Birds and Other Wildlife Sightings
Welcome to The Mono-logue's "Birds and Other Wildlife Sightings" category! The emphasis of this category is birds, but other noteworthy wildlife sightings are encouraged also. Anyone that is logged-in can submit to this category!
Date of sighting: 22 march 2014
Spring is coming early!
This morning there were a couple hundred gulls on Old Marina Island (excuse me,peninsula). They were calling and looking all excited to set up territories for a new season. More were on one of the mounded islands to the south they also nested on last year.
Last year these islands hosted 9% of the entire population. It has (had) a lot of advantages for gulls: close to fresh water and high alkali fly densities. At the end of last summer Old Marina became essentially connected to the mainland from lake level decline, and a Coyote obliterated the remaining unfledged young in late July (apparently well over 100).
This important nesting site has not been connected to the mainland like this since gulls were first found nesting there, almost 10 years ago. Hopefully they’ll figure out it’s not safe and move out to Negit or Paoha. People seem to wander out there a lot, too. Seemed like a lot of flies already out around there.
Lots of new birds keep arriving: sapsucker, kestrels. A warm early spring!
Date of sighting: Sept 1, 2013
This morning a Painted Bunting (dull green type) made a brief appearance at Jan’s land here on Dechambeau Creek. First saw it in our corn patch – a overall dull olive passerina-type bunting, pale yellowish green underparts. Beedy dark eye on plain dull olive head. It’s call was different – lower in pitch than the call I associate with Lazuli/Indigo’s. Twitched its tail in that triangular, bunting way.
By the time I got my camera, it was in a willow patch across the yard. Got some horrible distant photos, then it flew up creek. I couldn’t track it down again, although the call was distinctive and I’ll keep my ear and eyes open for it. Unlike the one that visited our garden 2 years ago about this time (that stayed and ate dill seeds for a day and a half) this one seemed more like it was on the move – even though I’d think those corn tassels and dill seeds would look tasty to a bunting.
Will post if I see it again….
Things I have not posted – there was a WW dove in Lee Vining Aug. 12-13 (Erik Lyon found it), a Red Knot at Navy Beach Aug. 12 (Erik or other MLC interns found that), and a Solitary Sandpiper at the June Lake sewage ponds Aug. 17.
Date of sighting: August 25
There’s been local buzz about the Blue-footed Booby that was seen at Navy Beach a few days ago.
If the people who saw/photographed it read this – please send in those great photos! That is a significant bird record for Mono Lake (a first) and for California!
Story goes: Max gave a 6pm South Tufa walk, and a family group came along. They showed him the digital photos on their camera of the strange big bird with bluish webbed feet – wondering what it was! Max could hardly mistake it for anything else!
But, alas we don’t know who the people were, and have no copies of the pictures. So I’m sending this post, just in case they happen to check this website! worth a try….
In other news, Susan Steele found a Little Gull at Crowley Lake this past weekend, although I couldn’t find it yesterday. SHorebirding is great right now. Maybe we can keep up the great bird sightings!