Date   
re dead fulmars

Don Tate
 

How will we know a die-off is occurring except if reports are made of dead birds, following up on earlier reports? China's former reticence on Covid springs to mind. Dead pelagics are unlikely to have drifted many miles to shore, I would guess. Such reports may inspire coast watches. Minus tides (at Pt Arguello) will be occurring at 1:36 PM Friday, 2:18 PM Saturday, and 2:57 PM Sunday. I hope I'm not the only SB Co person who's seen fulmars on the beach during storms. Venture forth, O ye doughty! :-)

Don Tate

[eBird Alert] Santa Barbara County Rare Bird Alert <daily>

eBird alert
 

*** Species Summary:

- Hammond's Flycatcher (1 report)

---------------------------------------------
Thank you for subscribing to the <daily> Santa Barbara County Rare Bird Alert.The report below shows observations of rare birds in Santa Barbara County. View or unsubscribe to this alert at https://ebird.org/alert/summary?sid=SN35915
NOTE: all sightings are UNCONFIRMED unless indicated

Hammond's Flycatcher (Empidonax hammondii) (1)
- Reported Apr 02, 2020 09:02 by Mark Holmgren
- San Antonio Creek upstream Tucker's Grove, Santa Barbara, California
- Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=34.45299,-119.78458&ll=34.45299,-119.78458
- Checklist: https://ebird.org/checklist/S66543242
- Media: 4 Photos
- Comments: "In Mtn Mahoghany in upper 1/4 of San Antonio Creek Trail. Bird showed long primary projection not shown in photos, flesh-colored mandible, small, narrow bill. Tail slightly notched as shown. Not vocal. Consistently ensconced in the shrub. If correctly identified, this would be an early date for Hammond's Flycatcher."

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Birding miscellany

Florence Sanchez
 

Yesterday I checked out a few spot in Goleta where there is nothing remarkable right now, but they could get better soon.  I walked along Winchester Canyon Road, checking out the small park and the creek.  There was a lot of activity of common birds and both Hooded and Bullock's Orioles were present.  Best finds here were a flock of AMerican Goldfinches near the Park and a nicely plumaged "Myrtle" Warbler.

From there I went to Ellwood and checked the area at the end of Santa Barbara Shores Road.  This has been a good spot for Orioles in spring, including Baltimore.  No Baltimores found yesterday, but there were plenty of Hooded and Bullocks Orioles in the eucs and also lots of Woodpecker activity ( 5 species).  The path to Coronado drive is blocked by mud and a downed tree.  To get to Coronado, you have to cross the creek on the plank bridge and walk the bluffs path on the other side until you can get down to another crossing. 

I tried a seawatch at Coal Oil Point, but the wind was from the southeast and nothing was moving.  Eventually the coastal eddy brought up a ribbon of fog that blocked the ocean view.

Today I checked a couple of spots in Carpinteria.  First was Rincon Creek at Bates Road, where there were singing Orange-crowned and Townsend's Warblers, HouseWrens, Robins, and both Hooded and Bullock's Orioles.  My target bird here was a Black-chinned Hummingbird, but I didn't find one.  They like the giant Echiums that are planted along the road to the west, which are blooming, but no Black-chins yet.  This area is worth checking again.

I drove by Lake Jocelyn but there were two people out on a boat in the lake, so I figured it would not be worth a stop.  I ended up at Carpinteria Creek where there was some modest activity near the Eighth Street Bridge, but nothing remarkable.  My best bird here was a Lincoln's Sparrow.  I found no Chestnut-backed Chickadees at either Carp Creek or Bates Road.

Florence Sanchez

kingbird movement

Eric Culbertson
 

This morning I was able to count 45 kingbirds passing over the yard in groups beginning at 0745 hrs and continuing for about 40 mins. Although all were likely western I only managed to identify six as such due to distance and sunlight.

