Date   

Re: Male Surf Scoter at Albany Bulb

Michael Carnall
 

There is a group of scoters that seem to be permanent residents near Brooks Island.  I kayak in the area regularly and have noted them in July as early as 2013. 
Mike Carnall
Point Richmond

On Monday, August 10, 2020, 10:59:32 AM PDT, cwells2073@... <cwells2073@...> wrote:


While this seems unusual I am beginning to think this is normal. I saw a male and female scoter pair in this same location on July8th of last year and a group of 5 males at sunset in this spot on July 28th of this year. One of the males had most of the secondary flight feathers on its right wing missing and the vanes on the primaries looked pretty much useless. I was thinking maybe it was the victim of a shark or seal attack but I am finding out that this is the time of year that scoters typically molt their flight feathers. Perhaps this is a refuge they are using annually during this vulnerable molting period? Does anyone know the flight feather molting pattern of a scoter? Do they lose one wing at a time?
Charlie Wells
Oakland


Re: Male Surf Scoter at Albany Bulb

Charlie Wells
 

While this seems unusual I am beginning to think this is normal. I saw a male and female scoter pair in this same location on July8th of last year and a group of 5 males at sunset in this spot on July 28th of this year. One of the males had most of the secondary flight feathers on its right wing missing and the vanes on the primaries looked pretty much useless. I was thinking maybe it was the victim of a shark or seal attack but I am finding out that this is the time of year that scoters typically molt their flight feathers. Perhaps this is a refuge they are using annually during this vulnerable molting period? Does anyone know the flight feather molting pattern of a scoter? Do they lose one wing at a time?
Charlie Wells
Oakland


Re: Request for information - best tides for East Bay shorebird spots?

Joe Morlan
 

On Sun, 9 Aug 2020 19:24:47 -0700, "Hilary Powers"
<hilary@salamanderfeltworks.com> wrote:

Seconding everything Maureen said, especially about the Ridgway's Rails at Arrowhead Marsh. At high tide last week, there were at least 7 calling around the boardwalk, and we had fantastic, close views of one.
Unfortunately Arrowhead Marsh is slated for "restoration" with removal of
the existing hybrid Spartina phased in with replacement by native Spartina.
However if what they did to Colma Marsh is any indication (over 60
Ridgway's Rails gone), they may turn it into a mudflat. For more
information see the "Invasive Spartina Project" at...

https://spartina.org/
--
Joseph Morlan, Pacifica, CA


Re: Request for information - best tides for East Bay shorebird spots?

Hilary Powers
 

On 8/9/2020 11:50 AM, Fred Werner wrote:
Seconding everything Maureen said, especially about the Ridgway's Rails at Arrowhead Marsh.  At high tide last week, there were at least 7 calling around the boardwalk, and we had fantastic, close views of one.

Yes - high tide is good for seeing a lot of rails at Arrowhead Marsh. But mid-low tide is good for seeing a lot of happy rails there. Not quite as many, but strolling around like chickens and generally enjoying themselves, rather than huddling miserably on one of the few scraps of above-tide ground....


-- ~ Hilary Powers - Hilary@... - Oakland CA ~ ~ www.salamanderfeltworks.com; www.Etsy.com/shop/SalamanderFeltworks ~ ~ Needle Felted Sculpture - Real and Fantasy Creatures ~


Re: Request for information - best tides for East Bay shorebird spots?

Fred Werner
 

Seconding everything Maureen said, especially about the Ridgway's Rails at Arrowhead Marsh.  At high tide last week, there were at least 7 calling around the boardwalk, and we had fantastic, close views of one.

There are lots of good apps for tracking/forecasting tides.  Tides Near Me has handy maps and info on currents.  Note also the height of the tide.  The lower high tide of the day might not completely flood a given mudflat, while the higher high tide that same day might keep it underwater for more than two hours before and after high-tide

Albany Mudflats is a feeding site, so the best time is often ~ an hour after high tide (with the above caveat), when shorebirds flock in to feast on the newly exposed, freshly re-stocked buffet.  The "Point Isabel" location for NOAA tide reports is the far side of that same cove.   The far southeast corner, where Codornices Creek enters the Bay, tucked in by the highway off-ramp, is the last part to flood and first to be exposed but it's hard to get good looks. 

Also, note that birding the feeding sites before high tide can be productive, too.  At Oakland Middle Harbor in particular, the shorebirds often get pushed towards you as the tide rolls in, before they finally give up on it.

Good luck, and let us all know what insights you gain on tide-birding!

