Date   

Pine Siskins, White-throated Sparrow Richmond

Alan Krakauer
 

This morning we noticed a major uptick in the number of Pine Siskins at our feeder near Wildcat Canyon park. Probably 25 this morning! Also a tan-stripe White-throated Sparrow and a Hutton’s Vireo in the yard, along with the regulars.

Good birding,
Alan Krakauer
Richmond, CA


Arrowhead Marsh (10/29/2017) - Nelson's Sparrows

Jerry Ting
 

I found at least 2 Nelson's Sparrows around 9:30 this morning at Arrowhead Marsh right beside the footbridge/boardwalk foraging in the marsh.  Will post photos later.


Happy Birding,


Jerry Ting

Fremont


Coyote Hills 10-28-17

Matthew Dodder
 

I led my Palo Alto Adult School birding class to Coyote Hills Regional Park today for a successful morning of birding. Highlights were numerous. 

VISITORS CENTER
We explored the area around the visitors center first finding 4 GOLDEN-CROWNED KINGLETS in the large oaks beside the Butterfly Garden. Also in this area was a female-plumaged PURPLE FINCH doing its best Cassin’s Vireo vocal impersonation! An apparent pair of SHARP-SHINNED HAWKS were perched together on the hillside above Hoot Hollow. WHITE-TAILED KITES and NORTHERN HARRIERS were hard to miss from almost anywhere in the park, and a single RED-SHOULDERED HAWK was seen harassing a RED-TAILED HAWK.

HOOT HOLLOW
We heard several HERMIT THRUSHES here, but as far as I know no one viewed any. We had our only two AMERICAN ROBINS of the day flying overhead, as well as a trio of COMMON RAVENS. Most interesting was an “intergrade” NORTHERN FLICKER displaying both a red nucial patch AND malar. It’s underwings and tail were definitely orangey, not red or yellow.

HILLTOP
The hilltop view above the visitors center provided us with fantastic views of both the marsh and the bay. From there were were able to scope a small group of RING-NECKED DUCKS, CANVASBACK, and a variety of Dabbling Ducks including NORTHERN PINTAIL, NORTHERN SHOVELER, GADWALL, GREEN-WINGED TEAL, CINNAMON TEAL and MALLARD.. Far in the distance on the second pond we could see an abundance of AMERICAN WIGEONS, which we returned to later for further examination.

BAY
We made our way down the hill to the No Name Trail leading into the bay. There we found a large assemblage of both BROWN and AMERICAN WHITE PELICANS, huge numbers of Gulls which included CALIFORNIA, RING-BILLED, WESTERN, MEW and BONAPARTE’S GULLS. Three LESSER YELLOWLEGS were found near the utility structure, as well as many BLACK-NECKED STILTS, AMERICAN AVOCETS, DOUBLE-CRESTED CORMORANTS etc. A lone CASPIAN TERN was foraging over the salt pond and only identifiable through the scopes.

QUARRY
We returned to the quarry parking area finding many AMERICAN PIPIT, SAVANNAH SPARROWS and YELLOW-RUMPED WARBLERS along the way. Several folks were able to view the ROCK WREN on the rocks above the lot, but not everyone. Earlier, we had also seen a MERLIN in this area, but it was gone by the time our entire group was together.

MARSH
From here we decided to walk along the boardwalk through the marsh toward the second pond. We found SORA swimming across one of the channels, heard a second further along the trail, and heard and saw a VIRGINIA RAIL. A GREEN HERON was briefly visible flying along the close edge of the pond, briefly visible before disappearing again.

FAR POND 
The second pond produced at least a hundred AMERICAN WIGEONS, and a single EURASIAN WIGEON male (our first of season). A large group of AMERICAN WHITE PELICANS was seen circling high overhead.

GRASSY HILLS
On our way back to the visitors center along the paved trail we located a BURROWING OWL among the rocks near the “trail closed” hillside. Some folks also saw a second individual hidden in there too.

Matthew Dodder
Mountain View


Re: Lewis's Woodpecker

Mark Rauzon
 

Lewis's Woodpecker continued near Briones, on Bear Valley Rd, as one approaches Briones Regional Park, a right turn off on to EBMUD land requires a permit to access a fire road that wends around the north side of the San Pablo reservoir. In the valley oak at the summit of the first hill on the road about a quarter mile in sat a Lewis's Woodpecker until a male Kestrel contested it's perch. I was lucky enough to be camera ready for the action.
good birding,
Mark Rauzon 
Oakland


Lincon's Sparrow

judisierra
 

I had a very rare urban yard visit today of a Lincoln's Sparrow and a Junco who arrived and left at the same time today. Yesterday another rarity here, a Red-breasted Nuthatch. A Hermit thrush who has been coming this week in the late afternoon/evening to bathe, brought a friend today- another Hermit Thrush! I also had a Townsend's warbler today.

