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Re: Olive-sided Flycatchers
Wed, 28 Jul 2004 08:13:53 -0700 (GMT-07:00)
From: Rusty Scalf

I guess it's obvious, but I'll write it anyway.

Whenever a neotropical migrant shows a sharp decline, one has to consider their situation on wintering grounds. I'm not suggesting that there is any immediate problem with the Olive-sided Flycatcher, but just in general. The American Bird Conservancy is a great conservation organization that is quite focused on this issue. If we do, in fact, detect a big drop in Olive-sided Flycatchers in coming seasons, this fact should noted and some effort made to look at their winter habitat situation.

Dickcissel got hammered by insecticide spraying on rice fields in Venezuala, Swainson's Hawk have been hit hard by pesticides in Argentina, and a number of arboreal warbler species from the Eastern United States have suffered with the conversion to "sun coffee."

Rusty Scalf

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Albany shoreline and Tilden Regional Park
Wed, 28 Jul 2004 21:06:02 PDT
From: Brian Fitch

Yesterday, we saw our first Peregrine Falcon since 1997 fly over Albany heading out across the bay, scaring everything in its path, though it never stopped to hunt. We also saw the continuing Wandering Tattler at the westernmost point of land, and a single Elegant Tern flew overhead.

Today, we finally found a pair of Olive-sided Flycatchers pip-pip-pipping to each other in the pines above the start of the Big Springs Trail in Tilden Regional Park. Up on the east side of Vollmer Peak was the earliest Cassin's Vireo we've ever seen. The three past sightings have all been during the last week of August. Both sites had young Hermit Warblers as well.

Brian Fitch & the summer camp crew

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Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve, Oakland Hills
Thu, 29 Jul 2004 07:49:59 -0700
From: Debbie Viess

Along the Huckleberry Botanic Preserve Regional Preserve lower trail yesterday, I encountered a diverse and interesting conglomeration of birds in a mixed species flock.

Flitting and feeding amongst the bays were Chestnut-backed Chickadees, Dark-eyed Juncos, Ruby-crowned Kinglets, a Downy Woodpecker, a silent empid flycatcher, a Red-breasted Nuthatch and a first-year Townsend's Warbler (kinda early for Townsend's, isn't it?). Alas, still no Olive-sided Flycatcher; I drank three beers, quickly, to its memory and future good health.

Debbie Viess

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Re: Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve, Oakland Hills
Thu, 29 Jul 2004 10:51:49 -0700
From: Joseph Morlan

Debbie Viess wrote:

Flitting and feeding amongst the bays were Chestnut-backed Chickadees, Dark-eyed Juncos, Ruby-crowned Kinglets, ...

Wow! This is an exceptionally early arrival for Ruby-crowned Kinglet. Usual arrival date for the Bay Area is mid-September. There are a couple of documented late-August records from Monterey and Santa Cruz counties. I am not aware of any previous July records of this species in the Bay Area.

Here is a useful link for Santa Cruz County:
Is there a similar summary available for the East Bay, or other Bay Area counties?

Joseph Morlan, Pacifica, CA
Fall Birding Classes start Sep 14
California Bird Records Committee

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Re: Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve, Oakland Hills
Thu, 29 Jul 2004 12:43:14 -0700
From: Joseph Morlan

Debbie Viess wrote:

... and a first year Townsend's Warbler (kinda early for Townsend's, isn't it?).

This is also completely amazing!

Normal arrival for Townsend's Warbler is mid to late August. I am unaware of any July records for the Bay Area except for one that lingered in Santa Cruz through 3 July 1996.

Joseph Morlan, Pacifica

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Cooper's Hawk fledgling in Oakland Hills
Thu, 29 Jul 2004 16:46:17 -0700
From: Debbie Viess

Today, in an undisclosed Oakland Hills location, I encountered the biggest damn Cooper's Hawk that I've ever seen. She was big, beautifully marked with white on her wings and nape, and like most fledges, as dumb as a bag of hammers. She was perched conveniently in the open, in perfect light, and gave her birdie version of a whining toddler to keep her parents appraised of her location. Another fledge echoed her cries in deeper cover. At least she didn't have to worry about some hungry accipiter picking her off! Some girls have all the luck....

