Some ok photos of the Arctic Loon are posted on my Picasa sight here:
Kerry Ross's photo is the first photo in the set and is probably the best
Thanks to Wally Tordoff from Turlock, CA for initially finding and reporting
on this bird!
On Feb 13, 2008 7:17 PM, Rob Fowler <migratoriusfwlr@...> wrote:
> Hi all,
> This morning Kerry Ross and I followed up on a possible Arctic Loon at
> Stone Lagoon reported to the Northwestern California Bird Alert by "Wally"
> (couldn't make out the last name), an out-of-town birder from the Central
> Valley. We refound the bird he most likely reported on and we feel that the
> bird is indeed an ARCTIC LOON.
> The observation of this bird was overall pretty frustrating as it would
> only stay on the surface a couple of seconds at a time, being up for up to
> 10 seconds at the most, making photography difficult. But, with the
> observation we had of the bird we did get we did note that the bird was
> overall darker and possibly larger than a Pacific Loon (of which there were
> 1-2 on the Lagoon). The bird was blocky-headed, with the top of the head
> being somewhat flat looking. The bill was large. No chinstrap was apparent.
> The nape and back of the head were dark, with the nape, back of the neck,
> and top of the head being dark grey, to almost blackish depending on the
> angle of the bird. Most noticeable, however, was the distinct white patch
> that showed along sides at the rear of the bird. This feature almost always
> stood out, even from a distance, and looked almost oval-shaped in
> appearance. The bird was never at rest during the whole of the observation
> so the extent of white shown was almost always from the distinct rear white
> patch towards the rear end of the bird. A couple of photos were taken that
> show the features above and will be posted at a later time.
> Directions for out-of-towners: Take Highway 101 north to Stone Lagoon.
> Before Stone Lagoon you will see a trailer park campground and a small red
> school house to the east. There are often Roosevelt Elk in this area and are
> easy to see. Soon after you will see a brown sign for Humboldt lagoons State
> Park. Look for a pullout with a visitors center on the south side of the
> road and pullout and scope the lagoon from here. I would recommend morning
> to be the best time to try for the bird as the lighting is pretty good.
> From this vantage point the closest that we had the Arctic Loon was about
> 150 meters, farthest distance viewed being to where it was almost
> This is Humboldt Counties 1st Arctic Loon and was predicted to show up in
> Humboldt by five Humboldt birders that play the "Humboldt's Next 10 county
> records" game, as seen on John Sterling's website..
> Come check it out!
> Rob Fowler
> Arcata, CA
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