Judi Sierra Oakland


Distal rhynchokinesis

verne_nelson@...
 

You might think a shorebird's beak is rigid, but part of it is not. They can flex the upper end of their beak like pincers to grab prey buried below in the mud and wet sand. It's called distal rhynchokinesis. I caught this Least Sandpiper flexing it above water while resting. 


http://bit.ly/2xtq7F7



Tropical Kingbird continues in Heather Farm Walnut Creek

rosita94598
 

Yesterday about 6 PM while returning from a bike ride for exercise, I found the continuing Tropical Kingbird in the sycamore trees just south of the bathrooms at the north ball fields of Heather Farm Park.

It was seen again this morning for an extended around 9 AM right near the wooden railing on the east side of the large, mostly natural pond.

Hugh B. Harvey
Walnut Creek



Re: Lewis' Woodpecker

Teri L Wills
 

We also had three at round valley today during the EBRPD raptor walk. They were about 3/4 of a mile from the parking lot on the trail that goes west

Teri Wills
Martinez

On Oct 26, 2017, at 7:54 PM, Rusty Scalf rscalf@... [EBB_Sightings] <EBB_Sightings-noreply@...> wrote:

 


There was a Lewis' Woodpecker at the north end of Briones Reservoir this morning. 
Leaving, I crossed paths with Colin Meusel who had see 3.  So Lewis' are about.

   Rusty Scalf


Lewis' Woodpecker

rfs_berkeley
 


There was a Lewis' Woodpecker at the north end of Briones Reservoir this morning. 
Leaving, I crossed paths with Colin Meusel who had see 3.  So Lewis' are about.

   Rusty Scalf


Wniter ducks continued Heather Farm Park--win some, lose some

rosita94598
 

Just as I was catching Fred Safier at the little bridge over the Contra Costa Canal at the north end of Heather Farm Park in Walnut Creek, he told me to go back to the west so I could see Buffleheads in the pond closer to the private Seven Hills School.  Portions of the pond are visible from the canal trail and he had seen a male and 6 females.  Not a duck was visible to me, so I continued west to the concrete creek channel and did see a Kingfisher on the fence way to the south.

I checked the pond again on my return and even rode my bike to the entrance of the school for better viewing and still did not see any Buffleheads.  On the Seven Hills Ranch property to the left of the school, a Red-tailed Hawk was perched on a power pole and 70 Mourning Doves were on the wires.

Eventually, I caught Fred and we continued around the pond, finding Walt Duncan and Tracy Farrington as we went.  From the south end, we did finally see a single male Bufflehead at the far north end of the pond, but it was associating with two Ring-necked Ducks.  Closer to the island were two other Ring-necked Ducks and a total of 3 Pied-billed Grebes.  But we did not seen the Northern Shoveler female; she was seen as recently as Tuesday.

The Common Gallinule was out in the middle of the pond, but the Coots either went into hiding or have left.


A Lincoln's Sparrow was seen in the reeds to the left when standing at the bottom of the gravel boat ramp.  Most of the other expected species were seen.


Hugh B. Harvey

Walnut Creek




Varied Thrush, Oak Hill Park, Danville

photohutch
 

Hi all,

Saw my first of the season Varied Thrush at Oak Hill Park in Danville this afternoon. I don't keep records, but don't recall ever seeing one this early in the fall, and in 90 plus degree weather to boot.

Good birding,

Steve Hutchcraft
Alamo, CA


Heather Farm Park winter arrivals--Walnut Creek

rosita94598
 

Yesterday we found a pair of Ring-necked Ducks on the large, mostly natural pond in the park.  For a number of years now, we have had a flock of 40 or more ring-necked Ducks spend the winter in the park.  Perhaps this pair are the first arrivals.

A female Northern Shoveler has been present since last week; she hangs out with a pair of Mallards.


A couple of weeks ago, Fred Safier had a Wilson's Snipe fly over.  Yesterday while standing at the wooden observation railing, Fred and I saw a Snipe in the reeds across the water and to the right a bit.  This morning we had two of them.


Heather Farm Park is in the Ygnacio Valley of Walnut Creek


Hugh B. Harvey

Walnut Creek


White-throated Sparrow at Tilden Nature Area

Minder Cheng
 

My wife Wen and I stopped by Tilden Nature Area between 11:30 am and 1 pm today (10/23 Monday). We saw a lone White-throated Sparrow near the bench at the northeastern end of Jewel Lake around noon. It was a beautiful White-striped adult. A picture is available at:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/mindercheng/37843306626/in/dateposted-public/


We also saw several Golden-crowned Kinglets along Upper Packrat Trail around 1 pm. They were with a group of Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Townsend's Warblers and Bushtits.


