“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

Monday, September 21, 2015

Day 263 Part 2 - Night Shift

This morning after leaving the warblerfest, Tom Turner and his wife Maggie scared up a Lesser Nighthawk near the former Ocean Meadows Golf Course.  This bird is pretty unusual for the area and would be good to see.  Since these birds are essentially nocturnal it was suggested to me an outing in the area at dusk may a good way to see it.

So about an hour before sunset I left home and headed back to Goleta.  I arrived at the spot where the Nighthawk had been seen.  There was a Lincoln's Sparrow in the area, which was nice as I had not yet gotten a photo of one this year.

I headed out to the more open areas of the golf course.  My experience with Nighthawks is that they like to forage over open areas.  As I approached a group of pine trees I could hear some alarm calls from Scrub Jays.  It seemed to me I was too far away from them to be prompting this so I looked around - and saw a Bobcat sitting in the weeds not far from the tree.  Cool!  Then I saw another and yet another - 3 Bobcats!  A mother and 2 youngsters.  They were not terribly upset by me nor the jogger and cyclist that came by and got a big surprise as they passed the cats.  Eventually a Coyote arrived and had a bit of a faceoff with the mama cat.  She took a rather aggressive posture and the Coyote headed on its way.

As for the Nighthawk, I searched around the area until the light faded without any luck.  There were a number of bats working the area which was fun to see.  From a birding point of view I was rewarded with good looks at a Barn Owl hunting over the open spaces - bird # 249 for the year!  I was beginning to wonder if I would catch up with one of these this year.

I had a pleasant ride home in the dark.

Lincoln's Sparrow



After the addition of this 1 species, the year's total stands at 249.

This evening I rode another 27.2 miles

More later,

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