Thursday, 22 November 2012 - On a gloriously sunny Thanksgiving Day, we
birded down the Mendocino coast from Elk to the Garcia River flats, more
or less repeating the route of the MCAS raptor field trip.
From Elk to Manchester there were relatively few birds out and about.
At the turnout south of Elk Creek, Catherine found an Osprey, the only
one of the day. From the same spot we saw two Peregrine Falcons, and
then we found two more at the Vista Point north of Irish Beach. We did
not find FEHA at any of the usual places north of Stoneboro.
The best action was along and near Stoneboro Road. There we had 4
Ferruginous Hawks, including one in a small tree right next to the road,
and two others spiraling up a thermal together; at least 7 Northern
Harriers; and three Red Crossbills, in addition to many other birds.
Alas, no RLHA this time.
Brush Creek lagoon now has some water at the west end. Many ducks, no
Garcia River fields are still populated with White-Tailed Kites; I
counted at least 7 in a brief look (the wind was getting brisk). I did
not see a single Egret anywhere in the fields.
In a day of great sightings, perhaps the best was a pair of Bobcats
nuzzling one another, only about 100 yards from the road, just past the
Garcia River bridge.
Sure was a day to make us thankful!