Date   

Re: Cassin's Kingbirds at Orestimba Creek

Adam Panto
 

A link to your ebird checklist would be very helpful.

Adam Panto, Placerville


Cassin's Kingbirds at Orestimba Creek

Sal
 

I met up with Xavier Sandoval earlier this morning for our first Cassin's Kingbird survey of this season.  We saw two Cassin's Kingbirds in an apparent territorial contest, as well as one adult Loggerhead Shrike feeding another adult in pair bonding. More details are in eBird.  We do not intend to go there as frequently as last spring, when we confirmed two nesting pairs in the sycamore groves.  If you plan to visit there between now and July, please observe any breeding behaviors and use the appropriate code, if you post to eBird.  We are hoping that other birders will observe there--not alone, of course--and help us find evidence of breeding.

Sal Salerno, Modesto 


today's Tall Forest survey results

Glennah Trochet
 

Dear Birders,

I was behind the Farm Center gate from about 06:30 to 14:15 today, covering my usual route for the monthly bird survey there.  That's not likely to be possible tomorrow, since the rising river level is likely to prevent getting to the Accidental Forest on Sunday.  The dregs of remaining water attracted lots of shorebirds, with one surprise.  This being the first day of spring, I'd hoped to find a whimbrel and/or Bullock's oriole, but I did not.  Like most outings, it was one of hits and misses, the latter including gadwall, western kingbird, cliff swallow, purple finch, pine siskin, western meadowlark, black-throated gray warbler and Townsend's warbler.  The hits were equally numerous, and included these:
snow goose-  4 blue morphs
blue-winged teal-  1
hooded merganser-  pair
sandhill crane-  7
western sandpiper-  1
bonaparte's gull-  2 flying with snow geese!
bald eagle-  both adults at the nest
great horned owl-  6, 5 seen in daylight
peregrine falcon-  1
Hammond's flycatcher-  1
Pacific wren-  1
golden-crowned kinglet-  2
varied thrush-  7
white-throated sparrow-  1
brown-headed cowbird-  3 (back in the Tall Forest for the first time this year)

I ended up with 103 species.  And a hybrid or backcross small woodpecker: it looked much more like a downy, so maybe a backcross.  The red nape patch was comparatively enormous for a downy, it had a vague "ladder" on the white back patch, and a few dark spots at the side of the breast.  But it called like a Nuttall's woodpecker.  I thought that these hybrids only occurred where one or both species were rare where their distributions overlap.

I managed to get through the autumn and winter without ever coming across a brown creeper.

Best,
John Trochet
Sacramento


more spring arrivals

kuschmanfred
 

Yesterday, March 19, the first pair of Barn Swallows returned to my house and seemed quite familiar with the place, very likely a returning couple from previous years. A Swainson’s Hawk circled above the creek today, and the number of Rufous Hummingbirds passing through my garden is increasing. So far I have noticed  seven individuals, three males and four females. One of the males had quite a bit of green on its upper back, but a pronounced notch on its R2 tail feathers clearly identified him as a Rufous and not Allen’s. The first Hooded Oriole could show up any day now, to be followed by Bullock’s Orioles and within the next 10 days by the first Black-chinned Hummingbirds, the bulk of whom arrive during the first week or 10 days of April. Then Black-headed Grosbeaks and Western Kingbirds, and finally Ash-throated Flycatchers. A pair of White-breasted Nuthatches is building a nest in the same nest box they have occupied for the last three years. But although I see Wood Ducks regularly on the creek none of my 5 nest boxes are yet occupied.


Manfred Kusch
South bank of Putah Creek
3 miles W of Davis





Re: orange-crowned Cassin’s Finch

Bob & Carol
 

Hello all,
Here in Redding there has recently been an orange-crowned Cassin’s Finch, and the report included pictures, joining with our many other Cassin’s Finches during the valley invasion here.

Sent From
Bob & Carol Yutzy
Redding, Ca

On Mar 19, 2021, at 1:08 PM, Asher Perla <asher.perla@...> wrote:


Where I live in the sierra foothills, I have seen yellow Purple Finches more often than House. I once saw at least 3 in a flock of 20 at a feeder.

