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Monthly Archives: September 2018

Mission Trails and Santee lakes 9-24-18

At the lake at the campground in MTRP I found a Solitary Sandpiper this morning.  Also a pair of Red-necked Phalaropes and a single Wilson's Warbler.
The sandpiper had distinctive white spectacles. 

At Santee Lakes I was unable to find the chestnut-sided Warbler reported yesterday, but I did come up with a  Red-breasted Sapsucker in the eucs  east and across from the road, up the hillside a bit, near the north end of Lake 6, well outside the park.

Eric Kallen
San Diego 
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

FRNC – lots interesting birds, Sep 24, 2018

At Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery this morning and a good show of rarer migrants.

American Redstart, imm male, and Tennessee Warbler, both found by Jim Pawlicki.

Chestnut-sided Warbler and two Clay-colored Sparrows found by John Sterling. Also a bright a Cassin’s Vireo and MacGillivray’s Warbler.

Northeast section seems most lively with migrant warblers.

White-winged Dove at the point, Cabrillo National Monument, also by Jim Pawlicki.

Gary Nunn,
Pacific Beach.
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

Buena Vista Audubon and Grande Pelagic Sunday Sept. 23, 2018

The Buena Vista Audubon and Grande Pelagic  Sunday was a great success. Bird species of note included Least Storm-Petrel,

Masked/Nazca Booby, Red Billed Tropicbird, Long-tailed Jaegers, Craveri's Murrelets.

We found a large raft of storm-petrels on the Thirty Mile Bank. The makeup of 700-800 Black Storm-Petrels and 100 plus

Least Storm-Petrels. This about 26 nautical miles west of Ocean Beach.

A immature Masked/ Nazca Booby was well seen and photographed on the Nine Mile Bank near

the end of the trip. This bird about a half mile north of the border and 11 n.m. s.w. of Point Loma, This sighting continues a

long string of white bodied booby reports for 2017-2018.

A close in Red-billed Tropicbird was on the water over the San Diego Trough early in the day perhaps 15 n.m. southwest of

Point Loma. This species has been rather scarce this year.

Long- tailed Jaegers best considered rare locally inside San Clemente Is. were in exceptional numbers with at least five.

We had three adults fly right in to the chummed gull flock for nice photo opportunities. All Long-tailed Jaegers seen from the

Nine Mile Bank or further offshore.

Three pairs of Craveri's Murrelets were found. One pair allowed close approach for photos. Two of the pairs were in the expected

area of the Thirty Mile Bank. The last pair, I. D. form photos, was surprisingly inshore on the inner edge of the Nine Mile. Likely

8 n.m. or less from Point Loma.

A partial list;

Greater White-fronted Goose  30+  (high V seen off Point Loma).

Northern Fulmar   3

Pink-footed Shearwater   27

Sooty Shearwater   2

Black-vented Shearwater   110

Leach's Storm-Petrel chapmani   2

Ashy Storm-Petrel    4

Black Storm-Petrel   850

Least Storm-Petrel   120

Red-billed Tropicbird    1

Masked /Nazca Booby   1

Brown Booby    5

Red-necked Phalarope    27

Red Phalarope    4

Pomarine Jaeger   5

Parasitic Jaeger   3

Long-tailed Jaeger  5

jaeger sp.   1

Craveri's Murrelet   6

Sabine's Gull   3

Common Tern    10

Elegant Tern   225

 

Dave Povey

Dulzura

 

p.s. The last 2018 Buena Vista Audubon and Grande Pelagic is Oct. 21, 2018. For reservations call 619 222-1144 or log on

to www.hmlanding.com .  See trip details and reports at www.sandiegopelagics.com.

 

 

 

 

Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

Re: News from San Felipe Valley: Broad-winged Hawk, Tropical Kingbird, Summer Tanagers…

After decades of California Gnatcatcher surveys in southern California I’ve never had a chigger incident. I’ve removed multitudes of ticks but no chiggers. As Phil implies, they must be a recent arrival.

 

Geoffrey Rogers

San Diego, CA

 

From: SanDiegoRegionBirding@groups.io [mailto:SanDiegoRegionBirding@groups.io] On Behalf Of Philip Unitt
Sent: Sunday, September 23, 2018 4:03 PM
To: SanDiegoRegionBirding@groups.io
Cc: 'Lori Hargrove'
Subject: [SanDiegoRegionBirding] News from San Felipe Valley: Broad-winged Hawk, Tropical Kingbird, Summer Tanagers…

 

Dear friends,

 

Last week, from 17 to 21 September, our team from the San Diego Natural History Museum surveyed the riparian oasis in San Felipe Valley, about midway between the pass along Highway S2 and Scissors Crossing. The area became part of the San Felipe Wildlife Area several years ago, and our study was sponsored by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Last week’s visit followed one in July 2017 and another in March of this year.

