Date   
The Two Photos of Cuckoo from SLO Co.

Mark Holmgren <holmgren@...>
 

Last week I sent to Steve Laymon digital photos of the two Yellow-billed
Cuckoos that have been captured and banded in SLO Co. this summer. He
viewed them and wrote the message below. Perhaps Paloma would like to get
in touch with Steve? Here is his e-mail: slaymon@...
~~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~~
Hi Mark,

The mid-June cuckoo is almost certainly a male. The white spots are well
separated and this IDs probably 85% to sex. The one in mid-July is probably
a female based on the extra large bill. Both sexes have brood patches so
that doesn't help with the sexing, but it does say that they may be breeding
there!!!

Pam and I are thinking about visiting the Oso Flaco area on Monday, 1 Aug.
Who would be a good contact to find out what area the cuckoos were captured
in?

That's all for now, Steve
~~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~~
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
* Mark Holmgren, Associate Director 805 893-4098 office
* Museum of Systematics and Ecology 805 893-4724 dept. fax
* Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology
* University of California
* Santa Barbara, CA 93106 holmgren@...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Tropical Kingbird at the SB Bird Refuge

Mark Holmgren <holmgren@...>
 

Dick Norton, Topanga, CA ae327@... submitted the report below of a
TK at the BR. Following that is response from Paul Lehman. Karen exhorts
us to find a Couch's Kingbird!
Mark
~~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~~
Tropical Kingbird - Santa Barbara - July 25, 1999

After a day of birding Santa Barbara County, Jim Abernathy, Colin Rogers
of South Australia, and Richard Norton stopped at the Andree Clark Bird
Refuge. We walked westward, along the trail north of the lake. JA and
CR were sitting at the next to last overlook, when CR asked, "What is that
yellow bird?"

There was a kingbird across the water, on the northwest side of the
western-most large island. It was several hundred feet away.

JA replied, "It looks like a Tropical Kingbird."

JA called RN, who was farther west, on the radio. RN looked at the bird
with binoculars. RN saw a very bright yellow kingbird, but was not
ready to agree to the ID, because it seemed too far out of season.

RN walked back to the car, and retrieved a Kowa TSN-4 scope with a 20-
60 power eyepiece. The bird remained in the same area.

All three observers were now between the last two overlooks, east of
the small bridge, near the end of the east-west path, at a location closest
to the bird. The sunlight was quite favorable, being no more than 45
degrees off of directly behind us. There was no significant heat
distortion in the scope view.

The bird was a kingbird, with a dark back and very bright yellow breast
and belly. The yellow came farther up the breast than it would in a
Cassin's Kingbird.

The bill was dark, and noticably larger than that of a Cassin's or
Western Kingbird.

The forked tail was seen very well. It had no white on either the edges
or tips. The rectrix lengths tapered in length toward the center. R1
was shorter than R2, which was shorter than R3, ..., on both sides. The
forked appearance was not due to a missing rectrix.

We did not hear the bird call or sing.

We have not eliminated Couche's Kingbird from what we observed.

This description was written by Richard Norton from memory, after
talking with Jim Abernathy. It has been reviewed by Colin Rogers.

Yours truly,

Dick Norton, Topanga, CA ae327@...
~~ ~~ ~~ ~~
From: Shawneen Finnegan/Paul Lehman <lehmfinn@...>
To: Karen Bridgers <kbridgers@...>
Sent: Tuesday, July 27, 1999 1:05 PM
Subject: Re: Fw: Fw: Some Santa Barbara Bird Sightings - July 25, 1999

Karen:

The kingbird report seems credible to me, and folks should try to refind it if
possible. Remember that Brad Hines photographed a mid-summer Tropical near
Lompoc last year or the year before, and there is also a summer record for the
Farallones, so this record would not be without precedent. Of course, if the
bird remained silent, it would probably be best to leave it as a
Tropical/Couch's--as the observers note as well--given the very odd time of
year. Given multiple observers saw the bird and agree with the description, it
has more credence than an unknown single-observer sight record would have.
Aren't Virginia Rails assumed/known to nest periodically at LLC? I would think
they would.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
* Mark Holmgren, Associate Director 805 893-4098 office
* Museum of Systematics and Ecology 805 893-4724 dept. fax
* Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology
* University of California
* Santa Barbara, CA 93106 holmgren@...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Re: Tropical Kingbird at the SB Bird Refuge

Karen Bridgers <kbridgers@...>
 

Thanks, Mark. Now everyone will know I'm an idiot!

