Ridgecrest Watchable Wildlife Site & Cemetery
- 9:30am-10:30am, Saturday, December 6, 2008
The Ridgecrest Watchable Wildlife Site and nearby cemetery were more
devoid of late fall/early winter bird species diversity and
individual numbers than I have ever seen. However, there were
1500-2000 white geese (I stopped counting at 1300 with a big flock
left to go) and at least one "Blue" Goose among them in the fields
behind the Watchable Wildlife Site (and northwest of the cemetery).
It is nice to have a publicly accessible site available in Kern
County to view more than a few white geese at a time.
The five old sewer ponds which make up most of the Watchable Wildlife
Site hosted 4 waterbirds in total during my 30 minute visit. Two Tree
Swallows over the ponds were unexpected.
The cemetery did have two Red-breasted Nuthatches foraging together
in the pine trees.
Maybe colder weather will bring in more birds for the 14 Dec 08 China
Lake Christmas Bird Count. Otherwise, the 55-60 species total reached
while covering the cemetery and ponds two years ago won't even be
Sometimes noting absence is as interesting as presence. So, here's
the complete list. You can fill in the blanks of what
should/could/would be expected:
Watchable Wildlife Site (9:30am-10am): Snow/Ross's/Blue Geese
1500-2000, Bufflehead 2 females, American Coot 2, Rock Pigeon 7,
Mourning Dove 1, Northern Flicker 1, Black Phoebe 1, Common Raven 4,
Horned Lark 2, Tree Swallow 2, Marsh Wren 1, Yellow-rumped Warbler 2,
Western Meadowlark 11 ... 13 species ...
Cemetery (10am-10:30am): Mourning Dove 1, Long-eared Owl 1 (no
attempt to find and count more before the CBC), Anna's Hummingbird 1,
Red-breasted Nuthatch 2, Yellow-rumped Warbler 2 ... 5 species ...
15 species, 43 individuals in all (not counting geese in either case),
Ridgecrest, Kern County
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