Minder Cheng

Berkeley, CA



Tilden RP Lewis's Woodpecker

Laura Look <chamaea@...>
 

Today (Oct. 23) I saw a LEWIS'S WOODPECKER along the Seaview Trail at Tilden Regional Park. The bird was on the second group of dead trees going west from the junction with the Upper Big Springs Trail (about 1/4 mile west of the junction). Last seen flying east (back toward the junction).

Id shot: https://www.flickr.com/photos/115418990@N03/37633682190/

Additionally, a WHITE-THROATED SPARROW and an apparent "slate-colored" Fox Sparrow (rather than our usual "sooties") were with a flock of golden-crowns on the Upper Big Springs Trail on the last big bend before reaching the Seaview Trail. An adult BALD EAGLE flew overhead while I was watching the sparrows.

Park info & map: http://www.ebparks.org/parks/tilden

Good birding,
--
Laura Look
Pinole, CA


Heather Farms - Tropical Kingbird Oct 22, 2017

hoggsville
 

As my son's baseball tournament winded down this evening I heard an usual call and quickly located with my binoculars a Tropical Kingbird atop one of the Sycamores east of the bathroom at the baseball parks near the main pond. The bird flew to a lamppost south of the bathroom along the road and continued vocalizing at that location. The call was a brief downslurred trill which was similar in part to calls on the excellent crowd sourced website xeno canto.


An earlier walk around the pond offered looks at a Common Yellowthroat, White-breasted Nuthatch (heard only) and a Myrtle's Warbler.


Jack Hayden

Albany, CA


Barn Owl at Sydney G Walton Square (SF)

Sheila Smith
 

Hello folks


There was a Barn Owl flying about Sydney G Walton Square in SF around 7:15 on Friday night.

I've worked off the park for 10+ years - first time I've seen an owl there.


Sheila Smith

Oakland


Martinez Cattle Egret

Laura Look <chamaea@...>
 

The CATTLE EGRET that we saw at Martinez Regional Shoreline on Sept. 4 was back today (Oct. 22) about mid-day. I identify it as the same bird based on an unreadable leg-band on its left leg.

Instead of being at the duck pond, it was foraging in the marshy grassy area just north of the main picnic area lawn (just south of the duck pond & Boardwalk Trail).

Park info & map: http://www.ebparks.org/parks/martinez

Good birding,
--
Laura Look
Pinole, CA


Unusual proximity

verne_nelson@...
 

Yesterday at Doolittle Pond, three of our common waders - a Great Egret, Great Blue Heron, and a Snowy Egret - were standing in close proximity waiting for the low tide and fishing to begin. There are huge schools of minnows in San Leandro Bay right now and Forster's Terns and Brown Pelicans are also fishing the bounty. 


Here's a picture of the waiting waders-


http://bit.ly/2yHgeah



Blue-winged Teal are back at Arrowhead

Derek
 

On a windy afternoon on the bay shore, Very little activity at high tide around the boardwalk at Arrowhead Marsh, so I headed along the Bay Trail north where at Garretson Point I had a late Yellow Warbler playing chase with a Yellow-rumped Warbler.  Over the years I've found the bike-path area north of Garretson Point to be fairly reliable for Lincoln's Sparrow and today I found one along with a male American Kestrel perched on the telephone wires. 

The shorebird crowd, including ten Greater Yellowlegs,  had settled at high tide at Damon Marsh joined by a handful of American Wigeon and Northern Shovelers.  By the tiime I biked back to Arrowhead the tide had gone done and activity had picked up there.  It appeared quite a few of the shorebirds had moved there and I counted 22 Greater Yellowlegs. As I started to leave I caught a glimpse of a couple ducks going out of sight in the marsh that made me think Blue-winged Teal. I had to wait about 15 minutes for them to come into view, and was surprised to find 10 evenly split between male and female. 

Highlights of biking around the inner marsh were 3 Say's Phoebes, 20 American Pipits, White-tailed Kite and  Burrowing Owl. 

Derek Heins


Townsend’s Warbler - Antioch yard - 10/19

Paul Schorr
 

This morning a male. Townsend’s Warbler made a brief visit to our yard. Earlier in the week, we had an Orange-crowned Warbler gleaning insects from shrubs and then taking a prolonged bath. And Yellow-rumped Warblers are here every day. Hoping for more!

Good birding,

Paul and Nancy Schorr
Antioch

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