The Birds of Bay Center

(Including a Guide to the Gulls of the Northwest)

At the cabin

Throughout the year

In trees, grass, blackberries and shrubbery

On the shoreline or out in the bay

In spring and summer

In trees, grass, shrubbery or blackberries

On the shoreline or in the bay


In winter

On the shoreline or in the bay

During migration (late summer, fall and spring)

In the trees, grass, blackberries and shrubbery

On the shoreline or in the bay

In the fields along Dike Road

  • Turkey Vulture

  • Tree Swallow Seen in spring continuously gliding and swooping. White breast, dark bluish back.

    In local marshes

  • Redwing blackbird

  • Common snipe

  • Marsh wren You'll probably hear this bird before you'll see it pop quickly in and out of marsh reeds.

    In Bush Park Woods

  • Red-breasted nuthatch A pretty bird with short tail; often found walking down tree trunks.

  • Winter wren Found near the ground in woods. Small dark bird with an elaborate beautiful lengthy song.

    At Goose Point or on the west side of the peninsula

    Throughout the year

  • Hooded merganser This striking duck with the "duck tail" haircut is not at all common but has been seen occasionally at Goose Point.

    During migration in spring, late summer or fall

    Elsewhere in the Bay Center vicinity

  • Wood Duck This is one of the most beautiful ducks going and can be seen in ditches and on ponds in the Bay Center area in April.

  • Ring-necked duck We've seen these in winter in ponds on the Rose Ranch (along Dike Road) and along the South Palix River. The bird's name misdescribes its appearance. The ring is not around the neck,but around the bill.

  • Common merganser

  • Common yellowthroat Easy to recognize this bird with its yellow throat, black mask with white upper boarder. Hangs out in wetlands.

  • Red Crossbill Another view: Red Crossbill (male) More commonly heard flying overhead rather than seen, though we once were surprised to find one perched on logs on a Bush Park beach. They can be present any time of year, though their abundance varies from year to year.

    Seldom Seen

  • Redhead

  • Willet A dullish grey bird -- until it flies. Then notice the distinctive white on the underwing: Willet flying.

  • Ruddy turnstone This is a gaudy shorebird we've seen once or twice on the shoreline during fall migration. For another view, see Ruddy turnstone2

  • Bonaparte gull

  • California gull This is a winter adult. California gull is larger than a mew, ring-billed, and Heerman's gull but smaller than the Glaucaus-winged-Western hybrid. Dark eye, yellow legs, bill has red and black spots on it.


  • Snowy egret We saw one in April 1994 on the mudflat below our deck and one in September 1997 in the mudflats along Dike Road. Not expected this far north. Here's  a better view.

  • Western kingbird We saw this bird sitting on a fencepost along Dike Road near 101.

  • Northern mockingbird Conspicuous white wing patches make this bird hard to misidentify. We saw one in the cemetary once and the next day along Rhoades Street.

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