I left the hotel early to time my arrival at the reserve for 8AM. The morning was chilly but not too cold. At this hour I had the entire reserve to myself. It took me about 30 minutes to locate the Thrasher - I kept getting distracted by the numerous Sapsuckers in the nearby Pepper Trees. The bird cooperated nicely for photos before disappearing. Sage Thrasher for #285!
I took a walk up to the pond, hoping to get a photo of the male Wood Duck that has been seen there recently. I did see the duck briefly but it was camera-shy.
As I was returning to my bike I saw that there was another visitor arriving at the reserve. It turned out to be Tom Turner, who had also come up from Goleta to see the Sage Thrasher. Presently Tom is on top of the Santa Barbara County ebird list for 2015 with over 310 species. We have run into each other in the field a number of times this year, but never so far from home. We wandered around for a little bit until the Thrasher made another appearance, then I hit the road.
I had a screaming tailwind and made the 60 or so miles home in about 4 hours. I was soooo thankful the wind was not blowing the other way!
After the addition of this 1 species, the year's total stands at 285
The Score: Vermont 277, Green Big Year 285
Today I rode a total of 70.2 miles