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Mon, 1 Feb 1999 12:11:08 -0800 (PST)
From: Emilie

The Oldsquaw was still present Saturday (1/30) at the Berkeley waterfront at Cesar Chavez Park by the Berkeley marina. At 10 AM, it was near the concrete breakwater; but by about 10:30 AM it had paddled behind the riprap breakwater just to the south where it was not visible. This is by far the most beautiful Oldsquaw I have ever seen - it was a lot of fun to watch it while hearing the "zee" of Allen's Hummingbirds overhead.

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50,000 waterbirds dead of cholera
Mon, 1 Feb 1999 17:48:48 -0800
From: Larry Tunstall

According to an article in the Jan 28-29 editions of the Contra Costa Times newspapers, an estimated 50,000+ water birds have been killed in Northern and Central California by avian cholera. The affected area stretches from Del Norte County to south of Merced. More than 700 Aleutian Canada Geese in refuges near Sacramento are among the victims.

The outbreaks began in December and have killed many American Coots, Ruddy Ducks, Snow Geese, and other species. Greg Mensik of Sacramento National Wildlife Refuge complex is quoted as saying: "We seem to be getting toward the end of the cycle, but mortality is continuing. We are still picking up birds." He and others say that this winter's outbreak is one of the worst in memory.

For more details, go to and use the Search feature to search for the keywords avian cholera. That should lead you to the story (available for free access for only about a week after publication). If you can't find it and would like an e-mailed copy, contact me.

Larry Tunstall
El Cerrito CA

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Ideas about Berkeley Marina development?
Tue, 2 Feb 1999 19:04:52 -0800
From: Larry Tunstall

The acquisition of land from Catellus for the new Eastshore State Park ends most of the fears of more commercial development along the bayshore from the Bay Bridge to Richmond, but the plans for the new park are very vague. Although East Bay Regional Park District will run the long shoreline park, plans for the nature of park development are to be left largely up to the individual cities along the shore (subject of course to the usual planning and environmental approval procedures).

There is a great deal of pressure from various recreational groups to devote parts of the shoreline to space for their activities - everything from dog walking through playing fields to room for jet skis or off-road vehicles might be considered. There is also talk of such things as docks for high-speed ferries.

If as much space as possible is to be restored to wetlands or kept in some way as suitable wildlife habitat, those who care about such things will need to speak up. The following notice is about one meeting where plans for the Berkeley Marina will be open for public discussion. Areas affected include Cesar Chavez Park (the old North Waterfront Park - which dog owners want opened up entirely for off-leash dog activities), the North Sailing Basin (the water area between Chavez Park and the race track), and the Berkeley Meadow (the brushy area north of University Ave between the freeway and the Marina - currently moderately good bird habitat). Those who care about birds and habitat need to be sure that these interests are represented. Input from people who can talk about birds they have observed that actually use or need habitat in this area would be particularly important.

Larry Tunstall
El Cerrito CA

City of Berkeley Planning and Development Department


Saturdy February 6, 1999
10 AM to 1 PM
Berkeley Yacht Club
One Seawall Drive - Berkeley Marina

The Berkeley Waterfront Commission invites you to the third in a series of public workshops to discuss the Berkeley Marina Plan. This workshop will focus on three preliminary design concepts for the Marina and conceptual use recommendations for the Berkeley Waterfront. Development of the preliminary design concepts is based on existing conditions data, public input from the two earlier public workshops and future Marina facilities requirements. On the basis of public comment received at this workshop, the preliminary design concepts will be refined and then presented to the Waterfront and Planning Commissions and City Council for their consideration prior to initiating the CEQA review process on the preferred design concept.

Come and give us your input on this important community project.

For additional information, please contact Patricia Jeffery, City of Berkeley Planning and Development Department at 510.705.8133, TDD: 510.644-6915, or

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Final Oakland CBC results
Tue, 2 Feb 1999 19:41:40 -0800
From: Larry Tunstall

Thanks to Lillian Fujii for forwarding to the list the final species counts from the Oakland Christmas Bird Count, as compiled by Clyde Morris & Joelle Buffa.

December 20, 1998
cold, windy, some rain and even snow showers
82,523 individual birds of 181 species
178 observers in the field, 10 observers at feeders

