Grebe Catches Big Shrimp I Didn’t Know was in the Russian River Estuary

Friday October 10, 2014 Jenner CA.

And they repaired the visitor center roof today

I always check my email while waking up in the morning before going out to meet the day. Seems my well driller guy didn’t receive the well plot map I sent them the other day with all the set backs drawn on it. Since the guys office help was leaving on a two week vacation  after today, I had to redraw it and send it on in. Of course they sent the original one to me in PDF format which I can’t draw on, so I had to convert it to .jpg, and then draw the stuff on it. I sent it and called them to see if they got it and was everything ok on the map?

It was, so I went off to Jenner to kayak for the day.

Right away I noticed a guy on the visitor center roof doing something. Turned out, he was repairing the roof, which had a bunch of shingles blown off it. I paddled on out and turned to inspect his work. Looks good, he did a good job and now it can rain like hell, I hope. :O)roofrepair


I decided to head on down to the river’s mouth. I didn’t seem to have much energy today, so I took longer then usual to get down there.

A number of grebes on the water

On the way, just past the west end of Penny Island I ran into some of these little grebes, which seem to be friendlier this year than usual.grebes


There was a log floating on the water on the way down and I stopped here for awhile just checking things out. The river’s mouth is still closed and some fog was moving around today.closedmouth


I paddled down to haystack rock where these mergansers and a great blue heron were taking it easy.birds


The friendliest grebe

I was sitting around down there and noticed a grebe not too far away and eventually, it popped up right beside my boat.grebe2


There were some merganser ducks sitting on a log close by. Have you noticed we all do about the same thing down here?mergansers


And some killdeer were feeding on the shoreline near me too.killdeer


A little grebe with a big shrimp

Just as I started to head away from the area, I saw something I hadn’t seen before. A grebe, but not the grebe, but the shrimp it had in it’s beak. I saw it with something and it was having a hard time swallowing whatever it was. As I watched, I realized it was a larger shrimp than I had ever seen in the estuary and didn’t know these big guys were in here.

It tried and tried to swallow it, but just couldn’t get it down. I left it still trying and I bet it finally ate it. Not all birds can open their beaks wide to swallow. Some of the birds down here can only swallow small things.shrimp


I paddled over to Penny Island and paddled on into it where I had a little sorta nap for a bit in this spot.island


Once I got going again, I let the breeze push me up the river past Penny Island where I ran into these harbor seals and birds all taking it easy, like me. :O)seals


I worked my way up the river to the muskrat area and sat in this spot for an hour or so, before crossing the river and heading back.sitspot


I crossed the river to the north side to see what birds were along the shoreline. One can’t see the birds resting along the shoreline, unless one gets a lot closer to them as they blend in fairly well. So the only way to see if there are any birds is to go over and get close enough to see.

I spotted these merganser ducks sitting on a piece of wood in the watermergansers2


I didn’t know this happened, but somehow, my camera took a picture of my feet in the kayak when I put the camera on my lap. I didn’t know the sun shined through my green boat?shoes


I passed these mallard ducks taking a nap. Have you noticed most of the critters down here are resting or taking it easy, just like I do? It just seems like the thing to do down here, so why fight it? :O)mallards


I was temped to join the ducks, but I continued on down the shoreline, where I ran into a bunch of these coots, which moved off ahead of me. The coots come down here this time of year to eat the dead weeds in the water.coots


Back at the boat ramp, I checked the estuary water level gauge. About six and three quarters feet. It’s holding almost the same level. The estuary seems to reach an equilibrium state around the seven foot level, which means it will remain near this level until something happens to change that, such as a big rain storm. I think it will remain near this level until we start to get some of our winter rain, but we’ll see.gage


I pulled my boat out and went on home for a nap. Then I did some work moving the big dead log from my well site. I moved about ten wheel barrels of dead decayed wood to my blue berry patch, after throwing a bunch of old potatoes on the patch first so the new mulch would cover them up. Now, I’m down to the wood on the log that isn’t decayed yet and I need to figure out how I’m gong to move it out of the way. My big chain saw is not working right now, so I’m thinking what to do with the rest of the log?

Then I just sat around for the rest of the day, until it started to get dark.

That was my day.

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2 Responses to Grebe Catches Big Shrimp I Didn’t Know was in the Russian River Estuary

  1. admin says:

    Hi Brian,
    Yes, I agree. I was real surprised to see this big guy. I thought there was only the little tiny shrimp in the estuary, called Bay shrimp, about an eighth to a quarter of an inch.
    The estuary seems full of surprises.

  2. Brian J says:

    Interesting to see that big of a shrimp in the estuary. Maybe it doesn’t survive that long once the salmon and steelhead start to come in. Might be something I am going to try out as bait this year.

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