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County Park

May 15th, 2009 by tdomf_e48ef
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Date of sighting: May 15, 2009

A few of the many species at County Park today:

Western Tanager, Bullock’s Oriole, Clark’s Nutcracker, Black-headed Grosbeak, Caspian Tern, Gadwall, nesting Osprey, Common Yellowthroat, Wilson’s Phalarope, American Coot.

It’s definitely colorful over there right now.

Evening Grosbeak Pair

May 15th, 2009 by tdomf_e48ef
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Date of sighting: May 15

A pair of Evening Grosbeaks have been hanging out in the alley between 2nd and 3rd street in Lee Vining at my neighbors feeder for the last few days, as well as three pairs of Black-headed Grosbeaks.

The small world of water: Today’s story on NPR

May 11th, 2009 by Geoff, Executive Director
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National Public Radio ran a story this morning titled “Drought, Politics Trouble Farmers In California“. The water situation in the San Francisco Bay Delta and Central Valley is complicated enough for many a report, but what had Mono Lake veterans talking was the interview quote from Tom Birmingham, current Executive Director of the Westlands Water District and previously the lead attorney fighting against Mono Lake’s protection.

Now we get along fine with Tom but we have to assume he was talking about us when … more »

Red Breasted Sapsucker ?

May 7th, 2009 by tdomf_e48ef
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Date of sighting: May 1 2009

Seen east of Dynamo Pond on Green Creek

Bald Eagles

May 6th, 2009 by tdomf_e48ef
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Date of sighting: May 2 2009

We saw a pair of bald eagles displaying mating behaviour in Green Creek Canyon.

A sage fades away

May 6th, 2009 by Gary, Canoe Tour Supervisor
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“But if ever you come beyond the borders as far as the town that lies in a hill dimple at the foot of Kearsarge, never leave it until you have knocked at the door of the brown house under the willow-tree at the end of the village street, and there you shall have such news of the land, of its trails and what is astir in them, as one lover of it can give to another…”

–Mary Austin
The Land of Little Rain

If only the door of Mary Austins’ home could have served as a portal to the past … more »

Wonderful Warblers

May 1st, 2009 by tdomf_e48ef
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Date of sighting: May 1, 2009

At County Park this morning, there seemed to be at least two warblers in every willow I scanned with my binoculars. I counted upwards of ten Wilson’s Warblers, the majority of which were males, although I did see a few females. I heard and found two Orange-crowned Warblers (my personal favorites). The park teemed with Yellow-rumped warblers, the males in their dark black and bright yellow breeding plumage, the females a more modest brownish gray. I sat and watched one Yellow Warbler hop daintily from willow to willow down by the boardwalk for a few minutes. Oh, warblers, you make my heart sing.

Other interesting sightings in the Park:

Gray Flycatcher, Black-headed Grosbeak, four or five Bullock’s Orioles, Blue-winged Teal, Least Sandpiper, and I saw and heard for the first time the display of the Wilson’s Snipe. I saw one standing high atop a tufa tower, calling a loud, repeated TIKa-TIKa-TIKa and then two or more dove from the air and I heard the “winnowing” sound that is produced by their outer tail feathers vibrating during the dive. It was quite a sight and sound combination to behold.

South Africa: Winterskloof to St. Lucia

April 29th, 2009 by Arya, Communications Director
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Morning started with tea and the South African specialty, rusks—biscotti-like biscuits—before a full morning meeting at the Wildlands Conservation Trust office. As fellow founding members of the Living Lakes Network, the Mono Lake Committee and Wildlands have been in touch for the past 11 years, but have never had a chance to sit down and make use of the connection in quite the way we did on this morning.

Meeting with Simone Dale, Communications Manager at the Wildlands Conservation Trust.

Meeting with Simone Dale, Communications Manager at the Wildlands Conservation Trust.

We talked about how our organizations operate, our goals, guiding principles, programs, fundraising, daily operations, and the challenges we face. It was a thoroughly invigorating meeting—a rare and valuable chance to learn from another non-profit and to share some of our Mono Lake experience.

Full of new ideas and ways of thinking about things, we started on our journey to see St. Lucia, the surrounding area, and some specific project sites in the vicinity. With absolutely no help from our Portuguese-speaking GPS unit, but lots of good information from our guide Charmaine, we traveled up the coast to where St. Lucia meets the Indian Ocean.

One observation that would become critical … more »

Evening Grosbeak

April 29th, 2009 by Mono Lake Committee Staff
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Date of sighting: 4/29/2009

Evening Grosbeak at the sunflower feed station this am. Sorry, no picture this time. Been 3 years since the last time he was here. Also at the Lower Twin Lake, black billed magpie, Black throated gray warbler. First time for magpie at the lake. Normally only in town. Northern oriole at the orange half. 23 total species since 4/23/2009

Home Bird feeders

April 27th, 2009 by tdomf_e48ef
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Date of sighting: 4/26/09

A good variety of birds visiting my home bird feeders: American Goldfinch, Lesser Gold Finch, Pine Siskin, Cassin Finch, and Steller’s Jay.

It is good to see them all again! Although I heard from Don Banta, a local bird watcher, that he is getting tens of American Goldfinch at his feeders!!!!!!

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