After checking the status of forest fires in southern California, twelve intrepid birders traveled to Long Beach for a field trip November 1-3, 2019. Upon arrival, the coast was sunny and clear with no trace of smoke in the air. The trip was organized by Paul Rodriguez and led by Theresa Hyde, owner of Bios Environmental, an environmental monitoring company. RRAS members on the trip were Doug and Nancy Chang, Tom and Jane Clay, Jim Roombos, Daniel Joslyn, Paul Rodriguez, Cathy Kozmary, Kathryn Chasen and Richard Walker. Attached are some photos taken on the trip, but they do not necessarily match the accompanying paragraphs.
The first day began along the coast at Point Vincente Lighthouse and Point Fermin in San Pedro. Sea, shore, gull and heron-iike birds were in abundance, including: Surfbird, Heerman’s and Western Gull, Royal Tern, Whimbrel, Willet, Pacific Loon, Brown Pelican, Double-crested Cormorants, Snowy Egret, and Great Blue Heron. In the afternoon, we stopped by Ken Malloy Harbor Regional Park and ended the day at the Cabrillo Beach fishing pier.
On day two we caravanned to Surf City U.S.A. -- Huntington Beach. Huntington Beach’s Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve, habitats include open water, mudflats, salt marsh, coastal dunes, seabird nesting areas, riparian and freshwater marsh. The next stop was Huntington Central Park. Some of the species encountered were: Sharp-shinned, Cooper’s, Red-shouldered, Redtailed Hawks, American Kestrel, Red Breasted Sapsucker, Downy, Nuttall’s Woodpecker and Egyptian Goose.
After lunch in the park at the Park Bench Café we headed to Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve -- Back Bay. It’s a coastal wetland surrounded by bluffs on either side. It has a oneway drive with a few parking spots along the side of the road. Some of the viewed birds were: Killdeer, Least Sandpiper, Ring-billed Gull, Northern Harrier, Belted Kingfisher, California Towhee and Long-billed Curlew.
The last day we stopped by the San Joaquin Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary. It is part of the Irvine Ranch Water District’s Natural Treatment System. Up to 70% of the nitrogen is removed from the San Diego Creek before it enters Upper Newport Bay. Some of the marsh birds present included: Wood Duck, Clark’s Grebe, Greater Yellowlegs, Caspian and Forster’s Tern. After thanking Theresa for a wonderful guided field trip in southern California and bidding her farewell, we headed back home.
All article submitted by Richard Walker