Santa Catalina Island, 1-2 Nov.
- Thanks to those who responded to my RFI about Santa Catalina Island. It was
interesting to wake up in the morning to the yacking of Acorn Woodpeckers,
cooing of Spotted Doves, and battling of the sedentary Allen's Hummingbirds.
The most interesting sight on the ferry from Dana Point was a water
funnel/spout before we even left the harbor. We then proceeded to head
straight into that system, so seabirding was pretty cold and wet for awhile.
I still manage to see 38 Black-vented Shearwaters, 3 Northern Fulmars (one
light morph), 2 Pink-footed Shearwaters, 32 Bonaparte's Gulls, 1 Red
Phalarope, 1 Cassin's Auklet, and 1 Ocean Sunfish.
The only eastern vagrants I managed to find in Avalon were a "Myrtle"
Yellow-rumped Warbler at Descanso Cove and an Eastern Phoebe on the golf
course along Avalon Canyon Drive. The American Crows continue (at least 8 at
the golf course and 1 at the harbor). Two Northern Fulmars were paddling
around very close to the rocks at Lover's Cove.
Endemic subspecies I saw were Catalina California Quail (C. c.
catalinensis), sedentary Allen's Hummingbird (S. s. sedentarius), Catalina
Hutton's Vireo (V. h. unitti), Catalina Bewick's Wren (T. b. catalinae), San
Clemente Spotted Towhee (P. m. clementae), and San Clemente House Finch (C.
m. clementis). Dusky Orange-crowned Warblers (V. c. sordida) were also seen,
but were not new to me as they occur on Pt. Loma, SD. The House Finches
appeared to have bigger bills and shorter tails, approaching Purple Finch is
shape. The Spotted Towhees definitely have a mew-like call unlike what I'm
used to in SD, although I did hear two individuals that gave the typical
The evening trip back (while it was still light enough to see) produced 9
Northern Fulmars, and nothing else.
I have posted photos of the Eastern Phoebe and a Northern Fulmar in the
photo section rarities folder of LACOBIRDS.
San Diego, CA