Continuing ALA birds

Bruce Mast

I started the morning at Arrowhead Marsh in Oakland, where this season's
high tide crested around 10 am. Rail action was less than I expected--are
the rails moving back to Mitigation Marsh now that the cord grass is
maturing there? I counted 2 Clapper Rails and a Sora. Thought I caught a
glimpse of a possible Virginia Rail under the boardwalk but I never got a
second chance. As folks were drifting off, a sparrow flew into the shrubs at
the water's edge in front of me. I got a glimpse of the pumpkin face of the
continuing NELSON'S SPARROW but the bird flew out before I could get anyone
else on the bird.

Heading down to Coyote Hills Regional Park, a WHITE-FACED IBIS flew over the
main marsh and 2 more flushed from the South Marsh when a guy's dogs went
duck hunting. I asked him to please not let his dogs harass the wildlife and
he suggested I find a new hobby. Class act. A Peregrine Falcon tried to
capitalize on the uproar but came away empty-taloned.

Down at Pacific Commons Linear Park, I studied the Blackbird flock a good
long while, mostly Tricolored with some Red-winged Blackbirds mixed in. Just
as I picked out a female YELLOW-HEADED BLACKBIRD, a novice photographer
flushed the flock. He told his daughter they would be back and asked me if
they were Robins. I helped him with the bird ID but didn't stick around to
see if his knowledge of bird behavior was any good.

Good birding,

Bruce Mast

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