One of the wonderful things about Alaska birding, and one of the hardest to get used to, is the presence of Bald Eagles nearly everywhere. This morning I ended up doing mostly “drive-by” birding, from Anchorage down to Portage Glacier and back. Although I had intended to do some walking on trails down near the glacier, when I got there it was raining very hard, so I just turned around and drove back. The closer I got to Anchorage the more blue sky there was.
In fact, I saw very few birds today. I had gone 30 miles this morning before I saw my first bird for the drive, a Bald Eagle. After another 22 miles I had my next bird, another Bald Eagle. On the way back a few more Bald Eagles had appeared, three of which were beautifully posed against scenic backgrounds. There were also a few Common Ravens, a trio of Common Merganser males on a melted pond area along the highway, and a few Black-capped Chickadees at a stop.
I took a late afternoon walk at Hilltop Park in Anchorage, hoping that I might find White-winged Crossbills in some of the many spruce trees. Although it is possible that I heard one, I never was certain and did not see it. I did see and hear a couple of noisy flocks of Boreal Chickadees. My last bird sighting on this beautiful afternoon walk was a Sharp-shinned Hawk coasting overhead while I was on my cell phone planning birding for tomorrow. There’s always another day to find a new bird.