Carrizo Plain

Roger Lau <lauroger@...>

Greetings to all:

Was on the Carrizo Plains all day Saturday. Lots of the usual birds and raptors. One merlin, one prairie falcon, one ferruginous hawk, one northern harrier, one black-shouldered kite, one golden eagle (juv.) seen. Lots of red-tails. Ferruginous hawks seem to be heading out. LOTS of rough-legged hawks, however (4 seen; two adult, two juvenile). Also LOTS of long-billed curlews seen (30 total, in 4 groups of 7 or so), scattered throughout the grasslands. Soda Lake is about 3/4 filled or so. No cranes seen. Lots of avocets scattered generously over the lake surface (50-75). One burrowing owl seen on Soda Lake Road, south of Goodwin Center.

Lots of interesting mammals: one pronghorn by the center, a herd of 30-40 tule elk north of Hwy 58, between junctions with Soda Lake Rd. and 7-mile Road, AND one long-tailed weasel at the turnoff from Soda Lake Road to Goodwin Center. It popped out of the ground and scampered toward our car to inspect us. Cute as a button.

Happy birding,
Roger Lau