This morning much of the leadership of Santa Barbara Audubon met at the bird refuge (thanks Peter Thompson for organizing us and choosing this spot) for a surprisingly rewarding look at soon to depart waterfowl. In ascending order of interest, the refuge had numerous Mallard, good numbers of Northern Shoveler, abundant Ruddy Duck with several males in pronounced breeding plumage, a few Bufflehead, two Canada Geese, a dozen or so Lesser Scaup, almost that many Cinnamon Teal, two pair of Blue-winged Teal, at least two Northern Pintail, 5 female Hooded Merganser, and two male Wood Duck. Other birds of passing interest seen while there included a Spotted Sandpiper and several Common Yellowthroat (which I have not found to be as common as usual this year). A Sora was heard but not seen. All the swallows I saw here were Northern Rough-Winged.
We also made a brief stop at the SB Harbor and Breakwater. Best bird was a Red-throated Loon right off the breakwater, but we also had Black Turnstone and Least Sandpiper on the rocks and a Surf Scoter farther offshore. The only swallow were Barn Swallow. Mostly, bird numbers and diversity were low here.