K.

----- Original Message -----
From: Mark Holmgren <holmgren@...>
To: <sbcobirding@...>
Sent: Tuesday, July 27, 1999 6:25 PM
Subject: [sbcobirding] Tropical Kingbird at the SB Bird Refuge


Dick Norton, Topanga, CA ae327@... submitted the report below of a
TK at the BR. Following that is response from Paul Lehman. Karen exhorts
us to find a Couch's Kingbird!
Mark
~~ ~~ ~~ ~~ ~~
Tropical Kingbird - Santa Barbara - July 25, 1999

After a day of birding Santa Barbara County, Jim Abernathy, Colin Rogers
of South Australia, and Richard Norton stopped at the Andree Clark Bird
Refuge. We walked westward, along the trail north of the lake. JA and
CR were sitting at the next to last overlook, when CR asked, "What is
that
yellow bird?"

There was a kingbird across the water, on the northwest side of the
western-most large island. It was several hundred feet away.

JA replied, "It looks like a Tropical Kingbird."

JA called RN, who was farther west, on the radio. RN looked at the bird
with binoculars. RN saw a very bright yellow kingbird, but was not
ready to agree to the ID, because it seemed too far out of season.

RN walked back to the car, and retrieved a Kowa TSN-4 scope with a 20-
60 power eyepiece. The bird remained in the same area.

All three observers were now between the last two overlooks, east of
the small bridge, near the end of the east-west path, at a location
closest
to the bird. The sunlight was quite favorable, being no more than 45
degrees off of directly behind us. There was no significant heat
distortion in the scope view.

The bird was a kingbird, with a dark back and very bright yellow breast
and belly. The yellow came farther up the breast than it would in a
Cassin's Kingbird.

The bill was dark, and noticably larger than that of a Cassin's or
Western Kingbird.

The forked tail was seen very well. It had no white on either the edges
or tips. The rectrix lengths tapered in length toward the center. R1
was shorter than R2, which was shorter than R3, ..., on both sides. The
forked appearance was not due to a missing rectrix.

We did not hear the bird call or sing.

We have not eliminated Couche's Kingbird from what we observed.

This description was written by Richard Norton from memory, after
talking with Jim Abernathy. It has been reviewed by Colin Rogers.

Yours truly,

Dick Norton, Topanga, CA ae327@...
~~ ~~ ~~ ~~
From: Shawneen Finnegan/Paul Lehman <lehmfinn@...>
To: Karen Bridgers <kbridgers@...>
Sent: Tuesday, July 27, 1999 1:05 PM
Subject: Re: Fw: Fw: Some Santa Barbara Bird Sightings - July 25, 1999

Karen:

The kingbird report seems credible to me, and folks should try to refind
it if
possible. Remember that Brad Hines photographed a mid-summer Tropical
near
Lompoc last year or the year before, and there is also a summer record
for the
Farallones, so this record would not be without precedent. Of course, if
the
bird remained silent, it would probably be best to leave it as a
Tropical/Couch's--as the observers note as well--given the very odd time
of
year. Given multiple observers saw the bird and agree with the
description, it
has more credence than an unknown single-observer sight record would
have.

Aren't Virginia Rails assumed/known to nest periodically at LLC? I would
think
they would.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
* Mark Holmgren, Associate Director 805 893-4098 office
* Museum of Systematics and Ecology 805 893-4724 dept. fax
* Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology
* University of California
* Santa Barbara, CA 93106
holmgren@...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


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Re: Tropical Kingbird at the SB Bird Refuge

Mark Holmgren <holmgren@...>
 

Why do you say this?


