Tuesday, August 4, 2015

South Fork SRA 7/31--Black Tern, Vesper Sparrow

South Fork State Recreation Area
Our ultimate goal on Friday was Ruby Lake NWR, but before we went there, we birded the South Fork Reservoir. We had great looks at Common Nighthawks. For once locating them in the sky was easy. Usually someone tries to describe a cloud to you or locate the bird "in the blue between the slightly gray cloud and wispy one," and you have no idea what they're talking about. The nighthawks could be found by looking at the clouds that formed an X in the sky.

Lark Sparrow
Two new species for the trip were Black Tern and Vesper Sparrow, both relatively hard birds to find and identify. A few Bonaparte's Gulls struck as oddities both seasonally and geographically, but apparently they're not out there.

Lark Sparrow was a new trip bird, and there were plenty of shorebirds and waterfowl to sort through. In all we had 44 species at this spot.
Canada Goose  20
Mallard  50
Blue-winged Teal  2
Redhead  1
Pied-billed Grebe  1
Eared Grebe  200     
Western Grebe  1
Double-crested Cormorant  5
American White Pelican  25
Great Blue Heron  1
White-faced Ibis  10
Bald Eagle  2
Swainson's Hawk  1
Red-tailed Hawk (Western)  1
American Coot  1
Sandhill Crane  2
Black-necked Stilt  5
American Avocet  10
Killdeer  5
Spotted Sandpiper  1
Willet  1
Lesser Yellowlegs  1
Western Sandpiper  5
Long-billed Dowitcher  15
Wilson's Phalarope  25
Bonaparte's Gull  3
California Gull  5
Black Tern  6
Eurasian Collared-Dove  5
Mourning Dove  1
Common Nighthawk  5
Loggerhead Shrike  4
American Crow  1     heard
Common Raven  2
Northern Rough-winged Swallow  5
Sage Thrasher  10
Orange-crowned Warbler  1
Yellow Warbler  1
Brewer's Sparrow  15
Vesper Sparrow  1
Lark Sparrow  1
Red-winged Blackbird  20
Yellow-headed Blackbird  15
Brewer's Blackbird  25

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