Late this afternoon, my partner and I saw well over a thousand godwits and close to a thousand or more Black-bellied Plovers, mostly in breeding plumage, in tight, dense flocks on islands and sand bars in the main pond at Frank’s Dump on the Hayward Regional Shoreline. Several hundred Red Knots, Western Sandpipers and scores of other shorebirds and waterbirds (including several dozen Black-necked Stilts and a few Avocets) were mixed in. At one point, something scared up the whole lot of them and as they swirled overhead, it was spectacular! Couldn’t see what scared them besides a low-landing plane (we watched a Peregrine scare up winter flocks in that exact spot a few months ago).
I likely wouldn’t have found any rarities if they were there, so I can’t say. One Red-necked Phalarope was my special find of the day.
Not sure how today’s stiff WNW winds affected the flocks or their migration, I’d be curious to hear how much longer these flocks linger there.
The parking lots at the end of Winton Ave. are open, the main lot closes at 5pm, but the smaller lot outside the gate doesn’t close.
eBird list here:
Happy safe socially distant birding!
- Fred Werner