MDAS trip to North Briones Regional Park
It was cool and breezy this morning, but 8 birders still counted 52 species at North Briones. After coming out of the trees to the grassland, we found a female Mallard with 2 ducklings at the first of the Maricich Ponds. As we climbed the Crest Trail, we found Lark Sparrows, Horned Larks and American Pipits. Then, along the ridge we had a Golden Eagle being harassed by three crows and a Red-tailed Hawk. The hawk was about 1/3 the size of the eagle, but dove at it repeatedly. At the first of the Sindicich Lagoons, we had two male and one female Gadwall. The second, and larger pond had a pair of Buffleheads and a Double-crested Cormorant. Behind the pond was a distant Lazuli Bunting. Western Bluebirds seemed to be everywhere. A pair of White-tailed Kites were acting in a romantic way and a pair of Red-tailed Hawks were seen copulating. As we returned to the parking area we had Blue-Gray Gnatcatchers, an Ash-throated Flycatcher and a nice singing Orange-crowned Warbler.
Hugh B. Harvey
Double Crested Cormorants, Adult Breeding Pair, Marina Bay Harbor, Richmond, Ca.
Walking along the Bay Trail in Marina Bay Harbor, Richmond, Ca.
yesterday afternoon, I saw a pair of Double Crested Cormorants. They
were midway along Penninsula Drive.
Sunday at Marina Bay, Loon and Grebe
The following two species were seen in breeding plumage along Peninsula
Drive, Marina Bay Richmond, this past Sunday:
A lone Common Loon:
4 Horned Grebes:
Garretson Pt. - Sunday, 4/18
Amy McDonald <amymcd@...>
Garretson Pt. was a great spot on Sunday for close-up shorebirds and waterbirds in transition to alternate plumage. Highlights were as follows.
- HORNED GREBE 2
- EARED GREBE 12
- BLACK OYSTERCATCHER 2
- SPOTTED SANDPIPER 1 (with spots)
- WHIMBREL 1
- RED KNOT 7
- WESTERN SANDPIPERS 700 (looking very sharp)
- DUNLIN 450
- AMERICAN COOT 8 tiny chicks, north end of the pond
San Jose, CA
Derek Heins <derek.heins@...>
Satuday Jim Chiropolis and I birded Wildcat Canyon sans bikes.
Highlights were a Western Bluebird joining two Western Kingbirds on a
fence near San Pablo Ridge Trail, one MacGillivray's Warbler seen and
another heard, a single Chipping Sparrow heard along Havey Canyon, Lark
Sparrows, three Grasshopper Sparrows and Bullock's Orioles. We also
enjoyed the frequent presence of Bank-tailed Pigeons. We started the
walk at the end of Rifle Range Road.
Patterson Pass migrants
richard s. cimino
Jim Ross and I made our way to Patterson Pass today about 3 PM.
We missed birders Zach Baer and Eric Pilotte, they reported a Blue Grosbeak.
Their sighting supports the mid April Blue Grosbeak typical arrival date.
We did met Steve Huckabone and his wife around RM 6.04, so we had to stop birding long enough to chat.
That only lasted twenty seconds, because the large cottonwood trees in that area were so full of migrants.
RM 5.47 scan the hill side on the south side of the road. There are now two pairs of Burrowing Owls a few hundred feet apart.
RM 5.90 to RM 6.21
1 Willow Flycatcher in an area of the large cottonwoods, very low directly above the creek. This Flycatcher lacked an eye ring.
1 Ash-throated Flycatcher
1 Western Kingbird
2 Black-headed Grosbeaks
2 Bullocks Oriole
1 House Wren
5 Nashville Warblers
3 Wilson Warbler
6 Black-throated Gray Warblers - one female
5 Audubon Warblers - all males
1 Selasphorus Hummingbird - moving very fast
2 Hermit Thrush's
3 Ruby-crowned Kinglets
4 White-crowned Sparrows
5 Golden-crowned Sparrows
2 Chipping Sparrows
Lark Sparrows - several
Nesting Juncos in Walnut Creek
Our Chestnut-backed Chickadees have not yet learned that we are putting out meal worms in the morning. This morning I noticed a California Towhee in our patio early, so I quickly tossed a little seed and then some meal worms. The Towhees were collecting them like crazy last summer when feeding babies, but this one practically walked on them and didn't seem to pay attention.
while the Towhee was still present, an Oregon Junco came in and picked up 3-4 worms and flew off. It did this twice more before I left for church. It must have a nest somewhere nearby, possibly in the redwood trees which are along Treat Boulevard a couple of houses away.
We are still having some White-crowned Sparrows come, they like the meal worms, too. I did not see any Zonatrichia sparrows in Heather Farm Park Thursday or today.
Hugh B. Harvey
Patterson Pass and Mines Rd (Dusky Flycatcher and Blue Grosbeak)
Today I birded with Eric Pilotte along Patterson Pass Rd and then onto Mines Rd. I have listed the highlights below:
Patterson Pass MP 4.98
1 BLUE GROSBEAK (Male) seen initially right next to the road and then worked its way North along the fence row up over the hill with the wind turbines.
