Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Yellowstone Eared Grebe Monday

We added a couple days on to the beginning of our trip so that we could stop at Medicine Lake to get some pictures of eared grebes in breading plumage. We had taken some wonderful grebe pics last year at Medicine Lake an we hoped to get some more shots this year. If you have bean reading the blog you already know that Medicine Lake NWR was very dry this year and we were not able to get any descent grebe pics. We decided to move on to Bowdoin NWR where we did get some better grebe shots but they still were not up to par with the ones that we got last year, when they swam right under a small bridge that we were parked on and let us get great close up shots. We were a little disappointed, however on our second day in Yellowstone we decided to head over to the fishing bridge area to try and see if we could spot some harlequin ducks that had been spotted the week before.
We did not find any harlequin but while we were there a group of about 6 eared grebe in breading plumage swam right below the bridge and several of them began to dive for fish.
The first thing that crossed my mind was why did I bother stopping in Montana, but even though we got great eared grebe shots in Yellowstone it was worth it to stop at Medicine Lake and Bowdoin to see some of the western specialties that we did not see in Yellowstone and do not regularly see at home.
Who knows what we will do next year. Hopefully we will be able to take our annual trip to Yellowstone, although by that time it is possible that we will not be able to afford gas for any other then getting to work. If we do go next year we will need to decide if we want to make any stops or whether we would rather spend more time in Yellowstone. It's a tough choice, good thing we have plenty of time to think about it.