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Felicita to Penasquitos (San Diego Co.)

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  • MiriamEagl@aol.com
    Hi, all! Today I wanted to start at Elfin Woods, but they didn t open till eight, so found a back way to Felicita Park to avoid the I-15 Parking Lot. The
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 7, 2003
      Hi, all!

      Today I wanted to start at Elfin Woods, but they didn't open till eight, so
      found a back way to Felicita Park to avoid the I-15 Parking Lot. The little
      pond next to the road is full again thanks to the rain, and had some
      beautiful Ring-necked Ducks in there as well as a big bunch of redwings (and
      a madly barking Weimarauner...) The park itself was closed, so headed on
      down to the Del Dios side of Lake Hodges, where the beautiful oak woodland
      through there had Hutton's Vireo, Acorn Woodpecker, and tons of Butterbutts.
      Ruby-crowned Kinglets were starting to sing, and Song Sparrows were all over.
      Ran into an Irish-sounding guy who informed me that the grebes were
      "a-runnin' over the water," so that was something to look forward to! I had
      to walk farther down than normal to get even with the water (which was rather
      fogged in, but it made for a beautiful ethereal effect), and sure enough,
      there were just TONS of grebes out there (both Western and Clark's), and even
      caught a few in their famous dance! What a sight! The additional waterfowl
      in there kinda paled next to them! Both Bonies and Forster's Terns fed over
      the water, and a group of Black-necked Stilts were sillhouetted against a
      little dock of some sort (with those legs there's no mistaking them!). On
      the way back picked up Oak Titmouse and Downy Woodpecker for the day as well,
      and a couple of Juncos in the park area.

      Unfortunately there's no other way to get to Rancho Bernardo Community Park
      except by the freeway, so I joined the rush-hour queue and eventually crawled
      down to the next exit, where the place I usually pull off to hike the little
      trail right next to the lake (or what used to be the lake) had such a big rut
      in it that I didn't dare try to pull over into it! So I just skipped it and
      went on ahead to the Senior Center where a cute little Rufous-crowned Sparrow
      greeted me right away! A California Gnatcatcher hissed from the bushes, and
      a couple of Rough-winged Swallows wheeled overhead. A Fox Sparrow smacked
      from the bushes and then started to tentatively sing! There was still no
      water visible from my resting rock, but there were plenty of Red-winged
      Blackbirds setting up shop in the willows, as well as a Marsh Wren and a Sora
      calling from the stuff! A lone Harrier hunted low over the vegetation, and
      again had Greg and Sneg hanging out, the first Sneg chasing away a second
      Sneg that happened to fly by. On the way back a White-tailed Kite whistled
      from a tree, which was nice to see.

      Headed over to the access trail from Duenda Drive, which was lively with
      resident riparian stuff like Song Sparrows, House Wrens, and both American
      and Lesser Goldfinches. A pair of Mourning Doves scared up a Hermit Thrush
      who stared at me with his beady eyes before diving back into the brush.
      Another mob of redwings hid in the rushes, and in the open area had a Say's
      Phoebe hunting from a post. While resting picked up a calling California
      Quail and a pair of Cassin's Kingbirds making a fuss, and on the way back I
      nearly tuned out something I had written off as another redwing, but the
      cadence made me pull up short: it was the "kick-kick-kick-kick-mcGREER!" call
      of a Virginia Rail in a little bunch of reeds! What a surprise in this dinky
      little area!

      Blue Sky was evidently closed (they were doing major construction in the
      parking area, anyway), so I headed on down to Penasquitos Canyon, where more
      House Wrens and Song Sparrows livened up the place, as well as a trilling
      Orange-crowned Warbler. Another pair of Cassin's Kingbirds put on a show,
      and a White-breasted Nuthatch making little noises was interesting for the
      area, I thought. On the way back had something calling that sounded just
      like the "chuck-chuck-chuck-chuck" scolding of the Cactus Wren, but that's
      the last place I'd expect them (there sure wasn't any cactus around, anyway)!
      Couldn't get the bird to come out, so it shall forever remain a mystery.

      Headed home after that with 62 species for the day. Bird list:

      Western Grebe Aechmophorus occidentalis
      Clark's Grebe Aechmophorus clarkii
      Double-crested Cormorant Phalacrocorax auritus
      Great Egret Ardea alba
      Snowy Egret Egretta thula
      American Wigeon Anas americana
      Mallard Anas platyrhynchos
      Northern Shoveler Anas clypeata
      Ring-necked Duck Aythya collaris
      Ruddy Duck Oxyura jamaicensis
      White-tailed Kite Elanus leucurus
      Northern Harrier Circus cyaneus
      Red-shouldered Hawk Buteo lineatus
      California Quail Callipepla californica
      Virginia Rail Rallus limicola
      Sora Porzana carolina
      American Coot Fulica americana
      Black-necked Stilt Himantopus mexicanus
      Killdeer Charadrius vociferus
      Bonaparte's Gull Larus philadelphia
      Forster's Tern Sterna forsteri
      Mourning Dove Zenaida macroura
      Anna's Hummingbird Calypte anna
      Acorn Woodpecker Melanerpes formicivorus
      Nuttall's Woodpecker Picoides nuttallii
      Downy Woodpecker Picoides pubescens
      Black Phoebe Sayornis nigricans
      Say's Phoebe Sayornis saya
      Cassin's Kingbird Tyrannus vociferans
      Tree Swallow Tachycineta bicolor
      Northern Rough-winged Swallow Stelgidopteryx serripennis
      Ruby-crowned Kinglet Regulus calendula
      Bewick's Wren Thryomanes bewickii
      House Wren Troglodytes aedon
      Marsh Wren Cistothorus palustris
      Northern Mockingbird Mimus polyglottos
      California Thrasher Toxostoma redivivum
      Hermit Thrush Catharus guttatus
      Wrentit Chamaea fasciata
      California Gnatcatcher Polioptila californica
      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
      Lesser Goldfinch Carduelis psaltria
      American Goldfinch Carduelis tristis
      Orange-crowned Warbler Vermivora celata
      Yellow-rumped Warbler Dendroica coronata
      Common Yellowthroat Geothlypis trichas
      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
      Dark-eyed Junco Junco hyemalis
      Red-winged Blackbird Agelaius phoeniceus

      62 SPECIES

      Mary Beth Stowe
      San Diego, CA

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