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Hayward Regional Shoreline
Sun, 14 Jul 2002 17:36:45 -0700
From: Sheila Junge

This afternoon I saw at least 42 Least Terns and 4 Snowy Plovers at Hayward Regional Shoreline. They were relatively near the northwest corner of Frank's Dump West. I also saw a few Semipalmated Plovers and possibly additional Snowy Plovers in the northeast corner.

Frank's Dump West is the wetland that fronts on the bay north of the W Winton Ave access between the radio towers and Sulphur Creek.

Good birding,
Sheila Junge
Hayward, CA

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Ruddy Duck at Lake Merritt
Wed, 17 Jul 2002 22:08:01 -0700
From: Bruce Mast

Noticed a Ruddy Duck in with the Pied-billed Grebes at Lake Merritt (in Oakland) today. The first I've noticed this summer. Numbers of grebes and gulls appear to be increasing. Geese have almost completed their molt. Breeding activity on the islands is tapering off.

Bruce Mast

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Mike's Northern California wish list - continued
Thu, 18 Jul 2002 22:50:07 -0700
From: Darrell Lee

Mike added three life species (Hutton's Vireo, Bell's Vireo, and Wrentit) in Gates Canyon before we went to Yosemite, and Tricolored Blackbird near Merced National Wildlife Refuge after leaving Yosemite. He added another 3 in Yosemite (Vaux' Swift, Black Swift, and Black-headed Woodpecker), 3 at the burn area 8 miles east of Hwy 395 on Hwy 120 (Lewis' Woodpecker, White-headed Woodpecker, and Piñon Jay), two at Mono Lake's South Tufa (Sage Thrasher and Sage Sparrow), and one at Aspen Grove campground west of Lee Vining (Cassin's Finch) to add to the 8 he got his first day in California. So, with 20 lifers for his California trip, we went to Bodega Bay on July 17.

We got every one of Mike's target birds at Bodega. An unexpected sighting for me was three Common Loons in the bay. We arrived at low tide, but added Mike's lifer Western Gull (21) at Lucas Wharf and his lifer Black Turnstone (22) on the rocks at the north end of the bay. We went over to Bodega Head and added his lifer Heerman's Gull (23), Black Oystercatcher (24 - they were abundant, some with chicks), Pigeon Guillemot (25), Pelagic Cormorant (26 - also abundantly nesting), and Brandt's Cormorant (27). We were having problems finding Surfbirds, so we drove north up the coast, scanning the rocks unsuccessfully. Common Murres (28) were abundant in the inshore waters, with about 1 Marbled Murrelet (29) per 10 murres. We went back to Bodega Bay, where by now the tide was in. We missed Surfbirds at Bodega Head, so in desparation, we paid the entrance fee to enter Doran Beach to scope the jetty. I saw six Surfbirds fly to the back side of the jetty, so we drove around the bay, parked at the lot over looking the bay, and walked to the cliff edge to scope the jetty's south side, finding Surfbirds (Mike's 30th trip lifer) there.

We birded Tilden Park July 18, adding Mike's lifer Pacific-slope Flycatcher (31), and got him a lifer Dusky Flycatcher (32) in Martinez.

Darrell Lee
Alameda, CA

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Lawrence's Goldfinch in Oakland
Fri, 19 Jul 2002 16:32:02 -0700 (PDT)
From: Kathy Jarrett

i live in the upper rockridge area about 1 mile above college ave (and the rockridge BART station) in oakland. i was totally surprised to see a lawrence's goldfinch in a neighbor's front yard this week. i've never seen one here before, although we have plenty of house finches, lesser and american goldfinches. since this area was severely burned over in october of 1991, it has taken a long time for trees of any size grow up, but it's finally happening. perhaps this has been a factor.

kathy jarrett

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Nimitz Way, Tilden Regional Park
Sat, 20 Jul 2002 12:11:04 -0700
From: John Poole

I took a mid-morning walk along the Nimitz Trail from Inspiration Point in Tilden Regional Park (Berkeley Hills) today to see what the fog had blown in.

At the one-mile mark there was a large mixed flock of songbirds foraging in the pines. The flock included Chestnut-backed Chickadees, Bushtits, Song Sparrows, American Goldfinches, Lesser Goldfinches, Wilson's Warblers, Red-breasted Nuthatches, Purple Finches and one or two juvenile Cassin's Vireos.

Fall is on its way!

John Poole

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Bufflehead at Berkeley Marina
Sat, 20 Jul 2002 15:28:17 PDT
From: Brian Fitch

On Tuesday of this week, there was an early-arrival young Bufflehead on the bay near the Berkeley Marina, between César Chávez Park and Hwy 80, north of the Harrier nesting field [Berkeley Meadow]. The duck was alone and cruising close to shore along all three sides of the cove [North Sailing Basin]. The young harriers are out and about, and a Great Blue Heron has been gophering on the grass hills of Chávez Park.

Up in Tilden Regional Park, we saw a Belted Kingfisher take a large crayfish from Jewel Lake on Monday, and another was flying high and fast over the valley between Grizzly and Vollmer Peaks on Wednesday. On Friday, there was a very placid Great Horned Owl sitting ten feet from the trail adjacent to South Park Dr, in pines just beyond and across from the bathroom at the Willows picnic area sign.

Brian Fitch & crew

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