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  1. FW: [OrangeCountyBirding] Com Goldeneye LINK
    DATE: Mar 5, 2017 @ 2:01pm, 8 month(s) ago
    The Goldeneye, Merganser and Mandarin Ducks were all still present at 11:45AM
    From: Don Hoechlin quixdimnd@... [OrangeCountyBirding]
    Sent: Saturday, March 4, 2017 8:42 AM
    Subject: [OrangeCountyBirding] Com Goldeneye
    The common goldeneye found by John Fitch is still present on the first pond to the west of the main pond. Also present was a female common merganser and a pair of Mandrin ducks Don Hoechlin. RMV
    Sent from my iPhone
  2. -back to top-
  3. Com Goldeneye LINK
    DATE: Mar 4, 2017 @ 8:42am, 8 month(s) ago
    The common goldeneye found by John Fitch is still present on the first pond to the west of the main pond. Also present was a female common merganser and a pair of Mandrin ducks Don Hoechlin. RMV
    Sent from my iPhone
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  5. Re: [OrangeCountyBirding] Brightwater/Bolsa Chica Border Question LINK
    DATE: Feb 15, 2017 @ 8:33pm, 8 month(s) ago
    Good luck. Native grasses are the hardest things to grow.Wonder if there will be a time when they give up and allow the native plants that do well to continue to grow and provide habitat for animals.I hope they will be successful but they will have to be diligent about weeding until the grasses establish themselves. Maybe the rain this season will help.
    Sent from my iPad Lena Hayashi
    On Feb 15, 2017, at 5:44 PM, terrynjohn@... [OrangeCountyBirding] < > wrote:
     I’m sorry I’m a bit slow to jump in and respond, but a similar question came up in 2015 when our Bolsa Chica Conservancy monthly counters asked why they were pulling up all the native vegetation.I asked Kelly O’Reilly, the Bolsa Chica Fish & Wildlife Manager.This was her response then:
    "Brightwater Trail reasons about taking out vegetation Dec. 2015
    Hi Terry,
    I talked to Ed Mountford yesterday regarding the cleared vegetation which I saw for myself on Tuesday. He told me the CA Coastal Commission required the Brightwater Development to plant native grasses because that was stipulated in the Coastal Development Permit Brightwater was issued years ago. Thus, healthy drought-tolerant natives were ripped out and they have planted native grass seed. I'm sure the developer would not have gone to that expense had he not been forced to by the Commission.
    So, now we know why that happened.
    Kelly O’Reilly”
    (Ed Montford is with the Brightwater Development.)I hope this answers the question. That area is part of the Bolsa Chica Reserve that Fish & Wildlife monitors.If further information is needed, I can contact Kelly again.
    Terry Hill Huntington Beach
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  7. Green-tailed Towhee at Huntington Central/Urban Forest LINK
    DATE: Dec 19, 2016 @ 8:13am, 10 month(s) ago
    I saw the bird at 0800 at the same blue horse bucket as John found it on Saturday. Horse paddock to the north, wooden fence of the Urban Forest behind. I couldn't focus through the chain link before it dropped down and disappeared. I'm waiting to see if it comes back for a photo op.
    Edana Salisbury
    Buena Park
    Sent from my iPhone and possibly autocorrected incorrectly ....
  8. -back to top-
  9. Orange County RBA: December 8, 2016 LINK
    DATE: Dec 8, 2016 @ 8:05am, 11 month(s) ago
    RBA * California * Orange County *December 8, 2016 * CAOC16.12.08
    This is the Orange County, CA weekly Rare
    Bird Alert (RBA) and local events summary. California Bird Records Committee
    (CBRC) review species are marked with asterisks below. All documentation of
    review species should be forwarded to the CBRC secretary, Tom Benson, at secretary@... .
    Birds mentioned:
    Tufted Duck Long-tailed Duck Common Goldeneye Mew Gull Thayer’s Gull Glaucous-winged Gull Yellow-crowned Night-Heron Bald Eagle Ferruginous Hawk Short-eared Owl Williamson’s Sapsucker “Western” Flycatcher Vermilion Flycatcher Bell’s Vireo Mountain Bluebird Lapland Longspur Northern Waterthrush Black-and-white Warbler Palm Warbler Clay-colored Sparrow Summer Tanager Baltimore Oriole
    A TUFTED DUCK that was found on the Santa
    Ana River in Anaheim on November 20 is still being seen at the same location as
    of December 7. The bird has thus far been reliably found in the vicinity of the
    bridge at Lakeview, sometimes in the river itself and sometimes in the
    associated ponds.
