Santa Maria River Estuary, 25 July 1999

Mark Holmgren <holmgren@...>
 

Hello Nascent E-Group:

We (Dave Compton, Morgan Ball, Melissa Kelly, and I) met Jamie Chavez at the estuary and he alerted us to what he suspected was a Semipalmated Sandpiper and a Baird's Sandpiper. We found the Semipalmated, got good looks at it, and we feel that was probably what it was, although it would have been nice to have more juvenile Western Sandpipers to compare it to. There might have been a second juvenile Baird’s Sandpiper present.  Also, we saw 5 ad Red-necked Phalarope, 10 juv Wilson Phalarope, 3 Elegant Tern, probably 5 Least Terns plus a couple of juvs being tended by parents, 13 or so Caspian Terns at least one of which was a juv.

We did not see any fledgling Semipalmated Plovers, but one or two ad birds were particularly agitated by our presence. There was a small bunch of very young (fledgling) Snowy Plovers present with attending adults.

Overall, the numbers of small shorebirds was in the range of 250-350 based upon our limited survey. This could be a serious underestimate. Other species present were

Semipalmated Plover (~15).
Black-bellied Plover (~45)
Whimbrel (<10)
LbCurlew (2)
dowitchers (~20)
Sanderling (~50)
Ruddy Turnstone 6
Black Turnstone 1
Willet 1
Many hundreds of Sooty Shearwaters were flying in a northerly direction.

Some surprising absences included:
yellowlegs 0
stilts 0

Heermann’s Gulls 0
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Mark Holmgren, Associate Curator             805 893-4098
Museum of Systematics and Ecology           fax  893-4724
Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology
University of California
Santa Barbara, CA  93106
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Join main@sbcobirding.groups.io to automatically receive all group messages.