Date   

Mountain Bluebirds on Patterson Pass Road with Photo Links

GunderTaker
 

Yesterday, Sunday 2/20, I drove Patterson Pass Road from east to west. In the lower elevations there were lots of Western Meadowlarks and quite a number of Savannah Sparrows. As I approached the summit, near the 6.63 marker, I spotted four Mountain Bluebirds. They seemed to like the barbed-wire fences on either side of the road.

Link to photos on my FLICKR site:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bobgunderson/


Bob Gunderson
San Francisco


Recommendation for Birding Tour in Panama

Richard
 

Hello EBBers. Does anyone have a recommendation for booking a birding tour in Panama? Any advice much appreciated. Richard


Pt Richmond Ducks

Bob Hislop
 

I also made it over to Ferry Pt (and Miller/Knox) today in search of the Harlequin Duck but to no avail, alas. The large number of Gulls had dwindled considerably as previously reported, but I was more interested in ducks anyway where there is still a fair number out there. It didn't take me long to record the following species:

Buffleheads
Ruddy Duck
Scaup (Greater and Lesser)
American Wigeon
Gadwall (in the fresh water lagoon)
Common Goldeneye
Common Merganser (in the fresh water lagoon)
Surf Scoters
Mallards

Bob Hislop

----- Original Message -----
From: Todd Easterla
To: bird sightings East Bay ; Lori Arthur
Sent: Thursday, February 17, 2011 4:03 PM
Subject: Re: [EBB_Sightings] herring run moved?



It would sure be nice to know where and when these Herring runs are starting
to wind up. There used to be a "Herring Hotline" and a web site but I think
they are now bunk?

If any one knows any thing feel free to post please!

Thanks,

Todd Easterla
Rancho Cordova, Ca

----- Original Message -----
From: "Lori Arthur" <loriarthur61@...>
To: "bird sightings East Bay" <EBB_Sightings@...>
Sent: Thursday, February 17, 2011 3:45 PM
Subject: [EBB_Sightings] herring run moved?

Ferry Point today had very few gulls, in fact, far fewer than I would expect
on
a normal day at such a location: WESTERN, GLAUCOUS-WINGED, THAYER'S,
CALIFORNIA,
and MEW GULLS, all present in very small numbers (saw only one-each of
Thayer's
and California, although I didn't examine every fly-over carefully).

On the way back from Ferry Point, I think I figured out where they all went
to.
There were huge numbers of gulls in the inlet between the Bay Bridge and
Emeryville Marina, clearly visible from the freeway, comparable or only
slightly
less than the numbers present at Ferry Point earlier in the week. Does
anybody
know if there is public access to this area?

At Ferry Point, duck numbers are still pretty high, but it was too cold and
windy at the Point for me to spend much time going through ducks. A
fair-sized
feeding flock was in close to the pier at the tip of Ferry Point, so I
scanned
through them, finding only SCAUP (didn't try to identify), SURF SCOTERS, and
BUFFLEHEADS, as well as three COMMON LOONS, all three of which appeared to
be
juveniles. WILLET and BLACK OYSTERCATCHER were the only shorebirds that I
got a
good look at, although I did see a distant flying flock of smaller waders.

Noah Arthur, Oakland

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Backyard Bird count starts tomorrow

judisierra
 

Great Backyard Bird Count
Join Us, February 18–21


Top 5 Reasons to Do the GBBC



1. The
birds you see will be recorded for all time. Just count for at least 15
minutes on one or more days and enter your checklist at www.birdcount.org.



2. Your counts ensure that the birds in your town or favorite birding locales will be represented in this continentwide event.



3. Scientists and birders alike can see the tallies as they roll in for more than 600 bird species.



4.
Now in its 14th year, the GBBC provides data to track dynamic bird
populations through time, a feat that would be impossible without the
participation of tens of thousands of people like you.


5. Celebrate birds by watching them at your
favorite spot. See photos of birds submitted from around the continent
or send in your own for a chance to win birdy prizes.



