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Monthly Archives: August 2022

Mexican Duck gone? ; a couple early arrivals

Mexican Duck gone? ; a couple early arrivals
By – 12:42 pm

On Friday, 12 Aug, a juvenile Red Knot with a flock of 90 adults at the J Street mudflats sets a new early arrival date for that age-class in the county by one day. Yeah! A Green-winged Teal at Sweetwater Reservoir also on the 12th may be the second earliest arrival date–with the earliest published record being 9 Aug 1978. This species is somewhat regular starting the third week of August, however. Also on the 12th, a juvenile Lesser Yellowlegs and continuing summering Ring-necked Duck were at the upper end of Lower Otay Lake, and a continuing, over-summering, near-adult Bald Eagle was at Sweetwater. Reddish Egrets continue at both J Street and at the San Diego River mouth.

The current last date for the Lower Otay Lake Mexican Duck appears to be 8 Aug. It has now been looked for several times since Tuesday with no success, and the number of Mallards at that north end appears to be only about half of what it was. Whether the bird has fully vacated the premises or just shifted to another part of the lake is unknown.

–Paul Lehman, San Diego

RED-FACED WARBLER – Sunrise Highway, Lagunas Mountains 8/12

RED-FACED WARBLER – Sunrise Highway, Lagunas Mountains 8/12
By – 10:08 am
Victor and Ruben Stoll just messaged me that they found a RED-FACED WARBLER in the Lagunas Mountains along the Sunrise Highway at this pin this morning:, -116.4642885)It appears they’re just southwest of the “Sunset Trailhead”.Will share additional details as I receive them, but I’ve seen the photo and it’s 100%.Nathan GoldbergOff to St. Paul Island, AK with a twinge of jealousy!

Red-eyed Vireo, 8/12

Red-eyed Vireo, 8/12
By – 7:16 am
The REVI that was recorded back in mid July and more recently photographed is present at the Tijuana River Valley Bird and Butterfly Garden. Moved from just N of blue-green building to just E of building at 0710.Matt Sadowski

The Buena Vista sponsored Pelagic Bird trip for August 2022.

The Buena Vista sponsored Pelagic Bird trip for August 2022.
By – 5:04 pm
Hello fellow birders,The BVAS sponsored August pelagic trip aboard the 80ft. Legacy out of Seaforth Landing is this Saturday. The trip is booked full and has a waiting list, as does the Sept. trip. Currently the Oct. 1st. trip has spaces. I would jump on those soon!Fair warning for those of you signed on to Saturday’s trip, parking will be an issue. If possible, I recommend car pooling, ride share, or other method of drop off at the landing. I was by this week and the only spots available were out on the street. No matter how tempting the empty spots are in the lots to the east and west of the landing, DO NOT park there. You could be towed away. Parking on the street is free. but may require a little bit of a walk.Getting to the land early will likely not help much, as we are the last boat to leave that morning.Most boats left the night before.Plan to be parked and checked into the office between 6 a.m. and no later than 6:20 a.m. That is when the orientation will start. We will load passengers on the boat about 6:40.The Legacy has snacks and drinks. You may wish to bring a sandwich or the like for your lunch.There are three heads (restrooms) on the boat.I recommend sunscreen, hats, sunglasses, and light layers for clothing (windbreaker, long sleeved shirt, tee shirt, or the like ). Bins and cameras are welcome. Leave tripods and scopes at home.If you need motion sickness meds I recommend you take them before getting on the boat. I think with breakfast is good, but it’s best to follow the meds directions.The weather forecast as of now is nice, but motion is part of the deal for going offshore.Any question, give me an email off list serve,Dave Povey

Offshore/Nine Mile Bank aboard Legacy– Townsend’s SP, Red Phalarope, etc.

Offshore/Nine Mile Bank aboard Legacy– Townsend’s SP, Red Phalarope, etc.

