One diving bird I couldn't identify had all white plumage except for a trace of black painted on the wing feathers. It's beak was dark. I need to be ready with my camera.