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Loveland Reservoir to Iron Mountain (San Diego Co.)

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  • MiriamEagl@aol.com
    Hi, all! Spent a lovely morning out in the foothills today, starting at Loveland Reservoir, then over to Alpine Pond , Lake Jennings, San Vicente Reservoir,
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 6, 2002
      Hi, all!

      Spent a lovely morning out in the foothills today, starting at Loveland
      Reservoir, then over to "Alpine Pond", Lake Jennings, San Vicente Reservoir,
      and finally up to Iron Mountain in Poway.

      Started off pretty cold but sunny, and the birds were pretty active along the
      trail that goes to the lake (I decided to start birding this instead of the
      California Riding & Hiking Trail across the street, seeing as they had
      improved the trail and the habitat was much better anyway). Tons of Spotted
      Towhees were about, as well as Butterbutts, but also had Hermit Thrush, Fox
      Sparrow, a single Orange-crowned Warbler, and a pair of Red-tailed Hawks
      staked out side by side on a telephone pole, each one facing the opposite
      direction as if to say, "Okay, you watch THAT way and I'll watch THIS way!"

      Headed Up to the little pond in Palo Verde Estates in Alpine, where the water
      was back in there and lots of ducks were utilizing it! Interesting ones
      included Bufflehead, Canvasback, several Wood Ducks way in the back, and a
      huge flock of American Wigeon that came sailing in. Even more interesting
      was the Band-tailed Pigeon on top of someone's TV antenna! In the little oak
      woodland had plenty of Acorn Woodpeckers, a single Nuttall's, and some
      titmice and kinglets.

      Lake Jennings had lots of cormorants, but also a pair of Ospreys, one with a
      fish. Closer to the campground was a single Western Grebe, and a couple of
      Pied-billeds fed closer to shore. An American Pipit called from the grassy
      area on the other side of the dam, and the California Gnatcatcher and Cactus
      Wren came through along the little "Cactus Finger" trail. My first Blue-gray
      Gnatcatcher for this area called in here as well. A nice Great Blue Heron
      came sailing in over the dam on the way back and landed on the rocks.

      El Capitan Reservoir was closed, which was a disappointment, seeing as
      they're SUPPOSED to open on Fridays (even the little sign said so)! So I
      headed on up to San Vicente, where the nice man let me in for free since I
      wasn't fishing or boating. Even though a lot of people use the area, once
      you get on that fire road that's up and away from the water, you really do
      feel like you have the whole place to yourself! Several interesting birds
      were along here: a mob of Snowy Egrets chased little fish right at the dock,
      while further out was a flock of Gadwall and some Ring-billed Gulls. A
      single Fosrter's Tern came batting by, and in a more sheltered area a Great
      Egret came in and joined yet more Snowies. Close to the shore an Eared Grebe
      and Red-breasted Merganser fed together (the grebe was even vocalizing, which
      I don't hear them do too often), and got a knockout look at a Rufous-crowned
      Sparrow that came out to pishing. At the resting spot yet another Osprey
      pair circled around (this one had a fish, too), and enjoyed watching a water
      skiier repeatedly wipe out on the boat's wake... On the way back a young
      Black-crowned Night Heron had joined the Snowies at the dock. A Rock Wren
      whizzed in to a boulder and bobbed at me at the trailhead.

      Last stop was Iron Mountain, where it was getting a little warm, but not
      terribly so. The most unusual thing was a male Harrier soaring next to one
      of the hills! California Thrashers were literally all over; at the pond
      (which is dry as a bone) I had at least five going at once! I heard a shrike
      "koot-CHEE"ing and was trying to find him when I realized that what I was
      hearing was one of the thrashers incorporating that into his song...

      Headed home after that with 59 species for the morning. Bird List:

      Pied-billed Grebe Podilymbus podiceps
      Eared Grebe Podiceps nigricollis
      Western Grebe Aechmophorus occidentalis
      Double-crested Cormorant Phalacrocorax auritus
      Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias
      Great Egret Ardea alba
      Snowy Egret Egretta thula
      Black-crowned Night-Heron Nycticorax nycticorax
      Wood Duck Aix sponsa
      American Wigeon Anas americana
      Gadwall Anas strepera
      Mallard Anas platyrhynchos
      Canvasback Aythya valisineria
      Bufflehead Bucephala albeola
      Red-breasted Merganser Mergus serrator
      Ruddy Duck Oxyura jamaicensis
      Turkey Vulture Cathartes aura
      Osprey Pandion haliaetus
      Northern Harrier Circus cyaneus
      Red-tailed Hawk Buteo jamaicensis
      American Coot Fulica americana
      Killdeer Charadrius vociferus
      Ring-billed Gull Larus delawarensis
      Forster's Tern Sterna forsteri
      Rock Dove Columba livia
      Band-tailed Pigeon Columba fasciata
      Mourning Dove Zenaida macroura
      Red-crowned Parrot (in El Cajon on the way out) Amazona viridigenalis
      Anna's Hummingbird Calypte anna
      Acorn Woodpecker Melanerpes formicivorus
      Nuttall's Woodpecker Picoides nuttallii
      Black Phoebe Sayornis nigricans
      Say's Phoebe Sayornis saya
      American Pipit Anthus rubescens
      Ruby-crowned Kinglet Regulus calendula
      Cactus Wren Campylorhynchus brunneicapillus
      Rock Wren Salpinctes obsoletus
      Bewick's Wren Thryomanes bewickii
      Northern Mockingbird Mimus polyglottos
      California Thrasher Toxostoma redivivum
      Hermit Thrush Catharus guttatus
      Wrentit Chamaea fasciata
      Blue-gray Gnatcatcher Polioptila caerulea
      California Gnatcatcher Polioptila californica
      Bushtit Psaltriparus minimus
      Oak Titmouse Baeolophus inornatus
      Western Scrub-Jay Aphelocoma californica
      American Crow Corvus brachyrhynchos
      Common Raven Corvus corax
      European Starling Sturnus vulgaris
      House Finch Carpodacus mexicanus
      Orange-crowned Warbler Vermivora celata
      Yellow-rumped Warbler Dendroica coronata
      Spotted Towhee Pipilo maculatus
      California Towhee Pipilo crissalis
      Rufous-crowned Sparrow Aimophila ruficeps
      Fox Sparrow Passerella iliaca
      Song Sparrow Melospiza melodia
      White-crowned Sparrow Zonotrichia leucophrys

      59 SPECIES

      Mary Beth Stowe
      San Diego, CA
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