By – 7:15 pm
Today, Aug 10th, I ventured offshore aboard the Legacy for a quick jaunt on one of their cheap midweek whale-watching trips (I believe Justyn made a post about these a few weeks ago, so if you’re looking for details I’m sure you can find some there).  Upon leaving Mission Bay we made an immediate beeline down to the lower Nine Mile Bank, which of course bode well for our birding potential. It turned out to be a storm-petrel palooza out there, not huge numbers, but a great species variety. The best bird of the day was a Townsend’s Storm-Petrel just on the inside edge of Nine Mile Bank. Other highlights included Ashy Storm-Petrel, both white-rumped and “Chapman’s” Leach’s Storm-Petrels, and a single Red Phalarope.My total offshore list is as follows:Red-necked PhalaropeRed PhalaropeWestern GullRoyal TernElegant TernCaspian TernLeach’s Storm-Petrel (both nominate and dark-rumped Chapman’s)Townsend’s Storm-PetrelBlack Storm-PetrelAshy Storm-PetrelBlack-vented ShearwaterBrandt’s CormorantBrown Pelican  We also had some incredible views of four Blue Whales and a single California Flying Fish. All in all, not bad for only $24!  –Aedyn LoefkeValley Center

Neotropic Cormorant– Safari Park

Neotropic Cormorant– Safari Park
By – 3:43 pm
Today, Aug 8th, there is a Neotropic Cormorant at the lower lagoon in the Safari Park in San Pasqual Valley. This could potentially be the same bird that frequented this same lagoon in the spring of last year.It is not associating with any other cormorants.Also of slight note, there are two Red-necked Phalaropes on a pond in the East Africa fields, the first I have ever seen at the Park.  –Trysten & Aedyn LoefkeValley Center 

updated “San Diego County Avian Database 2002-2022” posted

updated “San Diego County Avian Database 2002-2022” posted

By – 4:48 am

For the past 2-1/2 years I have been working on
a “San Diego County Avian Database 2002-2022.” With assistance
provided by Guy McCaskie and Phil Unitt, and also with input from many
additional San Diego County birders, past and present, the latest version of
this missive has now been posted on-line.

This database includes avian records
from late 2002 to early August 2022—essentially since the pre-publication
cut-off date of records for the San Diego County Bird Atlas by Philip
Unitt (2004). Also included are many pre-2002 records of interest not found in,
or data-corrected from, Unitt (2004) and Unitt (1984; The Birds of San Diego
County). The data include those involving rarities, unseasonal records,
high counts, early and late dates, specimens of interest, range expansions and
contractions, and some other significant population trends. Each species entry
is divided into four principal “sub-regions” of the county—coast,
inland, mountains, and desert–and these sub-regions are further sub-divided
into three seasons—migration, winter, and summer/breeding.

With much-appreciated assistance provided by Jane Mygatt and Natalie
Shapiro, the database has been posted in a WORD version on the Buena Vista
Audubon Society website:

Birding Resources

Once on the site’s Birding Resources page, you should be able to easily view
and download the document. Once downloaded, it should be SEARCHABLE, for ease
of finding particular species, observer names, locations, or whatever.
(Alongside the database on this page there is also an electronic version of the
San Diego County Bird Atlas.)

I plan to continuously update this database, and to post updated versions
approximately every six months. If anyone is interested in the most current
version at any time between those intervals, feel free to contact me privately.

And please do let me know about any errors or omissions you might find. No
correction is too minor!

–Paul Lehman, San Diego


juvenile shorebirds (late & low), W-w Dove

juvenile shorebirds (late & low), W-w Dove

By – 10:01 am

As of August 6th, I have found juvenile shorebirds across the board to be late and in low numbers so far this fall. The first species to arrive, as is typical, back in the third week of July (a bit late) was juv. Willet, followed soon by juv. Wilson’s Phalaropes, and then by juv Long-billed Curlew and Marbled Godwit. And then since the beginning of August there have been juvenile Semipalmated Plovers, Least & Western Sandpipers, Short-billed Dowitchers, Red-necked Phalaropes, as well as a slightly early (Aug 2-3) juv. Greater Yellowlegs. But for most everything, the first juvs are appearing a good week late and almost all appear to still be in decidedly low numbers for this date. I heard that it was a late spring in much of western Alaska, so perhaps (hopefully) things are just running late and numbers will very soon improve greatly; but I also heard that at some point in early summer there was a major heat event in parts of mainland western Alaska and that many nesting waterbirds there may have failed. So, we’ll see…..

Today, Aug 6th, there was a White-winged Dove bordering and in the TRV community gardens. About half the years, this is the first coastal landbird stray I see in the fall season.

Yesterday, Aug 5th, there was a Hutton’s Vireo on outer Point Loma, where a rare but somewhat regular fall visitor (Aug-Nov). Perhaps just a post-breeding disperser from not too far away. This is the earliest date there, I believe.

–Paul Lehman, San Diego