Tilden on Sunday?

Cal Walters

I am hoping someone else was birding in Tilden on Sunday in the area south of Inspiration Point where the Quarry Trail intersects the Big Springs Trail. At about noon there were 2 raptors calling and interacting mid air. It may have been fledgling training or possible mating engagement. Lots of noise back and forth. They fairly bright underneath and no naked eye markings I could make out. Some wondered if they were Ospreys - but the felt too small. By the time I got my glasses out they had drifted behind the eucalyptus trees that are down slope towards Lake Anza. Perhaps the birds are somewhat regular in the area and someone will know what they were. Lovely pair and action.

I also had a surreal Great Horned Owl fly over on the hike. Earlier in the hike we heard a Sharp-Shinned Hawk calling in some bay trees. As we walked on, not being able to see where the calling came from, a large Great Horned Owl swooped out of the trees with the hawk in pursuit. The owl passed within 8 feet of our heads dropping down the hill - the eyes were lovely and bright and seemed like headlights as it approached and passed over. It was an amazing experience and a delight for the non-birders to experience, too.

Cal Walters

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