Santa Maria

Wes Fritz

SB Birders,

I made a few stops in north county today. I pretty much followed Florence’s stops, but a little later in the day. My first stop was at the Los Alamos Sewage Works. No birds to report and all the habitat is dried up.

James May Park,
24 Great Egrets, 6 Snowy’s, 2 Green Herons, 8 American Avocets, one Spotted, a dozen or so of Phalaropes, 5 least Sandpipers and a few Greater Yellowlegs. One of the Great-tailed Grackles has a couple primaries that are white, kinda cool.
  The reeds and willows near the observation deck has been flailed, so that island of habitat is now gone. It will be interesting how this will work out for wintering birds. Also, the water level is dropping and looks like it could be good.

At the retention pond just north of Robert F. Grogan Park near Blosser and Rancho Verde was completely void of birds, really just one Coot and a TV. 

Jack O’Connell Park pretty much has been sucky for the last month. I checked the agriculture fields for the Plover flock and could not find it. Although, the Savannah Sparrows are arriving and I saw close to 10 Sparrows. I also saw 300+ Tricolored Blackbirds.

The Santa Maria Sewage Works looked great but it only had a couple hundred Phalaropes, several Yellowlegs ( no count, they were flying all over the place) very few Sandpipers and two menacing Peregrine Falcons.

I checked out the Black Road Flooded Field, which was just a little damp but not very good. I checked it again a couple hours later and all the irrigation pipes were gone. Amazing how things can change in a couple hours.

Tanglewood Pond, only a couple ducks, very dead.

Yesterday, Wednesday 9-4-19. I birded down in Lompoc and it was foggy off and on and made birding a little challenging. The best birds were 2 Baird’s Sandpipers. The birds of note were a downy Western Grebe Chick, or at least it was being cared for by Western Grebes. A Clark’s Grebe was still on a nest.

The pond on Hwy 246 and Campbell Road had 7 Wilson’s and 4 Red-necked Phalaropes, and couple Least Sandpipers. This seems strange as I drove past it late Tuesday afternoon and it had a lot of birds on it.

Good birding,

Wes Fritz
Solvang CA.

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