I've become quite enamored with pipits since moving to the West Coast. This one was taking advantage of the high tide in the salt marsh in Bodega Harbor today, searching for insects among the vegetation along the water's edge.
I was having fun just observing the pipit in its habitat, watching it feeding, wondering about what it was finding...
...when I noticed something I hadn't seen before:
Sometimes the feathers above the pipit's eyes flared into little tufts!
I'm not sure what was going on, as I don't recall noticing this in pipits before, or seeing it mentioned when reading about them. But it was definitely there on several occasions. Have I just been missing it? Have you seen this before? Do you know what it's about? I'd be interested in your observations and thoughts.