Monday, February 27, 2012


Spent a delightful day in Paso Robles birding with Harry and Norma. Moments after arriving at Harry and Norma's, their resident Phainopela made an appearance. The male is glossy black with red eyes and a perky, up-swept hairdo. Phainopela eat berries, and can consume more than 1,000 Mistletoe berries in a day. (photo - deciduous Cottonwood - green patches are Mistletoe)

We birded in three locations: along the Salinas River Bed, an Sycamore/Oak Woodland, the Paso Robles Cemetery.

Our first sighting at the Salinas River was of Turkey Vultures warming their wings. They flew off before I could get their photo. (the more focused I am on birding, the fewer the photos) White-breasted Nuthatch were active in the trees and in the grassy area were many Western Bluebird and White-crowned Sparrow. We saw 11 species.

Next stop, the Sycamore/Oak Woodland. Acorn Woodpeckers were prolific and very talkative. Our most fun was with the perky, little Oak Titmouse. I recorded its call, then played it back. Several responded.

In the bushes along the creek, that meanders through the woodland, were scads of Lesser Goldfinch and a Ruby-crowned Kinglet. Overhead soared Red-shouldered and Red-tailed Hawk.

Our final birding hotspot was the Paso Robles Cemetery. Best sighting was a small flock of Cedar Waxwing - They can become intoxicated from eating fermented berries in the winter.

Highlight of the day was lunch. Harry and Norma introduced me to the La Reyena Market on the corner of Oak and 24th. in Paso Robles. They have the best soft taco I have ever had the pleasure to consume.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a lovely day Joyce !

    Wow at 1000 berries a day , really amazing.

    How fun it must be playing the bird sound and they reply back :)