Asher Perla

Oregon House


On Fri, Mar 19, 2021, 12:53 PM Steve Hampton <stevechampton@...> wrote:
I had a strawberry blonde Purple Finch several years ago. Pics here: https://ebird.org/checklist/S41628739

Apparently this happens but is quite rare-- much rarer than in House Finch. 



On Fri, Mar 19, 2021 at 11:41 AM L Markoff via groups.io <canyoneagle=mycci.net@groups.io> wrote:

Hello everyone, I thought some of you might find this bird of interest.

 

Purple Finches have been regular in my yard since the beginning of December and for the last few weeks, their numbers have grown to 15-20 daily.  The mix of birds changes and sometimes other interesting birds like Cassin’s Finch are traveling with them.  Yesterday I noticed a yellow bird with them.  Over the years I have seen yellow House Finches on occasion, so I thought it might be a House Finch.  But when I looked more closely, the bird looked more like a Purple Finch than a House Finch to me. 

 

Here are a few photos if you would like to see the bird.  If it is a House Finch rather than a Purple Finch, please let me know.

 

https://www.flickr.com/gp/canyoneagle/30y466

 

Thank you!

 

Lori Markoff

Citrus Heights

 



--
Steve Hampton
Davis, CA


Re: more Cosumnes birds of modest interest in the last week- error correction

Glennah Trochet
 

Dear Birders,

I just noticed that I misplaced the insertion of loggerhead shrike into the 15 March list.  It should be after Say’s phoebe rather than before.  The comment attending the phoebe entry applies to the two flycatchers listed.  Sorry for any confusion.

Best,
John Trochet
Sacramento


On Mar 19, 2021, at 12:06, Glennah Trochet via groups.io <trochetj@...> wrote:

Dear Birders,

I've been seeking birds at the Cosumnes River Preserve in southern Sacramento County most days this past week.  I found nothing really unusual.  The water is being drawn down or off the rice fields behind the Farm Center gate, so most of the water best suited for shorebirds, waterfowl and the few remaining sandhill cranes is viewable from the public trails and roadways.  At least a few representatives of all the native trees and shrubs- excepting only buttonwillow- have leafed out.

Tomorrow I will do the monthly bird survey in the Tall Forest.  Preserve staff are now in discussions about when and how to resume docent-led activities for the public.  I am looking forward to the time when I may once again show off the plum parcel of the preserve to interested folks.

12 March
I did a loop very like a monthly survey, turning up the following of modest interest:
bald eagle-  1 in nest
tundra swan-  4 (sort of a late surprise)
sandhill crane-  10 only
golden-crowned kinglet-  2 
varied thrush-  7 
purple finch-  2
black-throated gray warbler-  1

13 March
I returned to a couple of the Denier and Whaley parcels north of Twin Cities Road this morning.  I found none of the goodies from last weekend.  At Whaley I checked the heronry predawn and found that 14 of 17 nests had great blue herons in them.  There were six great egrets standing in the trees there, but none was at a nest.  Also at Whaley was a flock of about 600 white geese (I could not see any Ross's) that included eight blue snows and two cackling geese.  A very similar number of white geese flew over very high later in the morning.  I saw one Ross's with them but no blues.  There were two chipping sparrows near where the slate-colored junco was last weekend.  A common merganser female was below Oneto Crossing, where the two breeding records that I have at Cosumnes were recorded.  A lot of walking for not much.

15 March
I visited Valensin Ranch east of Highway 99, mostly in the vicinity of Horseshoe Lake.  The heronry seems to be behind schedule, with only great blue herons seen in nests.  But there are many black-crowned night-herons (roughly 120) showing interest in the willows on the opposite side of the north arm from the current heronry.  Grassland patches had really good numbers of American pipits and Savannah sparrows, a few horned larks (not often encountered any more) and in one spot, about 70 yellow-rumped warblers in the grass, which everywhere was clipped short by geese.  A common raven nest on a power pole near the heronry was no longer to be seen.  It was not on the ground below the nest site, so likely it was deconstructed and at least partly reassembled elsewhere.
Other notables:
two pairs of hooded mergansers among a good variety and good numbers of puddle ducks, some ring-necks and a few ruddies.
peregrine falcon-  1
western kingbird-  1 (FOS)
loggerhead shrike-  1
Say's phoebe-  1 (usually this and the preceding species just miss one another in their arrival and departure)
5 swallow species, including my FOS violet-green swallows (12) and a single FOS barn swallow.