At 06:44 PM 7/27/99 -0700, you wrote:
Thanks, Mark. Now everyone will know I'm an idiot!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
* Mark Holmgren, Associate Director 805 893-4098 office
* Museum of Systematics and Ecology 805 893-4724 dept. fax
* Ecology, Evolution, and Marine Biology
* University of California
* Santa Barbara, CA 93106 holmgren@...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Santa Maria River 7/30

Slobird@...
 

I spent two hours this morning down at the Santa Maria River mouth. The
onshore ocean breeze started just as I arrived, but did not increase to the
intensity that I was feeling on the SLOCO coast the previous two days...but
it was still breezy.

The river mouth is open to the ocean and there is some great habitat,
especially with all the water coming down the river. There are plenty of
nice shallow-water flats with a small number of peeps and other shorebirds.

Highlights were three Semipalmated Sandpipers (all juveniles) and two Baird's
Sandpipers (again all juvs). One of the SeSa was at the very south end where
the sand/mud flats give way to vegetation (there was also one of the
Semipalmated Plover young in this area). The other two SeSa were foraging
together further north towards the big black sand?-filled bags. There were
enough subtle differences between the three individuals to make me feel
comfortable on the numbers.

Along with these birds were 12 Black-bellied Plovers, 30 Semipalmated
Plovers, seven Snowy Plovers, 14 dowitcher sp., 75 Western's, the same
number of Least's, 300 Sanderlings and one Red-necked Phalarope. Very few
terns with only small numbers of Caspian, Forster's and Least.

I stopped by the Santa Maria Wastewater Treatment Plant and had 35 Wilson's
Phalaropes, two Long-billed Dowitchers (my first of the season), 20 Greater
Yellowlegs, two Lesser Yellowlegs, numerous Black-necked Stilts and small
numbers of peeps.

See ya,
Greg Smith
Morro Bay

Early Date Forster's Tern juv

Mark Holmgren <holmgren@...>
 

Hi Folks,
     Kevin Lafferty took and transmitted a digital photo today of 2 Least Terns foraging at Devereux Slough mouth.  That prompted me to look at Goleta Beach and Goleta Bay for terns.  There were 6 or 7 Forster's Terns in the bay, mostly around the buoys at the E end of the bay.  Among them was 1 juvenile Forsters seen well from the UCSB cliffs looking down on the birds as they flew by. 
    BOSB mentions an early date in SB Co. for juvenile Forster's Tern as 8 August.  This precedes that obviously.  Yet it does not seem that unlikely that juv FoTe would arrive on the coast in July.  Perhaps we have not looked hard enough.
Mark
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
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
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Re: Early Date Forster's Tern juv

Slobird@...
 

Mark Holmgren's statement that Forster's Terns could be showing up in late
July on the coast (Devereux Slough) is further substantiated by what I saw at
the Santa Maria River mouth yesterday: a juvenile Forster's Tern's nonstop
"begging" call to an adjacent solitary adult.

Greg Smith
Morro Bay, CA

No. Shrike

brad hines <bkhnca@...>
 

Is anyone aware of Northern Shrike records from eastern SLOco? SW Kern
co?

Figueroa Mtn.

Paloma Nieto <palomanieto@...>
 

Figueroa Mtn. was pretty slow this morning (only 5 birds were banded in 6 hours).  I did however, net and band a hatch year Hermit Warbler (passing through I'm sure as I haven't seen or heard any adults in the vicinity prior to this).  On the way down the entertainment was courtesy of 4 Condors (2 flying overhead and 2 perching on a dead - almost - pine at the ranger station).  It appears they've been visiting there regularly so keep your eyes open!!

Paloma.

Paloma Nieto
Wildlife Biologist
palomanieto@...
(805) 929-5377

-- "He whose ear is untrained to hear the harmonious discord of the birds travels alone when he might have company."

Shorebirds

brad hines <bkhnca@...>
 

Hello all: I birded the SMRE yesterday morning from 7-9. Not much
change from last week: at least three SemiSand continue along with three
juv Bairds. Most interesting to have juv SeSa feeding with nothing but
adult WeSa. The lone SemiPlo chick was easily observed ( I didn't see
the bands) feeding near the river east of the parking lot. This evening
I checked out conditions at SYRE. The water level is rising back into
the channels along the entrance road. The wet edge near the beach
continues to support feeding shorebirds which included: one juv SeSa and
a Surfbird. Had eight juv Least Terns also. Thank you Krista for the
info.

report Friday Morning

JHcynwren@...
 