 

On Wednesday 19 September, Lea Squires, Christine Beck, and I saw an adult Broad-winged Hawk. It flew out of the riparian woodland and circled over us for about a minute, showing a tail boldly banded with black and white, pale underwings with primaries and trailing edge sharply tipped with black, a head rather uniformly dark brown, breast mottled brown, sides barred brown, belly whitish, and upperparts gray. Then it headed down the valley.

 

The next day, I was with Marcus Hubbell and Stéphane Vernhet when we heard a high-pitched twittering from the opposite side of the creek, out of sight. I said, “if anything, that sounds like a Tropical Kingbird!” The bird kept calling but moving northwest up the valley—it was still calling when we met up with Lea Squires. I found a spot with a break in the trees where we could look across the creek to some mesquites on the opposite side. And there it was sitting atop one of the mesquites, a kingbird with a pale gray head, yellow belly, and dark but not black tail. At a distance of ~150 m the identification still relied more on the voice than on the plumage. Then the bird flew high into the air and headed out of sight to the northwest up the valley. The next morning, a bit farther upstream, I thought I heard the characteristic twittering call once in the distance. Then when I met up with Lori Hargrove a couple of hours later, she related that she had just seen the Tropical Kingbird very well right along Highway S2, noting the extensively bright yellow underparts, green back, large bill, etc. I don’t know of any previous records of the Tropical Kingbird far inland in San Diego County, but San Felipe Valley leads up to the lowest pass over the county’s mountains. So it’s a reasonable place to find a Tropical Kingbird as it makes the crossing that accounts for the species regularly reaching the coast. San Felipe Valley is well known as a corridor for spring migrants heading northwest, and seeing its use in fall was a reason for choosing a survey in mid-September. Several Vaux’s Swifts and Barn Swallows—as well as the Broad-winged Hawk—were following the route toward the southeast, but we hadn’t anticipated seeing it used as a corridor to the northwest in fall by the Tropical Kingbird.

 

Early fall arrivals were a Hermit Thrush on 18 Sep and a junco on 19 Sep. One Nashville Warbler had the throat white, the belly extensively white, and the back so gray it might have been mistaken for a Virginia’s Warbler, but the rump was the same green as in a Nashville. Wilson’s Warbler was by far the dominant species among the common migrants. An Acorn Woodpecker on 19 Sep was about two miles below the lowest oak trees. The Nuttall’s and Ladder-backed Woodpeckers meet here: there are several Nuttall’s in the riparian woodland along the creek, Ladder-backed in the scrub on the adjacent southwest-facing slope and occasionally crossing the creek.

 

The area has become an important site for breeding riparian birds—Lori counted up to 33 Bell’s Vireos along a mile and a quarter of creek on 25 July 2017—far greater than from 2003 to 2008 when she and Paul Jorgensen covered the area during our study of the effects of the fires. Last week, one Bell’s Vireo was still present and singing sporadically up until 20 September, and at least two Yellow-breasted Chats were still there on 21 September. Summer Tanagers were still present up until our departure on the 21st with a minimum of three individuals, one female and two adult males. On the morning of the 18th, one of the males was even singing. The museum’s early collections from the Colorado River attest to the population of the Summer Tanager there remaining into late September. But I don’t think any previous observations have confirmed that our recently established population in San Diego County remains similarly late. Also, the White-winged Dove is now resident in San Felipe Valley, as we saw it on all three visits, though no more than one bird per day last week.

 

Our mammal results include three species of bats—the western pipistrelle, California myotis, and Townsend’s big-eared bat—captured by Drew Stokes in two evenings of netting. Drew also saw a mountain lion!

 

The only downside to the week were the bug bites Lea and I got—possibly from two species of mites, including bites that look like chiggers. Lea got a bad case of chiggers in Camp Pendleton a couple of years ago. In my whole life I had never heard of chiggers in San Diego County. Is dealing with chiggers another price we must now pay for the warming climate?

 

Thanks to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife for sponsoring our study and Hans Sin for coordinating it.

 

Good birding,

 

Philip Unitt

San Diego

Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

News from San Felipe Valley: Broad-winged Hawk, Tropical Kingbird, Summer Tanagers…

Dear friends,

 

Last week, from 17 to 21 September, our team from the San Diego Natural History Museum surveyed the riparian oasis in San Felipe Valley, about midway between the pass along Highway S2 and Scissors Crossing. The area became part of the San Felipe Wildlife Area several years ago, and our study was sponsored by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Last week’s visit followed one in July 2017 and another in March of this year.