Afterwards I visited the Tall Forest Northeast, a portion of the woodland not accessible from the usual trail routes through the forest.  Mostly I worked: 900 meters of trail cutting took 5 hours.  There were few birds that got my attention:
bald eagle- 1 adult on a fly-over
varied thrush-  1
purple finch-  1

17 MAR
This morning I visited behind the Farm Center gate again, starting at the end of the east side road and visiting the Tall Forest NOrtheast again.  It was 25 degrees F. with a bit of ground fog, but clear overhead.  But during the hour I walked my newly cut trail (what a treat!) in the Tall Forest Northeast, it clouded up.  I then visited the Accidental Forest, followed by a visit to the Tall Forest a la a monthly survey.  After a visit to the shack and a tour of the rice fields (water continues to be drawn down and off), I closed with a check of the ponds south of Alex's house.

In no particular order, here is what I found that interested me:
1)  A bald eagle was "singing" (i.e., doing its "gull imitation") over the pond just to the south of the end of the east side road.  Another was in the nest.
2)  varied thrush-  3, all singing males, one really belting out song.
3)  intergrade flicker-  one with orangey yellow flight feathers, a full red nuchal crescent and a fully red moustache; another flicker in flight had yellow wings and tail, yellower, I thought, than the intergrade I saw well.  So likely a second non-red-shafted flicker.
4)  an odd Audubon's warbler- this was a male molting into alternate plumage with a more-than-usually extensive yellow crown patch, a brilliant yellow throat AND a yellow supercilliary; nothing else to suggest that it wasn't an Audubon's warbler, including its call notes.
5)  Anna's hummingbird gathering spider silk
6)  bushtits putting the finishing touches on a nest
7)  a dead great horned owl stuck on a barbed wire fence adjacent to Johnson's pastures; unfortunately too picked over to be salvageable.
8)  a flock of 14 American avocets is the first encounter this season not of one or two birds.
9)  my FOS anise swallowtail was the only butterfly I saw.
10)  zero fox sparrows

18 MAR
Yesterday I visited Grizzly Slough and the Twin Cities Unit.  The latter sometimes has interesting grassland birds like burrowing owl and grasshopper sparrow (both have bred there in the past), and one of the four ponds is the only really reliable spot for nesting great-tailed grackles.  But I found none of these.  The only bird of note was a male Eurasian wigeon.

Best,
John Trochet
Sacramento


Re: yellow Purple Finch?

Asher Perla
 

Where I live in the sierra foothills, I have seen yellow Purple Finches more often than House. I once saw at least 3 in a flock of 20 at a feeder.

Asher Perla

Oregon House


On Fri, Mar 19, 2021, 12:53 PM Steve Hampton <stevechampton@...> wrote:
I had a strawberry blonde Purple Finch several years ago. Pics here: https://ebird.org/checklist/S41628739

Apparently this happens but is quite rare-- much rarer than in House Finch. 



On Fri, Mar 19, 2021 at 11:41 AM L Markoff via groups.io <canyoneagle=mycci.net@groups.io> wrote:

Hello everyone, I thought some of you might find this bird of interest.

 

Purple Finches have been regular in my yard since the beginning of December and for the last few weeks, their numbers have grown to 15-20 daily.  The mix of birds changes and sometimes other interesting birds like Cassin’s Finch are traveling with them.  Yesterday I noticed a yellow bird with them.  Over the years I have seen yellow House Finches on occasion, so I thought it might be a House Finch.  But when I looked more closely, the bird looked more like a Purple Finch than a House Finch to me. 

 

Here are a few photos if you would like to see the bird.  If it is a House Finch rather than a Purple Finch, please let me know.

