Saturday, April 2, 2011

Birds I'm Watching: Crane Creek Regional Park (April 2, 2011)

I joined a morning hike with the Madrone Audubon Society today at Crane Creek Regional Park, which is only about 25 minutes from home, but I'd never been there before. It's a beautiful park with pretty walks through rolling hills studded with oaks and along small streams with the sort of brush that attracts many birds. At this time of year, the grass is lush green. Even the new poison oak leaves were pretty. I got some good photos of a female Red-winged Blackbird (above).

The highlights for me were first-of-season sightings of: Red-breasted Sapsucker, Pacific-slope Flycatcher, Western Kingbird, Orange-crowned Warbler, Western Meadowlark, Lincoln's Sparrow (last of season, perhaps, but first of 2011), and Bullock's Oriole--this last was fabulously bright. Some of the Yellow-rumped Warblers were also in very bright, attractive plumage, as were the male American Goldfinches.

I saw 47 species: Canada Goose, Mallard, Wild Turkey, Double-crested Cormorant, Great Egret, Turkey Vulture, White-tailed Kite, Cooper's Hawk, Red-shouldered Hawk, Red-tailed Hawk, Eurasian Collared Dove, Mourning Dove, Great Horned Owl (on a nest), Anna's Hummingbird, Acorn Woodpecker, Red-breasted Sapsucker, Nuttall's Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, Pacific-Slope Flycatcher, Western Kingbird, Western Scrub Jay, Common Raven, Tree Swallow, Violet-green Swallow, Oak Titmouse, Bushtit, White-breasted Nuthatch, Bewick's Wren, Western Bluebird, American Robin, European Starling, Orange-crowned Warbler, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Spotted Towhee, California Towhee, California Quail, Song Sparrow, Lincoln's Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrow, Golden-crowned Sparrow, Red-winged Blackbird, Western Meadowlark, Brewer's Blackbird, Bullock's Oriole, House Finch, Lesser Goldfinch, and American Goldfinch.

For more about bird watching in Sonoma County, see my Website Sonoma County Bird Watching Spots.

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