    A female LONG-TAILED DUCK was found at
    Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve in Huntington Beach on November 24, followed by
    a male on November 28. Both birds have continued to be reported together
    through December 4 mostly in the area of the inner bay, where they have been
    reliably seen there about 100-200 yards north of the PCH parking lot along the
    western edge. The female was most recently reported alone on December 5, and
    the male was observed alone on December 6.
    Two COMMON GOLDENEYES continue in the
    lake at Mason Regional Park in Irvine as of December 7. In addition, three
    Common Goldeneyes were observed on December 1 at Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve
    in Huntington Beach. The birds were observed in a pond near the U.S. Fish and
    Wildlife Service trailer at the end of Graham; this area is not open to the
    A MEW GULL was reported on the Santa Ana
    River in Anaheim on December 4. This first cycle bird, a rarity at inland
    locations, was seen in a pond west of Lakeview Avenue.
    A THAYER’S GULL was reported on the Santa
    Ana River on December 5. This first cycle bird, a rarity at inland locations,
    was seen between Lincoln Avenue and Glassell Street.
    A GLAUCOUS-WINGED GULL was reported at
    Carl Thornton Park in Santa Ana on December 2. This first cycle bird, a rarity
    at inland locations, was seen at the pond with other gulls.
    Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve in Huntington Beach on December 1 and continued through
    December 4. The bird has been observed near PCH and the tide gate.
    A BALD EAGLE has been reported on the
    Santa Ana River since late October and was most recently reported on December
    6. While it has been reported as far west as Glassell Street and Tustin Avenue
    and as far east as near Imperial Highway, it has been most reliably observed between
    Tustin Avenue and Lakeview Avenue. This is undoubtedly a returning bird that
    was present in the same area through last winter and may have been present in
    previous winters (though this is uncertain).
    A FERRUGINOUS HAWK was observed at Bolsa
    Chica Ecological Reserve in Huntington Beach on December 4. The light morph juvenile
    bird was observed flying over the Brightwater Trail. Now that Orange County has
    lost long-standing open habitat at the Great (Deception) Park in Irvine, any
    Ferruginous Hawks located outside of the Seal Beach Naval Weapons
    Station/National Wildlife Refuge are considered a rarity.
    Two SHORT-EARED OWLS were reported at
    Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve in Huntington Beach on December 1, although the
    birds had originally been observed earlier in the week. They were observed
    flying around in Nest Site 1, the sandy area extending south from the fenced
    area across the walkbridge by the PCH lot.
    A WILLIAMSON’S SAPSUCKER was found in the
    gated community of Laguna Woods Village on November 26 and was last reported on
    December 4. This is a private area that is accessible by invite only from a
    guest within the community.
    A “WESTERN” FLYCATCHER was reported at
    Mile Square Regional Park in Fountain Valley on December 5. The bird was seen
    and heard in eucalyptus trees to the west of the main entrance. A VERMILION FLYCATCHER was found at Mason
    Regional Park in Irvine on December 3 and continued to be reported through
    December 6. The immature male bird has been reported on the western side of the
    park, sometimes in the northwest corner. Another immature male bird was
    reported at the nearby San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary on December 5 and 6.
    While this species now occurs year-round at certain locations in the county, it
    otherwise continues to be a rare winter resident in Orange County.
    A BELL’S VIREO was observed at John Baca
    Park on December 4. This continuing bird has wintered at this park since fall
    of 2013 and is one of only about a half-dozen records of wintering Bell’s
    Vireos for Orange County.
    Five MOUNTAIN BLUEBIRDS were observed in
    the vicinity of the UCI Marsh in Irvine on December 7. These birds were found
    in a grassy field to the southwest of the Arboretum. This area is not open to
    the public and there is no legal access without prior authorization.
    A LAPLAND LONGSPUR was found on Seal
    Beach Naval Weapons Station/National Wildlife Refuge in Seal Beach on December
    3 and was reported again on December 5. The bird was in a mixed flock of Horned
    Larks in the large agricultural fields on the eastern side of the installation,
    south of Westminster Avenue. This species has been recorded annually at Seal
    Beach for the last five years but is still considered a rarity in Orange
    A NORTHERN WATERTHRUSH was reported at
    Huntington Central Park in Huntington Beach on December 7. This is presumably a
    continuing bird that has been reported at the park for the last several
    winters. It was found away from where it is usually reported, and was in some
    Brazilian pepper trees to the east of the bathroom near the Park Bench Café.