 

https://www.flickr.com/gp/canyoneagle/30y466

 

Thank you!

 

Lori Markoff

Citrus Heights

 



--
Steve Hampton
Davis, CA


Re: yellow Purple Finch?

Steve Hampton
 

I had a strawberry blonde Purple Finch several years ago. Pics here: https://ebird.org/checklist/S41628739

Apparently this happens but is quite rare-- much rarer than in House Finch. 



On Fri, Mar 19, 2021 at 11:41 AM L Markoff via groups.io <canyoneagle=mycci.net@groups.io> wrote:

Hello everyone, I thought some of you might find this bird of interest.

 

Purple Finches have been regular in my yard since the beginning of December and for the last few weeks, their numbers have grown to 15-20 daily.  The mix of birds changes and sometimes other interesting birds like Cassin’s Finch are traveling with them.  Yesterday I noticed a yellow bird with them.  Over the years I have seen yellow House Finches on occasion, so I thought it might be a House Finch.  But when I looked more closely, the bird looked more like a Purple Finch than a House Finch to me. 

 

Here are a few photos if you would like to see the bird.  If it is a House Finch rather than a Purple Finch, please let me know.

 

https://www.flickr.com/gp/canyoneagle/30y466

 

Thank you!

 

Lori Markoff

Citrus Heights

 



--
Steve Hampton
Davis, CA


more Cosumnes birds of modest interest in the last week

Glennah Trochet
 

Dear Birders,

I've been seeking birds at the Cosumnes River Preserve in southern Sacramento County most days this past week.  I found nothing really unusual.  The water is being drawn down or off the rice fields behind the Farm Center gate, so most of the water best suited for shorebirds, waterfowl and the few remaining sandhill cranes is viewable from the public trails and roadways.  At least a few representatives of all the native trees and shrubs- excepting only buttonwillow- have leafed out.

Tomorrow I will do the monthly bird survey in the Tall Forest.  Preserve staff are now in discussions about when and how to resume docent-led activities for the public.  I am looking forward to the time when I may once again show off the plum parcel of the preserve to interested folks.

12 March
I did a loop very like a monthly survey, turning up the following of modest interest:
bald eagle-  1 in nest
tundra swan-  4 (sort of a late surprise)
sandhill crane-  10 only
golden-crowned kinglet-  2 
varied thrush-  7 
purple finch-  2
black-throated gray warbler-  1

13 March
I returned to a couple of the Denier and Whaley parcels north of Twin Cities Road this morning.  I found none of the goodies from last weekend.  At Whaley I checked the heronry predawn and found that 14 of 17 nests had great blue herons in them.  There were six great egrets standing in the trees there, but none was at a nest.  Also at Whaley was a flock of about 600 white geese (I could not see any Ross's) that included eight blue snows and two cackling geese.  A very similar number of white geese flew over very high later in the morning.  I saw one Ross's with them but no blues.  There were two chipping sparrows near where the slate-colored junco was last weekend.  A common merganser female was below Oneto Crossing, where the two breeding records that I have at Cosumnes were recorded.  A lot of walking for not much.

15 March
I visited Valensin Ranch east of Highway 99, mostly in the vicinity of Horseshoe Lake.  The heronry seems to be behind schedule, with only great blue herons seen in nests.  But there are many black-crowned night-herons (roughly 120) showing interest in the willows on the opposite side of the north arm from the current heronry.  Grassland patches had really good numbers of American pipits and Savannah sparrows, a few horned larks (not often encountered any more) and in one spot, about 70 yellow-rumped warblers in the grass, which everywhere was clipped short by geese.  A common raven nest on a power pole near the heronry was no longer to be seen.  It was not on the ground below the nest site, so likely it was deconstructed and at least partly reassembled elsewhere.
Other notables:
two pairs of hooded mergansers among a good variety and good numbers of puddle ducks, some ring-necks and a few ruddies.
peregrine falcon-  1
western kingbird-  1 (FOS)
loggerhead shrike-  1
Say's phoebe-  1 (usually this and the preceding species just miss one another in their arrival and departure)
5 swallow species, including my FOS violet-green swallows (12) and a single FOS barn swallow.