Eric Culbertson
Carpinteria

Carpinteria Salt Marsh

Rob Denholtz
 

Carpinteria Salt Marsh, Thursday morning, April 2, 2020

Spent a couple of hours in the Marsh . . . Marsh Park, Basin 1, and walked up along Santa Monica Creek.

Found two Lincoln’s Sparrows, two Golden Crowns, a definite Rufous Hummer, and fos Western Kingbirds.  Individual numbers in many species were high.  The Cliff Swallows are back en masse.  Complete list:  https://ebird.org/checklist/email?subID=S66534337

Rob Denholtz
Carp

--
Rob Denholtz
Carpinteria

Calliope Hummer

Nick Lethaby
 

After several days of checking, I finally found a male Calliope Hummingbird in Winchester Canyon this evening. Although most of you likely know this already, hummingbird activity seems to be much higher in the evening, especially after sunset. In particular, aggression levels drop as dusk falls and birds are happy to feed alongside each other rather than fight. At least in Winchester Canyon, I have been finding that Calliopes feed most frequently low down in flower beds. I have only once seen one at a feeder and they don't use the bottlebrush trees that often, probably because of the aggressive selasphorus species.

I may have has a female Costa's as there was an Anna's or Costa's type with the wingtips reaching the tail. However, I find this a tricky identification.

Nick


--
Nick Lethaby
Goleta, CA

[eBird Alert] Santa Barbara County Rare Bird Alert <daily>

eBird alert
 

*** Species Summary:

- Vesper Sparrow (1 report)

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Thank you for subscribing to the <daily> Santa Barbara County Rare Bird Alert.The report below shows observations of rare birds in Santa Barbara County. View or unsubscribe to this alert at https://ebird.org/alert/summary?sid=SN35915
NOTE: all sightings are UNCONFIRMED unless indicated

Vesper Sparrow (Pooecetes gramineus) (1) CONFIRMED
- Reported Mar 31, 2020 09:30 by Zena Casteel
- Santa Cruz Island - near Main Ranch, Santa Barbara, California
- Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=33.9986232,-119.7152898&ll=33.9986232,-119.7152898
- Checklist: https://ebird.org/checklist/S66465334
- Media: 1 Photo
- Comments: "White eye ring, unmarked belly, and distinct white outer retrices in flight. Photos."

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Re: another dead fulmar

Jamie Chavez
 

This sounds like the perfect opportunity to comment on dead vs live bird reporting. 

While eBird does not permit the inclusion of dead birds into checklist submissions (You didn't know that? Please see eBird best practices: https://ebird.freshdesk.com/support/solutions/articles/48000795623-ebird-best-practices ), iNaturalist, by comparison, does permit this and there is an attribute "Alive or Dead" when filling out an iNaturalist entry that one can choose for reporting deceased birds. As far as sbcobirding is concerned, generally, we should refrain from posting about dead birds unless it is part of a broader discussion about a possible die-off event, or if it represents a rarity that is worth reporting whether it is alive or dead. 

Moderator,

  --
Jamie Chavez
Santa Maria, CA


On Wed, Apr 1, 2020 at 10:43 AM Christopher Kibler <kibler@...> wrote:
Adding to the recent observations of dead seabirds, this weekend I observed a dead Northern Fulmar on East Beach near the Sycamore Creek outfall.

https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/40916125

Chris
Goleta




--
Jamie Chavez
Santa Maria, CA

Re: another dead fulmar

Linus Blomqvist
 

Hi all, 

If all the news of dead northern fulmars brings you down, there are at least some in the channel that are alive and well - I saw one from Coal Oil Point a week ago today. Checklist here. I went seawatching four times last week in the moderately strong western winds, the northern fulmar being the only notable sighting.

