“People often ask me how it is that I seem to be so much at peace. There is a primary reason — and it is available to all who wish to have it. Here’s a simple prerequisite to attaining peace at that level. I invite you to observe the beasts, birds and fish and let them teach you. Let this be a daily routine and life, as you know it, will never be the same.”
– Eddie Bo

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Day 256 - A New Bird! (Almost 2)

Well it has only been 8 days since I made my last addition to the year's list.  For some reason it seems like much linger than that.  Today's birding adventure had a number of twists and turns but ended with the addition of a new bird to the year's list.

My basic plan was to catch up with the White-winged Dove reported yesterday.  That was fairly close to home and I felt no need to get there early.  That left some time for further exploration.  I headed out to UCSB and Goleta Beach.  There was not much exciting to be found there.

I headed back towards the dove, stopping along the way at Atascadero Creek.  There have been many fine birds sighted here over the years but I never seem to find much in this area.  Yesterday Dave Compton reported a Virginia's Warbler here.  I was in the general area where this bird was seen yesterday when I received an email from Dave that he was seeing an American Redstart.  He was about a mile from where I was so I hopped on the bike and raced over there.

When I arrived Dave was not around but Peter and Lucas Gaede had just arrived but were unaware of the Redstart report.  We searched the area for awhile without luck.  Dave showed up and pointed to where he had seen the bird, but it was not to be seen.

I tagged along with Peter and Lucas to check out the nearby area.  There were some birds around but nothing extraordinary.  A pair of American Kestrels zooming all over the place were quite fun to watch.  We headed back and made one more swing through in search of the Redstart.  After awhile Peter found it and we all got good looks at the female/1st year male as it hopped around in the treetops.  Bird 244 for the year!  Definitely not a photo-friendly bird.  Peter also got a brief glimpse what he thought was a Tennessee Warbler, but the bird did not reappear for proper identification.

I told them I was heading to try and find the White-winged Dove and described the location where it had been seen.  When I arrived at the spot I found Peter and Lucas there waving me over and pointing at a dove perched on a wire in the distance.  We were convinced we were looking at a White-winged dove.  The tail appeared short and there was a hint of white along the lower portion of the wing.  However, further examination of the long-distance photos shows the bird is in fact a Mourning Dove with an unusually short tail.  Oh well, I will have to try and chase that bird down once again!

Not a White-winged Dove

A few photos from this morning:

Black-crowned Night-heron (immature)

Greater Yellowlegs

Least Sandpiper

After the addition of this 1 species, the year's total stands at 244.

Today I rode a total of 25.4 miles

More later,

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