There were 10 Least Terns (1 juv.) on the beach just west of the "Dune
Pond" which is just west of Devereaux. There were also 25 Snowy Plovers in
the dry sand.
There are 100+ hummingbirds at our house inc. Anna's, Costa's,
Black-chinned and Selasphorus. Less than 10% are adult males. They consume
4 gallons of sugar water per day.
Joan Hardie

Mist netting and banding

Paloma Nieto <palomanieto@...>
 

Mist netting at Chorro Flats today didn't produce any rarities but we did mist net 105 birds (a record for the site).  Lots of Common yellowthroats (immatures and adults) and Song sparrows and a mixture of Wilson's warblers, Orange-crowned warblers, Black-phoebes, Bushtits, Spotted towhee, Barn swallow, Brown-headed cowbird (YUK!), Swainson's thrush and a deer that took out about 1/2 a net!

I will be mist netting at Oso Flaco and Chorro Flats through fall migration (early November).  Will be at Oso Flaco next on Friday, August 20th and Chorro Flats on Saturday, August 21st and every other week thereafter.  If anyone would like to join us to see what interesting things we catch show up between 7AM and 12 PM on any of those days (I bring breakfast - muffins usually - if anyone needs to be bribed).

Paloma

Paloma Nieto
Wildlife Biologist
palomanieto@...
(805) 929-5377

-- "He whose ear is untrained to hear the harmonious discord of the birds travels alone when he might have company."

deja vu

brad hines <bkhnca@...>
 

Good afternoon to all, Apparently things are slow to change at
SMRE. The Sunday morning highlights include: three SemiSandpipers,one
Red Knot,two Bairds,and many juv Leasts and Westerns. No tiny SemiPlo
though :,-( Ciao!...time.

Sunday

Gene Lynch <grlynch@...>
 

From the Santa Maria river mouth via Brad Hines

The Sunday morning highlights include: three SemiSandpipers,one
Red Knot,two Bairds,and many juv Leasts and Westerns

Central Coast Birding Trail

Gene Lynch <grlynch@...>
 

Congratulations to Jamie Chavez for creating the Santa Barbara County
Birding Group.

As reports of migrating birds begin to filter in from local hotspots
it's a good time to start thinking about forming a team to participate
in the Central Coast Birding Rally which highlights birding sites along
the Central Coast Birding Trail.
The Rally is the weekend of October 15-17, 1999. Remember, all Rally
events are absolutely free to participants and sponsors. Check out the
Rally webpage for all the details.
http://homepages.go.com/~lpas/lpas.html

There are two categories of competition, and ,for those who don't want
to compete on a birding team, the Rally could use volunteers for
staffing the checkpoints during the competition and for helping with the
picnic. For monitoring the checkpoints call Eldora Barton, 736-2684, and
for the picnic call Patsy Warwick, 688-8733.
It's not too soon to register!

Gene Lynch, President
La Purisima AS

Re: report Friday Morning

Rebecca Fagan Coulter <impact2@...>
 

Hi Joan,
Four gallons of sugar water! I hope you have stock in C&H. I didn't see any
Costa's when I hiked Aliso Loop on Friday--now I know where they've gone. I had
a lovely hike early Friday morning. It was very quiet birdwise, but the day
was perfect--cool, slight cloud cover, no crowds. I'm really growing fond of
that trail!

G&B and Chris and I birded at McGrath State Beach yesterday. According to Guy,
it was a little slow, but as far as I was concerned, it was great. No Baird's
or Stilt (which have been seen recently), but did have Semi-palmated Sandpiper.
Beautiful looks at White-faced Ibis in the sunlight, good tern i.d. session
(Elegant, Forster's, Common, Caspian), lots of the usual shorebirds.

