FOS Greater Yellowlegs in GJ
This morning I biked the Colorado River Trail from the intersection of 33.5 and D.5 roads westward to the Redlands, 12+ miles, on a quest for something new. I wasn’t disappointed, but I can’t decide who my most exciting birds were: 1. fledged avocets and coots, 2. unfledged ospreys, or 3. my FOS Greater Yellowlegs (2), presumably southbound, along a perfectly muddy expanse of shoreline created by the ever-flooding Colorado River, just west of the footbridge at about 27.5 Rd. I was scanning that shoreline thinking there MUST BE shorebirds here besides spotties and killdeer, et voila!
Wow, the small white-cheeked geese are back already, i.e. Cackling Geese! (tisk) Also along the trail I saw huge swallow colonies I hadn’t encountered before – one each of Cliff swallows and Bank swallows. But again, this section of trail has only been open for a year or so? My overall tally was 53 species by 1030 hrs.
Migration! Our first west slope Yellow-billed Cuckoo (allegedly northbound) was reported on 21 June and our first Rufous Hummingbird (allegedly southbound) was reported on 24 June... a mere three days separated these migrants going in opposite directions. Migration strategies never fail to fascinate me, and the occurrence of some shorebird species during June-July makes it all the more interesting, i.e., are they late northbound migrants, early southbound migrants, or did they summer nearby?
Over the last several days I have heard a lot of thunder and seen a lot of dark clouds around the Valley, but in our yard we have recorded a measly 0.03” of precipitation.
Oh wait, here come a few more drops!