MCAS trip to Oceano (5/5) & El Chorro (5/6)


Jessica Griffiths
 

May 5 at Oceano Campground:
I led a walk for MCAS around the lagoon. No crazy migrants, but lots of fun/interesting breeding observations. Highlights included a PIED-BILLED GREBE with 5 chicks, MALLARD with 7 ducklings, SONG SPARROWS & CHESTNUT-BACKED CHICKADEES feeding begging fledglings, and a DOWNY WOODPECKER feeding noisy chicks in a cavity hanging over the trail. We saw HOUSE FINCH and EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVE (boo) building nests.

Other species: YELLOW WARBLER, BULLOCK'S ORIOLE, WILSON'S WARBLER, PACIFIC-SLOPE FLYCATCHER, COMMON YELLOWTHROAT. Lots of WESTERN TANAGERS.

May 6 at El Chorro Regional Park:
Lead a make-up walk for some students & saw 31 species. At least 4 LAZULI BUNTINGS, including a female. They were all hanging out on the section of trail past the gate. 2 males were chasing each other up & down the trail. We also saw a flock of at least 10 BULLOCK'S ORIOLES, mixed males & females. We watched a WHITE-TAILED KITE perch & devour a rodent it had caught. There is a pair of AMERICAN KESTRELS there, but I could not tell if they had a nest.

Breeding behaviors: NUTTALL'S WOODPECKER feeding nestlings in a cavity; BLACK PHOEBE, PACIFIC-SLOPE FLYCATCHER & LESSER GOLDFINCH all building nests; SPOTTED TOWHEE carrying food; SONG SPARROW feeding fledglings.

Other species: BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAK, WESTERN TANAGER, ASH-THROATED FLYCATCHER

-Jessica

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