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Central Calif Part 21: Marin Co.

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  • MiriamEagl@aol.com
    Hi, all! Had a marvelous day out with childhood birding buddy Harriet Davidson today in her winter home in Novato! She wanted to take me out to Bolinas
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 3, 2006
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      Hi, all!

      Had a marvelous day out with childhood birding buddy Harriet Davidson today
      in her "winter home" in Novato! She wanted to take me out to Bolinas Lagoon,
      but first we stopped by a little trail (technically part of Point Reyes NS)
      called Five Brooks. It was socked in when we first got there, and not much
      was stirring; she mentioned that she often got Bufflehead in the little pond,
      and as if on cue, a pair materialized through the mist! Lots of stuff was
      calling but not much came out except for kinglets; Pygmy Nuthatches were way up
      high, a Winter Wren and Fox Sparrow made a fuss, and Chestnut-backed
      Chickadees chattered. Some Golden-crowned Kinglets were doing their little "see see
      see" thing but were uncooperative as usual. As the fog lifted and the sun
      actually came out, we picked up more things on the pond (including a female
      Common Goldeneye), but what really shocked me was a hoot from the forest that
      made me think "Barred Owl" (as it's not uncommon to hear them during the day
      in Florida), but then realized the cadence wasn't that of a Barred--it was a
      Spotted! I had never heard of them calling during the day before, but they're
      so similar to the Barred, I guess that's possible... We then had a
      four-raptor thermal: the TVs were up already, and a White-tailed Kite was doing what
      looked like a display of some kind, then as a Red-tailed Hawk joined the
      crowd a Red-shouldered Hawk started yelling, and sure enough, he went after the
      Redtail!

      After that we headed down to the lagoon and stopped every half mile to scan;
      nothing unusual, but did pick up a Lesser Yellowlegs for the trip. Even so
      it was fun sorting through the stuff: lots of Long-billed Curlews, a few
      Olympic Gulls to confuse us, a Western-type grebe that was in the sun so I really
      couldn't tell which it was, a couple of Horned Grebes, several more
      goldeneye (including a stunning male), Dunlins and Sanderlings, and some hauled-out
      Harbor Seals for good measure (that caused a lot of excitement among the
      tourists)!

      We bopped into Stinson Beach for some ice cream (where the siren went off
      just as we walked in; the lady assured us it was the regular noon test...) and
      sat on their deck enjoying a couple of Townsend's Warblers foraging in a
      blooming willow-like tree. We then headed back and went down a little side
      street that bordered the lagoon where there was a little trail that if you didn't
      know it was there you'd whiz right by it, part of the Point Reyes Open Space
      Preserve I think she said. We didn't go far because most of the trail was
      muck, but it was a nice little deciduous woodland where we picked up Downy
      Woodpecker for the day, and actually got a good look at several chickadees and a
      Sooty Fox Sparrow! A curious Hutton's Vireo gave us a looking-over, but the
      Winter Wren still wasn't cooperating...

      From there we headed up to Bear Valley and took a wonderful two-mile hike
      through the woods and next to a pasture with feral deer. It was rather quiet
      because of the time of day, but my body wanted exercise, so we got it! It was
      just gorgeous: perfect for Varied Thrushes (which we finally saw), and lots
      of towering flowering eucs that had plenty of Selasphorus hummers buzzing
      away (that we couldn't spot naturally; I'm assuming Allen's but I suppose Rufous
      could be coming through, too...). Part of the trail was called the
      Woodpecker Trail, and a Hairy made a brief appearance along with a Flicker bouncing
      across the trail (the Acorns were in some isolated redwoods in the meadow).
      On the way back we had a "boy and girl" Red-tailed Hawk in a tree posing
      nicely, with a mob of noisy blackbirds in the next tree over!

      My feet had had it after that, so we headed back to Novato and had a great
      dinner in town and reminiscing over old times! Bird List:

      Pied-billed Grebe Podilymbus podiceps
      Horned Grebe Podiceps auritus
      Western-type Grebe
      Double-crested Cormorant Phalacrocorax auritus
      Great Blue Heron Ardea herodias
      Great Egret Ardea alba
      Snowy Egret Egretta thula
      Canada Goose Branta canadensis
      American Wigeon Anas americana
      Green-winged Teal Anas carolinensis
      Mallard Anas platyrhynchos
      Northern Pintail Anas acuta
      Greater Scaup Aythya marila
      Surf Scoter Melanitta perspicillata
      Common Goldeneye Bucephala clangula
      Bufflehead Bucephala albeola
      Red-breasted Merganser Mergus serrator
      Ruddy Duck Oxyura jamaicensis
      Turkey Vulture Cathartes aura
      White-tailed Kite Elanus leucurus
      Red-shouldered Hawk Buteo lineatus
      Red-tailed Hawk Buteo jamaicensis
      American Kestrel Falco sparverius
      American Coot Fulica americana
      American Avocet Recurvirostra americana
      Black-bellied Plover Pluvialis squatarola
      Killdeer Charadrius vociferus
      Marbled Godwit Limosa fedoa
      Long-billed Curlew Numenius americanus
      LESSER YELLOWLEGS Tringa flavipes
      Willet Catoptrophorus semipalmatus
      Sanderling Calidris alba
      Dunlin Calidris alpina
      Ring-billed Gull Larus delawarensis
      California Gull Larus californicus
      Glaucous-winged Gull Larus glaucescens
      Western Gull Larus occidentalis
      American Herring Gull Larus smithsonianus
      SPOTTED OWL Strix occidentalis
      Anna's Hummingbird Calypte anna
      Allen's (presumably) Hummingbird Selasphorus sasin
      Belted Kingfisher Ceryle alcyon
      Acorn Woodpecker Melanerpes formicivorus
      Nuttall's Woodpecker Picoides nuttallii
      Downy Woodpecker Picoides pubescens
      Hairy Woodpecker Picoides villosus
      Northern Flicker Colaptes auratus
      Black Phoebe Sayornis nigricans
      Tree Swallow Tachycineta bicolor
      Golden-crowned Kinglet Regulus satrapa
      Ruby-crowned Kinglet Regulus calendula
      Bewick's Wren Thryomanes bewickii
      Winter Wren Troglodytes troglodytes
      Western Bluebird Sialia mexicana
      American Robin Turdus migratorius
      Varied Thrush Ixoreus naevius
      Wrentit Chamaea fasciata
      Bushtit Psaltriparus minimus
      Chestnut-backed Chickadee Poecile rufescens
      Pygmy Nuthatch Sitta pygmaea
      Steller's Jay Cyanocitta stelleri
      Western Scrub-Jay Aphelocoma californica
      American Crow Corvus brachyrhynchos
      Common Raven Corvus corax
      European Starling Sturnus vulgaris
      House Sparrow
      Hutton's Vireo Vireo huttoni
      Pine Siskin Carduelis pinus
      Townsend's Warbler Dendroica townsendi
      Spotted Towhee Pipilo maculatus
      California Towhee Pipilo crissalis
      Fox Sparrow Passerella iliaca
      Song Sparrow Melospiza melodia
      Lincoln's Sparrow Melospiza lincolnii
      Golden-crowned Sparrow Zonotrichia atricapilla
      Dark-eyed Junco Junco hyemalis
      Red-winged Blackbird Agelaius phoeniceus
      Brewer's Blackbird Euphagus cyanocephalus

      78 SPECIES
      For the trip (assuming I don't see anything new on the way to San Diego:
      193 SPECIES

      Mary Beth Stowe
      San Diego, CA
      MiriamEagl@...
      www.miriameaglemon.com
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