 

On Wednesday 19 September, Lea Squires, Christine Beck, and I saw an adult Broad-winged Hawk. It flew out of the riparian woodland and circled over us for about a minute, showing a tail boldly banded with black and white, pale underwings with primaries and trailing edge sharply tipped with black, a head rather uniformly dark brown, breast mottled brown, sides barred brown, belly whitish, and upperparts gray. Then it headed down the valley.

 

The next day, I was with Marcus Hubbell and Stéphane Vernhet when we heard a high-pitched twittering from the opposite side of the creek, out of sight. I said, “if anything, that sounds like a Tropical Kingbird!” The bird kept calling but moving northwest up the valley—it was still calling when we met up with Lea Squires. I found a spot with a break in the trees where we could look across the creek to some mesquites on the opposite side. And there it was sitting atop one of the mesquites, a kingbird with a pale gray head, yellow belly, and dark but not black tail. At a distance of ~150 m the identification still relied more on the voice than on the plumage. Then the bird flew high into the air and headed out of sight to the northwest up the valley. The next morning, a bit farther upstream, I thought I heard the characteristic twittering call once in the distance. Then when I met up with Lori Hargrove a couple of hours later, she related that she had just seen the Tropical Kingbird very well right along Highway S2, noting the extensively bright yellow underparts, green back, large bill, etc. I don’t know of any previous records of the Tropical Kingbird far inland in San Diego County, but San Felipe Valley leads up to the lowest pass over the county’s mountains. So it’s a reasonable place to find a Tropical Kingbird as it makes the crossing that accounts for the species regularly reaching the coast. San Felipe Valley is well known as a corridor for spring migrants heading northwest, and seeing its use in fall was a reason for choosing a survey in mid-September. Several Vaux’s Swifts and Barn Swallows—as well as the Broad-winged Hawk—were following the route toward the southeast, but we hadn’t anticipated seeing it used as a corridor to the northwest in fall by the Tropical Kingbird.

 

Early fall arrivals were a Hermit Thrush on 18 Sep and a junco on 19 Sep. One Nashville Warbler had the throat white, the belly extensively white, and the back so gray it might have been mistaken for a Virginia’s Warbler, but the rump was the same green as in a Nashville. Wilson’s Warbler was by far the dominant species among the common migrants. An Acorn Woodpecker on 19 Sep was about two miles below the lowest oak trees. The Nuttall’s and Ladder-backed Woodpeckers meet here: there are several Nuttall’s in the riparian woodland along the creek, Ladder-backed in the scrub on the adjacent southwest-facing slope and occasionally crossing the creek.

 

The area has become an important site for breeding riparian birds—Lori counted up to 33 Bell’s Vireos along a mile and a quarter of creek on 25 July 2017—far greater than from 2003 to 2008 when she and Paul Jorgensen covered the area during our study of the effects of the fires. Last week, one Bell’s Vireo was still present and singing sporadically up until 20 September, and at least two Yellow-breasted Chats were still there on 21 September. Summer Tanagers were still present up until our departure on the 21st with a minimum of three individuals, one female and two adult males. On the morning of the 18th, one of the males was even singing. The museum’s early collections from the Colorado River attest to the population of the Summer Tanager there remaining into late September. But I don’t think any previous observations have confirmed that our recently established population in San Diego County remains similarly late. Also, the White-winged Dove is now resident in San Felipe Valley, as we saw it on all three visits, though no more than one bird per day last week.

 

Our mammal results include three species of bats—the western pipistrelle, California myotis, and Townsend’s big-eared bat—captured by Drew Stokes in two evenings of netting. Drew also saw a mountain lion!

 

The only downside to the week were the bug bites Lea and I got—possibly from two species of mites, including bites that look like chiggers. Lea got a bad case of chiggers in Camp Pendleton a couple of years ago. In my whole life I had never heard of chiggers in San Diego County. Is dealing with chiggers another price we must now pay for the warming climate?

 

Thanks to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife for sponsoring our study and Hans Sin for coordinating it.

 

Good birding,

 

Philip Unitt

San Diego

Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

Vesper sparrow at Sweetwater Reservoir

This morning 9.23.18 I saw a VESPER SPARROW in parking lot of Sweetwater Reservoir. Additionally, I saw a RED-NECKED PHALAROPE along lakeshore mixed in with a flock of peeps.

Kat Wendel
in La Mesa
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

Marcy Park Summer Tanager

This morning (9/23/18) at 9:30, an adult male SUMMER TANAGER was seen along the south (eastern portion) fence line of Marcy Park.

It was also south of the fence in the north eastern corner of Mission Bay Montessori School.

This may be a continuing bird that I have missed for the last week, though I searched for it repeatedly.

Or it could be a new bird.

 

                         Jim Roberts

                        University City

 

                                 

Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports