I went to the Palo Alto Baylands on the first day of the year, hoping to see and photograph any rails that may have been forced to seek higher ground. After 2+ hours of walking along the access road adjacent to the airport, scanning the reeds and pickle weeds with no success, a RIDGEWAY’S RAIL popped up onto the road about 12 feet in front of me and about 50 feet away from a group of birders/photographers who were scanning the area. The bane of bird photographers, a small branch that takes focus away from the subject, left me with only one image of the rail in focus before a rambunctious dog, being walked by a somewhat careless owner, charged at the bird and scared it into cover. As is always the case, an absence of my primary target birds didn’t prevent me from enjoying the morning and I did get photographs of a GREEN-WINGED TEAL, BLACK PHOEBE, COMMON YELLOWTHROAT, PIED-BILLED GREBE, NORTHERN SHOVELER, LEAST SANDPIPER, SONG SPARROW and a RED-SHOULDERED HAWK.
Some of the photos I took that morning are posted at the very end of my photostream at https://www.flickr.com/photos/ronfredrick/https://www.flickr.com/photos/ronfredrick/