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Dan Tallman’s Chook Weblog: American Dipper

I think dippers are found all year along Tumwater Falls near Olympia. We check the falls and rapids about once a month, but seeing these bird is difficult. We only find them on about two-thirds of our searches. This image is our first for 2022, having missed them in December. This photo was taken on 8 February 2022.

American Dippers are wonderful, robin-sized birds that feed in and around tumbling mountain streams. Often they feed under the water, but usually they work the stream edges and rocks. Their feathers are remarkably waterproof. We are a bit perplexed by the white edged wing feathers, usually a sign of an immature bird. Perhaps, then, this individual is a second-year bird, since breeding in Washington does not start before March.

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