moderated Marsh Road/Ed Levin 12/31
I decided to end the year with a bit of birding and headed out beyond Milpitas to check out Marsh Road and Ed Levin park, since I hadn’t birded them for a while.
Marsh Road was quiet and not very birdy, except for a largish flock (25+) of Yellow-Billed Magpies and a family of Acorn woodpeckers (5ish) flying around in the oaks to the N of the road past the bridge towards the end of the road; looks like there’s a granary there. Highlight was in the area before that last downhill where I flushed a coyote that I realized was running really funny, then realized that’s because it was really a fox and not a coyote. First time I’ve seen a fox out there.
Ed Levin had a nice selection of birds. The one notable one was an Orange Crowned Warbler in among a loose mixed flock in the trees at the parking lot at the glider landing area. That flock was mostly yellow rumped and chickadees in the trees with juncos on the ground, and the warbler wandering around among them along with a nearby ruby-crowned kinglet. While watching these I heard the rattle call and in flew a beautiful Nuttall’s Woodpecker to forage the trees for a while.
Near Sandy Wool I ran into half a dozen western bluebirds; on the water were a few ducks and coots and cormorants, along with a single herring gull. On the shore were a couple of great blue herons and a great heron.
That closes out my birding year at 177 species (+6 over last year, +22 over 2017 and best since 2014), 137 for the county (+17 over last year), and life list at 298 (+5 for the year, county was 220 and +3). All in all, a fun birding year, thanks in large part to all of you for sharing what you see and know and making all of this an enjoyable way to spend time outdoors. Here’s hoping we all find that nemesis bird in 2020 and that it be a good and productive year for everyone.
(formerly chuqvr@.... Same me, less google)