Lake County gulls and waterfowl
- On Saturday the 3rd, six of us tallied 10 species of gulls and 4 species of geese by 10:15 am. We saw the adult LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL at Austin Park from 7:50 to 7:55 am and the presumed 1st-cycle ICELAND GULL at Wal-Mart (what is the correct spelling? Wal-Mart according to Wikipedia, but often spelled Walmart or Wal*Mart) from 8:50 to 9:20. We also saw a 1st-cycle MEW GULL at Wal-Mart and, later in the morning, an adult at Austin Park. The immature SNOW GOOSE, a GREATER WHITE-FRONTED GOOSE and seven CACKLING GEESE (six were "Aleutian") were on the ball fields at Redbud Park.
I returned alone in the afternoon hoping to get better photos of the Iceland Gull. I relocated the LESSER BLACK-BACKED GULL along the shoreline south of Redbud Park from 2:12 to 2:24 pm and the ICELAND GULL on the first dock (Bella Laguna) south of Redbud Park from 2:30 to 3:30 pm. The latter dock is visible from Redbud Park just south of the boat ramp and also from the junction of Beach Avenue and Golf Avenue. Unfortunately it is more distant than the last dock on Golf Avenue so I couldn't get any better photos.
Optimistic that I had the movements of the two gulls wired, I spent yesterday morning helping four birders (who missed Grace's Warbler the day before) find the two gulls. We worked very, very hard to find them at all the gull hangouts, but to our dismay neither showed up and we quit in the early afternoon. At Austin Park we saw a 2nd-cycle MEW GULL, three PHAINOPEPLAS and an ORANGE-CROWNED WARBLER.
The numbers of SCAUP are increasing at Borax Lake (several hundred yesterday), so if you're visiting the area, a search for a Tufted Duck (seen four consecutive winters) might be rewarding.
On Thursday the 1st I saw the male EURASIAN WIGEON at Detert Reservoir, along Butts Canyon Road south of Middletown.
Hidden Valley Lake, CA