Date   

Contra Loma Mountain Bluebirds and Bald Eagle

Jeff Acuff
 

Previously reported mountain bluebirds (5) remained along Fredrickson, and previously reported bald eagle (adult) remained at the reservoir this morning.

Good Birding,
Jeff Acuff 
Lafayette


American Widgeon Walnut Creek

artbum@aol.com
 

First for me: Saw an American Wigeon yesterday along the Boundary Oaks Canal between Valley Vista and Arbolado. It's a male among a group of mallards and gets picked on by them.  It's been there the last 3 days  at around 3 - 5:30 pm.  There is a "Duck Crossing" sign on the home's fence.

Bobbie & Walter Schmidt


Herring run Miller-Knox

Michael Carnall
 

Noted the first signs of the herring run at Ferry Point this afternoon.  Moderate gathering of ducks, gulls and cormorants diving near shore and several pelicans working the outer fringes.  Usually picks up pretty quickly after these signs. 

Mike C.


Alameda Shoreline Ballena Bay Continues

Sandy Steinman
 

I was at Ballena Bay in Alameda today between 11 and 12.  I didn't observe a feeding frenzy but did see thousands of birds with Scaup being most numerous and also lots of Surf Scoters. Afterwards went to Elsie Roemer where the shorebirds were also likely in the thousands with Western Sandpipers and Black-bellied Plovers most numerous. See photos and birds lists at http://naturalhistorywanderings.com/2016/01/15/birding-alameda-11516/#more-42285


Sandy Steinman

Berkeley

 


Round Valley Red-naped Sapsucker.

Russ Bright
 

    Seen early this afternoon by myself and Bob Dunn: a bright male loosely associating with a Red-breasted Sapsucker mainly in the old orchard (almond?) trees surrounding the yellow park residence. First found just outside the first gate flycatching from a Creekside cottonwood near the beginning of the the Hardy Canyon trail in front of the yellow park house. By excellent chance bumped into Bob in the parking area, and we were soon able to refind the bird.
Russ Bright
Brentwood


Re: Alameda shoreline: herring roe festival

John Cant 793-5216
 

Thanks, Stephanie for the alert.

 

I spent from 1017 to 1121 this morning at this location (Ballena Blvd.).  My estimates of numbers are very rough as I was occupied with looking for rarities, but:

 

American wigeon 30

greater/lesser scaup 3500 (mostly greater but some definitely lesser)

bufflehead 150

common golden-eye 50

surf scoter 600 (no other scoter species)

 

glaucous-winged gull 500

mew gull 400

western gull 125  (including some teaser 3rd/4th cycle birds with smudged faces but dark eyes)

Thayer's 1 (a first-year bird, no adults at all, as far as I could see)

glaucous-winged x herring hybrid 1 adult (it showed up in a photo I took and I thought at first it was herring)

some kind of first-cycle bird with glaucous genes, either glaucous or more likely glaucous x herring hybrid (could not see the entire bird)

 

As to the gulls, I saw no California (hard to believe) and no ring-billed.  There were doubtless more hybrids, especially glaucous-winged x western and glaucous-winged x herring.  I don't understand where the herring and Thayer's are.

 

If one wishes to try for the gull show, it would probably be best to go early in the day when the tide is fairly low, as they are feeding close in, some on the intertidal rocks.

 

John Cant

Fremont

 

 


From: EBB_Sightings@... [mailto:EBB_Sightings@...] On Behalf Of scfloyd2000@... [EBB_Sightings]
Sent: Wednesday, January 13, 2016 11:41 AM
To: EBB_Sightings@...
Subject: [EBB_Sightings] Alameda shoreline: something's running

 

 

Along the Alameda shoreline from the entrance to Ballena Bay (bay side of Willie Stargell field) to the marina there are thousands of gulls, scoters and others right now, very close to the road.Quite a spectacle. Careful: deep puddles in the potholed road.

Stephanie Floyd
Fremont


Unidentified ssp. of Canada/Cackling goose in Concord, CCCounty

albertlinkowski
 

This light plumage individual I found yesterday January 13th, 2016 in Concord, Contra Costa Co. (Ellis Lake Park). I'm not sure if rather it is "parvipesssp. of Canada Goose (more likely), or perhaps Taverner's ssp. of Cackling Goose? or something more obvious?. A further problem is that of what ssp are these slightly larger dark geese that were conferred  belong to? moffitti (not to small?), dusky ( not to light breasted?) interior?