- Fred


On Sun, Aug 9, 2020 at 10:56 AM Maureen Lahiff via groups.io <MLahiff=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:
Welcome to the wonders of migrating and wintering shorebirds on San Francisco Bay!
(Venturing south to Jetty  Road at Moss Landing is another not-to-be-missed location.)


One distinction is sites for feeding on newly exposed mudflats v. high tide roost sites.
For feeding sites, I go about an hour after the tide has started to go out.

Frank's Dump is a high tide roost, with protected islands as the tide is coming in (unless it it very high, when they are submerged).

Middle Harbor and Elsie Roemer are more impressive as feeding sites.
(Not very many birds roost there.)

Timing for rails at Arrowhead Marsh is the best with the really high tides around new moon and full moon in December and January.
Close by in MLK Regional Shoreline is the Garretson Point parking area, which has good shorebirding along the Slough.

I usually search online for NOAA Tide Predictions and the site name (Middle Harbor, Alameda for Elsie Roemer, east end of the San Mateo Bridge for Frank's Dump)
look at their lovely graphs of the tides.




-----Original Message-----
From: Don Simonson <don.r.simonson@...>
To: EBB-Sightings <EBB-Sightings@groups.io>
Sent: Sun, Aug 9, 2020 8:44 am
Subject: [EBB-Sightings] Request for information - best tides for East Bay shorebird spots?

I have been birding 55 years, I just retired here from Maryland,  and am very grateful for all the shorebird reports.  I have a scope and made initial visits to the renowned East Bay shorebird sites (below) but lack an understanding of the relation of high tide to your wonderful shorebird viewing spots and roosts. 

I will be grateful if anyone can reply offline to suggest the optimum time, relative to High Tide, to visit:
Franks Dump in Hayward
Middle Harbor in Oakland
Arrowhead Marsh in Oakland 
Elsie Roemer in Alameda
Albany Bulb Mudflats in Albany. 

Thanks in advance and good birding!
Don Simonson, Berkeley
240-277-2579



Re: Request for information - best tides for East Bay shorebird spots?

Maureen Lahiff
 

Welcome to the wonders of migrating and wintering shorebirds on San Francisco Bay!
(Venturing south to Jetty  Road at Moss Landing is another not-to-be-missed location.)


One distinction is sites for feeding on newly exposed mudflats v. high tide roost sites.
For feeding sites, I go about an hour after the tide has started to go out.

Frank's Dump is a high tide roost, with protected islands as the tide is coming in (unless it it very high, when they are submerged).

Middle Harbor and Elsie Roemer are more impressive as feeding sites.
(Not very many birds roost there.)

Timing for rails at Arrowhead Marsh is the best with the really high tides around new moon and full moon in December and January.
Close by in MLK Regional Shoreline is the Garretson Point parking area, which has good shorebirding along the Slough.

I usually search online for NOAA Tide Predictions and the site name (Middle Harbor, Alameda for Elsie Roemer, east end of the San Mateo Bridge for Frank's Dump)
look at their lovely graphs of the tides.




-----Original Message-----
From: Don Simonson <don.r.simonson@...>
To: EBB-Sightings <EBB-Sightings@groups.io>
Sent: Sun, Aug 9, 2020 8:44 am
Subject: [EBB-Sightings] Request for information - best tides for East Bay shorebird spots?

I have been birding 55 years, I just retired here from Maryland,  and am very grateful for all the shorebird reports.  I have a scope and made initial visits to the renowned East Bay shorebird sites (below) but lack an understanding of the relation of high tide to your wonderful shorebird viewing spots and roosts. 

I will be grateful if anyone can reply offline to suggest the optimum time, relative to High Tide, to visit:
Franks Dump in Hayward
Middle Harbor in Oakland
Arrowhead Marsh in Oakland 
Elsie Roemer in Alameda
Albany Bulb Mudflats in Albany. 

Thanks in advance and good birding!
Don Simonson, Berkeley
240-277-2579


Request for information - best tides for East Bay shorebird spots?

Don Simonson
 

I have been birding 55 years, I just retired here from Maryland,  and am very grateful for all the shorebird reports.  I have a scope and made initial visits to the renowned East Bay shorebird sites (below) but lack an understanding of the relation of high tide to your wonderful shorebird viewing spots and roosts. 

I will be grateful if anyone can reply offline to suggest the optimum time, relative to High Tide, to visit:
Franks Dump in Hayward
Middle Harbor in Oakland
Arrowhead Marsh in Oakland 
Elsie Roemer in Alameda
Albany Bulb Mudflats in Albany. 