Linus

______________
Linus Blomqvist


On Wed, Apr 1, 2020 at 10:43 AM Christopher Kibler <kibler@...> wrote:
Adding to the recent observations of dead seabirds, this weekend I observed a dead Northern Fulmar on East Beach near the Sycamore Creek outfall.

https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/40916125

Chris
Goleta

Re: another dead fulmar

Christopher Kibler
 

Adding to the recent observations of dead seabirds, this weekend I observed a dead Northern Fulmar on East Beach near the Sycamore Creek outfall.

https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/40916125

Chris
Goleta

Birding policy at SBMNH 4/1/20

Rebecca Coulter
 

Greetings birders,
Since people have been asking, here is more about using the Museum of Natural History property. It’s a moving target, but as of today 4/1 these are guidelines; appropriate signage is posted at all entry areas:
Parking lot will remain closed at all times except in emergencies. No parking allowed at any time in the lot.
You are permitted to use the woodland WEST of the Club House and Eyes in the Sky aviary. No one is allowed east of these buildings except to walk through the parking lot. Use of the recirculating creek and surrounding area not permitted.
Please observe social distancing from others you encounter: at least 6 feet between you.
Dogs are permitted on leash only. People with off leash dogs will be asked to leave.

Thanks for adhering to these policies while birding on the property at this time.

Rebecca Coulter
SB

Hummingbird arrivals - Blackchinned

Peter Schneekloth
 

The hummingbird show definitely ticked up a few notches today with a dozen or so Rufous/Allen's buzzing the feeders. After an hour or so sit a Black-chinned male arrived and allowed for some nice detail shots. A few shots of the Black-chinned and some of the other birds as well at my flickr site:

https://www.flickr.com/photos/55934026@N05/49722667232/in/dateposted-public/

Curious to see the hummingbird action at dusk.

Peter Schneekloth
Buellton

[eBird Alert] Santa Barbara County Rare Bird Alert <daily>

eBird alert
 

*** Species Summary:

- Neotropic Cormorant (1 report)
- Vesper Sparrow (1 report)

---------------------------------------------
Thank you for subscribing to the <daily> Santa Barbara County Rare Bird Alert.The report below shows observations of rare birds in Santa Barbara County. View or unsubscribe to this alert at https://ebird.org/alert/summary?sid=SN35915
NOTE: all sightings are UNCONFIRMED unless indicated

Neotropic Cormorant (Phalacrocorax brasilianus) (1)
- Reported Mar 30, 2020 12:15 by Dawn Hovey
- Devereux Slough, Santa Barbara, California
- Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=34.4136013,-119.8756027&ll=34.4136013,-119.8756027
- Checklist: https://ebird.org/checklist/S66450268
- Media: 1 Photo
- Comments: "We were told by the Merlin app and experienced birders looking at the picture that this is a young Neotropic Cormorant. (Picture taken by Steve Hovey.)"

Vesper Sparrow (Pooecetes gramineus) (1)
- Reported Mar 31, 2020 09:30 by Abbie Valine
- Santa Cruz Island - near Main Ranch, Santa Barbara, California
- Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=33.9986232,-119.7152898&ll=33.9986232,-119.7152898
- Checklist: https://ebird.org/checklist/S66456607
- Media: 1 Photo
- Comments: "White eye ring, unmarked belly, and white outer retrices. Photos."

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Re: Kinevan Road this morning 31 March 2020

Florence Sanchez
 

Mark is right--Kinevan is a great place to be right now.  I checked out La Cumbre Peak and East Camino Cielo Road this morning first (not much going on there), so I didn't even get to Kinevan until around 10 a.m. and there was stll lots of activity.

While on ECC, I checked out the recent burn area as I did a few weeks ago.   Most of the fire follower stuff up there still isn't blooming.  I suspect it will be another three weeks or so before it does.   (Exception today was two plants of Zygadene Lily in full bud.)  However coming down San Marco Pass Road, I noticed that lower down (next to the passing lane that is currently staked off with orange poles), some of the lavender Large-flowered Phacelia is blooming.  Lots of stuff is stump sprouting too.  Watching the regeneration of a burned area in chaparral is an intriguing pastime.

