Monday, April 4, 2011

Part 3--Continuing the search for the elusive Sandhill Cranes

After spending some time watching the  the enormous gaggle of geese, we determined to try the other location where we were  told we would find the cranes. So off we go again, through more of the Mid-Columbia farmland.

We followed the map and went north toward the Potholes Reservoir, then turned and headed across the causeway atop O'Sullivan Dam. Wind ablowing, the water in the lake was rough. We were glad we weren't there for fishing.

Partway across the dam was a rough turnout and evidence of a road down into Marsh Unit 1. We parked and went through the turnstile next to the gate.
It was pretty obvious that vehicle traffic was not welcome, at least at this time.

We hiked down a way into the area, but, not knowing how far we would have to go, and not prepared for a lot of hiking yet, we went back to the car.

When we got to the other side of the dam, we found the road where we had come out on our first attempt. This sign was no surprise, but we had not had such a warning when we started from the other end.

Now, when we had been traveling north on that road earlier, I had seen out of the corner of my eye what looked like a piece of black plastic or a ablack garbage bag stuck on a branch in the pond.

Whoa! Stop! Wait! What is this?

 Huge black bird. After a few snaps he decided he didn't link us hanging out there, so he took off.
My research suggests that he is a Great Ccormorant. Compare this picture--right click and open in a new window so you can look side by side. If someone can identify him more accurately, I would appreciate it.
The ducks at this pond didn't want me to photograph them either. You can just make them out in the center of the picture flying away from me.
Will we ever find those four foot tall red-heads? Watch here for part four.


Paulie said...

sigh I should have taken the hint with the word "elusive" in your title

RuneE said...

Even if you did not find the cranes, you obviously had a great experience. And that may perhaps been the most important of a trip like this?