Area K this morning

Florence Sanchez

I had a couple of errands to run in Goleta this morning, so stopped by Area K.  It was late, almost 11 a.m. and I did not expect much at that hour, but I had a good showing nonetheless, especially of the smaller shorebirds.  Among them, I had several Semi-palmated Plovers, several Western Sandpipers, 2 Least Sandpipers, and after a diligent search, I turned up the juvenile Pectoral Sandpiper reported by Nick yesterday evening.  

As happened the last time I was there, something spooked the entire flock and all the birds flew out to the middle of the shallow water.  It was still too deep for the small shorebirds, so they immediately headed back to the mud northeast of the water.  However I was able to get a rough Stilt and Yellowlegs count from that activity:  about 20 Stilts, 5 Greater Yellowlegs, at least 6 Lesser Yellowlegs, 1 Wilson's Phalarope, and 4 Teal that sprang out of the reeds.  One of the Teal was a Cinnamon (long spatulate bill shape and traces of reddish color on head and chest).  The other three had shorter, less spatulate bills; I believe they were probably Blue-winged.  All four had  green speculums and powder blue epaulets.  A single White-faced Ibis was working the far shore.

Also of interest was a Western Kingbird working the hillside vegetation and the marsh.  There has been a Cassin's KB here quite regularly, but this was definitely a Western.

No time for Devereux today.

Florence Sanchez