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Pre-MacWorld Birding Catchup

January 15th, 2008

As I wait for the MacWorld Expo to start, I figured that now would be a good time to catch up on posting the birding shots I collected in the U.S. around Christmastime. There were some good shots from a trip I took to the water treatment plant on Radio Road out in Foster City. One of the best was a Common Yellowthroat I stumbled upon while taking a road out to the less-peopled bayfront side of the plant. I was walking along this path bordered with medium brush, and there he was:

1207-Common Yellowthroat 01-450

Beautiful little thing, isn’t it? I don’t care if it’s a “Common” anything, that is one vibrant, startling bird. Click on it for a larger shot, or just see a closer view here:

1207-Common Yellowthroat 01A-450

Here’s where the new camera really pays off. Not only in the many shots I could snap off immediately, but in the quality of the close-up shot. Here’s another shot:

1207-Common Yellowthroat 02-450

Nearby, I saw a Yellow-rumped Warbler flitting around a fence:

1207-Y-Rumped Warbler 01-450

1207-Y-Rumped Warbler 02-450

These must be fairly common themselves–I saw a few at a winery Sachi and I visited in Los Gatos:

1207-Y-Rumped Warbler 04-450

There were tons of Cinnamon Teals there, not just the single one I spied last year.

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There were a number of other ducks present as well: Norther Shovelers, America Widgeons, Mallards, Green-winged Teals, Northern Pintails, and Ruddy Ducks.



1207-Gw Teal 01-450

1207-N Pintail 01-450

1207-Ruddy Duck 02-450

Tons of shorebirds, too–here you can see a Black-necked Stilt (also above), an American Avocet (both of those very common), some Marbled Godwits, and some Willets.

1207-Bn Stilt 02-450


1207-Marbled Godwit 01-450

1207-Willet 02-450

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The Willets were particularly notable in flight, with those contrasting black-and-white wings. There were tons of shorebirds–not surprising along the shore….

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There were some other miscellaneous birds–a Rustic Bunting, for example:

1207-Rustic Bunting 01-450

…And a female Common Yellowthroat, not as striking as her male counterpart, to be certain:

1207-Common Yellowthroat 03-450

Perhaps the most interesting, however, was a Red-tailed Hawk that I spied sitting on a fence post as I walked down that path:

1207-Red-Tailed Hawk 06-450

1207-Red-Tailed Hawk 03-450

As I tried to sneak in closer (not that he didn’t see me clearly!), a couple walked by and scared him into a tree. Gorgeous!

1207-Red-Tailed Hawk 01-450

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But the tree, apparently, was home to some crows, who definitely did not like the hawk being there!

1207-Red-Tailed Hawk 04-450

1207-Red-Tailed Hawk 05-450

They tried to harry him for a while, but the hawk was not at all perturbed. Just sat there like the crows weren’t swooping at him at all.

A few more photos from the vacation later on, but that’s most of the birds right there.

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