McLaren Park Big Day?

Daniel Scali

Howdy friends,

Today I thought I might try to hit as much of the park as possible to get a solo single day species total well above what I've done before (prob low/mid 40s). Doing so would force me to plan my attack and work on my weaknesses in the area of not getting stuck in one spot for hours trying to find ghosts. Spoiler Alert: I still got stuck!

50 species seemed easily doable, 60 seemed like a serious challenge, and 70 was getting every possible bird.

Highlights were: hearing a 7am Great-horned Owl in same spot (J Garcia) as seen on our August GGAS field trip, FOS Allen's Hummingbird, nice views of perched Red Crossbill, about 10 Golden-crowned Kinglets, 5 raptor spp. (both Reds, both Accips, and a resident AmKestrel), all the doves/pigeons, and a completely unexpected Spotted Towhee.

Big misses were: Bushtit, Red-masked Parakeet, Western Meadowlark. Also no Egrets/Herons, DCCorms, Mockingbird, or House Sparrow. And unfortunately, none of the Sapsuckers turned up.

Total score was 59 species if you count Muscovy Duck and allow a "well there are lots of gulls with pale wing tips flying overhead so surely one of them is a Glaucous-winged."

I better take another crack at 70 before all of these irruptive conifer eaters head off for summer vacation.

Stupendous Birding,
Dan Scali