Florence Sanchez
 

On Tuesday, March 31, 2020, 04:05:28 PM PDT, Mark Holmgren <maholmgren33@...> wrote:


I walked San Jose Creek along Kinevan Rd this morning where I met Florence Sanchez.  She’d agree, I’m sure, that Kinevan was really active today.  Highlights that I was able to detect were:

  • Yellow Warblers (3) present
  • Golden-crowned Kinglets in different places along Kinevan Rd. 
  • 3, possibly 4, singing Cassin’s Vireos
  • Large counts of Pacific-slope Flycatchers (13) and Warbling Vireos (14)
  • Only 1 pair of Black Phoebes, but that one pair was building a nest in a natural site—in a large boulder along the stream bottom.  
Of 381 Black Phoebe breeding records, we have 170 records for which the nest site was known.
The breeding record today at Kinevan is one of only 6 of those 170 records where breeding occurred in a natural setting.  

Here is where the Breeding Bird Study shows Black Phoebes choose to nest:

Nest species/structure

Number BlPh breeding records

bridge

170

nest site not known

131

building or house

60

culvert

6

inside dovecote

2

outhouse

2

boulder in creek

3

rock face

2

inactive hot dog stand

1

marble column

1

picnic table canopy

1

pipeline

1

platform over pond

1

stream bank

1

 

Breeding evidence was also collected for American Crow and Steller's Jay (by Florence). 

Neither Pacific Wren nor Varied Thrush were detected by me.

eBird checklist is here:

https://ebird.org/checklist/S66454918

 

Mark Holmgren

San Marcos Pass

Kinevan Road this morning 31 March 2020

Mark Holmgren
 

I walked San Jose Creek along Kinevan Rd this morning where I met Florence Sanchez.  She’d agree, I’m sure, that Kinevan was really active today.  Highlights that I was able to detect were:

  • Yellow Warblers (3) present
  • Golden-crowned Kinglets in different places along Kinevan Rd. 
  • 3, possibly 4, singing Cassin’s Vireos
  • Large counts of Pacific-slope Flycatchers (13) and Warbling Vireos (14)
  • Only 1 pair of Black Phoebes, but that one pair was building a nest in a natural site—in a large boulder along the stream bottom.  
Of 381 Black Phoebe breeding records, we have 170 records for which the nest site was known.
The breeding record today at Kinevan is one of only 6 of those 170 records where breeding occurred in a natural setting.  

Here is where the Breeding Bird Study shows Black Phoebes choose to nest:

Nest species/structure

Number BlPh breeding records

bridge

170

nest site not known

131

building or house

60

culvert

6

inside dovecote

2

outhouse

2

boulder in creek

3

rock face

2

inactive hot dog stand

1

marble column

1

picnic table canopy

1

pipeline

1

platform over pond

1

stream bank

1

 

Breeding evidence was also collected for American Crow and Steller's Jay (by Florence). 

Neither Pacific Wren nor Varied Thrush were detected by me.

eBird checklist is here:

https://ebird.org/checklist/S66454918

 

Mark Holmgren

San Marcos Pass

Purple Martins and Feeding birds in the breeding period

Mark Holmgren
 

On a visit to Nojoqui Falls County Park today I heard one briefly singing and saw one male (could have been the same bird) Purple Martin along Alisal Road near Nojoqui Park.  I'm not sure if 30 March is necessarily a late arrival date for PuMa, but I know they've arrived in mid-March in other years.
     ~~.    ~~.    ~~.    
On another matter, I thought I might pass to folks a short blurb I wrote today to a guy who lives on my property.  It pertains to the risk of predation to medium and small bird when tossing bird seed during the breeding season in habitat that supports breeding birds.

