Göran, Lena, and I had a fine week-long birding adventure starting just south of San Francisco. We visited the redwoods, Big Sur, the San Jacinto Mts., the Salton Sea, Anza Borrego, the Laguna Mts., and San Diego, ending up with 214 species. Some of our highlights are here; a day-by-day account with more photos will be up on our website soon!
At Monterey we listened to crying Pigeon Guillemots.
Big Sur was foggy, but we perservered and got a Spotted Owl the first night and two California Condors the next afternoon. At Piedras Blancas we saw a huge Elephant Seal nursery.
The San Jacintos provided a wealth of montane birds, including White-headed Woodpecker. At the Salton Sea we got Snowy Plover, many Ospreys, and five charasmatic Burrowing Owls.
Anza Borrego afforded us views of a spectacular desert bighorn. In the Laguna Mts. we watched a flock of Tricolored Blackbirds at Jacumba, Pine Siskins at the Julian Birdwatcher, and then both heard and spied the elusive Mountain Quail along Kitchen Creek Road.
Our final day was spent birding San Diego in the wind and rain; a dozen Surfbirds on the Imperial Beach jetty were loving it.
The days flew by, and ended with a Red-crowned Parrot screeching his goodbyes as I left Göran and Lena at Fisherman’s Landing–where they caught a pelagic trip to Baja!