3947Results: American White Pelican 3, Green Heron 1, Vaux's Swift 6, Pacific-slope Flycatcher 15
- Jun 11, 2014Saturday AM, May 10, 2014 South Fork Kern River Valley Rapid Assessment
Spring Bird Count
SIXTEEN OBSERVERS in NINE COUNT PARTIES: Bob Barnes, Gordon Black, Anna
Buckardt, Valerie Calegari, Matthew Danielcyck, Rachel del Rio, Greg
Homel, Ted Kinchloe Jr, Carissa Koopman Rivers. Sean Rowe, John Schmitt,
John Stanek, Reed Tollefson, Kurt Vaughn, Karen Velas, Mary Whitfield.
COUNT PARTIES: 1. Bob Barnes & Valerie Calegari; 2. Gordon Black; 3.
Anna Buckardt & John Schmitt; 4. Matthew Danielcyck & John Stanek; 5.
Rachel del Rio & Karen Velas; 6. Greg Homel & Ted Kinchloe Jr; 7.
Carissa Koopman Rivers & Reed Tollefson; 8. Sean Rowe & Kurt Vaughn; 9.
COVERAGE: CA Hwy 178 (selected spot checks in the ten miles between
Sierra Way and Canebrake Ecological Reserve), Canebrake Ecological
Reserve (due to lack of access only a portion of the Public Access Trail
was covered), Fay Ranch Rd (CA Hwy 178 north for 1.3 miles), Kern River
Preserve (very good to excellent coverage), Sierra Way (CA Hwy 178 north
for 1.2 miles), South Fork Wildlife Area (very good to excellent
coverage of a limited portion of the south side as accessed off CA Hwy
178, no coverage of the north side or Hanning Flat as accessed off
Sierra Way except for brief early morning owling).
LIMITED COMMENTS: MIGRATION: There was little evidence of active
migration through the extensive South Fork Kern River Fremont cottonwood
and red willow dominated (approaching 100%) riparian forest. Migrants
present were actively foraging throughout the riparian forest rather
than flying out from it, except for the count team covering east of Fay
Ranch Rd where they witnessed a flyout of migrants at one point.
Wilson's Warbler was by far the most numerous migrant non-nesting
species with 534 individuals reported. WATER: Not surprisingly there was
little surface water in the South Fork Kern River to the last water
diversion below Fay Ranch Rd and zero surface water from the water
diversion to Isabella Reservoir's very low eastern shore below Mountain
Mesa. Some territories had no water at all, while others had at least
one small pool of water in them. The only territories with surface river
water were two east of Fay Ranch Rd. All ponds had no water in them
except Prince Pond. Some agricultural water conveyance ditches had water
in them. VALUE: There seemed to be consensus that the count was
worthwhile despite limitations such as significant variability of spring
migration from day to day, limited coverage compared to the overall size
of the South Fork Kern River riparian forest, and overall lack of water.
MORE DETAILED COMMENTS (made by counters): Will be prepared by Southern
Sierra Research Station staff who are also creating a survey form for
next year in the effort to improve the comprehensiveness of data
collected during the 2015 and future counts.
108 SPECIES & 4260 INDIVIDUALS REPORTED: Wood Duck 15, Mallard 141,
California Quail 17, Wild Turkey 5, American White Pelican 3,
Pied-billed Grebe 2, Great Blue Heron 9, Green Heron 1, White-faced Ibis
27 in a single flock high count, Red-shouldered Hawk 11, Swainson's Hawk
1, Red-tailed Hawk 18, Sora 1, American Coot 2, Spotted Sandpiper 1,
Eurasian Collared-Dove 23, Mourning Dove 162, Greater Roadrunner 1,
Great Horned Owl 18, Vaux's Swift 6, White-throated Swift 40,
Black-chinned Hummingbird 9, Anna's Hummingbird 31, Costa's Hummingbird
1, hummingbird species 9, Nuttall's Woodpecker 37, Downy Woodpecker 13,
Hairy Woodpecker 2, Northern Flicker 22, American Kestrel 6, Olive-sided
Flycatcher 5, Western Wood-Pewee 104, Willow Flycatcher 6, Hammond's
Flycatcher 10, Gray Fycatcher 34, Dusky Flycatcher 10, Hammond's/Dusky
Flycatcher 19, Pacific-slope Flycatcher 15, Pacific-slope/Cordilleran
("Western") Flycatcher 2, Empidonax species 43, Black Phoebe 34, Say's
Phoebe 5, Vermilion Flycatcher 1(male...with a mate found a few days
later), Ash-throated Flycatcher 76, Western Kingbird 68, Loggerhead
Shrike 1, Bell's Vireo 2 (separated by over two miles from each other),
Cassin's Vireo 19, Warbling Vireo 24, Western Scrub-Jay 16, American
Crow 2, Common Raven 68, Horned Lark 2, Northern Rough-winged Swallow 2,
Tree Swallow 189, Barn Swallow 3, Cliff Swallow 24, swallow species 1,
Oak Titmouse 17, Bushtit 25, White-breasted Nuthatch 9, Brown Creeper 1,
Rock Wren 3, House Wren 212, Bewick's Wren 49, Marsh Wren 1,
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 2, Western Bluebird 63, Swainson's Thrush 43,
Hermit Thrush 5, Catharus species 2, American Robin 24, Northern
Mockingbird 6, European Starling 74, Cedar Waxwing 7, Phainopepla 3,
Orange-crowned Warbler 13, Nashville Warbler 3, MacGillivray's Warbler
4, Common Yellowthroat 51, Yellow Warbler 152, Yellow-rumped Warbler 37,
Black-throated Gray Warbler 5, Townsend's Warbler 15, Hermit Warbler 2,
Wilson's Warbler 534, Yellow-breasted Chat 9, Spotted Towhee 22,
California Towhee 10, Brewer's Sparrow 2, Lark Sparrow 9, Black-throated
Sparrow 3, Savannah Sparrow 1, Song Sparrow 107, Lincoln's Sparrow 1,
White-crowned Sparrow 6, Summer Tanager 17, Western Tanager 200,
Black-headed Grosbeak 84, Blue Grosbeak 14, Lazuli Bunting 14,
Red-winged Blackbird 229, Tricolored Blackbird 91, Western Meadowlark 9,
Brewer's Blackbird 17, Great-tailed Grackle 1, Brown-headed Cowbird 132,
Bullock's Oriole 99, House Finch 197, Lesser Goldfinch 55, Lawrence's
Goldfinch 86, House Sparrow 14,...
NEXT UP: The Saturday AM, July 12, 2014, South Fork Kern River Valley
Rapid Assessment Summer Bird Count. This count was also conducted on
single Saturday mornings in the first half of July in 1999, 2000, 2001,
2002, and 2007.
Serving as the Messenger,
Bob Barnes, Ridgecrest, Kern County, California