Readers’ wildlife photos

January 8, 2023 • 8:15 am

Today’s photos are the regular Sunday portion of bird photos by John Avise. John’s narrative and IDs are indented, and you can enlarge the photos by clicking on them.

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let it Be Snowy

On this winter’s day in the northern Hemisphere, the theme is snow: birds with the words “snow” or “snowy” in their official common names.  Although some of these species (notably the Snow Goose and Snowy Owl) nest at very high latitudes on Arctic tundra, they probably get their names not from their habitat but rather from their snowy-white plumages.

All of these photographs were taken in Southern California during the winter months.

Snowy Plover breeding adult, Charadrius alexandrinus (an endangered species):

Another Snowy Plover:

Snowy Plover chick:

Snow Goose adult, Anser caerulescens:

Immature Snow Goose:

Immature Snow Goose swimming:

Immature Snow Goose head portrait:

Snow Geese flying:

Snow Goose feet:

Snowy Egret, Egretta thula:

Another Snowy Egret:

Snowy Egret flying (this photo graced the front cover of one of my authored books):

Snowy Owl, Nyctea scandiaca (this bird was an astoundingly rare find here in Southern California this winter) (look at those feathered feet!):

That same vagrant Snowy Owl:

6 thoughts on “Readers’ wildlife photos

  1. I think the Snowy Owl has been re-classified as Bubo Scandiacus. I have always known it as Nyctea Scandia as I use birds of prey classifications for easy to remember passwords for some things.

  2. We get reports of snowy owls here in mid-Missouri from time to time. But Southern California?! For whatever reason it reminded me of Bugs and Daffy tunneling to Palm Springs (wrong turn at Albuquerque) and ending up in the Himalayas…I’m 45, or maybe 4 or 5. Anyway, is it due to a larger than expected prey abundance, leading to higher rate of chick survival, thus more birds fly greater distances to find suitable territory, or did this one just read the map wrong?

  3. Great grouping, as always, John Avise. My guess is that it’s a lot of work invested in searching and selecting from your many thousands of photographs, to produce these lovely collections. Thanks!

  4. I’m already done with snow this winter after being buried twice!

    But I’ll always welcome the beautiful photos of John Avise- snow or no snow. I can see why the flying Snowy Egret photo was chosen for a book cover- spectacular shot.

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