Dear . . . . ,

When large numbers of California Scrub-Jays congregate in an area they become very predatory on the nestlings and eggs of other bird species their size and smaller. We have such a congregation here because of the feeding that attracts the quail and other species, especially jays and crows.  A couple years ago, once I connected the facts that there was no small bird breeding success on the property and that I was supporting this unnaturally large bunch of jay, I quit tossing out bird seed.


It’s ironic that I, a chronicler of breeding birds in SB County, have few to no small- or medium-sized birds breeding where I live.  Kinda funny, in a perverse way.


It’s up to you whether you continue to feed birds during the breeding period, which we have just entered.  If you discontinue, we will have some angry birds bitching you out for a while, and they will take it out on other birds that try to nest.  But soon the jays will disperse and by the middle and end of the breeding period, we may see some breeding success.


Here are some of the species, large and small, on and near our property that would breed here if all things were equal.


Thanks for reading this.

Mark

[list of birds omitted]

     ~~.    ~~.    ~~. 

Mark Holmgren

San Marcos Pass

[eBird Alert] Santa Barbara County Rare Bird Alert <daily>

eBird alert
 

*** Species Summary:

- Solitary Sandpiper (1 report)

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Thank you for subscribing to the <daily> Santa Barbara County Rare Bird Alert.The report below shows observations of rare birds in Santa Barbara County. View or unsubscribe to this alert at https://ebird.org/alert/summary?sid=SN35915
NOTE: all sightings are UNCONFIRMED unless indicated

Solitary Sandpiper (Tringa solitaria) (1)
- Reported Mar 30, 2020 10:40 by Jim Moore
- Lake Jocelyn, Santa Barbara, California
- Map: http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&t=p&z=13&q=34.3919961,-119.4772805&ll=34.3919961,-119.4772805
- Checklist: https://ebird.org/checklist/S66409626
- Comments: "Continuing bird. Medium to large sandpiper, similar to Spotted Sandpiper, but larger dwith large eye-rings."

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Coal Oil Point and points nearby

Florence Sanchez
 

I walked Sands Beach at Coal Oil Point this morning, shortly after low tide.  It was lovely out there.  No Wandering tattler on the rocks, but I had plenty of other shorebirds, including Willets, Marbled Godwits, Whimbrels, Sanderlings, 2 Western Sandpipers, 2 Semi-palmated Plovers, and lots of Snowy Plovers.  My plan was to do a seawatch after walking the beach, but constant checking as I walked indicated it would be another slow day and there were other people sitting at the tables on the point, so I cancelled that idea.

Since I didn't find either Short-billed Dowitchers or a DUnlin on the beach there, I decided to check the UCSB Lagoon near the faculty club.  A small island there is often good for shorebirds and my intuition was right on.  There was a large flock of Dowitchers feeding there (70+).  All were in basic plumage and I find it very hard to separate the two species in that condition; however, the birds were fairly noisy and that helped.  I heard lots of the Yellow-legs-type call of Short-billed, and at least 1 Long-billed's typical "Keek," so I think both species were present with Short-bills predominating.  In addition to the Dowitchers, I also found 2 Dunlin there, both in basic plumage.

After I left the lagoon, I decided to check out Area K but not much was happening there.  Ducks numbers were way down from my last visit, but the species variety is still good here.  Noontime may not be the best time to scan this area.  A check of Goleta Beach did not turn up anything interesting.

Florence Sanchez

Goleta Beach hooded gull 4pm

Ron Hirst
 

Likely a Laughing Gull, maybe a Franklins. Floating at  furthest edge of my binoc and camera range, about 300 yards off end of Sandspit parking lot. A scope could discern what it is. Maybe it will come into creek.  Ron Hirst. SB

Oso Flaco Lake

Stephanie Little
 

CA State Parks Takes Additional Steps to Help Slow Down Spread of #COVID19: Vehicle Access Temporarily Closed at Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area, including Oso Flaco and Pismo State Beach. Read press release here: https://bit.ly/3duDuKx