- A friend and I kayaked out of Lakeside County Park today. I saw 1-3
black terns flying over the water just to the west of the park.
There were more nesting grebes than last Friday, fewer on the water,
but still many on the water and significant numbers of rushing rituals
and "Simon Says" head bobbing and turning rituals. No babies yet, lots
of eggs. I just read that it's mostly the males that carry the babies
around on their backs.
We saw one pair of wood ducks swimming about, and a large osprey on a
relatively low nest. I wasn't sure if it was an adult or a very large
baby. There were buffy to orange markings on the forehead. Has anyone
seen that? I don't think it was blood from prey. I couldn't see the
breast. A house sparrow was nesting on the underside of the Osprey
Also saw a Yellow-headed Blackbird sitting in a nest. Several broods
of Canada Goose goslings of different sizes. One Ruddy Duck floating
among the grebes. Lots of Green Herons, sometimes two or three flying
across open water together - maybe newly-fledged siblings? Also a
juvenile Black-crowned Night Heron flying across open water. Heard but
didn't see several Pied Billed Grebes.
A rich morning.
Closer to home: a Bullock's Oriole nest of uncertain occupancy, a
Lesser Goldfinch nest, extremely well hidden, a Bushtit nest with
recently fledged babies, and I think I'm closing in on a Chipping
- On 13 December I saw a LEWIS'S WOODPECKER and two male PHAINOPEPLAS at Anderson Marsh. The woodpecker was at the ranch house, one Phainopepla was before the boardwalk and the other was after. Five TREE SWALLOWS were flying over the south end of the lake (why do they consistently disappear during fall and suddenly reappear in December or January?), seen from the docks at Redbud Park, and a GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE was hanging out with domesticated geese to the north of the docks. Nine lingering LEAST SANDPIPERS and 26 SCAUP (they're finally arriving, hopefully to be joined soon by a Tufted Duck!) were at Borax Lake. The odd adult RING-BILLED GULLS, one with dark eyes and the other with a gray right leg, were both present at Redbud Park. Photos of the two odd gulls are posted here:
I also posted a photo of last winter's Eurasian Green-winged Teal here:
Hidden Valley Lake, CA
- Yesterday morning I saw the adult LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL with a flock of gulls on the water off Redbud Park from 8:15-8:25 am, and on one of the floating docks from 8:40-9:30. An immature SNOW GOOSE was swimming among the gulls, seemingly looking for another goose to hang out with.
Hidden Valley Lake, CA