While on the OBA sponsored trip to Brownsmead (Astoria) area yesterday, we observed two American Dippers perched on rocks and dead limbs at water's edge. The usually tame "Big Creek" at the Fish Hatchery of same name was a raging river. One of the dippers, did his/her dipping display on the thin point of a vertical limb at creek side. Then it flew to the tanks of hatchlings where it quickly dove, extracted, and swallowed 4 or 5 of the two-inch fish before disappearing, possibly irritated by its awe-struck audience.
The question becomes will the Dipper return to Big Creek for sustenance when manageable flow and naked rocks reappear? Or has it learned an easier way to fish?
Linda Berkemeier Portland
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