Tuesday, July 15, 2008

American Dipper

My timing on this one was impeccable. On my way back from my camping trip I stopped to look for tracks under the bridge. I was listening to a podcast about dippers and the speaker was just talking about finding a dipper's nest. Then, under the bridge I noticed a dipper chirping at me, then all of the sudden it flew up to the bridge rafters and was greeted by a chorus of little chirps.

After feeding the young it would fly down into the water and dive under, presumably catching something edible, but would then fly over to the shore and do a bit more hunting.

After it got enough food, it flew to a log in the water and bopped up and down for awhile (where it gets its name) before flying up to the nest.

I saw a bat under the bridge too. There was a big pile of scat and they appeared to be made up of insects. The location and contents made me suspect bats, I looked up and noticed that there was a large gap (a couple of inches across) in the concrete above. I looked for bats, but didn't see any (it was pretty dark and far away) until I heard a noise coming from up there and after several seconds of looking I noticed it crawling further back into the crevice. It was almost as though it noticed me looking up there and decided it was too exposed and needed to hide better, but its hiding actually made it more noticeable.

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