31 August 2009 - Monday - 0830 - 0915 AM PDT - The two Hudsonian Godwits
found by Matthew Matthiessen yesterday were still present at the far north
end of Virgin Creek Beach, MacKerricher State Park, just north of Fort
Bragg. I heard that another probable bird was on Ten Mile Beach just north
of Ward Avenue at 1000 AM this morning. I personally believe that these are
NOT the same individuals as found last week at Glass Beach. HUGOs are
showing up along the coast of California recently, and seem to be part of an
unprecedented migration wave coming down the Pacific Coast.
This species is considered a "Review Species" by the California Bird Records
Committee, and up until the printing of the Rare Birds of California,
published in 2007 by the Western Field Ornithologists, only 21 records of
Hudsonian Godwit had been accepted by the CBRC. So, the message is .please
don't take these Mendocino County sightings lightly . despite the fact that
we probably have had at least 6, may 7, individuals within the last week
seen by many observers. Please document your sightings as best possible
with notes, photographs, sketches, etc. . the more the better. Submit your
documentation directly to WBO-CRBC or through me. rjkeiffer@...
When considering the identification of Hudsonian Godwits make sure that you
look for key characteristics, such as the black and white tail, black
underwing linings, black and white primaries and secondaries seen in flight,
distinct supercilium especially at the fore-eye, small (for godwits) size,
and "drabber, grayish colors as compared to Marbled Godwits.
Also present on the beach were 1 Marbled Godwit, 2 Whimbrels, 1 Willet,
about 20 Black-bellied Plovers, 6 Semipalmated Plovers, 6 Black Turnstones,
and numerous Western & Least Sandpipers. 6 Northern Shovelers, 24
Northern Pintail, and 3 Green-winged Teal were in the estuary on the
beach-side of the bridge.
Good Birding. Bob Keiffer
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