Monday, November 19, 2007

11th Annual CVBS Recap

Well the Central Valley Birding Symposium this year was amazing as always. Without the disruption of a certain gull, the symposium lasted the full three days. I heard a number of very interesting speakers, enjoyed the lively I.D. panel, browsed the products laid out by vendors, engaged in some very interesting bird-related discussions, and as always, met some new people.

My friday field trip was the Pardee Reservoir Eagle Boat Trip. We were on water for about 4 hours and saw around 39 species (my list may not have been complete). The highlights included both Bald and Golden Eagles, Rock and Canyon Wrens, and gorgeous looks at a Prarie Falcon. The weather was sunny and gorgeous, but a breeze over the water turned chilly in the latter half of the ride.

My Saturday trip was to the Stockton Sewage Ponds, where a few years back we had a Harlequin Duck. We had around 52 species by my count. There were large numbers of ducks like Northern Shovelers and Canvasbacks, and the highlights were a Ferruginous Hawk, a Merlin, and a female Redhead. Gigantic flocks of Cackling Geese going overhead were quite impressive as well.

After lunch on Saturday the young birders as well as a few others went to Staten Island Rd. to get a little afternoon birding in. These flooded agricultural fields yielded few new species like Greater White-fronted Geese, Horned Larks and a Rough-legged Hawk. This was also a good spot to get a look at the Sandhill Cranes prevalent in the Central Valley.

Sunday felt much more like the usual weather of the CVBS - with cold fog throughout the entire morning. I went to Cosumnes River Preserve, which was the local patch for one of my fellow young birders, Daryl. Because of the fog, it was wet and quiet. I only added one or two new species to my Sacramento county list. The highlights of the day included a beaver poking its head through water plants to the delight of the group. Birdwise, Golden-crowned Kinglets, Golden-crowned Sparrows, and Lincoln Sparrows were notably present.
This tree had both a juvenile and an adult Bald Eagle perched in it!
This is an example of the scenery at Pardee Reservoir.
This lively Canyon Wren was a difficult bird to photograph.

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