A very pale plumage goose was slightly but clearly  smallest in the flock, the bill however, seem to be intermediate between CAGO and CACG,  In cf with the reset of flock this goose is very pale with little contrast between the back and under parts, Thinner mid-size in length neck and rather confusing shape of head. A few additional notes, this goose does not have the gular stripe, and was often bullied by other geese,  which could mean that this goose is not related to rest of the flock. 

Any suggestion?, opinion?

Separately, in the same park was also a male Redhead, this is the first record of this species in this park

Also in the "not quite sure" topic odd looking swan (tundra suggested) from Contra Loma, Antioch and seemingly small RSHA from Holland Tract. Photographed January 8th 2016

Albert W. Linkowski




Re: Mountain Bluebirds - Frederickson Lane, Antioch - 1/12

C Lou
 

This morning, the MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRDs were in the trees along Frederickson Lane,
near Hansen Drive.

Calvin Lou
SF

----- Original Message -----
From: "Paul Schorr pkschorr@comcast.net [EBB_Sightings]" <EBB_Sightings-noreply@yahoogroups.com>
To: "EBB_Sightings" <EBB_Sightings@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Tuesday, January 12, 2016 3:10:18 PM
Subject: [EBB_Sightings] Mountain Bluebirds - Frederickson Lane, Antioch - 1/12

At 2:00 this afternoon, the Mountain Bluebirds continued along Frederickson Lane in Antioch. Best viewing was from a large pullout on the north side of Frederickson Lane, just west of Hansen Drive where there is a trail entry gate. Scan the tussocks of winter grasses and small trees north of Fredericton Lane for the birds.

Good birding,

Paul Schorr
Antioch


Alameda shoreline: something's running

scfloyd2000
 

Along the Alameda shoreline from the entrance to Ballena Bay (bay side of Willie Stargell field) to the marina there are thousands of gulls, scoters and others right now, very close to the road.Quite a spectacle. Careful: deep puddles in the potholed road.

Stephanie Floyd
Fremont


White-winged Dove Monday, 1/11

Ralph
 

Sorry for the late post, but I went to Holland Tract Monday and found one of the WHITE-WINGED DOVEs that had been previously reported. When I found the bird it was in a thicket of willows on the north side of the road, just across the road from the first dock of the Holland Riverside Marina.

Ralph Baker, Riverbank



Thousands of Shorebirds in Emeryville

Elizabeth Leite <e.leite@...>
 

I was out looking for waterbirds today at the mid-day high tide on the
walking path facing the Bay Bridge on Powell Street opposite the
Watergate Condominiums. Thousands of Marbled Godwits, Willets, Dunlins,
and Western Sandpipers were hunkered down along the rip-rap shoreline or
flying out into half circles over the water within twenty feet of where
I was walking on the trail. I scarcely needed my scope to focus on the
occasional Black Turnstone, Dowitcher, or Whimbrel mixed in with the
huge flocks. I counted at least 750 Marbled Godwits before I stopped
counting. I have never (not even in Alaska at Kachemak Bay in May) seen
so many shorebirds in one place.


Elizabeth Leite


Tropical Kingbird Walnut Creek

rosita94598
 

This afternoon between 3 and 3:30, Tuesday January 12, our niece from Chile, Andrea, and I saw the Tropical Kingbird in Heather Farm Park in Walnut Creek.  It was flying from tree to tree over the water to the left of the gravel boat ramp at the southwest corner of the large, mostly natural pond.  This is the same area in which it spent most of its time two years ago, the first winter it spent with us.

We also saw something more than 40 Ring-necked Ducks and the many Buffleheads.  It was a three-heron day, Green Heron, Great Egret and Snowy Egret.

Hugh B. Harvey
Walnut Creek



Mountain Bluebirds - Frederickson Lane, Antioch - 1/12

Paul Schorr
 

At 2:00 this afternoon, the Mountain Bluebirds continued along Frederickson Lane in Antioch. Best viewing was from a large pullout on the north side of Frederickson Lane, just west of Hansen Drive where there is a trail entry gate. Scan the tussocks of winter grasses and small trees north of Fredericton Lane for the birds.

