Date: 9/30/17 10:03 pm
From: <paulsaraceni...> [SFBirds] <SFBirds-noreply...>
Subject: [SFBirds] Westside SF, 9/30/17
This morning Hugh Cotter, Mark Eaton, and I conducted a sea watch from the south end of the Great Highway and then birded south Lake Merced, after which Hugh and I hit Battery Godfrey for a midday skywatch. Diminishing W-NW winds and plenty of sun made for nice weather conditions and there were plenty of typical western migrants out there (e.g., Yellow, Townsend's and Yellow-rumped Warblers, W. Tanagers, Fox Sparrows, Pine Siskins) and we had some nice sightings throughout the morning.

Excellent viewing conditions, relatively mild seas as the WNW winds diminished. There were 4-6 Humpback Whales scattered about offshore and the recent shift in winds seemed to trigger a big movement of gulls -- hundreds on the beach, over the ocean, and flying N over the beach, mostly Californias and Westerns, good numbers of Heermann's, and a few each of Herring and Glaucous-winged. Observations of local interest:
Greater Scaup 20+ (several small groups flying over the ocean)
Common Loon 2
Pacific Loon 4
Pelagic Cormorant 1
W. Sandpiper 1 (with Sanderlings on the beach)
Elegant Tern 40+
PARASITIC JAEGER 18+ (2/3 adults, 1/3 sub-adults/imms.)
LONG-TAILED JAEGER 1 imm. (flying N trailing a Parasitic; observed well by the 3 of us relatively close to shore)
MARBLED MURRELET 2 (basic plumage; flying N together relatively close to shore)
Common Murre 30+

S. Lake Merced Concrete Bridge & Vista Grande Canal:
Eared Grebe 4
Virginia Rail 3 (heard near E end of bridge, both sides)
Warbling Vireo 2
Steller's Jay 4 (1 "flock" near VGC)
Red-br. Nuthatch 4
Hermit Thrush 1 (near VGC)
Swainson's Thrush 1 (near VGC)
Black-throated Gray Warbler 2
Com. Yellowthroat 3
Lincoln's Sparrow 3 (near VG canal)
SWAMP SPARROW 1 (I briefly observed an early individual that popped up on a low branch near VGC then disappeared; the 3 Lincoln's Sparrows and plenty of Song and White-crowned Sparrows were in the vicinity)
Great-tailed Grackle 3 (on the bridge)
Red Crossbill 8 (1 calling flock of non-locals flying S high overhead)

Battery Godfrey Skywatch (11:30-1:00):
Despite the wind direction we were hoping for some raptors and we only had a few but a couple of good ones and some other nice migrants were in the mix:
Cooper's Hawk 1
Red-tailed Hawk 5
Red-sh. Hawk 2
BROAD-WINGED HAWK 2 juvs. (@ 12:05 PM crossed the channel W of GG Bridge then continued SE over the trees behind BG flying together in a direct line)
Merlin 1
Turkey Vulture 8
Pelagic Cormorant 2 (on rocks below)
Elegant Tern 20+
PARASITIC JAEGER 2 (flying E together high up near GG Bridge)
Band-tailed Pigeon 40+
Say's Phoebe 1 (continuing bird)
Wrentit 1
Red-br. Nuthatch 1
PALM WARBLER 1 (dropped in right in front of us @ 12:45 PM near restoration area at S end of BG; on ground and low shrubs)
Am. Pipit 2 (calling flyovers)
Red Crossbill 3 (calling flyovers)

Paul Saraceni
San Francisco

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