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Allen's Hummingbird in Oakland Hills
Thu, 6 Feb 2003 08:45:42 -0800
From: John Luther

Hi All,

Yesterday, February 5, I had Allen's Hummingbird show up in my yard in the Oakland Hills. This is about two weeks earlier than I usually see them here.

John Luther
Oakland

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Allen's Hummingbirds in Moraga
Thu, 6 Feb 2003 09:12:41 -0800
From Mike Williams

Hi,

Like John Luther, we had 2 Allen's Hummingbirds at our feeders yesterday.

Mike Williams
Moraga

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Not-so-elusive Varied Thrushes in Oakland Hills
Thu, 06 Feb 2003 13:11:19 -0800
From: Nick Newton

Arriving at Joaquin Miller Park (Skyline Blvd, Oakland) this morning just after 7 AM, I was surprised to see half a dozen or so Varied Thrushes feeding in the middle of the road! These birds have always seemed pretty elusive to me - I usually have to peer into the dark undergrowth for a while to catch one sitting quietly on a branch. But not this morning. During my run through the park along the Sequoia-Bayview Ttrail, I saw perhaps 30 Varied Thrushes in all, foraging on or next to the trail. (I have no doubt that it was due to the unusual absence of my dog that I saw such an abundance of thrushes!). Has anyone else noticed larger numbers than usual?

Also, yesterday morning was quite exciting at home (Redwood Heights, Oakland) when a flock of Cedar Waxwings descended on the tree in the front garden. They lined up along the power line to chow down on the remaining berries on a shrub right outside the window. Watching these handsome birds from 2 feet away was a real treat for me and my wife.

Good birding - Nick Newton

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Allen's Hummingbird in San Leandro
Fri, 07 Feb 2003 22:15:39 -0800
From: Kathy Robertson

I noticed my first Allen's Hummingbird in my "yard" at work (Fairmont Hospital in San Leandro) on January 31. Looking back in my notes, I see that my first Allen's in 2001 was seen a full ten days earlier.

Kathy Robertson
Hayward, CA

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Friday birding in Alameda County
Sat, 08 Feb 2003 12:15:28 -0800
From: Dave Quady

Hi, EBBers:

A couple of notes from mid-day Friday birding in Alameda County.

The Rossí Goose was still present on the pond at San Lorenzo Park, looking quite handsome among the many domestic-strength geese.

At Hayward Regional Shoreline, the male Eurasian Wigeon loafed on a mud bar in the middle of the Frankís Dump West pond. Ten Greater White-fronted Geese and one Rossís Goose accompanied 175 Canada Geese on the capped landfill south of the pond.

About 1,000 Marbled Godwits foraged at the waterís edge on the early afternoon rising tide near Frankís Dump West. Among them was one bird that stopped me short. From a distance this godwit appeared to be all white above the base of its neck. At closer range the bird showed a few brown feathers mixed into its otherwise all-white neck and face and had a narrow fringe of brown feathers around the base of its bill. Its bare parts were colored normally. Quite striking.

Another Marbled Godwit was banded. Its left leg bore an aluminum USFWS band above its foot and a very pale green (might have been faded yellow) plastic band above its "knee," and its right leg bore an orange plastic band above its "knee." If anyone knows who has been banding Marbled Godwits in this way, please forward this note to them.

Dave Quady
Berkeley, California

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Phainopepla and Bald Eagle at Los Vaqueros Reservoir
Sat, 08 Feb 2003 14:43:25 -0800
From: Dennis & Patricia Braddy

EastBayBirders,

Returning from a morning of birding at Los Vaqueros Reservoir [between Brentwood and Livermore] in a group led by Steve Glover (best bird a male Phainopepla), we stopped 1.6 miles north of Hwy 580 to count 145 Long-billed Curlews in a field on the east side of Vasco Rd. A few minutes later and a quarter-mile farther south on a gentle slope west of Vasco Rd a Red-tailed Hawk first mantled over, then tore large chunks of flesh from, a recently deceased squirrel. Two less fortunate Red-tailed Hawks drooled nearby. One of the two bystanders, despairing of leftovers, circled overhead and drifted south toward Livermore, soon to be joined and dwarfed by a juvenile Bald Eagle.

Dennis and Patricia Braddy
San Ramon

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Allen's Hummingbird and Band-tailed Pigeons in Oakland Hills
Sat, 8 Feb 2003 19:20:27 -0800 (PST)
From: Sue Morgan

While in Joaquin Miller Park in the Oakland Hills last weekend checking on the nesting Band-tailed Pigeon (on the Sunset Trail), my husband and I watched a hummingbird doing the mating display half-circle swoop. I am without my guidebook at the moment and am wondering is this the Allen's Hummingbird. He made the swoop about 6 to 8 times and then flew off.

The Band-tailed Pigeon was there on February 1, but as of February 7 none was on the nest or anywhere in the 10 minutes I hung around.

Sue Morgan
Oakland

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Hayward Regional Shoreline
Sun, 9 Feb 2003 16:52:37 PST
From: Bob Richmond

Seen at the shoreline today -

Bob

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