Dunlin, Gt.Yel.Legs, singing Blue Grosbeak at SJWS
- At San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary yesterday (7/03) William
and I watched three Dunlins foraging in the low water of
Pond D. It seemed too early in the season for them to be
here. Just as we were preparing to leave, Bruce Aird drove
in and suggested we all go back to check on their ID. He
also concluded they were early Dunlins.
We then went out to the San Diego Creek Channel to verify
the ID of a fly-over bird I had spotted. Sure enough, there
sat a very darkish Greater Yellow-legs...as well as another
one coming over to join it. As Bruce said, "They seemed
like an old married couple, quite content to be in each
To our back, in the woods near the Audubon House parking
lot, a Blue Grosbeak was singing away (ID compliments of
Bruce). I was delighted to hear it. I knew the bird was
around, but I assumed it was being seen earlier in the day.
We were there mid-afternoon, in the heat of the day! What a
bonus to hear it singing.
A "first" for me was to watch an American Avocet take on an
Osprey as it flew in from over the channel and swooped low
over Pond E. Such a ferocious and noisy defensive attack
quickly routed the Osprey and sent it packing. After a few
minutes of strutting around, the avocet went back to its
usual mild-mannered self, busy with looking for food.
Used to be we had to walk back to the riparian area to find
California Quail, but this year the quail have come to us!
About a month or so ago we watched Mr. escort Mrs. down the
dirt path between Ponds B and D and finally dart down into
the bushes opposite Pond E, behind the residential houses.
Bold and proud he was with his lovely sweetheart. Well,
yesterday, crossing over the dirt path almost at the same
spot, there they were again, Mr. and Mrs., and this time
they were with all their youngsters. So amusing to watch.
One other surprise for us was to find a couple of
Blue-winged Teals in Pond D. I just didn't expect to find
them here on July 3.
Total for our short time: 38
(No, we haven't left the state yet. Still packing. I have
to admit that I am finding it difficult to think of leaving
the serenity and surprises of SJWS, although Bruce and many
of you have assured me that birding is great in AZ.)
Good birding to your all.