Good birding,

Paul Schorr
Antioch


Lafayette Reservoir this morning

rosita94598
 

I arrived about 10 AM or so at the visitor center at Lafayette Reservoir.  Lots of sparrows around the marina area, but not the Swamp Sparrow.  The Redhead was at the base of the dam more toward the east end.  It was first seen from the visitor center with a spotting scope, then I looked at it with binoculars from the top of the dam as I was leaving.  Two White Pelicans were also at the base of the dam, along with 15-20 Gadwalls of mixed sexes.  I have often seen a Spotted Sandpiper along the water's edge, but not today.

Parking is available for $1.50 per hour outside the pay station, or $7 for all day inside the pay station.  There are 3 15-minute spaces right at the visitor center, which requires the $7 entry.  The dispensing machines take quarters or plastic.  No paper money is accepted.

Hugh B. Harvey
Walnut Creek



Mountain Bluebirds - near Contra Loma Regional Park - 1/11

Paul Schorr
 

Oops, "black birds" should have been “blackbirds,” and I know better!  My bad, I apologize!  My only mistake all year! 

Paul Schorr   

Begin forwarded message:

From: "Paul Schorr pkschorr@... [EBB_Sightings]" <EBB_Sightings-noreply@...>
Subject: [EBB_Sightings] Mountain Bluebirds - near Contra Loma Regional Park - 1/11
Date: January 11, 2016 at 12:12:33 PM PST
To: EBB_Sightings <EBB_Sightings@...>
Reply-To: Paul Schorr <pkschorr@...>

This morning at 10:15, we located a small flock of ~ six Mountain Bluebirds along the north side of Frederickson Lane very near the intersection of Hansen Dr., the same area that was reported yesterday by Dave Weber and others. The birds were still foraging in the same area at 11:45 when we left. Frederickson Lane is the road leading into Contra Loma R. P., Antioch.

Along the fence line inside the park were several Say’s Phoebes and a Lincoln Sparrow. We also marveled at murmurations of thousands of black birds, but in our search we could not conclude that there were any Tricolored. We did not see the Bald Eagle that was seen yesterday.

Good birding,

Paul and Nancy Schorr
Antioch 



tanager at UC Berkeley

Kathy Durkin
 

About noon today, I saw a female or juvenile western tanager near the southwest corner of Stephens Hall. It was along the south bank of Strawberry Creek, just east of the concrete bridge (the bridge is between Stephens and Moses Halls).

Google maps put it at:
37°52'14.9"N 122°15'27.4"W


Kathy Durkin


No Livermore Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

Cuyler Stapelmann
 

Good afternoon,

I saw an eBird report of a scissor-tailed flycatcher yesterday. So, today, I took an extended lunch break to do a dashboard survey south of Morgan Territory/north of Livermore. I drove in a loop around Mt. Diablo, starting in Walnut Creek: Ygnacio Valley Rd, Clayton Rd, Marsh Creek Rd, Morgan Territory Rd, to N. Livermore Ave. 

I was not able to relocate the flycatcher, although I did not have much time to do so. However, the drive was very birdy and yielded some nice, but expected, sightings:

LARK SPARROWS
WESTERN BLUEBIRDS
SAY'S PHOEBES
LOGGERHEAD SHRIKES (3; all perched on wires near Livermore)
AMERICAN KESTRELS

Cuyler
Oakland


Mountain Bluebirds - near Contra Loma Regional Park - 1/11

Paul Schorr
 

This morning at 10:15, we located a small flock of ~ six Mountain Bluebirds along the north side of Frederickson Lane very near the intersection of Hansen Dr., the same area that was reported yesterday by Dave Weber and others. The birds were still foraging in the same area at 11:45 when we left. Frederickson Lane is the road leading into Contra Loma R. P., Antioch.

Along the fence line inside the park were several Say’s Phoebes and a Lincoln Sparrow. We also marveled at murmurations of thousands of black birds, but in our search we could not conclude that there were any Tricolored. We did not see the Bald Eagle that was seen yesterday.

