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Cow Canyon to Daley Ranch (San Diego & Riverside Cos.)

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  • MiriamEagl@aol.com
    Hi, all! Today headed up highway 79 past Warner Springs to Cow Canyon, Oak Grove, Dripping Springs, and then down I-15 to Daley Ranch on the north side of
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 3, 2003
      Hi, all!

      Today headed up highway 79 past Warner Springs to Cow Canyon, Oak Grove,
      Dripping Springs, and then down I-15 to Daley Ranch on the north side of
      Escondido. It was pretty cold the whole time; the roads through Cow Canyon
      had lots of rock slides and ruts (one rock took me pretty close to the
      drop-off in order to negotiate it...) and the usual chaparral stuff (lots of
      California Thrashers singing) plus some gobbling Turkeys coming from the
      general direction of the Naval training area! About a mile past the little
      oak woodland was a blockade (I had noticed a "Road Closed" sign on Lost
      Valley Road, which normally takes you all the way into Cow Canyon, but I came
      in via the little mobile home park at Sunshine Summit this time--hence the
      Coot, Grackle, and Red-winged Blackbird on the list...) so I took a peek, and
      it looks as though they might be building a bridge crossing the "lake" that
      always turns me back at that point! That would be great!

      Headed up to Oak Grove Campground, where there's a trail starting from the
      fire station across the street. The last time I did this I only went out and
      back, but this time they had fenced off a confusing dirt road, directing you
      down another one, and by taking the NEXT right after that, it took you back
      to where the little foot trail turned off, making a great little loop trail!
      Bird-wise it was the usual oak woodland stuff, but a Gray-headed Junco popped
      up in a junco flock near the residential area, which was nice!

      Dripping Springs was the next stop, and seeing as the campground was closed,
      I literally had the place to myself! The biggest surprise was a couple of
      Cliff Swallows calling and swirling overhead (when are they supposed to come
      back to Capistrano, anyway??)! The camp host didn't have any food out, so no
      mob of sparrows and quail this time, but there was still plenty of riparian
      stuff singing away: Black Phoebes, Hutton's Vireo, Ruby-crowned Kinglet (yes,
      singing), and even a territorial Flicker that was fun to watch as he
      alternately drummed and "sang"! A California Quail DID call in the distance,
      but surpringly there were no sparrows along here (aside from juncos). Even a
      sit at Arroyo Seco (with plenty of water) was rather quiet, although very

      From there headed down to Daley Ranch, which was also pretty quiet, but a
      pair of Red-shouldered Hawks were screaming in the riparian area, and I
      managed to pish up an excited Fox Sparrow and a thooking Hermit Thrush. On
      the way back a Cooper's Hawk was lazily flapping in display flight, while its
      prospective mate flapped by at a more normal pace. Headed home after that
      with 38 species for the day. Bird list:

      Cooper's Hawk Accipiter cooperii
      Red-shouldered Hawk Buteo lineatus
      Red-tailed Hawk Buteo jamaicensis
      American Kestrel Falco sparverius
      Wild Turkey Meleagris gallopavo
      California Quail Callipepla californica
      American Coot Fulica americana
      Mourning Dove Zenaida macroura
      Anna's Hummingbird Calypte anna
      Nuttall's Woodpecker Picoides nuttallii
      Northern Flicker Colaptes auratus
      Black Phoebe Sayornis nigricans
      Cliff Swallow Petrochelidon pyrrhonota
      Ruby-crowned Kinglet Regulus calendula
      Bewick's Wren Thryomanes bewickii
      House Wren Troglodytes aedon
      California Thrasher Toxostoma redivivum
      Western Bluebird Sialia mexicana
      Hermit Thrush Catharus guttatus
      Wrentit Chamaea fasciata
      Bushtit Psaltriparus minimus
      Oak Titmouse Baeolophus inornatus
      White-breasted Nuthatch Sitta carolinensis
      Western Scrub-Jay Aphelocoma californica
      American Crow Corvus brachyrhynchos
      Common Raven Corvus corax
      European Starling Sturnus vulgaris
      Hutton's Vireo Vireo huttoni
      House Finch Carpodacus mexicanus
      Yellow-rumped Warbler Dendroica coronata
      Spotted Towhee Pipilo maculatus
      California Towhee Pipilo crissalis
      Fox Sparrow Passerella iliaca
      Dark-eyed Junco Junco hyemalis
      (incl. Gray-headed)
      Red-winged Blackbird Agelaius phoeniceus
      Western Meadowlark Sturnella neglecta
      Great-tailed Grackle Quiscalus mexicanus
      Brown-headed Cowbird Molothrus ater

      38 SPECIES

      Mary Beth Stowe
      San Diego, CA

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