Afterwards I visited the Tall Forest Northeast, a portion of the woodland not accessible from the usual trail routes through the forest.  Mostly I worked: 900 meters of trail cutting took 5 hours.  There were few birds that got my attention:
bald eagle- 1 adult on a fly-over
varied thrush-  1
purple finch-  1

17 MAR
This morning I visited behind the Farm Center gate again, starting at the end of the east side road and visiting the Tall Forest NOrtheast again.  It was 25 degrees F. with a bit of ground fog, but clear overhead.  But during the hour I walked my newly cut trail (what a treat!) in the Tall Forest Northeast, it clouded up.  I then visited the Accidental Forest, followed by a visit to the Tall Forest a la a monthly survey.  After a visit to the shack and a tour of the rice fields (water continues to be drawn down and off), I closed with a check of the ponds south of Alex's house.

In no particular order, here is what I found that interested me:
1)  A bald eagle was "singing" (i.e., doing its "gull imitation") over the pond just to the south of the end of the east side road.  Another was in the nest.
2)  varied thrush-  3, all singing males, one really belting out song.
3)  intergrade flicker-  one with orangey yellow flight feathers, a full red nuchal crescent and a fully red moustache; another flicker in flight had yellow wings and tail, yellower, I thought, than the intergrade I saw well.  So likely a second non-red-shafted flicker.
4)  an odd Audubon's warbler- this was a male molting into alternate plumage with a more-than-usually extensive yellow crown patch, a brilliant yellow throat AND a yellow supercilliary; nothing else to suggest that it wasn't an Audubon's warbler, including its call notes.
5)  Anna's hummingbird gathering spider silk
6)  bushtits putting the finishing touches on a nest
7)  a dead great horned owl stuck on a barbed wire fence adjacent to Johnson's pastures; unfortunately too picked over to be salvageable.
8)  a flock of 14 American avocets is the first encounter this season not of one or two birds.
9)  my FOS anise swallowtail was the only butterfly I saw.
10)  zero fox sparrows

18 MAR
Yesterday I visited Grizzly Slough and the Twin Cities Unit.  The latter sometimes has interesting grassland birds like burrowing owl and grasshopper sparrow (both have bred there in the past), and one of the four ponds is the only really reliable spot for nesting great-tailed grackles.  But I found none of these.  The only bird of note was a male Eurasian wigeon.

Best,
John Trochet
Sacramento


yellow Purple Finch?

L Markoff
 

Hello everyone, I thought some of you might find this bird of interest.

 

Purple Finches have been regular in my yard since the beginning of December and for the last few weeks, their numbers have grown to 15-20 daily.  The mix of birds changes and sometimes other interesting birds like Cassin’s Finch are traveling with them.  Yesterday I noticed a yellow bird with them.  Over the years I have seen yellow House Finches on occasion, so I thought it might be a House Finch.  But when I looked more closely, the bird looked more like a Purple Finch than a House Finch to me. 

 

Here are a few photos if you would like to see the bird.  If it is a House Finch rather than a Purple Finch, please let me know.

 

https://www.flickr.com/gp/canyoneagle/30y466

 

Thank you!

 

Lori Markoff

Citrus Heights

 


Sage Thrasher- Robinson Road, Rio Vista 3/18/21

George Chrisman
 

Today on my way back to the Peninsula from Sacramento, to took a detour along Robinson Road in Rio Vista and discovered a SAGE THRASHER near the silver barn on the east end of Robinson Road near Flannery Road. It was perching on the fence posts and feeding on the roadway about 200 yards west of the 90 degree corner near the hay barn, pretty close to the eBird Hotspot location for Robinson Road. It was fairly active feeding on both sides of the road and I noticed it was subsequently refound by other birders late in the day. I also saw 4 BURROWING OWLS at various spots in this area. Photos and description can be found on my eBird checklist at https://ebird.org/checklist/S83640105.
Good birding!

