After the storm in Heather Farm


What a glorious morning following the rain and wind overnight.  I was taught by my birding girlfriends that the birds are always out after the storm, and they were today.

Over 100 Mew Gulls were on the north ball fields.  In with them were a California Cull, at least one Ring-billed Gull and an unexpected large Herring Gull.  The last really stood out, as it was so much larger than all the others.

It was a 5-sparrow day again, with White- and Golden-crowned, Song, Fox (2) and a Lincoln's Sparrow.  It was also a 3-rail day, with Coots, a Common Gallinule and a Sora.  I have heard the Sora make a few single-note calls, but today it really surprised me.  I was watching the sparrows come out on the sidewalk for the seeds I scatter, and the Sora joined them.  It did not come onto the pavement, but it was up out of the willows and reeds right at the edge of the walkway.  It seemed to be as interested in the seeds as the sparrows were.

The female Wood Duck continued in the pond near the private Seven Hills School, and the Common Goldeneye was in the large, mostly natural pond early.  I saw it later in the concrete pond near the rose garden.

The Yellow-rumped Warblers were very busy, as were House Finches, Cedar Waxwings and Robins.  A Western Bluebird surprised me as it was at the top of a tall conifer near the maintenance area of the park.  It took me a while to realize, oh, a Bluebird.  Often lately, there has been a Starling sitting up there.

The Canada Geese have been quite rambunctious lately, even attempting copulation.  The Mourning Doves are cooing as the days are already a little longer.  The world seems to be awakening after a long slumber.

Hugh B.Harvey
Walnut Creek