2 Ash-throated flycatchers
Gate near Mile 5.5
3 Burrowing Owls
MP 5.9 to MP 7.1
1 DUSKY FLYCATCHER actively flycatching low on either side of the larger group of trees right near MP 5.9
3 Nashville Warblers
2 Black-headed Grosbeaks
1 Yellow Warbler
6 Black-throated Gray Warblers
1 WESTERN RATTLESNAKE sunbathing on the road
2 Say's Phoebe
Round Valley Regional Preserve
Today I visited Round Valley Regional Preserve
<_http://www.ebparks.org/parks/round_valley_ (http://www.ebparks.org/parks/round_valley) >. Highlights
were NASHVILLE, ORANGE-CROWNED, "MYRTLE" YELLOW-RUMPED & WILSON'S
WARBLERS, GOLDEN EAGLE, ROCK WREN (4), BULLOCK'S ORIOLE (abundant), LARK SPARROW,
WESTERN KINGBIRD, ASH-THROATED FLYCATCHER (many).
Olive Sided Flycatcher, Tilden RP
Well, that's what I'm assuming it was.
I actually camped last night in what of the group camps near The Little Farm in Tilden. Regrettably, I forgot my binoculars, but I nonetheless took a lovely early morning stroll down to Jewel Lake and back. I had been walking about 5 minutes when I heard the unmistakable "Quick Three Beers" call, repeated maybe every 20-30 seconds. Wandering around, I was able to trace it to very high in the pines behind the Visitors' Center, but I saw no bird. I very much doubt binoculars would have helped. Nonetheless a very enjoyable sound, and since I haven't seen these guys reported yet by anybody else, I'm curious as to whether this would be a typical date for them to appear in the area.
Further on down the pain path to Jewel Lake, I had the odd site of a pair of Mallards walking side by side down the trail. I got quite close to them before they took any notice: they were looking from side to side and the male was squawking in a low tone of voice. I imagined him saying: "I thought it was your job to pack the binoculars." The lake itself was notable for a single remaining female Bufflehead among the Mallards and turtles. It appears the Mergansers, Common and Hooded, have moved on since last weekend. Black-headed Grosbeaks, OC and Wilson's Warblers dominated the soundscape in addition to Stellars' Jays and Bewick's Wrens. Anyway an absolute gorgeous morning and day, and quite a contrast to when I took the walk about 4 hours later and there were hordes of people about.
A Golden Eagle was soaring above Del Valle lake, being harassed by a Red-winged Blackbird dive bombing from above, at about 12:00 today, about two miles east from the Staging area on Arroyo. I had been told a pair was nesting across the lake.
Albany Hill, Sunday morning
Birding this morning at the base of Northeast side of Albany Hill near
Creekside park I saw a Cassin's Vireo. It was silently feeding in the
willows up from the creek. Also interesting was seeing a flock of
waxwings bathing in the creek. Complete species list below:
Pacific-slope Flycatcher (heard)
Mines Road & Del Puerto Canyon
FYI, of EBB Interest, at least the part covering Alameda County.toggle quoted messageShow quoted text
Mike Feighner, Livermore, CA (Alameda County)
[mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of Lisa
Sent: Sunday, April 18, 2010 12:38 PM
To: email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: [SBB] Mines Road & Del Puerto Canyon
Yesterday I led a trip down Mines Road and east to I-5 via Del Puerto Canyon
Road. This was the earliest I had done this trip. Wildflowers of every
color and running water everywhere was a nice bonus I had not
previously experienced here.
I had not done this trip in many years so re-acquainting myself with the
route involved a scout trip and yesterdays adventure.
Below is a re-cap of some of the hi-lites and information for those who will
head out this way in the next month.
Murrietta Wells - We did not go into the property, but birded along the
road. We then learned that the owners prefer the birders drive onto their
property to park and then bird the property. They prefer folks not parking
outside the gate next to their sign. We did find nesting YELLOW BILLED
MAGPIES. A pair for TURKEY VULTURES was also behaving a little odd. Not sure
if there was food or a nest near. Also had BULLOCK'S ORIOLES and EURASIAN
Roughly 2.75 up the road we stopped for a RED-TAIL HAWK nest on the right.
One was sitting on the nest with the mate stationed near. Had both crown
sparrows, a female AMERICAN KESTREL and an ASH THROATED FLYCATCHER. BARN
SWALLOWS & NORTHERN ROUGH WINGED were here. We also spotted the just the
head of a female TURKEY looking at us through the grass. Looked like a
skinny twig that blinked! If I were to guess I'd say she was sitting on a
nest, but we could not see anything below her neck because of the tall
Between MP 8 & 10 where the road gets windy we stopped and had great views
of an adult GOLDEN EAGLE. Could also heard a BLACK HEADED GROSBEAK calling
from the canyon below. No fun sparrows to be heard from the canyon below.