George Chrisman
Burlingame, CA


wondering about Davis Broad-billed Hummingbird

Denise and David Hamilton
 

Hi all,
 
I am wondering if anyone knows if the Broad-billed Hummingbird is still around.  Yes, I’ve seen it, and I’m thinking that everyone who wanted to see it, saw it, so there aren’t anymore Ebird reports of it.  Is anyone in touch with the Cross family that hosted it to see if it is still around OR if it had left?  Is there a way to thank them?  They certainly were gracious to let all of us come into their yard for so many weeks!
 
Just curious!
Thanks,
Denise Hamilton
Napa


Red-naped x Red-breasted Sapsucker at Lagoon Valley/Pena Adobe, Solano County

Sami
 

This sapsucker cross was seen today in the Oak tree going up the hill and gully at far end of the park.
For photo see the checklist: https://ebird.org/checklist/S83516637
Sami LaRocca
Woodland, CA


Swainson's Hawk, Caswell Memorial State Park

Sal
 

This Swainson's Hawk, soaring over the slough at Caswell Memorial State Park, was a first-of-season for me. .

Sal Salerno, Modesto


Cosumnes the last three days

Glennah Trochet
 

Dear Birders,

This morning I did the monthly bird survey on the Lost Slough route.  I turned up 77 species, a tally a bit poorer than average for the date and conditions.  I turned up nothing really notable.

Yesterday I visited the Denier parcel and Shaw Forest.  The forest interior was notable only for the vigorous song produced by the house wrens there, the first time this year they've contributed to the chorus.  Forest edge birds were the most interesting, with one each of Swainson's hawk (FOS), red-breasted sapsucker, chipping sparrow (FOS) and white-throated sparrow.  I had another Swainson's hawk on the drive out.

On Friday, I cleaned up the trail on the last bit of the Tall Forest route that needed attention.  Along Wood Duck Slough I had two varied thrushes (one singing softly) and a purple finch.  And inside Warbler Woods I found a Hammond's flycatcher in the same place that one wintered last year, and where one persisted well into this past autumn.  I thought that I heard it in mid-December, but I hadn't been able to see it until this day.  I do suspect that it wintered there again.

Best,
John Trochet
Sacramento


Sacramento county Red-naped Sapsucker continues

Emmett Iverson
 

Hey all,

Just wanted to give a heads up that Max Brodie and I refound the male Red-naped Sapsucker that was first found in early February by Gavin Stacey at Rollingwood Bluffs. It was seen here along the trail, (38.6696299, -121.1915669, before flying out to 2407 Snowberry Way where it was seen munching on camphor berries. This bird hasn't been reported since Feb 13 so it may be tricky to find but is still in the area. Red-breasted Sapsuckers are thinning out so it may only be around a little while longer.

Good birding,

Emmett Iverson
Sacramento


recent bird observations at the Cosumnes River Preserve

Glennah Trochet
 

Dear Birders,

I've been out almost daily the last week or so.  Friday the 26th of February I visited behind the Farm Center gate, where it was 22 degrees F. predawn at the Accidental Forest.  Water had been drained from about half the flooded fields.  The only waterbird of note was an intergrade American green-winged teal x common teal, with both a vertical and a horizontal white bar on the side.  My purple finch spot, reliable for almost eight weeks, had none today.  Other birds of note included the following:
acorn woodpecker-  1
Say's phoebe-  1 (often gone at this date)
common raven-  2
varied thrush-  7 (widely but thinly scattered)
pine siskin-  1 (fly-over, my first in roughly four weeks)
Lincoln's sparrow-  1 (it's been a terrible year behind the gate for this one)
white-throated sparrow-  1 (with juvenal plumage aspect)
Townsend's warbler-  1

Saturday I did some of the same, but with a work agenda.  I remembered finally to bring the tools necessary to cut around, over or through six trees or major limbs that fell on trails during the storm that hit in late January.  I also pruned back the poison oak that threatens to consume another trail.  I noted incidentally the bald eagle in her nest and one varied thrush.

