Date: 10/21/18 7:47 pm From: James Pike <jimpike444...> Subject: ESbirds: Mojave: 19 - 21 Oct
On Friday, an Am. Tree Sparrow was at the north end of the pond in Shoshone (lousy photo at link below, although I expect better pics have been taken since). The hatch-year Yellow-bellied Sapsucker in front of the high school in the tree that hosted two male Yellow-bellieds ten days ago proved to be a new bird, as it was a female. (Notably, all three had scant, dappled red on their crowns, unlike the solid red crowns on all Red-napeds seen this fall). A Western Meadowlark impaling and consuming a Desert Spiny Lizard was a curiosity. Other birds of note Fri-Sat included White-throated and "Red" Fox Sparrows, and Len Warren had a Pacific Wren and Yellow-shafted Flicker in the marsh. Late afternoon on Saturday, another Am. Tree Sparrow was at the north end of the rectangular chub pond at Zzyzx (lousy photos at link below). Oddly enough, it lacked a dark spot on the central breast ("Round these parts, we call those Chippies").This morning at Chet Huffman Park in Baker, I ran into a scruffy lad (goes by the name of Curtis) who had just found a Rose-breasted Grosbeak, and we searched without luck at Zzyzx for the sparrow. We did see the catbird at the opposite end of the chub pond, along with additional White-throated and "Red" Fox Sparrows.
Date: 10/16/18 12:08 pm From: Russell Kokx <kokxbio...> Subject: ESbirds: Male Hooded Merganser Diaz Lake Lone Pine
Today at 0930 there was a Hooded Merganser in the center of the very choppy Diaz Lake keeping company with an Eared Grebe. Winds were 10-25 MPH. (A small distant pic is included here for the record keepers)
Date: 10/15/18 6:30 pm From: Russell Kokx <kokxbio...> Subject: ESbirds: White-throated Sparrow Furnace Creek
Today at 15:40 there was a White-throated Sparrow at the Furnace Creek Golf Course in the mesquite grove along the Northside of the Golf Course. A snow goose, 2 blue-winged teal, gadwall, american wigeon ruddy duck, and 85+ American coots were all crowding the small pond. Plus many American pipits, Yellow rubbed warblers and Savanah Sparrows on the courses.
Date: 10/12/18 4:08 pm From: Susan Steele <steele7...> Subject: ESbirds: Ovenbird at over 10000'
Bob and I decided to head to the North Fork of Big Pine Canyon today. We were hoping for good leaves and if not, the weather service's forecast was for a sunny day, which is always nice when viewing Temple Crag. The leaves around Lon Cheney's cabin were very nice, mixed to poor in the lower canyon. The weather at 2nd Lake was cold with Temple Crag enveloped in a mist. For some insane reason we decided to complete the loop after lunch cuz I guess our fingers weren't frozen solid yet. Between 2nd and 3rd Lakes I had movement and was thinking maybe a Lincoln's Sparrow. When I edged around the bush the bird was walking in the snow. Walking. It was rump towards me, then it turned to the side, showing the black streaks on white underparts, rust and brown striped crown, and bold white eye ring. Ovenbird, at over 10000'. Amazing.
Even more amazing this is the 2nd that I know of in this canyon. I recall one Chris and Rosie Howard had by Lon Cheney's cabin several years ago.
Date: 10/12/18 1:25 pm From: Ron Overholtz <overholtzart...> Subject: ESbirds: New Gull at Topaz Lake
Jon Dunn, Ron and I stopped at Topaz where Jon spotted a Mew Gull which he thought might NOT be brachyrhyncus. John, brave soul that he is, took off his shoes and walked through the mud to get closer for photographs.
Date: 10/9/18 4:25 pm From: <ted999.williams...> Subject: ESbirds: more Green Gates
Green gates very quiet the past two days. The plentiful Orange-crowned Warbles seem to have moved on. A Steller’s Jay was seen, Bewick’s wren, White-crowned Sparrows, lots of Flickers, but no insectivores
Date: 10/2/18 7:54 pm From: James Pike <jimpike444...> Subject: ESbirds: Mojave: 1 Oct
A Palm Warbler was at the marsh in Shoshone yesterday. Later, I encountered
the probable hybrid woodpecker that Dave Goodward first found at Chet
Huffman Park in Baker on 20 Sept. It was feeding on a seemingly endless
supply of larvae within the rotting branch of a palo verde tree on the
northwest side of the park. As Dave had previously described, the
bill-length appears intermediate between Downy and Hairy, although I was
surprised to find photos online of a few Hairy’s with similar bills. I also
see in Pyle (1997) that the widespread HAWO subspecies (P.v. orious) that
breeds and winters in SE California averages shorter-billed than nearly all
others north of the border. The very narrow supercilium might also be
related to this bird being of the “Interior Western” group. Bold, DOWO-like
spots are present on the outermost visible rectrices, but can also rarely
be found on HAWO (Pyle 1997). Supporting the hybrid case is that the bird
‘appears’ to lack the extension of the submoustachial-stripe onto the side
of the breast as found in HAWO but not DOWO. I say ‘appears’ as ruffled or
missing feathers on the sides of the breast occasionally reveal darker
basal feathering that can give the impression of the HAWO-like extension.
(That’s my interpretation anyway). My photo link provides different looks
at the breast, and how the presence/absence of an extension is dependent
upon the posture of the bird. The combination of oddities that this bird
embodies leads me to think that it is most likely a hybrid. Too bad that
nobody has yet heard it call.
Green gates this morning was fairly busy with the ususal suspects including: Yellow Shafted Northern Flicker, 3 Downey, 1 Nuttles, numerous oragne-crown warblers, spotted towhee, white-crown sparrows, black phoebe, finches, and crows
Date: 9/27/18 3:36 pm From: <ted999.williams...> Subject: ESbirds: Birds at Green Gates
Nothing real unusual at Green Gates these days, except for the fact there were birds to see at 2 in the afternoon (Watch out for the bugs, there are more there than I can ever recall...and they are REAL annoying.):
Belted Kingfisher, Orange-crowned Warbler, Loggerhead Shrike, Western Wood-Pewee; plus the usual White-crowned Sparrow, Red-Tailed Hawk, House Finch, Bewick's Wren, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Northern Flicker.