Friday, February 13, 2015

Was That Nessie At The Marsh?

We went to the marsh the other day to take a good long walk. We went expecting to see, as we always do, many shorebirds and dabbling and diving ducks. We were quite surprised that the ponds and lakes were almost empty. Just a handful of American Coots, a few mallards off in the distance. Mmmm... very odd.

We came upon one of the ponds, and there wasn't a single bird to be seen. I said to Roger, "There must be a predator out there somewhere. Maybe there's a shark!" We had a good laugh about sharks. Then, we saw this out of the corner of our eyes. Whoa, what is that?

Often we see the concentric circles of something that we just missed, as it dives down into the food-rich waters there. But this, this looked like our own little Loch Nessie. We were pretty intrigued. Suddenly it came up again, and there were two of them, coming up for air and diving down just as quickly.
We hadn't seen a river otter here since 2008. Sure was nice to see two again. Wikipedia says, "Fish is a favored food among the otters, but they also consume various amphibians, turtles and crayfish. Instances of river otters eating small mammals and occasionally birds have been reported as well." That may explain the absence of birds in these waters.

Not what we expected to see out on our marsh walk, but what a truly welcomed sight it was.

15 comments:

  1. fantastic find! and good, quick shooting.

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  2. Tara-- Thank you! It was a challenge to get those shots.

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  3. Soooo cool! Kali and I spotted a river otter once in a lake near our house in central Florida. It had a fish in its forepaws and we could hear it crunching the bones and cartilage as it ate.

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  4. Scott-- We used to see river otters up in Port Townsend, WA. They would come out of the bay and walk across the sand to their dens. I have a few photos from back then. They are intense little creatures.

    kathy a-- Yes!

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  5. Wonderful, good sign of healthy environment, too.

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  6. have only seen them once...exciting! hard to catch these shots...you did great!

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  7. isabelita-- I like knowing they're out there, and that it's a good sign of a healthy environment.

    Sky-- We used to say them in the bay in Port Townsend. Such interesting creatures.

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  8. Unexpected sightings are the best. Keep looking for Nessie.

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  9. Ya otter try again, because that was a singularly fine shot!

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  10. NCmountainwoman-- We love when the unexpected happens, especially when it's an otter!

    MandT-- We'll be looking around for these critters whenever we head out there. Glad you liked the pic!

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  11. Nice shot. All I have ever managed of that creature were the circles. Smart birds to take stay clear for a while.

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  12. Sweet that you were able to photograph those quick-moving otters. We sometimes see otters scampering on and off of the lower dock as we walk on the upper part of Taylor Street Dock along Bellingham Bay. Love their liveliness, their playfulness.

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  13. That's pretty cool. I envy you for the varieties of wildlife you get to see out there.

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  14. Arkansas Patti-- The birds do tell a story by their absence.

    am-- They are interesting creatures. We're always glad to see them, even if the fish and other wildlife aren't!

    Mark-- We're always looking for wildlife when we're out on our walks. It's the best part of my new regime of weight-bearing exercise for my bones. Now we're walking 4 miles a day. More time for wildlife viewing!

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