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Fort Bragg 3/4-5

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  • Cheri Pillsbury
    Hi All, My friend Pat MacEwen and I drove up from Stockton Wednesday. I was looking for Harlequin Duck and Rock Sandpiper. Pat is a beginner so most things
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 6, 2004
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      Hi All,

      My friend Pat MacEwen and I drove up from Stockton Wednesday. I was looking
      for Harlequin Duck and Rock Sandpiper. Pat is a beginner so most things were
      new for her.

      We tried Glass Beach, but nothing was around but a Red-breasted Merganser.
      We went to MacKerricher and I made it out to Laguna Point and back. Not a
      mean feat (especially after Glass Beach) as I'm partially disabled and can't
      walk far or stand long. No Rock Sandpipers, but Black Oystercatchers, a
      Whimbrel, and IDing cormorants and gulls kept Pat busy. A Pacific Loon flew
      by.

      Thursday morning we made it a point to be at Laguna Point at high tide. No
      Rock Sandpipers. Pat spotted some oystercatchers and a Black Turnstone on a
      rock. On closer inspection, there were at least 20 oystercatchers and five
      turnstones in a group. It was hard to tell, as most of them were sleeping
      and unless you got a flash of red or pink it was hard to tell the birds from
      the rock. I saw 15-20 Sanderlings fly by.

      As we started to leave I was thinking I was too sore to try Glass Beach
      again (I was wondering if I could make it back to the car). A couple of
      other birders arrived singly and gave advice. One was Dorothy Tobkin (Toby)
      who is familiar to this list. She said she'd been sick, and didn't think
      anyone had seen the sandpipers in days- but they should still be around for
      another couple of weeks. She didn't think the high tide was high enough for
      a good chance at a sighting, though. She said there were scoters in the
      water off Ward Ave. and I wouldn't even have to get out of the car- so Pat
      and I decided to forget Glass Beach and hit Ward Ave. before leaving for
      Stockton.

      Well, the second bird I put my bins on was a gorgeous drake Harlequin!
      Thanks, Toby!!! I hope one of you up there thanks her for me, as she said
      she doesn't have email. I put my window-mounted scope up and enjoyed that
      beauty for almost a half hour. It was amazingly hard keeping track of him
      as he rode the waves and dove and dove and dove. But fun!

      Next year, I'll get that Rock Sandpiper. Maybe a high tide in January...

      Cheri Pillsbury
      Stockton
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