Wintering Waterfowl and Wading Birds in the Central Valley

rosss-geese-and-pintails-12-2016-smallRoss’s geese and northern pintails

As I’ve shared here before, I follow the migratory waterfowl and other birds—my own personal migration on winter weekends. Here are some portraits from recent trips to California’s Central Valley. These are highlights from this season’s trips to several national wildlife refuges—Colusa, Merced, Sacramento, San Luis—as well as the as well as the Llano Seco Unit of the North Central Valley Wildlife Management Area and various agricultural fields.

I feel such joy being around these birds, who bring so much life during the cold, dark months of the year. More photos to come.

geese-flying-above-sutter-buttes-12-2016-smallGeese silhouetted against the Sutter Buttes

white-faced-ibis-merced-nwr-12-2016-smallWhite-faced ibis


northern-shoveler-12-2016-smallNorthern shoveler

Black-necked stilt

black-necked-stilt-san-luis-nwr-2-12-2016-smallAnother view of the black-necked stilt

snow-and-white-fronted-geese-12-2016-smallGreater white-fronted geese (foreground) and snow geese

snow-geese-at-sunset-sac-nwr-11-2016-smallSnow geese

white-fronted-geese-11-2016-smallGreater white-fronted geese

turtle-and-cinnamon-teal-11-2016-smallThe odd couple – western pond turtle and cinnamon teal

pintail-swimming-1-12-2016-smallNorthern pintail

wigeon-pair-11-2016-smallAmerican wigeons

tundra-swans-11-2016-smallTundra swans

egret-and-mallards-12-2016-smallGreat egret and mallards

Great blue heron


  1. Hi Beverly,

    Thanks for sharing this great edition. You have some great photos here. I especially love the “odd couple” and the picture with thousands of geese.


  2. From a nearby street corner in Indianapolis, I recently watched two flights of sandhill cranes pass N==>S overhead, and was struck by how clearly I heard them, how far away they were, and how swiftly they were moving. It *always* seems to amaze me……

    Your Cali pictures here remind me so much of that, or of hanging on to a piece of schist near a Connecticut salt marsh when growing up, hearing the Canada goose flights overhead.

    Amazing passages….

  3. From one Woodswoman to another: What a beautiful collection of photos you’ve gathered! We are in Peru and are headed in three days to Quito and the Galapagos . . . I hope to get photos of birds, sea lions, and giant turtles while we’re there. Hope you are well.

  4. Your pictures are wonderful! That one of the geese in the air is breathtaking! Thanks for sharing.


  5. Couldn’t pick a favorite this time, but I especially enjoy “White-faced ibis,” “The Odd Couple,” “Great Blue Heron,” “Geese silhouetted against the Sutter Buttes” and just about every portrait…stupendous!!

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