Let me set the scene. We first drove east to Tahoe and took the back country road to Markeeville. Along the way we stopped to peruse for birds and there we found some Clark's Nutcrackers.
|I love flight shots - however in or out of focus|
On our way back to highway 50, we took a little road off hwy 89 to Indian Creek Reservoir and Steven's Lake. I drove while Don scanned the road for any birdie type movement. We didn't see much and then suddenly - and I wish the hell I'd used my video to capture the moments - a HUMONGOUS flock of Pinyon Jays were shooting over the road & us, and into a pine forest. There must have been 150 Jays in my perhaps over generous estimation.Jay after jay, screaming, shot past us. Don and I just about lost our minds with excitement.
Once upon a time, Don and I dedicated trips to finding the 'ever elusive' damned Pinyon Jays. The birds seemed to be purposefully avoiding us. We hit their habitat again and again and no Pinyon Jays. Finally, last year, we found a flock at Mono Lake - hurray! I always joke that it may take half of forever to find a lifer species, but once you do, the danged things will pop up everywhere. So, here we were, at a spot we'd visited before with no Pinyon jays, and now - as we weren't looking for them - them, here was the biggest flock of the things one could hope for. Oh how ironic is that?
|One fleeing Pinyon Jay out of 150+|
|There are at least 3 Pinyon Jays in this pic - bet you can't find more than one.|
Another bird we spotted by Steven's lake was a v. far off Golden Eagle. All in all today we saw two Bald Eagles and the one Golden Eagle.
|A Golden eagle - far, far, far away|