Please help spread the word by asking your friends and family to participate! They’ll find easy instructions at www.birdcount.org.



For more news about the count, read this week’s article in The New York Times.





The Great Backyard Bird Count is a joint project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Audubon, with Canadian partner Bird Studies Canada. Special thanks to sponsor Wild Birds Unlimited. 





[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Re: herring run moved?

Todd Easterla
 

It would sure be nice to know where and when these Herring runs are starting to wind up. There used to be a "Herring Hotline" and a web site but I think they are now bunk?

If any one knows any thing feel free to post please!

Thanks,

Todd Easterla
Rancho Cordova, Ca

----- Original Message -----
From: "Lori Arthur" <loriarthur61@...>
To: "bird sightings East Bay" <EBB_Sightings@...>
Sent: Thursday, February 17, 2011 3:45 PM
Subject: [EBB_Sightings] herring run moved?


Ferry Point today had very few gulls, in fact, far fewer than I would expect on
a normal day at such a location: WESTERN, GLAUCOUS-WINGED, THAYER'S, CALIFORNIA,
and MEW GULLS, all present in very small numbers (saw only one-each of Thayer's
and California, although I didn't examine every fly-over carefully).


On the way back from Ferry Point, I think I figured out where they all went to.
There were huge numbers of gulls in the inlet between the Bay Bridge and
Emeryville Marina, clearly visible from the freeway, comparable or only slightly
less than the numbers present at Ferry Point earlier in the week. Does anybody
know if there is public access to this area?

At Ferry Point, duck numbers are still pretty high, but it was too cold and
windy at the Point for me to spend much time going through ducks. A fair-sized
feeding flock was in close to the pier at the tip of Ferry Point, so I scanned
through them, finding only SCAUP (didn't try to identify), SURF SCOTERS, and
BUFFLEHEADS, as well as three COMMON LOONS, all three of which appeared to be
juveniles. WILLET and BLACK OYSTERCATCHER were the only shorebirds that I got a
good look at, although I did see a distant flying flock of smaller waders.


Noah Arthur, Oakland





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herring run moved?

Lori Arthur <loriarthur61@...>
 

Ferry Point today had very few gulls, in fact, far fewer than I would expect on
a normal day at such a location: WESTERN, GLAUCOUS-WINGED, THAYER'S, CALIFORNIA,
and MEW GULLS, all present in very small numbers (saw only one-each of Thayer's
and California, although I didn't examine every fly-over carefully).


On the way back from Ferry Point, I think I figured out where they all went to.
There were huge numbers of gulls in the inlet between the Bay Bridge and
Emeryville Marina, clearly visible from the freeway, comparable or only slightly
less than the numbers present at Ferry Point earlier in the week. Does anybody
know if there is public access to this area?

At Ferry Point, duck numbers are still pretty high, but it was too cold and
windy at the Point for me to spend much time going through ducks. A fair-sized
feeding flock was in close to the pier at the tip of Ferry Point, so I scanned
through them, finding only SCAUP (didn't try to identify), SURF SCOTERS, and
BUFFLEHEADS, as well as three COMMON LOONS, all three of which appeared to be
juveniles. WILLET and BLACK OYSTERCATCHER were the only shorebirds that I got a
good look at, although I did see a distant flying flock of smaller waders.


Noah Arthur, Oakland


Patterson Pass Mt. Bluebirds

mojoedevine
 

Yesterday I drove Patterson Pass Rd. from east to west. At the first crest east of the pass from before mm 5.29 to mm 5.47 there were 4 Mt. Bluebirds. Down that hill near the gate to one of the wind farms (mm 6.07 ?) were 4 more Mt. Bluebirds, including the most rufous female Mt. I've ever seen. She was strongly rufous from the belly all the way up to the chin. As I came around the corner to mm 7.21 two birds flushed from the fence wiring ahead of me. I'm fairly sure these were also Mt. Bluebirds, but they flew off to the south before I could get a look.
In the tall grass fields to the south of the road just before the ACE train undercrossing were a couple hundred icterids, mostly RW Blackbirds, many W. Meadowlarks & a couple of Tri-colored males diving in & out of the grass feeding on insects being stirred up by the wind. There were probably a few more Tri-coloreds but it was hard to tell w/ so many diving into the tall grasses.

