We recently spent a few days on the beach at Waldport, OR. It is located in Oregon Dunes area of the coast. Just outside of town sets a beach amongst a craggy, old volcanic lava flow. It is a beautiful beach with many tidal pools left teeming with wildlife as the tide recedes.
On this visit, the birds really took center stage. We saw some seals, but they were offshore and all I could see were heads bobbing. So, they weren’t photo worthy. But we found some Pelagic Cormorants (Phalacrocorax pelagicus); one with a chick on the nest. We found Western Gulls (Larus occidentalis), many of which were recently fledged juveniles.
The Pelagic Cormorant is found along coastal waters and eats fish and marine invertebrates. It roosts and nests on steep, inaccessible rocky cliffs. It swims and dives for food.
The Western Gull is the common gull that you find on US West Coast beaches. They like fish, marine invertebrates, bird eggs and jelly fish. They will also scavenge on carrion and human refuse.
Our experience with the Western Gull brought some amusement. The juveniles were in the water and along the shore. When they wandered too far inland, an adult would chase after and send it back to the shoreline with the others. In the early morning, we even saw adults force the young into the tidal pools to splash and bathe. It was great fun.
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