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Thrush movement in southern Marin County

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  • jim@falconseye.com
    Calbirders and local listerve members, Sorry for the cross posts. No, this is not an alert that rare birds are showing up, just a note of a spectacular
    Message 1 of 1 , Nov 5, 2001
      Calbirders and local listerve members,

      Sorry for the cross posts.

      No, this is not an alert that rare birds are showing up, just a note of a
      spectacular migration that I witnessed at the Hawk Watch in the Marin
      Headlands just north of the Golden Gate bridge in southern Marin County on
      November 3rd and 4th. I bird here quite often in the fall to get an idea
      of passerine migration but have never witnessed the immensity of this
      thrush migration (from sunrise around 6:30 'til about 8 am when it dropped
      off significantly). Here are some numbers of a few species:

      November 3rd November 4th
      ------------ ------------
      American Robin 4214* 2610
      Varied Thrush 136 3190!!!!!!!!!!**
      Cedar Waxwing 727 998
      Band-tailed Pigeon 911 964
      Pine Siskin 94 95
      Purple Finch 38 70
      CASSIN'S FINCH 2 0
      House Finch 60 85
      Lesser Goldfinch 40 54
      American Goldfinch 40 12
      Water Pipit 49 23
      Yellow-rumped Warbler 65 116
      Starling 175 yes
      Double-crested Cormorant 75 30
      "Yellow"-shafted Flicker 1 (may have been a hybrid - didn't see malar)
      PALM WARBLER 1 0

      * included one flock of 1200 which took five minutes to pass - may be an
      extreme underestimate
      ** my previous high was 363 on a day in mid-October (can't find exact date),
      1996 and 281 on October 16, 1995.

      Weather on Saturday morning was calm with low ground fog but clear at eye
      level. A full moon the previous night. Sunday was basically the same but
      with a 10 mph north wind in the morning and reduced ground fog.

      I have no idea whether the number of thrushes was great compared to any
      other year since I'm only able to get there on weekends (as we all know,
      most birds migrate between Monday and Friday).

      Question for birders in San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Santa
      Cruz Counties - did anyone note a sudden influx in American Robins and
      Varied Thrushes over the weekend?

      If anyone goes to this sight at first light for the passerines, please drop
      me a line and let me know what you see as I want to get a more complete
      picture of migration at this sight.

      Thanks and good birding.......




      Jim Danzenbaker
      San Jose, CA
      408-264-7582 (408-ANI-SKUA)
      jim@...
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