    A BLACK-AND-WHITE WARBLER that was found
    at Mason Regional Park in Irvine on November 26 continued through December 6.
    It has usually been observed in the northwest corner of the park. Another
    Black-and-white Warbler was reported on December 7 at Carbon Canyon Regional
    Park in Brea, west of the park office near the oil company facility.
    A PALM WARBLER was observed on the Santa
    Ana River at Lakeview in Anaheim on December 4. It was hanging around a pond at
    33.85686 -117.81269.
    A CLAY-COLORED SPARROW continued to be
    seen on December 6 with a flock of Dark-eyed Juncos at Craig Regional Park in
    Fullerton.The bird was observed near the playground by the park office.
    A SUMMER TANAGER continued at Mason Regional
    Park in Irvine through December 4. This adult male bird was observed in the trees
    in the northwest portion of the park, and has been known in the past to fly
    across University to the Rancho San Joaquin Golf Course. Another continuing
    female-type Summer Tanager was last reported on December 6 at Mason Regional
    Park in the trees to the south of the lake. A third female-type Summer Tanager
    was observed at Santiago Park in Santa Ana on December 3 in sycamore trees to
    the south of the lawn bowling area.
    A BALTIMORE ORIOLE was found at Mason
    Regional Park in Irvine on December 3 and continued to be reported through
    December 6. The bird has been most reliably found along the creek running at
    the northern end of the park, west of the entrance and north of the lake.
    The monthly bird walk at San Joaquin
    Wildlife Sanctuary will be conducted on December 11 from approximately 8 to
    noon. No reservations are required. Meet in front of the Audubon House.
    The next Upper Newport Bay pontoon boat
    field trip will be held onDecember 21from8:15 to 11:00. If
    you are interested in attending, make your reservations as soon as possible by
    emailing Nancy Kenyon. See here for more details: .
    The annual Christmas Bird Count will
    occur onDecember 17(San Juan Capistrano),December
    18(Inland), andJanuary 1(Coastal). If you are interested in
    participating in any of the counts this year, please refer to the official
    website, determine which count group you want to participate in, and email that
    area leader for more details: .
    Sylvia Gallagher’s “More Birds of Coastal
    Southern California” class will begin the first week in January 2017 and is
    expected to run until May. You must enroll in advance by sending the
    registration form to Sylvia. Registration began on December 5 and these popular
    classes tend to fill up pretty quickly. The enrollment form is located
    here: .
    ********************************************************* The Orange CountyRBAand
    events summary is produced weekly by Ryan Winkleman and Jeff Bray in
    collaboration with Doug Willick. Sightings of rare birds can be posted to the
    OrangeCountyBirding listserv, emailed directly to Jeff Bray ( jbray4913@... ) and/or Ryan Winkleman ( rswinkleman@... ), and/or submitted to
    eBird ( ).
    Any supporting details (descriptions, photos, audio recordings, etc.) of rare
    sightings that are not already disclosed on the listserv or on eBird should
    also be emailed to Doug Willick at doug.willick@... .
    Those sightings that are included in this
    summary generally include those that are considered rare (regionally or seasonally)
    for Orange County based on "The Birds of Orange County: Status and
    Distribution" (Hamilton and Willick) and/or "Birds of Southern
    California" (Garrett and Dunn). Rarities that regularly or seasonally
    occur at a particular location, such as annually wintering rarities on Seal
    Beach National Wildlife Refuge, are not included in this digest, but reports of
    these same species occurring at other, atypical locations throughout the county
    may be included. All bird reports are vetted to the extent possible prior to
    each publication, but in the interest of sharing information, the accuracy of
    any given report cannot always be guaranteed, nor can the presence of any given
    bird for those who choose to chase after them.
    Information on upcoming local events is
    taken largely from the Sea and Sage Audubon website ( ).
    Sea and Sage Audubon is based out of the Audubon House at the San Joaquin
    Wildlife Sanctuary in Irvine. They sponsor a number of public field trips,
    special birding events, conservation lectures, and social gatherings throughout
    the year.Information regarding upcoming local events should be considered
    accurate at the time of this posting. However, for the most current information
    please refer to the field trip list on the Sea and Sage Audubon website
    at . It
    is also recommended that you refer to that website immediately prior to
    engaging in any field trip to confirm that trips are still occurring.If
    you know of additional upcoming events that are not sponsored directly by Sea
    and Sage Audubon, please email Ryan Winkleman and/or Jeff Bray for inclusion.