Good birding,

Paul and Nancy Schorr
Antioch


Re: ID Help/ dead birds

judisierra
 

Although that was my first thought, there is way too much white in the wings snd tail and the bill though not real clear appears too long. I'm sticking with escaped captive exotic.
--------------------------------------------

On Sun, 1/10/16, Bob Power rcpower@sbcglobal.net [EBB_Sightings] <EBB_Sightings-noreply@yahoogroups.com> wrote:

Subject: Re: [EBB_Sightings] Re: ID Help/ dead birds
To: "Renmead" <renmead@earthlink.net>, "EBB_Sightings@yahoogroups.com" <EBB_Sightings@yahoogroups.com>
Date: Sunday, January 10, 2016, 9:40 PM


 









These are,
if more than one, American Goldfinches.Bob
PowerOakland, CA



On Sunday, January
10, 2016 9:26 PM, "Renmead renmead@earthlink.net
[EBB_Sightings]"
<EBB_Sightings-noreply@yahoogroups.com> wrote:



 









Perhaps Pine Grosbeak? Uncommon here.



Terry Mead, Orinda
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Eastern Contra Costa county 1/9/2015

Logan Kahle
 

Hi All,

Sorry for the belated message.

Spent Saturday 1/9 birding around various spots in Eastern Contra Costa county.

I started by looking for the Mountain Bluebirds at Contra Loma but, as expected, I failed...I hate chasing Mountain Bluebirds. Anyway, birded around the area and saw a few interesting birds:
Glaucous-winged Gull-1
Merlin-1

Full eBird checklist is here: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26789695


I then continued on to Ibis rd Pond to see if there were any Barrow's Goldeneye present. There weren't. The only other birds of note around the pond were:
Common Merganser-8
Green Heron-1
Lincoln's Sparrow-1

Full eBird checklist is here: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26790316


Then headed off to Jersey Island, mostly looking for flooded fields for shorebirds and ducks. Did not find any fields but the following made the trip worth while:
Ferruginous Hawk-2
Loggerhead Shrike-1
Tricolored Blackbird-2500 was a good count for Contra Costa

Full eBird checklist is here: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26790926


I then led a Mount Diablo Audubon Society Young Birders Club field trip to the Holland Tract. Despite the windy conditions, there were several bird highlights, as well as a mammal highlight, an uncooperative CALIFORNIA SEA LION. This species is much more regular in the delta than one may expect, and it seem ed content in its channel,and spent most of its time under water. Bird highlights included:
BARROW'S GOLDENEYE-3 were a very good bird for this spot
Swainson's Hawk-1 was a nice winter treat
Ferruginous Hawk-1
Lesser Yellowlegs-7 in a flyby group; this species is not regular here
Glaucous-winged Gull-1
Peregrine Falcon-1 circling high overhead
Tricolored Blackbird-2000 was an encouraging count for Contra Costa--good to see this species still around in numbers
Yellow-headed Blackbird-300 was the most I have ever seen in Contra Costa in one trip

Full eBird checklist is here: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26797943


Continued on to Marsh Creek Reservoir which had the regular assortment of ducks.
Full eBird checklist is here: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26799448


I then met up with Albert Linkowski and we headed to the Walnut Trail to look for--once again--Mountain Bluebirds. As expected, I struck out, but noteworthy here was:
Common Merganser-29 flyovers
Golden Eagle-1
Lewis's Woodpecker-3
Loggerhead Shrike-3

Full eBird checklist is here: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26802476


On to the main area of Los Vaqueros, we looked at the reservoir by the end of the road. Highlights here included:
Osprey-2
Bald Eagle-2 together was just the second time I have seen this species in Contra Costa county
Glaucous-winged Gull-10
Northern Harrier-2
Rock Wren-2

Full eBird checklist is here: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26802501


We then decided to head to Round Valley for the off chance of there being a Mountain Bluebird there. As we were approaching the entrance, I said "you know, this always looked like better Mountain Bluebird habitat than Walnut Trail", and not 10 seconds after I yelled to stop the car. There, in its full glory, was a beautiful lone male MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRD right at the roadside. After looking at and photographing it for over 20 minutes, the bird picked up, gained a huge amount of elevation, and flew well over a mile to the south. I never saw it land or even descend, so it could well have been heading to Patterson Pass. This was a long overdue county bird for me, and it was amazing to find one along a roadside! There was also a Ferruginous Hawk in the area.

Full eBird checklist is here: http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26803396


Brief stops at Byron WTP ( http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26804156 ) and Clifton Court ( http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S26805675 ) yielded nothing of interest. The former remains relatively dry and devoid of shorebirds in the "shorbird ponds" north of the road.

All in all, it was another fun day in East Contra Costa with about 105 species observed.

Good birding,
Logan Kahle
Ithaca, NY/San Francisco, CA

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