Monthly Archives: April 2019

cont. Solitaire and misc. waterbirds

On Sunday the 21st, Sara M's Townsend's Solitaire continues in residential Point Loma, having moved a block south today to along Albion near Dupont. Overall migrant landbird numbers just so-so. At the San Diego River mouth there's a 2nd- or 3rd- cycle Glaucous-winged Gull, getting slightly late and slightly surprising given how rare they were locally this past winter. Back on the 17th at the river mouth there was a Gull-billed Tern, which is rare but probably annual there in spring (this species is quite rare anywhere north of the south Bay), and a continuing Reddish Egret. Today up at San Dieguito Lagoon in Del Mar, the Reddish Egret there continues as well. Yesterday, the 20th, a one-by-one count of 250 Red Knots at the saltworks pond at the end of 13th St. was a good total for recent years.

–Paul Lehman & Barbara Carlson, San Diego
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

Western screech owls at San Elijo Lagoon


At 5.40 this morning I heard a pair of screech owls calling and responding just west of the Santa Helena trail. One was up in the old growth bushes on the hill, the other in one of the Torrey pines. They stopped calling at 5.50 and once light, I could not locate them visually. 
Also heard was a great horned owl in the neighborhood to the south, 4 common poorwills including 1 seen on the path. 
And I had a close encounter with a bobcat at the La Orilla/ Santa Helena trail Junction: he stepped out on the path 50 feet in front of me! We stared at each other for maybe 5 seconds and then he took off into the brush. Amazing!
Steve Perry
Solana Beach

Steve Perry
Solana Beach, CA
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

LBVI at Lake Murray!

This morning I encountered a singing Least Bell’s Vireo at Lake Murray! First record that I’m aware of off the top of my head, although I’ll have to research it. He’s in the vicinity of San Carlos Bay.
Barb Kus
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

Cuyamaca Neotropics?

The last ebird report on the Lake Cuyamaca Neotropic Cormorants was April 9.

Has anyone seen them since?

I am considering a drive up there on Tuesday.


                   Help please,


                      Jim Roberts

                 University City

Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

Lewis's Woodpecker continues in Descanso, 20 Apr

A Lewis's Woodpecker continues on the utility poles in the area of 32.8587, -116.6102 or 24976-24926 Viejas Blvd. near Descanso. This bird was first reported by Jim P. yesterday. It moves around, however, as I didn't see it on my return drive through the same area. 

Wintering Lewis's Woodpeckers fairly regularly will remain as late as the beginning of May.

Barbara Carlson
San Diego

Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

off shore carlsbad and mission bay

fyi for the birding community
Pete Ginsburg and I observed about 200 Black storm Petrels this morning saturday  at around 8 just south of the the carlsbad power plant    a number of other expected species seen in big  numbers
couple days back pete I et al did the san diego whale watch 3 hour  pelagic out of mission bay  and had 23 scripps murelets which is the most i have ever seen in 1 day or at the least a few hours   1 very cooperative Guadalupe Fur seal too
good birding

steve brad
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

Black-and-white Warbler – PLNU

I stopped by Point Loma Nazarene University and birded the path along the eastern edge of campus this morning (April 20). After a slow start, activity picked up a little after 830, with the birdiest stretch between the parking garage and the locked Dupont gate. The highlight was a BLACK-AND-WHITE WARBLER creeping along the branches of a large tree about 50 yards north of Dupont on the west side of the path. There were several Black-throated Gray and Nashville Warblers, and a Hermit Warbler present as well.

Alex Abela
San Diego, CA
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

Townsend's Solitaire continuing in Point Loma since March 1

I had seen a Townsend's Solitaire in the neighborhood March 1, so I was surprised to see one today, April 20, about 7:50AM, on Albion St. (near Dupont, near a large Torrey Pine).  Later I realized it is likely the same bird (see reason below). The bird is the "drab" version, with a small faintly rusty patch on the side of the wing.   It has a white eye ring and small dark bill and is plain light gray on the back and underside (including undertail coverts); it has some light edging on some of the wing feathers. It appears fluffy, almost like a young bird. It ate a few red berries and didn't seem to mind us (Keith and me) being quite close.  The only mark I didn't see was white at the outer edges of the tail when it flew around, but when it was perched I could see from the underside that the outer tail feathers were very light at the tips and along the outer half, with dark gray along the upper, inner half.  I returned after walking to the end of Silvergate, found the bird in the Torrey Pine, and spent 15 minutes trying to get a good photo with my phone (no luck).  But it was singing, very quietly, a lovely melodious song, similar to what the Sibley app calls its "continuous song."  I think the bird might be molting as the underside view of the tail seemed to show some very short feathers extending a little past the undertail coverts.  Eventually, the bird flew off, low, to the northeast.  I decided to stop at the end of Dudley on my way home to check the bottlebrush again.  To my astonishment, the Solitaire was perched on the wire at the end of Dudley near the top of the dirt path – exactly where I saw the bird on March 1.  So, if this bird was here almost two months, was it likely wintering?  (The SD Bird Atlas indicates that wintering in the coastal area would be very unlikely.)

     My walk along Silvergate also turned up a Lazuli Bunting and a Golden-crowned Sparrow.

Sara Mayers
Point Loma (San Diego)
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports

Kitchen Creek Rd./Jacumba; late Vesper Sparrow (real and imagined)

On Friday the 19th, a visit to Kitchen Creek Road in the early morning produced–and as reported by others over the past couple weeks–Gray Vireo just barely past mile marker 2 (a usual spot) and multiple Gray Vireos between about a quarter and half a mile east out the Pacific Coast Trail (another usual spot). Black-chinned Sparrows are scattered in good numbers, and there were a couple Mountain Quail just past MM2. No sign of any through-migrant landbirds, however.

At Jacumba, we had only a smallish-to-so-so number of migrants, just 1 White-winged Dove, many Lawrence's Goldfinch pairs are scattered all around town and easy to see, and the Tricolored Blackbirds are nesting at the pond/marsh near the west end of town, with a total of ca. 60+ birds coming and going with food (so, given that there are already young in the nest, fledging could easily happen within a week or ten days, or less). The least expected find of the visit was a getting-late Vesper Sparrow at the east edge of town. In looking up recent reports of this species unusually late in spring (latter April and May) via the eBird species maps, we found a number of pin-drop reports from May of singles and even small groups of birds from forested and semi-forested habitats on Mount Palomar! Clearly, these reports involved juvenile Dark-eyed Juncos–and indeed, the eBird reviewers have gotten them removed from those lists. But the records STILL appear as individual pin-drops with the basic data of date, location, and checklist number if you scroll your mouse over the pin without opening the full checklists up one by one. Very unfortunate, as it will certainly lead the casual data miner to get a very misleading impression of status for any species with number of invalidated records. (There were also a couple good May VESP records, such as from the Ramona Grasslands area one or two years ago.)

–Paul Lehman & Barbara Carlson,  San Diego
Source: SanDiegoRegionBirding Latest Reports