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Lesser Yellowlegs glut, new Neotropic

9:13 am

Early Wednesday morning, before heat distortion gets too bad, a check of the upper end of Sweetwater Reservoir from the corner of Jamacha Boulevard X Maya produced six juvenile Lesser Yellowlegs and a new, immature Neotropic Cormorant. Also small to medium numbers of several of the other more typical shorebirds. The water level at this site is slowly lowering and now producing reasonable shorebird habitat. One helpful way to separate Lesser from Greater Yellowlegs in August is that 90% of the Lessers are juveniles whereas it’s the opposite ratio for Greaters, so if you can age the birds then they’re easier to ID– a truism for almost all shorebirds at this time of year. Also five fall arrival Northern Shovelers and continuing summering American Wigeon. Elsewhere, continuing 10 Wilson’s Phalaropes at the salt works at the end of 13th Street.

Paul Lehman, San Diego