Showing posts from March, 2016

The rest of California.

I arrived in San Diego on a foggy St Patrick's Day morning, ready to take on some birding before Sunni would get done with work.  The sun emerged while I stopped for a sandwich and by the time I arrived at Lake Hodges things were hot and dusty.  Quite the difference from the snowy death march only 24 hours before. 

I was supposed to be looking for sparrows but I was quickly distracted by grebes doing that thing they do...

Both Western and Clark's Grebes were getting in on the mating ritual, sometimes one of each.  I sat and watched for a long time before deciding to drive over to Oak Hill Cemetery.  Birds love dead people.

Another Western Bluebird caught a caterpillar and proceeded to beat it into submission atop a gravestone.

Other birds around the cemetery:

Lark Sparrow

Mountain Chickadee

My last stop near Liberty Station had this handsome Marbled Godwit feeding along the shore with a Willet:

And another Black Phoebe, because they are everywhere...

When Sunni was done with wo…

Anza-Borrego Desert.

A couple years ago my good friend Sunni and I visited Anza-Borrego briefly (blog post here) and we had both been wanting to go back ever since.  Since she had to fly to San Diego this past week for work and I was planning to meet her to get in some birding, it was a good time to make the drive.  We headed east in my second rental car of the year, stopped in Julian for an ugly baseball hat and pie, and continued through the mountains.

We drove through Borrego Springs en route to the state park headquarters passing some of the famous metal sculptures by Ricardo Breceda.

Bird claw gripping my shoulder. 

We made it to the visitor center and stopped for some cold water and to ask about wildflowers and hawks.  I had heard about the migration of Swainson's Hawks here and wanted to get the latest info.  Conveniently the person we asked was Terry Hunefeld, a name I recognized when I read it on his name tag, but did not figure out till later.  He was super friendly and helpful and gave us th…