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Lesser Nighthawks in Contra Costa County
Fri, 21 May 2004 16:52:46 PDT
From: Phil Gordon

Greetings Birders,

Yesterday my wife, Pat, and I finished up a preview trip for my Bird Class Field Trip (Natural History of California Birds, Acalanes Adult Education) in eastern Contra Costa County. At the advice of Steve Glover (thanks, Steve), we located the spot where Lesser (once Texas) Nighthawks can be seen. At 8:15 PM (shortly after we arrived) one flew over the mini marsh of the Byron Sewage Ponds. Our first brief look was better confirmed when another bird appeared with its almost butterfly-like swoops and erratic fluttering as it foraged for insects in the dusk light over the north pond. The buffy wing bars and inconspicuous throat patch, and no whitish hindneck collar or subterminal tail band made it a female. This locale is at the east end of Camino Diablo Rd just off Byron Hwy (J3). Park and look or walk (carefully) over the rubble and humps and around the pondlets to better (higher) vantage points. (See the Mount Diablo Audubon Society website,: key on Local Habitat and then Birding Contra Costa County by Steve Glover.)

May your bird searching always be 92% successful. May you always have the challenge of those 8% of birds found as surprises. (Cf Laurie Binford)

Phil Gordon
Hayward, Alameda County Subject Index

Re: White-eyed Vireo in Dublin
Fri, 21 May 2004 17:32:25 -0700
From: Kris Olson

Hi birders,

A quick note to say that the White-eyed Vireo was seen again at Tassajara Creek Regional Park in Dublin around 12 noon by Dave Quady and two others. Later, it called around 2 to 2:30 PM but no one ever saw it. There were 3 to 7 birders there during this time frame. One birder started at 8 AM and heard nothing between then and 10 AM when I arrived. So like yesterday it was most "active" during the noon hour.

A very quiet skulky little guy!

Kris Olson
Menlo Park, CA

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Garin & Dry Creek Pioneer Regional Parks, Hayward
Fri, 21 May 2004 19:37:45 -0700 (PDT)
From: Bob Power

Hi all:

So, if a White-eyed Vireo doesn't get up until noon, you could go bird Garin & Dry Creek Pioneer Regional Parks in Hayward from 6 to 11 and then scoot over to Tassajara, right?

Today's Garin/Dry Creek highlights were:

So, you're an eastern bird. Maybe you get up early because of the whole time-zone thing and you're up at like 3 or 4 and by 6 AM you're ready to take a siesta until noon or so. I'll try for 6:30. See you there.

Bob Power

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Re: White-eyed Vireo in Dublin
Sat, 22 May 2004 13:35:24 -0700
From: Dennis & Patricia Braddy


The Tassajara Creek Regional Park White-eyed Vireo was heard and seen by a dozen or more birders from 11:30 to 12:15 today, 40 yards to the right from the far end of the footbridge. We were told that it had been seen earlier in the day farther from the bridge.

Dennis and Patricia Braddy
San Ramon

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Re: White-eyed Vireo in Dublin
Sat, 22 May 2004 15:30:40 -0700
From: Judi Sierra

The White-eyed Vireo was seen again today. The best sighting and song were until 1:30 PM. I got there at 12 and people had been looking at it. I was disturbed by the 2 people that were using recordings! One when I got there and one as I was leaving at 2:30. The park is not well marked. (Not the ususal East Bay Regional Park District signs on the right. side of the road pointing to the spot.) The gate is before the construction.

Judi Sierra - Oakland

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Hummingbird nestling in Berkeley
Sat, 22 May 2004 15:40:29 -0700
From: Tom Condit

There is now (apparently) one nestling in the hummingbird nest in the 1700 block of Allston Way in Berkeley. I think two is more usual, but I can only see one bill poking up at the angle I can see it from.

Tom Condit

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Re: White-eyed Vireo in Dublin
Sat, 22 May 2004 17:55:56 -0700
From: Stephen Long

East Bay Birders,

I just returned from Tassajara Creek Regional Park, having heard and seen the White-eyed Vireo (12:55 to 1:30). It has moved about 30 meters upstream from the location described by Steve Huckabone (namely, the footbridge). Continue across the bridge and up the path. As soon as you emerge from the creek, you will see a tall and long chain-link fence running off to the left and right. Turn right and proceed along the fence until you come to a sharp angle to the left. From this point, which is now adjacent to (and above) the creek, look through the relatively large opening in the vegetation toward the creek. The bird has been in the large live oak overhanging the creek to the right of this opening. Occasionally, it will cross to the left of the opening (willow and coyote bush).

The bird seems to sing for 5 to 8 minutes, fall silent for several minutes, then start singing again. It does fly to perches that are relatively open, but alights for mere seconds (less than 10) before seeking a more covert perch. Complicating the visual scene are flocks of Bushtits and Oak Titmice, and the aural scene is complicated by just about every bird in the vicinity. But if you've never heard White-eyed Vireo, don't despair - it sounds like no other western songbird. You will instantly know that you are hearing a song that "isn't suppose to be there."

Good luck!

Stephen Long
Oakland, CA

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