Date: 5/31/19 10:12 am
From: Lisa Larson <lisafaylarson...>
Subject: [MBBIRDS] Let's try this again - Pinto Lake County Park yesterday
Oops, I hit send by accident!

Hi Birders,

Yesterday at Pinto Lake there were lot of fledgling CHESTNUT-BACKED
calling in various areas on the west side. CALIFORNIA SCRUB and STELLER'S
JAYS were observed carrying food. A BLACK-HEADED GROSBEAK is still singing
in the area near the dip after the closed bathroom/bench area on the 2nd
arm of the lake.

The RED-TAILED HAWK nest has a fuzzy-headed baby per Larry Corridon, but I
didn't see it. I did see the parents, however.

The RED-SHOULDERED HAWK nest has young as well. AMERICAN ROBINS became
extremely upset in the area near the nest. I am 99.999% sure their nest was
predated by one of the parent hawks. It is hard for my tender heart to see
that, but nature has its ways. I did see a parent Red-shouldered take some
food to the nest.

I saw something odd. A pair of OAK TITMICE were foraging in an oak near the
picnic bench below the stairs and one of them appeared to be poking her
face around in a nest. She even scrunched down and wiggled in it - like she
was shaping the nest. Oak Titmice are cavity nesters *only*, right? Maybe
she was just trying it on for fun - like a wild pair of shoes that you
would never be caught dead wearing in public.

The most exciting thing was seeing *three *AMERICAN BITTERNS in close
proximity to each other. There were 2 females and a male. The male had his
epaulets tucked in (but I could see them) and he was larger and more
dust-colored. The females were smaller and more reddish. The one we could
see best had gorgeous, intricate patterning on her back. This female
approached the male, and fluffed her feathers three separate times, the
second time "presenting" herself for him. I do hope we see babies in June.
Last year there were eight young there. The three adults is the highest
number of Bitterns I have seen at Pinto this year. I believe for Larry,
too. I really thought we might see some mating action, but he did not puff
his white epaulets or boom (vocalize) at all. He just eyed her and moseyed
away. Maybe he needed Bittern Viagra.

I spotted a "Furbie" GREAT HORNED OWL fledgling in full view on the large
oak tree on the north side after the gate nearest the end of the parking
lot. It was hilarious when a cheeky red squirrel went right up to it - with
a couple of feet! The baby looked at it with a wide-eyed expression that I
would caption, "What the hell is *that*???"

Let's keep our primaries crossed for bittern babies!

Happy birding,

For Monterey Rare Bird alerts call 831-250-4550
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