Wed. Aug. 22, 2007. Today at noon I made my way out to the outlet
of Kelsey Creek in Clear Lake State Park. This has been one of the
best birding locations in Lake County during years when water depth
in Clear Lake is low enough to expose the mud flat at the outlet of
the creek. The area remained underwater during all of 2005 and 2006,
but Clear Lake is presently at 2.38 ft. on the Rumsey scale, low
enough to expose mud below the Creeping Water Primrose that has
unfortunately covered most of the mud flats around the lake shore.
To get to the outlet, pay the $5 entry fee to the park and go to the
north end of the Visitor Center parking lot. Find the trail leading
into the dense thicket of willows and follow it ca. 100 yds to the
tules. It is difficult to follow as many willows have fallen during
the past two years. Also, pay attention to this WARNING!!. About 75
yds along the trail there is a large aerial YELLOWJACKET nest about
three feet above ground on the underside of a fallen willow. The
nest is just about 15 yds before the location where you reach the
tules and if you try to duck under this trunk your face will be
nearly right on the nest. I went past the yellowjackets by going off
the trail out towards the tules and around. Look for the trail which
passes through the tules out onto the flat at the outlet of the
Today at the outlet there were 7 American Avocets, 2 Marbled
Godwits, 3 Greater Yellowlegs, 7 Caspian Terns and about 100 gulls.
There were also Spotted, Western and Least Sandpipiers.