Saturday, December 25, 2010


The morning was cold, cloudy, dark, and windy. Sea Pines Golf Course pond - Four Ruddy Duck, three eared Grebe, two Canada Goose, and a Partridge in a pear tree.

Sweet Springs Preserve - Out from the overlook: A forlorn looking Snowy Egret (photo), Four Greater Yellowleg, Northern Pintail, hundreds of Ruddy Duck and Greater Scaup, and a sprinkling of Brant Goose. Four Red-shouldered Hawks were soaring, and in the distance could hear a Flicker and a Kingfisher. Brrrrr, I was chilled to the bone. Time for a hot cup of Starbucks Coffee.

Sunday, December 19, 2010


The Christmas Bird Count, every year since 1900, is a census of birds, performed annually by volunteer birders. The purpose is to provide population data for use in science, especially conservation biology.

The count took place yesterday, Dec. 18th. Rain all day, heavy at times. The preliminary count total of 174 species was far below the 20 year average of 199 species. One new species was noted, the Black-throated Sparrow, which is visiting a feeder on the 300 block of Piney in Morro Bay. I happen to drive by this front yard feeder several times a week because it is on the way to my volunteer job. So thoughtful of the little darling to hang around for the Christmas Bird Count.

I got rather wet, actually drenched, this morning on my walk to Sweet Springs. It was raining so hard I could barely hear the birds; seeing them was even more difficult. Most of the Mallards were snoozing (photo). Notable was the Black Phoebe perched on her usual twig, a vocal Kingfisher, and numerous Egrets.

Sunday, December 12, 2010


Laguna Lake, its park lands and open space could not have been more beautiful, deep blue sky, warm air, and a gentle breeze. On the lake: 27 Canada Goose, Pied-billed and Western Grebe, Double-crested Cormorant. In the tress: A mixed flock of Bushtits, Yellow-rumped and Townsend's Warbler, Downy Woodpecker, Ruby-crowned Kinglet (flashing its Ruby Crown). Busy on the ground were White and Golden-crowned Sparrow. In the open space area: Say's Phoebe, Black Phoebe, Meadowlark. A woman jogging with her dog said the open space reminded her of the Serengeti.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


Beautiful in Sweet Springs this morning. Mallards were abundant in the large pond. A Great Egret (photo) was looking for breakfast by the second bridge. In the distant channel were Blue-winged Teal, American Wigeon, Northern Pintail (the male is always dressed in his formal attire).

Out from the overlook were scads of Brant Goose, Ruddy Duck, Am. Wigeon, Cinnamon Teal, Bufflehead, Scaup, No. Shoveler, West. Grebe, Caspian Tern. In the brush along the boardwalk got a good view of a Hermit Thrush. Hermit Thrush may come to your birdfeeder if you put out raisins, currants or nut meal.

Sunday, December 5, 2010


This lone female wild turkey at MdO (photo) is more like a pet than a wild turkey. It is not shy of people. The campers are certainly enjoying it. The other day it was on the beach to the amazement of the beach goers. (click on photo for larger image)

Yesterday went north to look at Elephant Seals. The males are coming in to establish their territory. We found three huge males on Wind Surfer Beach about a mile south of Piedras Blancas, their usual area. They were spaced about 200 feet from each other.(photo - rear view) Along the shoreline was a mixed flock of Ringed-billed gulls and Royal Terns. In the grassy area above the sand was a lone Ross's Goose feeding on grass.
Today, checked out Sweet Spring. Tide high. Feeding in the flooded pickleweed were the usual Blue-winged Teal and Mallards. There were 11 Snowy Egrets, one G.B.Heron, one Great Egret. A Kingfisher was calling, heard Yellow-rumped Warbler, No. Flicker, Junco and White-crowns. Out from the Overlook was a flotilla of Ruddy Duck with a sprinkling of Bufflehead, Scaup and three Brant Goose. The majority of the ducks are in the Eastern area of the estuary and seem to be staying away from the southern area of the bay.