Sunday, January 07, 2007

BMB07/01 San Jacinto 6th January 2007

After numerous cancellations due to a fear of inclement weather, twelve Big Morongo Birders, i.e. all birders with an active connection to Big Morongo, had a wonderful day and saw more than sixty species. Thanks to Margaret for the list and notes
Bird List, San Jacinto Wastewater Treatment Facility and San Jacinto Wildlife Area
Saturday January 6, 2007

Golden Eagle Red-tailed Hawk Black-necked Stilt
Northern Harrier American Kestrel White-faced Ibis
Canada Goose Common Moorhen American Coot
Wilson's Snipe Green Heron Mallard
Cinnamon Teal American Widgeon Ruddy Duck
Fox Sparrow Red-winged Blackbird Common Yellowthroat
Song Sparrow Black-crowned Night Heron Tree Swallow
Virginia Rail Cassin's Kingbird Say's Phoebe
Yellow-rumped Warbler American Pipit White-crowned Sparrow
Black Phoebe Ring-necked Duck Eared Grebe
House Finch Yellow-headed Blackbird Killdeer
Savannah Sparrow Redhead* Great-tailed Grackle
Starling American Avocet Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Common Raven Brown-headed Cowbird Brewer's Blackbird
Burrowing Owl Long-billed Dowitcher** House Sparrow
Tri-colored Blackbird Ferruginous Hawk*** Turkey Vulture
Least Sandpiper Rock Pigeon Horned Lark
White-tailed Kite American Crow Mountain Bluebird
Great Egret Great Blue Heron White Pelican
White-throated Swift Western Meadowlark Ring-billed Gull
Long-billed Curlew Barn Owl California Quail

Total number of species = 63.

* Redhead and canvasback similar in appearance. Redhead summers here, but
only "winters locally" few spots. Canvasback winters this area. Anyone certain?
** Long-billed and Short-billed Dowitcher very similar, and both are migrants or
winter residents in Southern California, but short-billed mainly along coast.
*** Ferruginous Hawk - similar to red-tail but paler. Seen in flight from below, lacks
dark leading edge of underwing present in red tail, etc.
Although it was cold at 8am -32!- there was no wind and it was a very pleasant sunny morning. We were welcomed by SBDV Audubon and hurried, in the nicest way, around the pond - rather similar to Linda's. It is rather strange that, although very clearly oriented toward education and wildlife, access is not at all easy. We had a good selection of birds and discovered that San Jacinto Wildlife Area was closed to birding, Wednesday and Saturday being devoted to hunting! After some discussion with those more familiar with the area than your scribe, Bill Moramarco volunteered to take us to Mystic Lake (which is part of San Jacinto Wildlife Area), which he did in spades. With his guidance, we found Tri-coloured and Yellow-headed Blackbirds, Ferruginous Hawks, the Barn Owl in an open field, Mountain Bluebirds and a host of others; we are indebted to him for making a wonderful day. Thanks to Sherri and Steve for putting it all together.
Thursday 11th January 2007 Salton Sea
Meet at Costco at I10 and Monteray in Palm Desert at 7am for car pooling ,intending to arrive at Wister, our first stop, around 8.15am. High Desert folks please get together to arrange car pooling. Bring water and a picnic, we will lunch at Sonny Bono.

Good Birding, and thanks to
Barry Parkes