Joe Devine
Modesto, Ca


Tropical Kingbird continues at Coyote Hills (PIC)

hsrandhawa
 

Finally I saw the Tropical Kingbird after 3 failed attempts. The Bird was at the same place as earlier reported i.e end of Dust Trail. Later it flew inside South West from Dust Trail. I followed it via Willow Trail and was able to see it again and get some record shots.

Few pics at link below.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sarbhloh/

harjeet singh


FW: Tenth Day Since Point Richmond Herring Run!

judisierra
 

From fwd to Bethany Facendini EBRPD Naturalist

--- On Mon, 2/14/11, Bethany Facendini <bfacendini@...> wrote:


From: Bruce & Sandra Beyaert <beyaert>Date: February 13, 2011 4:45:20 PM PSTTo: Pt Richmond Waterside south <>Subject: Tenth Day Since Point Richmond Herring Run! Neighbors,

For the last ten days, Waterside South Neighborhood Watch residents have been watching the Bay and listening to the cacophony of gulls' cries and sea lion barks associated with this years’s amazing spawning run of Pacific herring. This email attempts to address questions many have asked and to consolidate observations shared by others. What is Going On? The first week of February has been the normal time for Pacific herring to spawn near the shoreline of Point Richmond between Ferry Point, Keller Beach and Long Wharf. Herring are oceanic fish which enter San Francisco Bay and hold several weeks in deep water channels awaiting ripening of male gonads and female eggs. When a school is ready to spawn, male herring initiate spawning by releasing milt in shallow waters where there is suitable substrate for the eggs such as eelgrass, algae and rocks. A pheromone in the milt triggers spawning by females which exude their adhesive eggs. Spawning is
announced to humans by gulls screaming their excitement to find roe washing ashore on fragments of eelgrass and algae. The harbor seal colony on Castro Rocks somehow gets the word and with barking sea lions swims in to feast on the fish, which run 8 to 16 inches long. Ducks fly in to dive underwater and forage to glean roe from the plants. These diving ducks such as scoters, scaup, ruddy ducks and buffleheads quickly turn to herring eggs from their normal diet of smaller fish, benthic plants and invertebrates such as worms, snails and clams. Gulls and dabbling ducks such as wigeons and mallards, which are unable to dive, hang out near the shoreline to feed on eggs remaining on kelp and eelgrass fragments washed in to shallow waters after being broken off by the diving ducks. The presence of marine mammals tells us that herring are underwater spawning whereas their absence suggests that herring have finished spawning and returned to deeper waters of
the Bay or the ocean. Diving ducks remain feasting on the eggs during their ten day incubation period, and the gulls hang around to feed on the leftovers. How Does This Year Compare with Past Experience? Before the commercial herring roe fishery was introduced in 1973, long time Point Richmond resident George Coles recalls that spawning herring were so abundant that they were easily scooped up by hand along the shoreline. When the word went out that the herring had arrived, folks would head down to the shore and harvest them for pickling with community barbeques held on the beach. However, there have been only modest runs in recent decades until last year when there was a moratorium on commercial fishing. This year, commercial fishing was halted on January 28 when the fleet caught their quota in less than a month. More Information: Click here for more information about herring biology and the roe fishery, Bruce &
Sandra--------------------------------------Bruce and Sandra Beyaertbeyaert@.../fax 235-2835


Re: Harlequin Duck

judisierra
 

It would be nice if folks clarified which pier. There is the old Ferry pier at the south end and what looks like an active oil loading pier past the north end.<br>judi Sierra- Oakland<br><br>--- On <b>Tue, 2/15/11, Derek Heins <i><derek.heins@...></i></b> wrote:<br><blockquote style="border-left: 2px solid rgb(16, 16, 255); margin-left: 5px; padding-left: 5px;"><br>From: Derek Heins <derek.heins@...><br>Subject: [EBB_Sightings] Harlequin Duck<br>To: "EBB (EBB_Sightings@...)" <EBB_Sightings@...><br>Date: Tuesday, February 15, 2011, 10:31 PM<br><br><div id="yiv29781548">





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<p>I was asked to forward this message: Jeffry Kosoff saw the harlequin duck at miller Knox Tuesday afternoon off the pier on the bay side.<br>
<br>
Derek Heins<br>
<br>
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Harlequin Duck

Derek Heins <derek.heins@...>
 

I was asked to forward this message: Jeffry Kosoff saw the harlequin duck at miller Knox Tuesday afternoon off the pier on the bay side.

Derek Heins


Re: Pt. Richmond show continues

Todd Easterla
 

What would be the estimate of gulls today please.

Thank You,

Todd Easterla

----- Original Message -----
From: "Kay Loughman" <kayloughman@...>
To: "EBB" <EBB_sightings@...>
Sent: Tuesday, February 15, 2011 12:31 PM
Subject: [EBB_Sightings] Pt. Richmond show continues


I spent a couple of hours this morning at Pt.Richmond and was duly
impressed that the huge number of gulls, scoters, etc. continues. In
the Lagoon at Miller Knox, there was a good selection of expected
species. I scanned Keller Beach, and the shoreline off Miller Knox and
Ferry Point - hoping in vain to find the Harlequin Ducks. If anyone
does see them this week, I hope they'll post the sighting to this list.

Kay Loughman
Berkeley


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Pt. Richmond show continues

Kay Loughman
 

I spent a couple of hours this morning at Pt.Richmond and was duly impressed that the huge number of gulls, scoters, etc. continues. In the Lagoon at Miller Knox, there was a good selection of expected species. I scanned Keller Beach, and the shoreline off Miller Knox and Ferry Point - hoping in vain to find the Harlequin Ducks. If anyone does see them this week, I hope they'll post the sighting to this list.

Kay Loughman
Berkeley


Point Richmond 2/14 (late)

Lori Arthur <loriarthur61@...>
 

Sorry about the late post.

Actually, one of the most interesting things was on a light post on the freeway
on the way to Pt Richmond. I was not driving, so I was able to get a fairly good
look at the POSSIBLE SLATY-BACKED GULL (adult) on the light post. It was
preening and I didn't see its head, but in the brief drive-by view I got, I
noticed two things: its mantle was black, and its legs were brilliant reddish
pink. I didn't see enough to call it a Slaty-backed, but I know that I've never
seen a gull like that before.


Point Richmond was swarming with gulls. The entire rip-rap shoreline was
carpeted with gulls, and a huge, oval swarm of many hundreds more was just
offshore. The gulls on the shoreline allowed a very close approach (about 2.5
yards), and most could be easily identified without binoculars. 

I didn't refind any of the conclusive Slaty-backed Gulls, but I did see one
POSSIBLE SLATY-BACKED GULL (adult), which looked like a Western with a pale eye
and a pale, tubular bill that did not have the "blob tip". Unfortunately, its
back was as pale as or paler than most of the Western Gulls I saw. However, the
shade of dark gray on the back seemed more bluish than a typical Western. This
gull was on the shoreline just south of Ferry Point. I didn't have time to try
to turn every Thayer's Gull into an Iceland, but I did see one POSSIBLE
'KUMLIEN'S' ICELAND GULL (adult). It looked like a Thayer's, but noticeably
small and large-headed, with a very thin but fairly long bill. It had extensive
white in the wingtips, and the dark streaks were slate gray rather than black.
The possible Kumlien's was at Ferry Point. Probably both of these were just the
common species, but maybe not?