We found our first nesting GREAT HORNED OWL sitting in a hollowed out tree
trunk on the right side of the road between the 15 & 16 MP. You pass a row
of mailboxes and homes for sale signs on the left and the owl is in an area
on the right side of the road. Sorry I don't have an exact mile marker.
Moving on, we also got to talk to the man living in the old fire station.
He said they will soon be putting up a fence around the property.
Before heading east on Del Puerto Canyon Road we drove up San Antonio Valley
Road to check out the large pond up on the left. We had lunch at the gated
pull-out on the left just past the pond. While we ate we watched
LEWIS'S WOODPECKERS snatching bugs out of the air. We also found several
WOOD DUCKS at the back end of the pond. Also had three pairs of RING NECKED
DUCKS and one pair of AMERICA WIGEON.
Once back out onto Del Puerto Canyon Road we stopped at Frank Raines Park
and found more woodpeckers already viewed earlier in the day and added HOUSE
WREN to our list.
I am not sure exactly what the MP was but there is a large rocky outcropping
on the left. Here you will find two GREAT HORNED OWLS nesting. One is in a
shaded opening up and to the left, while the other sits on a more exposed
out cropping below and to the right. Not a great pull-out here, but the
motorcycles were accommodating. Also had SAYS'S PHOEBE, and ANNA'S
HUMMINGBIRDS. A BELTED KINGFISHER was following the creek to our right.
Continuing to MP 3.8 (Owl Rocks) we found a nesting pair of RED-TAILED HAWKS
on the cliff. A GREAT HORNED OWL was almost invisible tucked away within a
hole. The is also a bee hive within the cliff. There were four WESTERN
KINGBIRDS here along with our second SAY'S PHOEBE. A GOLDEN EAGLE also flew
into the area and appeared to be displaying (aerial acrobats). BULLOCK's
ORIOLES were here and LARK SPARROWS were found the previous week.
We had a wonderful day, saw many more species than mentioned here, but
admittedly missed some of the target birds of the area. My personal choice
as a trip leader is to use recorded devices very sparingly and in fact only
once used it to play the Canyon Wren with no success, so if we did not hear
it or see it we missed it.
Good luck to everyone that will be heading out this way in the next month.
I invite you to come on out & spend time in nature!
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
South Bay Birds list (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/south-bay-birds)
Yahoo! Groups Links
I saw and heard my FOS Ash-throated Flycatcher this morning at Upper San Leandro Reservoir accessed via the Valle Vista Staging Area of EBMUD.
Marina Bay, Richmond
The last couple of days there has been a Horned Grebe in stunning full breeding plumage. Seeing this bird made me realize that previously I had only seen this species in transition plumage. This individual has been hanging out near shore along Peninsula Dr. just before it ends at the parking lot for Vincent park. The Black Oystercatchers have been very active and visible along the rocky "shore" in the same area as the grebe.
Steve Huckabone <shuckabone@...>
Birded slowly along Patterson Pass Rd this morning from about 8:15A to 11:15AM. Found several FOS birds, Black-headed Grosbeak (4),Yellow Warbler (1), Pacific-slope Flycatcher(4) and Chipping Sparrow (2). Still present and as previously reported Black-throated Gray Warblers, Wilson's, Nashville, Orange-crowned, Yellow-rumped.
The most unusual bird was a single Golden-crowned Kinglet at mm 7.14.
Union City Cattle Egrets (No)
I tried for the Cattle Egrets yesterday afternoon posted by Bob Dunn on weds. and was unable to find them. Earlier that day I did have my first Cassin's Vireo singing on the UC Berkeley campus. Good luck to anyone who tries for the egrets.
richard s. cimino
I visited Patterson Pass yesterday 1:45 PM to 2:30 PM and had the same sightings as Bingham Gibbs reported.
1.) Two Black-headed Grosbeak's male and female in a cottonwood directly south of RM 6.04.
2.) Two Burrowing Owls on the south facing hill side at RM. 5.47
3.) Three Ruby-crowned Kinglet's all near RM 6.04
As Bingham stated, nearly no wind at all, full sun made the visit enjoyable.
Also the wildflowers are their beginning colorful display cycle in relation to our El Nino year.
I'd like to add that the first appearance's of the Blue Grosbeak on Patterson Pass typically occurs on or near April 16th.
Hoping some lucky birder will report a Blue Grosbeak this weekend.
Everyone have a great birding weekend!
Capitalization of bird names
Deborah Hecht <hechtlich@...>
I have no idea about birds, but in all other things zoological, only
scientific names are capitalized, and then, only the genus. Species is in
lower case. With common names, there is no need for capitalization except
if the common name contains somebody's name; in that case, the somebody's
name is capitalized, as in Townsend's warbler. Otherwise, I would think
it's just stylistic.
(My degree was in botany.)
At the shoreline today -
White-breasted Nuthatch - 1 at Winton Ave. is the fourth I have seen at the shoreline.
Spotted Towhee - 1 (heard only) is still at Winton Ave.
Grasshopper Sparrow - 1 along the fence of the park office on Winton Ave. It was also on and under the fence on the other side of the road. This is only the third I have seen at the shoreline. The last one was 5-4-1991.