Thanks in advance and good birding!
Don Simonson, Berkeley
240-277-2579


Re: Pacific Commons Linear Park (8/8/20) - Possible Chimney Swift

Michael Park
 

Here's a guide to judging the wingshape characters mentioned by Jerry.

https://www.sibleyguides.com/2010/10/identifying-chimney-and-vauxs-swifts-by-wing-shape/

Judge for yourself. Vocalizations are distinct between Vaux's and Chimneys swifts, but are not noted in the report.

The wing's look broad, the secondaries do not seem to bulge significantly, and the primary shape appear relatively linear. The photos are very nice for seeing these characters.\

David Sibley refutes his previously published notions of relative tail lengths in the linked web page. This illusionary difference may be the result of the narrower wing in Chimney Swift.

Michael Park
Berkeley


Pacific Commons Linear Park (8/8/20) - Possible Chimney Swift

Jerry Ting
 

This (8/8/2020) morning I saw a possible Chimney Swift at the large pond picnic area (37.493236, -121.983744) in Pacific Commons Linear Park in Fremont. It was flying with other swallows and I first noticed its darker underparts then the darker rump compared with Vaux's Swift. Less contrast between the dark auricular and the underparts. It also shows the more bulging inner primaries compared with VASW's more evenly tapered and straight-edged wings.
Some shots can be seen in my eBird checklist here: https://ebird.org/checklist/S72223887

Stay Safe and Happy Birding
Jerry Ting,
Fremont


Male Surf Scoter at Albany Bulb

blofbern1 <berniker@...>
 

Yesterday afternoon around 4 PM I saw a male Surf Scoter in very shallow, sheltered water just inland from the large driftwood sculptures. The time of year and the setting both seemed unusual.
Ken Berniker
El Cerrito


Topic closed

Aaron Maizlish
 

All,

No politics, no ad hominem attacks, if you have a problem with the direction a conversation is going please reach out to your moderator. I am not going to let this list go into any nasty direction, that should be a thing of the past.

I think Ethan is correct that speculation on a bird’s identity is probably best done in private communication in order to not crowd everyone else’s inboxes. What this has to do with a free society of “Trumbers” is frankly beyond me. Let’s keep this list about the joy of birds.

Meanwhile, I am at Elsie Roemer in Alameda right now admiring thousands of shorebirds.

Thank you,

Aaron Maizlish
Volunteer moderator.

On Aug 7, 2020, at 1:20 PM, Steve Taylor <s-taylor@pacbell.net> wrote:

Once again this group has shown they want to police everything. This does not happen in a free society. You must be Trumbers?


locked Why

Steve Taylor
 

Once again this group has shown they want to police everything. This does not happen in a free society. You must be Trumbers?


locked Re: Bright red crest -- any thoughts?

Ethan Monk
 

Hi everyone,

I hate to be the one to send this message, but maybe it would be best if we send our ideas to Mr. h3m@... privately instead of doing a group reply? I think this is a good discussion to have but I think it would be much more productive if h3m@... follows up to the group after someone’s private email to him contains the bird that he thinks was correct. That way we see 2 emails on this topic. The question and the conclusion. 

Thanks for considering,

Ethan Monk

Ethan

On Aug 7, 2020, at 11:53 AM, Kay Loughman <kayloughman@...> wrote:


Size seems a bit off, and we wouldn't expect it anyway; but the first thing that came to my mind was Pyrrhuloxia.

Kay Loughman
in the hills on the Berkeley/Oakland border  

Hilary Powers wrote on 8/7/2020 11:47 AM:

It's an odd time of year, but have you considered Ruby-crowned Kinglet? I've seen them with so much red it looked like they were wearing puffy red shower caps....

On 8/7/2020 5:20 AM, h3m@... wrote:
I'd enjoy hearing your comparable experiences and readings. Oh, and your ID?
Last Saturday, August 1, as I walked back to the car at Las Trampas. . . . well, I mulled forever, and finally added the following to my eBird entry:
After long thought, I’m adding this to the record.  At 10:15 a.m. there perched, at the very crown of an isolated live oak, a small, plain tan-grey bird.  In its plumage and stubby shape it made me think of an Oak Titmouse with its crest raised, except that the crest was bright scarlet.  Viewing conditions were excellent, with the sun at about 4 o’clock as I faced 12 o’clock toward the bird; clear sky, no wind.  GPS coordinates of the perch are:  37.815709, -122.047016.   The bird was in profile facing east, motionless, and appeared to be sipping or nibbling, its bill in contact with something.  I had it in my binocs for a few seconds, then fumbled for my camera.  I missed with a single shot as the bird flew northwest in a straight line at the same elevation with a rapid, steady wingbeat.  A tinge of the reddish color was still in evidence amid the pale greyish as it flew away.  It was not a hummingbird nor an Orange-crowned Warbler nor a Purple or House Finch.  Maybe an immature Cedar Waxwing picked up red pollen or juice on its head and  the crest was raised, perhaps involuntarily, as a drying or self-cleaning measure.  Location and pose were right – but the size, shape, and flight style were wrong for a Waxwing.  So, despite its unlikely locale and behavior, my guess comes back to an accidentally colorful Titmouse.

-- ~ Hilary Powers - Hilary@... - Oakland CA ~ ~ www.salamanderfeltworks.com; www.Etsy.com/shop/SalamanderFeltworks ~ ~ Needle Felted Sculpture - Real and Fantasy Creatures ~


    



locked Re: Bright red crest -- any thoughts?

Kay Loughman
 

Size seems a bit off, and we wouldn't expect it anyway; but the first thing that came to my mind was Pyrrhuloxia.

Kay Loughman
in the hills on the Berkeley/Oakland border  

Hilary Powers wrote on 8/7/2020 11:47 AM:

It's an odd time of year, but have you considered Ruby-crowned Kinglet? I've seen them with so much red it looked like they were wearing puffy red shower caps....

On 8/7/2020 5:20 AM, h3m@... wrote:
I'd enjoy hearing your comparable experiences and readings. Oh, and your ID?
Last Saturday, August 1, as I walked back to the car at Las Trampas. . . . well, I mulled forever, and finally added the following to my eBird entry:
After long thought, I’m adding this to the record.  At 10:15 a.m. there perched, at the very crown of an isolated live oak, a small, plain tan-grey bird.  In its plumage and stubby shape it made me think of an Oak Titmouse with its crest raised, except that the crest was bright scarlet.  Viewing conditions were excellent, with the sun at about 4 o’clock as I faced 12 o’clock toward the bird; clear sky, no wind.  GPS coordinates of the perch are:  37.815709, -122.047016.   The bird was in profile facing east, motionless, and appeared to be sipping or nibbling, its bill in contact with something.  I had it in my binocs for a few seconds, then fumbled for my camera.  I missed with a single shot as the bird flew northwest in a straight line at the same elevation with a rapid, steady wingbeat.  A tinge of the reddish color was still in evidence amid the pale greyish as it flew away.  It was not a hummingbird nor an Orange-crowned Warbler nor a Purple or House Finch.  Maybe an immature Cedar Waxwing picked up red pollen or juice on its head and  the crest was raised, perhaps involuntarily, as a drying or self-cleaning measure.  Location and pose were right – but the size, shape, and flight style were wrong for a Waxwing.  So, despite its unlikely locale and behavior, my guess comes back to an accidentally colorful Titmouse.

-- ~ Hilary Powers - Hilary@... - Oakland CA ~ ~ www.salamanderfeltworks.com; www.Etsy.com/shop/SalamanderFeltworks ~ ~ Needle Felted Sculpture - Real and Fantasy Creatures ~


    


locked Re: Bright red crest -- any thoughts?

Hilary Powers
 

It's an odd time of year, but have you considered Ruby-crowned Kinglet? I've seen them with so much red it looked like they were wearing puffy red shower caps....

On 8/7/2020 5:20 AM, h3m@... wrote:
I'd enjoy hearing your comparable experiences and readings. Oh, and your ID?
Last Saturday, August 1, as I walked back to the car at Las Trampas. . . . well, I mulled forever, and finally added the following to my eBird entry:
After long thought, I’m adding this to the record.  At 10:15 a.m. there perched, at the very crown of an isolated live oak, a small, plain tan-grey bird.  In its plumage and stubby shape it made me think of an Oak Titmouse with its crest raised, except that the crest was bright scarlet.  Viewing conditions were excellent, with the sun at about 4 o’clock as I faced 12 o’clock toward the bird; clear sky, no wind.  GPS coordinates of the perch are:  37.815709, -122.047016.   The bird was in profile facing east, motionless, and appeared to be sipping or nibbling, its bill in contact with something.  I had it in my binocs for a few seconds, then fumbled for my camera.  I missed with a single shot as the bird flew northwest in a straight line at the same elevation with a rapid, steady wingbeat.  A tinge of the reddish color was still in evidence amid the pale greyish as it flew away.  It was not a hummingbird nor an Orange-crowned Warbler nor a Purple or House Finch.  Maybe an immature Cedar Waxwing picked up red pollen or juice on its head and  the crest was raised, perhaps involuntarily, as a drying or self-cleaning measure.  Location and pose were right – but the size, shape, and flight style were wrong for a Waxwing.  So, despite its unlikely locale and behavior, my guess comes back to an accidentally colorful Titmouse.