Debbie Viess

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Juvenile Cooper's Hawks in Berkeley
Thu, 29 Jul 2004 17:00:51 -0700 (GMT-07:00)
From: Rusty Scalf

Same thing happened to me this morning. Walked through San Pablo Park in Berkeley and had two juvenile Cooper's Hawks shoot right by me and land on children's playground equipment. They perched side by side and just stared at me. Maybe 30 to 40 feet away.

Rusty Scalf

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Juvenile Cooper's Hawk in Pleasanton
Thu, 29 Jul 2004 17:14:01 -0700 (GMT-07:00)
From: Rich Cimino

The same thing happen to Nancy Paulus while walking my dog the other morning behind the City of Pleasanton Swim Center. A juvenile Cooper's Hawk which lives in the back of the center came out of a tree, shot over her shoulder, landed on a low limb and watched her walk by. She is still amazed with the experience.

Rich Cimino

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Upcoming changes in East Bay Birds list and website
Thu, 29 Jul 2004 18:24:54 -0700
From: Ann McGregor

Dear EEB Members,

On Saturday, July 31, the EBB list serve will be transferred to Sightings, the Mt. Diablo Audubon Society's list serve. When this is complete, you will receive a welcome message containing important information. The message will have the posting address for Sightings, a general information address (I recommend that you bookmark this address) and your personal password. You will need your password to unsubscribe, access the Sightings' Archive, and to change your password to something that you can easily remember. You do not need your password to post messages. On Sunday, August 1, all message should be posted to Sightings.

The list of Birding Events from the East Bay Birders Circle web site has been moved to the Mt. Diablo Audubon Society's web site. You can access this information by going to
and clicking on Calendar. Mary McCanta has entered all the current information and has graciously volunteered to keep the information updated. Thank you, Mary.

Also, the entire East Bay Birders Circle web site has been successfully migrated to the Mt. Diablo Audubon Society's web site. In the next few weeks, we will be incorporating this information into the MDAS site. If you need information from the EBB site before the incorporation, you can find it at

Thank you, Larry, for your years of generous service to the birding community. You will be missed!

Ann McGregor
Sightings Administrator

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Cooper's Hawk fledgling in Berkeley
Thu, 29 Jul 2004 18:34:28 -0700
From: Mark Westlund

Well, since we're on the topic...

We've got a Cooper's Hawk nest around the corner on Spaulding St in Berkeley. Several mornings now I've watched a fledgling attempt to hunt ... it'll chase one finch, then, when other birds break cover, gets overcome by the possibilities and starts chasing fresh prey. This ends with the hawk retreating to a telephone pole or nearby tree where its mobbed by robins and hummingbirds.

But a week ago Saturday was the odd one. The hawk landed in the walnut tree outside my bedroom window - which has platform and thistle feeders popular with neighborhood songbirds - where it perched for about 20 minutes, whining constantly. Then it dropped from the tree and perched briefly on a patio chair, skated across my glass-topped patio table, then settled down in the chair on the other side, tucking its legs underneath as if it were bedding down in a nest. Eventually it flew into a tall acacia in the neighbor's yard, still crying, and some time later flew away.

Mark Westlund

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Sabine's Gull at Hayward Regional Shoreline
Sat, 31 Jul 2004 11:45:18 -0700
From: Mike Feighner

East Bay Birds:

Yesterday afternoon (July 30) at about 5:30 PM I found a Sabine's Gull in flight at Hayward Regional Shoreline. This was where the trail reached the edge of the bay west of the visitor center. The bird was flying from the bay eastward while being followed by two Forster's Terns and disappeared eventually over one of the inaccessible ponds to the east. Its wing pattern is unmistakable.

Mike Feighner, Livermore, CA, Alameda County

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Beginning with August 2004, the East Bay Birds list has been merged
into the Mount Diablo Audubon Society Sightings list.