02-11-07

Cricket and I checked in on the Northern Waterthrush again this afternoon around 5:00. It was calling loudly at the far western arm of the marsh. The area is accessed off of Charleston Road (near Amphitheater) in Mountain View. We parked at MIPS, crossed the street and walked on the left-hand trail beginning at the trellis. A sharp left appear about half way to where we saw and heard the Waterthrush. There are several large radio dishes along this section of the creek as well as some large red brick buildings on the other side. The bird was repeatedly dodging back and forth from a small patch of mud to the nearby reeds. The call note is impressively loud and quite different from the more liquid calls of the surrounding Yellow-rumped Warblers. It is conspicuously washed with yellow on the underside and continually bobbed its tail, much like a Spotted Sandpiper.






02-04-07

I stopped at Sunol Regional Wilderness late this morning to search for the Red-naped Sapsucker which appeared shortly after I arrived at the tree. The bird was, as previously reported, foraging in the upper branches of a huge tree near the picnic table. To reach this tree, walk across the footbridge and turn right. About 30 yards of so further there is a dirt trail leading uphill, and one leading down to the water. The tree where the bird was found at this junction and is marked with thousands of sapsucker holes, a few of which, close to the top, are quite new and that is where I saw the bird quietly feeding. Interestingly, I saw a Ruby-crowned Kinglet utilizing these holes too. Several Varied Thrushes were in the area, including two on the lawn back near the cars. An immature Golden Eagle appeared overhead, circling with Turkey Vultures.

After that, I looked for the Townsend's Solitaire, which I was albe to relocate between mp .3 and .4 along Geary Road. It perched and called from a large oak tree with patches of mistletoe across from the No Parking Anytime sign. At first, it appeared like a dull Western Bluebird, until I saw the tail, which is considerably longer and the flight even more fluttery.