    
-- ~ Hilary Powers - Hilary@... - Oakland CA ~ ~ www.salamanderfeltworks.com; www.Etsy.com/shop/SalamanderFeltworks ~ ~ Needle Felted Sculpture - Real and Fantasy Creatures ~


locked Re: Bright red crest -- any thoughts?

Michaela F.
 

Could it have been a Western Kingbird showing the red crown?

Michaela

On Aug 7, 2020, at 11:36 AM, Bo Forrest via groups.io <dforrest6=yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:

Possibly a ruby-crowned kinglet?


locked Re: Bright red crest -- any thoughts?

Bo Forrest <dforrest6@...>
 

Possibly a ruby-crowned kinglet?


locked Bright red crest -- any thoughts?

Mike Hall
 

I'd enjoy hearing your comparable experiences and readings. Oh, and your ID?
Last Saturday, August 1, as I walked back to the car at Las Trampas. . . . well, I mulled forever, and finally added the following to my eBird entry:
After long thought, I’m adding this to the record. At 10:15 a.m. there perched, at the very crown of an isolated live oak, a small, plain tan-grey bird. In its plumage and stubby shape it made me think of an Oak Titmouse with its crest raised, except that the crest was bright scarlet. Viewing conditions were excellent, with the sun at about 4 o’clock as I faced 12 o’clock toward the bird; clear sky, no wind. GPS coordinates of the perch are: 37.815709, -122.047016. The bird was in profile facing east, motionless, and appeared to be sipping or nibbling, its bill in contact with something. I had it in my binocs for a few seconds, then fumbled for my camera. I missed with a single shot as the bird flew northwest in a straight line at the same elevation with a rapid, steady wingbeat. A tinge of the reddish color was still in evidence amid the pale greyish as it flew away. It was not a hummingbird nor an Orange-crowned Warbler nor a Purple or House Finch. Maybe an immature Cedar Waxwing picked up red pollen or juice on its head and the crest was raised, perhaps involuntarily, as a drying or self-cleaning measure. Location and pose were right – but the size, shape, and flight style were wrong for a Waxwing. So, despite its unlikely locale and behavior, my guess comes back to an accidentally colorful Titmouse.


Heather Farm Thursday morning

rosita94598
 

Nothing really new, but both Ted Robertson and I separately saw a Pied-billed Grebe today.  If has been sticking around, it has certainly been very elusive.  Ted's eBird list is here:


That's it. 

Hugh B. Harvey
Walnut Creek


Heather Farm birds

rosita94598
 

Not a whole lot has changed in Heather Farm Park, which is why I have not reported.  We are seeing fairly regularly up to three Great Egrets, a Snowy Egret, Black-crowned Night-Herons and Green Herons, but for me today it was only one Night-Heron.

More than 100 Canada Geese were on the ball field closest to Ygnacio Valley Road today; they move around depending on the mowing of the grass.

Today only one Red-shouldered Hawk was behind the owl box, sometimes one is there and one in a tree up the slope.

There must not have been any river otter activity, because the 60+ Mallards were scattered all over the large, mostly natural pond.  Just over a week ago, the City had a crew using a machine to skim the scum from the pond.

The Anna's Hummingbirds like to hawk small gnat-like insects and I saw that activity again today.

Yesterday I heard a Downy Woodpecker, today I heard a Nuttall's.  Also heard Crows and Scrub-Jays. 

The eucalyptus trees between the boat ramp and chin-up bars had lots of Bushtits high, House Finches and at least one Chestnut-backed Chickadee.  I also found a Song Sparrow for the first time since July 22.  I am sure they are around, they are quiet, now, and much harder to find.  In the same area were some Lesser Goldfinches.  I counted about 25 House Finches on the ground near the chin-up bars this morning.

Swallow activity is way down, too, but I had a couple of Barn and a couple of Cliff Swallows today.

The CA Towhees had been very active for quite a while, then were quiet like the Song Sparrows.  The last couple of days I saw them again near the wooden railing.  Yesterday 4 of them nearly crashed my bike as I watched them chasing and fussing on the grass.  When they finally landed on the sidewalk, they were joined by a fifth.  Today, one of them turned out to be a young Cowbird begging and being attended by an adult Towhee. 

On the other side of the ridge from the park, Fred Safier has recently had Western Tanagers, so I have been watching and listening, especially around the eucalyptus trees.  Not yet for me.

Hugh B.Harvey
Walnut Creek

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