  10. -back to top-
  11. Bell's Vireo at Anaheim Coves Park LINK
    DATE: Nov 28, 2016 @ 3:23am, 11 month(s) ago
    Needing to get out of the house for a little “exercise” (well, ok, maybe a little birding), fairly late on Sunday afternoon (27 November), I headed over to Anaheim Coves Park (ACP), along the western side of Burris Basin.  Water birds in
    Burris were not very interesting (duck numbers are still relatively low, and not much of anything else, except for cormorants, a few grebes, and white pelicans).  Even though late afternoon, landbirds seemed completely non-existent.  However, when I stopped
    to look through a flock of Bushtits moving along the native scrub adjacent to the trail, I was quite surprised to have a Bell’s Vireo come into view.  Although initially the vireo may’ve been associating with the Bushtits, after watching it awhile it began
    moving off by itself.  The bird was along the path that heads south from the ACP entrance near the intersection of E. Wagner Ave. and S. Rio Vista St.  The riparian scrub habitat along the trail is rather narrow and linear in this area, and I wouldn’t be surprised
    that the bird (assuming it’s attempting to winter) wanders a fair amount to the north and south along this part of the park.  The light was rather poor when I had the bird in view, and though it looked quite fresh, I could see very little color on the bird
    (just a hint of yellow-olive on the rump and lower back, and some olive edgings on the flight feathers), much like what our endangered Southern California subspecies (“Least” Bell’s Vireo) would typically look like at this time of year.  This may be the second
    presumably wintering Bell’s Vireo in the county so far this season, including the apparently returning individual at John Baca Park.  Although I haven’t checked on this, I believe there are still less than 10 records of wintering (or at least winter period)
    Bell’s Vireos for OC.    I placed a photo of the ACP Bell’s Vireo on my Flickr site:    Doug Willick Orange, CA
  12. -back to top-
  13. Re: Eastern Phoebe at Bolsa Chica - 22 NOV LINK
    DATE: Nov 23, 2016 @ 1:50pm, 11 month(s) ago
    I just refound the Eastern Phoebe below the brightwater trail. Currently looking st it from:
    Altitude: 54 ft
    Accuracy of GPS signal: 33 ft,-118.04636,-118.04636
    Perching on random metal stakes in the ground. Cassin's Kingbird and Say's Phoebe in the same area.Moving around quite a bit.It's north of where it was yesterday.
    Jeff Bray
    Irvine, CA
    On Tue, Nov 22, 2016 at 8:40 PM -0800, "Jeff Bray" < jbray4913@... > wrote:
    Serving as messenger, John Oliver and Ed Stonick had an EASTERN PHOEBE at Bolsa Chica today. It was seen around GPS: 33.707056, -118.046558which is on the north side of the pocket pond, I think that's what it's called anyway.
    Some photos are linked to John's eBird list below:
    Jeff Bray
    Irvine, CA
  14. -back to top-
  15. Eastern Phoebe at Bolsa Chica - 22 NOV LINK
    DATE: Nov 22, 2016 @ 8:40pm, 11 month(s) ago
    Serving as messenger, John Oliver and Ed Stonick had an EASTERN PHOEBE at Bolsa Chica today.  It was seen around GPS:  33.707056, -118.046558  which is on the north side of the pocket pond, I think that's what it's called anyway.
    Some photos are linked to John's eBird list below:
    Jeff Bray
    Irvine, CA
  16. -back to top-
  17. munias and whydahs LINK
    DATE: Nov 14, 2016 @ 3:25pm, 11 month(s) ago
    Interesting to see (and hear) a family unit of two or three Scaly-breasted Munia fledglings and one fledgling Pin-tailed Whydah pursuing one adult Munia at John "Chew" Baca Park today. The persistent sssip-sssip-sssip-sssip begging calls of the whydah easily stood out from the peeer calls of his/her pseudo-siblings. It appears that parasitism events by the smaller whydahs don't have much of an impact on their munia hosts. 
    Jim Pike
    Make America grim again
  18. -back to top-
  19. HOMEless at HCP? LINK
    DATE: Nov 11, 2016 @ 3:26pm, 12 month(s) ago
    If anyone still needs a Hooded Merganser at Huntington Central Park, you might consider checking Huntington Lake, as there were two HOME there on Weds. The next day, the continuing Bell's Vireo at nearby Seagate (aka John "Chew" Baca) Park was in upslope toyon shrubs to the south of the blue doggie-bag dispensary and the "Protected Ecological Area" sign (the latter of which is always good for a chuckle).