Besides these, there were thousands of the more common gulls. Most abundant
were GLAUCOUS-WINGED, CALIFORNIA, MEW, and GLAUCOUS-WINGED/WESTERN HYBRIDS.
Slightly less common were RING-BILLED GULL, WESTERN GULL, and THAYER'S GULL, and
least common was AMERICAN HERRING GULL, with only one that I was 100% sure of
(first-cycle). One odd gull that was left unidentified looked like
G-winged/Western hybrid but had an extensive very pale inner primary panel,
obvious in flight.


Noah Arthur, Oakland


Beware of an all white gull at Ferry Point in Richmond

Denise Wight
 

Hi E.B. Birders,

I have posted two photos of an all white gull
that was seen yesterday afternoon at the Miller Knox/ Ferry Point area,
right next to the pier. 

http://www.flickr.com/photos/denisewight/

I
showed these images on my camera to Bob Richmond, and he said this was
NOT the gull he saw.  Which species it actually is I don't know for
sure, but it's always nice to know a bird like this is out there when
searching for whitish gulls!

All the Best Birding,
Denise Wight
Moraga, CA

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


swan over oakland

Mark Rauzon
 

This late afternoon I was walking in Piedmont and saw without binos, a large white bird winging its way SW. It looked like a swan with a direct flight about 1,500 ft up. No black wing tips nor and gliding eliminates snow goose or white pelican. I'm guessing tundra swan.



Things are looking up.


mark rauzon


Tropical Kingbird at CHRP this evening

scfloyd2000@...
 

Around 4:15 this evening, I parked at Quarry staging area and walked back along the entrance road, turning left (northwest) onto the Chochenyo Trail before the entry kiosk. Soon I ran into another birder on his way south on the trail, Marty, who said that he had just spent more than half an hour watching the Tropical Kingbird. He kindly walked me back to the spot so that I could see the kingbird flycatching from the willows along the pond at D.U.S.T. Marsh. From the Chochenyo Trail, the bird was beyond and northeast, as Zach reported this morning, from the shrub where Ken initially saw it two weeks ago. The view is pretty distant from the trail - take a scope if you have one, and look for the bird's bright yellow breast.

Stephanie Floyd
Fremont


Re: Richmond shoreline this afternoon

lowensvi@sbcglobal.net
 

Today at the Richmond shoreline in the mudflats not too far from the Meeker Slough area:

1 Black-bellied plover
1 oyster catcher
lots of whimbrels
Caspian terns
a bunch of coots and sandpipers and dowitchers
a few Am. Avocets


in the uplands: white-crowned sparrows, mourning doves

in the Richmond harbor: 1 Common Loon, gorgeous

Also this a.m. saw WildCare release the rehabbed peregrine falcon from downtown Oakland at Lakeshore Park

Lisa


Possible Iceland Gull in Richmond

rfs_berkeley
 

I just got a phone call from Emilie Strauss "I'm in Pt Richmond with Bob
Richmond and looks like he's found an Iceland Gull." She handed the phone to
Bob who said "I'm not 100% sure but I sure am suspicious "



The bird is at Ferry Park in Pt Richmond.



Rusty Scalf


Oakland Estuary, 12/12/11

Bruce Mast
 

Yesterday, I took a kayak trip in the estuary, paddling around Coast Guard
Island and west to the Port. The estuary is not a particular bird hotspot
but I was pleased to find a HOODED MERGANSER in a mixed flock of Goldeneyes,
Scaup, and Grebes in the shallows below the Central Concrete plant. I don't
believe there is any public access from land to this spot. A PEREGRINE
FALCON flew up to the east-most crane at the port. Not sure if this is the
bird that has been hanging out at City Hall or a Fruitvale Bridge bird.

Still a lot of work to do on my forward stroke...

Bruce Mast
Oakland

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