7 Red-throated Loon, 3 Pacific Loon, 53 Common Loon, 1 Loon sp, 265 Pied-billed Grebe, 131 Horned Grebe, 1 Red-necked Grebe, 68 Eared Grebe, 172 Western Grebe, 50 Clark's Grebe, 36 Aechmophorus sp, 19 American White Pelican, 318 Brown Pelican, 1638 Double-crested Cormorant, 12 Brandt's Cormorant, 4 Pelagic Cormorant, 31 Great Blue Heron, 89 Great Egret, 142 Snowy Egret, 1 Cattle Egret, 1 Green Heron, 94 Black-crowned Night-Heron, 2 swan sp, 1 Greater White-fronted Goose, 2 Snow Goose, 1 Ross' Goose, 1976 Canada Goose, 13 small Canada Goose, 2 Wood Duck, 1 Eurasian Green-winged Teal, 107 American Green-winged Teal, 1132 Mallard, 148 Northern Pintail, 2 Blue-winged Teal, 39 Cinnamon Teal, 428 Northern Shoveler, 234 Gadwall, 2 Eurasian Wigeon, 523 American Wigeon, 699 Canvasback, 68 Redhead, 97 Ring-necked Duck, 1 Tufted Duck, 3892 Greater Scaup, 1135 Lesser Scaup, 5987 scaup sp, 5363 Surf Scoter, 11 White-winged Scoter, 773 Common Goldeneye, 74 Barrow's Goldeneye, 1101 Bufflehead, 12 Hooded Merganser, 147 Common Merganser, 43 Red-breasted Merganser, 2036 Ruddy Duck, 90 duck sp, 154 Turkey Vulture, 8 Osprey, 6 White-tailed Kite, 2 Bald Eagle (both adults), 20 Northern Harrier, 12 Sharp-shinned Hawk, 23 Cooper's Hawk, 10 Accipiter sp, 22 Red-shouldered Hawk, 179 Red-tailed Hawk, 3 Buteo sp, 7 Golden Eagle (3 adults, 4 immature), 48 American Kestrel, 3 Merlin, 7 Peregrine Falcon, 95 California Quail, 5 Clapper Rail, 5 Virginia Rail, 1 Sora, 3954 American Coot, 946 Black-bellied Plover, 2 Semipalmated Plover, 177 Killdeer, 4 Black Oystercatcher, 185 Black-necked Stilt, 1252 American Avocet, 44 Greater Yellowlegs, 4 yellowlegs sp, 2032 Willet, 17 Spotted Sandpiper, 16 Whimbrel, 106 Long-billed Curlew, 1045 Marbled Godwit, 6 Ruddy Turnstone, 44 Black Turnstone, 2 Surfbird, 33 Red Knot, 227 Sanderling, 5211 Western Sandpiper, 426 Least Sandpiper, 1980 Dunlin, 1732 "peep" sp, 161 Short-billed Dowitcher, 9 Long-billed Dowitcher, 595 dowitcher sp, 15 Common Snipe, 13 Heermann's Gull, 1526 Mew Gull, 1868 Ring-billed Gull, 1406 California Gull, 13 Herring Gull, 4 Thayer's Gull, 1760 Western Gull, 9 Western X Glaucous-winged Gull, 430 Glaucous-winged Gull, 1 Glaucous Gull, 3180 gull sp, 82 Forster's Tern, 1643 Rock Dove, 61 Band-tailed Pigeon, 540 Mourning Dove, 3 Barn Owl, 9 Western Screech-Owl, 71 Great Horned Owl, 1 Burrowing Owl, 3 Long-eared Owl, 10 Northern Saw-whet Owl, 307 Anna's Hummingbird, 1 Selasphorus sp, 11 Belted Kingfisher, 22 Acorn Woodpecker, 15 Red-breasted Sapsucker, 72 Nuttall's Woodpecker, 25 Downy Woodpecker, 11 Hairy Woodpecker, 266 Northern Flicker (including 241 red-shafted, 1 yellow-shafted, 1 yellow-shafted X red-shafted), 138 Black Phoebe, 11 Say's Phoebe, 30 Tree Swallow, 296 Steller's Jay, 467 Western Scrub-Jay, 171 American Crow, 89 Common Raven, 728 Chestnut-backed Chickadee, 89 Oak Titmouse, 1182 Bushtit, 90 Red-breasted Nuthatch, 27 White-breasted Nuthatch, 22 Pygmy Nuthatch, 86 Brown Creeper, 7 Rock Wren, 105 Bewick's Wren, 1 House Wren, 44 Winter Wren, 9 Marsh Wren, 350 Golden-crowned Kinglet, 1020 Ruby-crowned Kinglet, 87 Western Bluebird, 209 Hermit Thrush, 1997 American Robin, 90 Varied Thrush, 116 Wrentit, 26 Northern Mockingbird, 12 California Thrasher, 63 American Pipit, 295 Cedar Waxwing, 2 Loggerhead Shrike, 1751 European Starling, 38 Hutton's Vireo, 1 Tennessee Warbler, 8 Orange-crowned Warbler, 1215 Yellow-rumped Warbler (including 339 Audubon, 16 Myrtle), 1 Palm Warbler, 1 Black-and-white Warbler, 2 Common Yellowthroat, 231 Spotted Towhee, 632 California Towhee, 10 Rufous-crowned Sparrow, 23 Savannah Sparrow, 156 Fox Sparrow, 224 Song Sparrow, 6 Lincoln's Sparrow, 8 White-throated Sparrow, 1374 Dark-eyed Junco (including 1344 Oregon race), 783 Red-winged Blackbird, 25 Tricolored Blackbird, 293 Western Meadowlark, 484 Brewer's Blackbird, 100 Brown-headed Cowbird, 31 Purple Finch, 602 House Finch, 113 Pine Siskin, 114 Lesser Goldfinch, 81 American Goldfinch, 363 House Sparrow

Posted to EBbird by Larry Tunstall

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