Sunday the 28th I visited the Denier and Whaley parcels north of Twin Cities Road.  The highlight was finding a heronry previously unknown to me.  Only great blue herons were there, but a review of Google Earth's previous images shows great egrets (well, white birds) in the heronry going back to about 2015, and none before.  A copse of large valley oaks had about 40 greater white-fronted geese well in its interior grazing on tall but fairly thinly grown grass, not a setting for geese that I'd noted before.  I walked a lot of grassland with closely cut grass and the ground already sporting large cracks.  There was a Say's phoebe out here, too.  Goose droppings were everywhere.  No wonder cattle owners near the preserve detest the large goose flocks of the last 15 years roughly.

On Monday the 1st I was back behind the Farm Center gate.  The highlight of the morning was the spring departure between 10AM and 11AM of about 2150 sandhill cranes.  Small flocks of 15- 60 would call sporadically on the move northward.  But when they found thermals and formed kettles they bugled wonderfully.  Frequently the small flocks aggregated into large flocks as the birds ascended in circles.  Eventually the cranes broke off to the NNE, to circle again in another distant thermal.  Some years I see the cranes set off after circling overhead toward some distant circling red-tailed hawk.  I didn't see such a guide on Monday.  At midday I briefly stopped at the Visitor Center, behind which an orange-crowned warbler was weakly singing.

There were other things of interest, too:
bald eagle-  2 (adults, one in the nest)
northern harrier courtship-  a pair northeast of the Tall Forest had the male doing a deep sine wave-type flight over a perched female.
acorn woodpecker-  4
yellow-billed magpie-  65+ (+ to indicate several heard but not seen flocklets (?) leaving their roost)
common raven-  7
varied thrush-  4 (one of these was repeatedly delivering the most musical rendition of song that I've heard locally- a treat)
six wood warbler taxa-  the first time this winter that I've tallied both black-throated gray and Townsend's warblers (one each) the same day.

Yesterday at midday I visited the heronry at Valensin Ranch, by far the largest on the preserve.  For the date it seemed that there wasn't much activity.  There were eight occupied great blue heron nests and two occupied black-crowned night-heron nests, plus a few great egrets and double-crested cormorants in the trees but not at nests.  It seems that many of last year's nest structures were blown from the trees since my previous visit last summer.

This morning I walked the public trails.  I found a few things of modest note:
osprey-  1 (fishing [as were a river otter and two cormorants] at the Point; only the otter was seen to be successful)
Cooper's hawk display flight where the trail first approaches the river-  slow, stiff-winged flapping with fanned undertail coverts
northern rough-winged (3) and cliff swallow (1) were my FOS; Jim Rowoth has already picked these up.
golden-crowned kinglet-  1 (at eye level in the small oaks at post #17)
purple finch-  1 (a brown bird was singing in willows at the more northerly metal bridge
Townsend's warbler-  1 in a mixed flock over the side path going to the river between posts #15 and #16.

Best,
John Trochet
Sacramento


spring arrival

kuschmanfred
 

Today, March 2, the first spring migration Rufous Hummingbird, an adult male, arrived in my garden and promptly took over one of my feeders from the resident Anna’s hummers that had shared it throughout the winter.


Manfred Kusch
South bank of Putah Creek
3 miles W of Davis





Mountain Plovers in Yolo County, not Colusa

rosita94598
 

It has been a long day of driving and somehow my mind became confused.  The Mountain Plovers were in Yolo County, south of County Line Road.  Sorry.  Rosita and I even joked about the line and which county was on which side.

Hugh B;. Harvey
Walnut Creek


Mountain Plovers in Colusa County today March 2

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My wife, Rosita, and I drove north today looking for a few specialties.  On Hwy 45 1-1/2 miles south of County Line Road, we had Mountain Plovers on both sides of the road.  They were especially visible to the west in a field with some remnants of green plant in the freshly turned soil.  Rosita thought this was the best she has ever seen these birds.

We also spent some time in the Maxwell Cemetery without finding the Vermilion Flycatcher.  The caretaker told me that he had not seen it since last Wednesday.

We had two Bald Eagles for the day, one adult over Lone Star Road and an almost adult bird perched on the auto tour route in Sacramento NWR.

Hugh B. Harvey
Walnut Creek

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