I'll have to get out to Devereaux one of these afternoons.
Rebecca

JHcynwren@... wrote:

There were 10 Least Terns (1 juv.) on the beach just west of the "Dune
Pond" which is just west of Devereaux. There were also 25 Snowy Plovers in
the dry sand.
There are 100+ hummingbirds at our house inc. Anna's, Costa's,
Black-chinned and Selasphorus. Less than 10% are adult males. They consume
4 gallons of sugar water per day.
Joan Hardie

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Re: report Friday Morning

Rebecca Fagan Coulter <impact2@...>
 

Hello SB Co. Birding subscribers,
You just received a message from me intended to go to Joan Hardie. In replying
to her email, I replied to you all. Now you all know a little bit more about me
than you intended...most of you don't know me at all! But there it is--I'm
still fine-tuning this high-tech messaging. My apologies for the clutter--and
thanks to Jamie Chavez for organizing the group!

Rebecca

postbreeders and misc.

jcwings@pronet.net <jcwings@...>
 

Hello,

First of all, it might be time for an update on the sbcobirding group.
There are now 45 subscribers to this listserve in just about two weeks
time. Thank you for your interest and participation. This should get
even more exciting as fall migration rolls around. If you know of
someone that might be interested in subscribing, please refer them to
the web site address (found at the bottom of the page) or send their
email address to me and I will forward the auto invitation to them. Also
wanted are addresses for people that might contribute sightings from the
Channel Islands. We may not make it out there but it would be nice to
hear about what is being found on the islands. Please help me to keep
this group growing in size so we can all benefit from it.

A reminder, I intentionally set this up so "Reply To" messages would be
sent to the entire group (see the welcome message in the archive).
Responses to a posted message can be of interest to the entire group,
especially when a question is posed, or someone is seeking information,
and everyone else is wondering what the answer might be. A private
response would not provide this to the rest of the group. If you wish to
reply to the originator of the message, send it to their private email
address. Rebecca's reply to a posted message was of interest to the
group (I thought) and adds to the information that we can receive from
this list group. However, I can change the settings so "Reply To"
messages are not seen by the group. Let me know your opinions about that
if you have any.

Secondly, there is obvious post breeding bird movement going on.
Preisker Park in Santa Maria today had a few Yellow Warblers,
Pacific-slope Flycatchers, Black-headed Grosbeaks, Hooded and Bullock's
Orioles, and a Western Tanager. This park is a good migrant trap but
does not support these birds as breeders. Also, there is absolutely no
sign of the "mystery grackle" that gave everyone fits in early summer. I
have not seen it during several lunch hour visits now. For those that
didn't get to see it, go to Joe Morlan's web site where there are a few
pictures of it and comments from experts on its identity. A great web
site for many reasons. Go to the California Birding and Mystery Photos
links. I concede the point that it is not a Common Grackle but a hybrid
Great-tailed Grackle X Brewer's Blackbird as many suspected (perhaps the
first ever seen). It had me fooled, but it was fun while it lasted! I've
learned a lot because of that experience. Good birding.

http://fog.ccsf.cc.ca.us/~jmorlan/

Jamie Chavez
Santa Maria
jcwings@...

Re: postbreeders and misc.

Beqrqry@...
 

I vote for reply to defaulting to the whole list.

Q

Curlew Sandpiper at Goleta Sewage Treatment Plant

Karen Bridgers <kbridgers@...>
 

Last evening, an adult Curlew Sandpiper in nearly complete breeding plumage
was found at the Goleta Sewage Plant on William Moffet Place (between the
airport and Goleta Beach). The plant can be reached by staying on Fairview
Avenue going south, passing the airport and looking for the gate opening on
the left between two large white pillars. Note that the south-bound
Fairview off-ramp is closed due to freeway construction, so you'll have to
get off at Los Carneros, turn right and go to Hollister, left on Hollister,
then right from Hollister onto Fairview.

The bird was still present this morning, but seems to be very skittish. The
sewage plant folks have said it is okay to broadcast this bird (which we are
doing on Calbird, BirdWest, etc.), but ask for your cooperation in the
following:

PLEASE SIGN IN AT THE OFFICE BEFORE HEADING OUT TO THE PONDS.

If you should see the bird, please call me (964-1316) and/or Joan Lentz
(969-4397) with an update.

Good birding!

Karen Bridgers
kbridgers@...