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McArthur-Burney Pk - Shasta County

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  • Richard Cimino
    Dave Bowden of Berkeley and I arrived in Burney Falls State Park 6:30 PM Friday evening August 1. We immediately headed for the falls to look for Black Swifts,
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 4, 2008
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      Dave Bowden of Berkeley and I arrived in Burney Falls State Park 6:30 PM
      Friday evening August 1.
      We immediately headed for the falls to look for Black Swifts, none where
      found.
      The park was full so our camp site was assign across the Pit River on
      Clark Creek Rd. in the "horse camp" unimproved part of the park.
      This area was great and I'd highly recommend this area for birder's when
      visiting Burney.
      From our picnic table:
      Western Wood-Pewee Adults and Juvenile
      Hairy Woodpecker
      Mountain Chickadees
      Yellow-rumped warbler
      Brown Creeper
      White-breasted Nuthatch
      A short walk to an Osprey nest with two juveniles still hanging around.
      Then near 7:30 PM a Black Swift flew above the campsite following the river
      to the falls.
      The falls is maybe a quarter mile walk away on the Pacific Crest Trail.
      We followed the trail until the river was in clear sight.
      First we heard the Black Swifts it was 8:07PM. First one then two, in a
      matter of a few minutes we had 12 Black swifts over head.
      Then smaller swift's started to appear, flying lower, voicing a total
      different call.
      We had Vaux Swifts in volume , they started to fly lower and lower and form
      swarms like groups , so we followed the procession.
      As we followed them deep into the mix Oak and Pine forest to our
      amazement the more Vaux's Swift appeared.
      By shear luck, the luck of being out birding during dusk, we found a
      massive Black Oak being used for their roost tree.
      The Vaux's Swifts were in an odd ritual manner entering (diving) into the
      high center of the Oak in groups of 10-12 at a time.
      We counted up towards 60 Vaux's Swifts entering the oak.
      Saturday by 6:50 AM we had made our way to the base of Burney Falls.
      A few Black Swifts were out soaring with many Vaux's Swifts.
      A few Black Swifts made trips into the lichen and fern cliffs /caves
      behind the falls.
      Near 8 AM we had a single formation of circling Black Swifts not unlike how
      shore birds form in uniform flight, for a total of 24 Black Swifts in one
      group.

      Rich Cimino
      Pleasanton, Alameda County



      Richard Cimino
      Pleasanton, Alameda County, Cal.
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