    Jim Pike
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  21. Laguna Niguel Regional Park - Tennessee Warbler LINK
    DATE: Oct 7, 2016 @ 6:59pm, 1 year(s) ago
    The Tennessee Warbler made a 2 second appearance at the pool in the rocks under the large willow below the dam at 4 PM.It is much more cautious than the crowd of Yellow-rumps that frequent the pool. John Chapple got a great photo which I expect will be in his eBird report. A minute before the Tennessee, the Palm Warbler came to the pool.
     Andy Lazere, Laguna Niguel
  22. -back to top-
  23. Palm Warbler and Golden Eagle in Mason Regional Park, Irvine LINK
    DATE: Oct 5, 2016 @ 2:16pm, 1 year(s) ago
    Hi OC Birders.I birded by myself then was joined by Terry Hill, Sharon and Mark, who came from a bird count in the UCI Marsh.Once they joined me we found the Palm Warbler in the grass and the Golden Eagle in the air.
    John Chappel gave us the clue we needed to find the Palm Warbler.Looking south from the restroom to the sandy playground / volleyball area the birds was to the right of the sand in the grass amongst some exercise stations.The eagle circled the park various times, and even dove after something in the east end, but must have missed because it came right back up.
    My eBird report:
    Rick Shearer Huntington Beach
  24. -back to top-
  25. Palm Warbler continues @ Mason Reg. LINK
    DATE: Oct 4, 2016 @ 7:23pm, 1 year(s) ago
    The Palm Warbler Jeff found at Mason Regional Park was re-found this afternoon by John C, Carl and myself. It was foraging on the lawns west of the lake and generally associating with a group of ground foraging Yellow-rumped Warblers. They moved around a bit but it's yellow covert/vents helped it standout as does it's slightly smaller size.
    It runs fast in straight lines and generally stays at a bit of distance but forages out in the open for somewhat easy spotting and photography. One behavior note is a tendency to do tail pumps sometimes similar to a Spotted Sandpiper if they are bit shorter and stiffer.
    Cris Whetstone
    Fountain Valley
  26. -back to top-
  27. Highlights of Today’s Harriett Wieder Park Count LINK
    DATE: Sep 16, 2016 @ 4:35pm, 1 year(s) ago
    There weren’t any exceptional birds today (9/16) on the Harriett Wieder Park Count.Best birds were 1 White-throated Swift and 7 Vaux’s Swifts, and 2 Red-necked Phalaropes (in the Bolsa Chica cell below the helipad).Other highlights included 5 White-faced Ibis, 4 Pacific Slope Flycatchers, 14 Greater Yellowlegs that flew over Harriett Wieder Park while calling during our tally, and 5 Soras.We had a number of hawks today--two juvenile Cooper’s Hawks just outside the playground area, 1 juvenile Red-tailed Hawk in the same area, plus two RTHA at the far northeastern end, Northern Harrier, and several Am. Kestrels, including a family of 3 at the far n.e. end (M, F, Juv.) that were fighting/competing with a Belted Kingfisher over who was going to sit on a particular wire, especially since there was no water there for the BEKI (the John Thomas Leasehold area at that end).
    We also had no water again in the cell looking out from the playground, although the next two cells to the right have water, and there was water in the cell below the helipad.
    Terry Hill Huntington Beach
  28. -back to top-
  29. Re: [OrangeCountyBirding] Baird's Sandpiper LINK
    DATE: Sep 10, 2016 @ 9:44am, 1 year(s) ago
  30. -back to top-

-revision history-
v1.30 - 01/05/16 - Revamped cloud logic, optimized database queries, linked to eBird rarities.
v1.23 - 12/08/11 - Added direct link to CBRC records.
v1.22 - 12/03/11 - Corrected GMT offsets on dates. Added last 5 posts at top.
v1.21 - 11/24/11 - Added direct link to range map for NA birds.
v1.2  - 11/23/11 - Greatly improved graphing technology - separates month vs. year by posts. Added species auto-complete functionality.
v1.14 - 11/22/11 - Added cloud bubble for common thread topics.
v1.13 - 11/22/11 - Added integrated photos where available.
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v1.11 - 11/22/11 - Added banding code, species look-up. Also direct link to recent eBird observations.
 v1.1 - 11/22/11 - Added 'date' functionality. Shows top 'month/year' combinations for a query. Restrict results to that 'month/year'.
 v1.0 - 11/21/11 - Initial version coded. Currently archiving 'lacobirds' and 'calbirds'.