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Re: [Mendobirds] Digest Number 902

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  • Karin Wandrei
    At Anderson Marsh in Lake County I saw (briefly but unmistakedly) a male hooded merganser. It was in Cache Creek on the nature trail behind the ranchhouse.
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 29, 2005
      At Anderson Marsh in Lake County I saw (briefly but unmistakedly) a male
      hooded merganser. It was in Cache Creek on the nature trail behind the
      ranchhouse.
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: <Mendobirds@yahoogroups.com>
      To: <Mendobirds@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Thursday, December 29, 2005 7:59 AM
      Subject: [Mendobirds] Digest Number 902


      >
      > There are 2 messages in this issue.
      >
      > Topics in this digest:
      >
      > 1. RE: Continuing Red Phalaropes
      > From: Richard Kuehn <windnsea@...>
      > 2. Tufted Duck
      > From: chaniot@...
      >
      >
      > ________________________________________________________________________
      > ________________________________________________________________________
      >
      > Message: 1
      > Date: Wed, 28 Dec 2005 10:25:09 -0800
      > From: Richard Kuehn <windnsea@...>
      > Subject: RE: Continuing Red Phalaropes
      >
      > This was in the San Jose Mercury News this morning-
      >
      >
      >
      > Rare birds mystify scientists
      >
      > HUNGRY, STORM-TOSSED RED PHALAROPES SIGHTED IN BAY AREA
      >
      > By Lisa M. Krieger
      >
      > Mercury News
      >
      > Pacific storms have blown thousands of rare sea birds into the Bay Area,
      > many of them weak, emaciated and seeking refuge in rain puddles of
      > suburban
      > yards and parking lots. The small birds, called red phalaropes, ordinarily
      > live many miles off the Pacific coast and are rarely seen on land. Since
      > the
      > afternoon of Christmas Day, they've been sighted in Los Gatos, Palo Alto,
      > San Francisco, even Campbell's percolation ponds at Budd Road and San
      > Tomas
      > Expressway. Most abundant on the coast, a flock of 1,200 was reported near
      > Half Moon Bay.
      >
      > ``This is really unusual,'' said Alvaro Jaramillo, a biologist with the
      > San
      > Francisco Bird Observatory in Alviso. ``There are more here than anybody
      > can
      > remember, and we don't know why.''
      >
      > Robbie Fischer of Pacifica saw one fly down her suburban street as she
      > stepped out onto her front porch to get laundry ``It was at eye level,
      > eight feet off the ground, more than a mile inland from the ocean,'' said
      > Fischer, who is a member of the Western Field Ornithologists. ``We're used
      > to seeing sparrows and chickadees, yard birds like that.''
      >
      > Normally they are wary of humans. And they only come on land in the
      > Arctic,
      > where they briefly breed and raise their young. Last week, many red
      > phalaropes in a weakened condition made landfall in coastal Oregon.
      >
      > On Christmas Day, news of the first sightings along the Sonoma County
      > coast
      > -- from Jenner to Point Arena -- was spread by bird enthusiasts who
      > regularly alert each other when they sight rare birds. Word quickly spread
      > about the red phalaropes by computer and cell phone.
      >
      > By Monday, they had arrived in the Bay Area. In Palo Alto, Ron Wolf saw
      > three paddling down a flood channel by the town recycling center near
      > Bixby
      > Park. Others have been sighted in Lexington Reservoir. They've been seen
      > in
      > ponds near San Jose's Almaden Expressway and by a restroom at Mountain
      > View's Shoreline Park. There were at least 18 near the concrete bridge at
      > San Francisco's urban Lake Merced; four were seen in the Presidio. Many
      > are
      > weary, allowing people to approach closely. Some have been killed by cats
      > and gulls. Along Highway 1, hundreds were reportedly struck by cars.
      >
      > One was rescued from traffic in a busy parking lot on San Pablo Avenue in
      > the East Bay town of Albany.
      >
      > Seven weak birds are resting in incubators at the Peninsula Humane Society
      > in San Mateo. The International Bird Rescue and Recovery Center in
      > Cordelia
      > got three, all of which quickly died.
      >
      > ``They were emaciated, with anemia and low protein levels,'' suggesting
      > long-term starvation, said Marie Travers of the Peninsula Humane Society.
      >
      > Their arrival is mystifying local biologists and animal lovers. Weather
      > may
      > be to blame. The birds float and eat by skimming sea life from the surface
      > of the water. Smaller than a robin, they are easily tossed and turned by
      > turbulent ocean waves and can't eat under those conditions.
      >
      > ``There are storms across the entire Pacific, from China to the west coast
      > of California. It's a steady stream of storms, with no break in between
      > them,'' said Steve Anderson, a forecaster with the National Weather
      > Service
      > in Monterey. Off the coast, waves are 15 to 25 feet high, with winds
      > racing
      > from 30 to 50 mph. Rain is heavy, said Anderson.
      >
      > It is also possible that the ocean has been less productive this year, so
      > food has been scarce, Jaramillo said.
      >
      > If birds are healthy, people and their pets should keep a safe distance so
      > they are not frightened, advise bird experts. Weak or injured birds can be
      > taken to the Peninsula Humane Society in San Mateo for emergency care.
      >
      > This week's weather forecast -- seven days of intermittent storms -- does
      > not bode well for weak birds and it could be a while before they can head
      > back to the ocean. But the Bay Area's rich estuaries could offer badly
      > needed food and rest.
      >
      > ``We don't know why they're here. They may have gotten off course, or
      > pushed
      > in, due to the storms,'' Jaramillo said. ``Or maybe they came here
      > because
      > they had no other choice,'' he said. ``We don't understand.''
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > Richard Kuehn
      >
      > WindandSea at The Sea Ranch, CA
      >
      > N 38 44.93 W 123 31.66
      >
      > http://ourlives-at-windandsea.info
      >
      >
      >
      > Life is NOT a dress-rehearsal!
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      >
      >
      >
      > ________________________________________________________________________
      > ________________________________________________________________________
      >
      > Message: 2
      > Date: Wed, 28 Dec 2005 10:47:42 -0800
      > From: chaniot@...
      > Subject: Tufted Duck
      >
      > Wed, 28 Dec 2005 -- I took advantage of a slack in the rain to run out to
      > Lake Mendocino. The water has come up rapidly and is about 1.5 feet below
      > the inlet road. The north end of the lake is full of floating debris and
      > the ducks and grebes were dispersed. From the N. boat ramp and Oak Grove
      > parking lot I saw an adult male TUFTED DUCK among the 200 scaup. The black
      > back and gleaming white sides show up well among the scaup.
      >
      > George Chaniot
      > Potter Valley, MEN, CA
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > ________________________________________________________________________
      > ________________________________________________________________________
      >
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