Bill Anderson: Edmonds wildlife enthusiast and photographer

Bill Anderson, 70, passed away on Tuesday after a long battle with cancer. Bill was well known in Edmonds for his knowledge and fabulous photos of the Edmonds Marsh and its wildlife. His almost weekly photographs in My Edmonds News brought to life the diverse wildlife of the Edmonds Marsh (usually hidden to the naked eye). His generous contribution of wildlife photographs to a variety of venues to help educate the public was recognized by the City of Edmonds, with the mayor proclaiming Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019 as Bill Anderson Day in Edmonds.

Bill was a familiar face along the Edmonds waterfront and the Edmonds Marsh with his huge-lens camera and welcoming approach to anyone stopping to ask him what he was shooting. Bill wasn’t just an avid photographer; he was a one-of-a-kind, self-trained ecologist who strived to understand and photograph wildlife behavior and then share that knowledge with others. It was not uncommon to see Bill, with his son Daren, in the middle of small gatherings of people at the Edmonds Marsh, the Edmonds Fishing Pier, or Brackett’s Landing talking about the wildlife in the area. If you wanted to find a rare bird reported in Edmonds, all you had to do was look for Bill and his giant camera lens, or his red Toyota pickup with the WSU Cougar license plate.

Bill will be remembered as one of the few people that really understood the wildlife of the Edmonds Marsh. His expertise and advice about the marsh will be sorely missed. Wesly (the Marsh hummingbird), Katie (the Marina kingfisher) and other birds he came to know from his daily excursions to the waterfront will also miss him. In addition, he will be remembered for the key role he played as a member of the annual Puget Sound Bird Fest Planning Committee, bringing the love of wildlife photography to so many in the Edmonds community and beyond.

Even in his last months confined to his house, Bill continued his passion for wildlife photography on his back deck,posting his exquisite photos of backyard birds in My Edmonds News.

He is survived by his wife Pauline, daughter Jennifer, son Daren and great niece Elizabeth.

— By Joe Scordino

~ ~ ~ ~

From the publisher:

Here’s a gallery of selected photos Bill Anderson has submitted to My Edmonds News over the years:

Here’s a link to the video featuring Bill’s photos of the four seasons at the Edmonds Marsh, which was produced for the 2020 Bird Fest:

Here’s a link to Bill Anderson’s photos in the Washington State Digital Archives:


  1. I went to the Edmonds Marsh today with my camera. There were quite a few Great Blue Herons and several white crown sparrows. Wesley (the male anna’s hummingbird) was on his “normal” twig. I wanted to tell him about Bill, but couldn’t; I suspect he already knows.

  2. Bill’s beautiful photographs have provided such joy throughout the years. His love of nature clearly shines through the eye of the lens. Bill will be missed.

  3. I met Bill in Yost Park shortly after moving to Edmonds in 2014. He kindly pointed out a resident barred owl and told me about, where I’ve admired his photos ever since. I am so sorry to hear of his passing and send condolences to his family.

  4. Thank you, Teresa, for the gorgeous pictures which are Bill Anderson’s legacy. What a gift he has been to our community.

    1. Bill’s love of nature was contagious and his beautiful photos provided us all with the exquisite sights Edmonds has to offer. I met him through his son Daren. What an honor it was to know Bill. He cherished his family. His legacy lives on in the photos he so graciously shared with us all.

  5. condolences to his family and friends.
    He was always fun to talk with.
    A wealth of knowledge !
    As an amateur photographer . I greatly appreciated his work !
    Rest in peace and strength

  6. Therese,
    Thank you for sharing Bill’s beautiful photographs. He definitely had an eye for capturing nature at its best.
    Condolences to his family.

  7. Very sorry to hear that Bill has passed. I was fortunate to meet him and his son, often in my front yard at the beach. Bill was one of a kind. His breadth of knowledge was amazing. He will be missed! RIP Bill.

  8. Bill will be sorely missed. I came to know Bill and Daren during my frequent trips to the Edmonds Marsh. I learned so much from Bill and was always amazed by his photos. My condolences to Bill’s family. So many of us share your profound loss.

  9. I sadly learned today of Bill’s passing on a Ducati motorcycle website we both frequented for years. It wasn’t long before I made a connection with him because at the time he was nearing retirement with the FBI and I had already retired from a municipal police department in California. We rarely spoke about our work lives, it was more fun to talk about Ducatis and later, photography. This was a secondary common interest I had with Bill because I already admired his nature photography greatly and me being a rabid nature conservationist, we hit it off right away.

    I was also interested in photography, but not the kind of work Bill did, my interest was in astrophotography. I met up with Bill a couple of times when I transported a motorcycle I sold to a buyer in Seattle and Bill was nice enough to ride down and meet up in person. The second occasion was when I had a business appointment in Seattle. I scheduled some extra time so Bill could take me over to the Edmonds Marsh, a place I was familiar with through his beautiful photos. We had a good time taking some shots, but the highlight of the day was when he took me to a nearby established Bald Eagle nest. To those who knew Bill, he spent a lot of time with the local Bald Eagles and it was great to view their nesting cycles through his skills behind the camera. I was amazed at how close he got to them using his very long Canon lens and how sharp the images were. Bill really brought local nature to life and shared his images with many people. RIP Bill, I’m going to miss your contributions and friendship.

  10. Bill will be sorely missed by many in the Ducati motorcycle community worldwide. A true gentleman whom I only spent one afternoon with yet called a friend for life. RIP Bill. May the road rise up to meet you, may the wind always be at your back.

  11. Knew Bill from work. There wasn’t a person that did not enjoy Bill joining a conversation. He was a really nice guy and an old school gentleman. Edmonds folks engaging him on the waterfront would never know how much he quietly did for our country. God Bless.

  12. As a former colleague, I can say Bill served his country with honor and integrity. He was always fun to be around and could easily make others smile and chuckle at times, but was always truly dedicated to his work in service to America. He loved his family and left a great impression on his community.

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