29 September 2020

Posts Tagged ‘California quail’

Rain

Saturday, September 19th, 2020

It wasn’t a lot, but it was rain. The morning started off with a trace of drizzle, then the drizzle abated, and the weather radar showed a rain-free channel for a while—but that rain would likely follow. And afternoon thundershowers were possible.

An overcast filled much of the sky, and I could feel humidity for the first time in a while. Quite a few birds flitted about, and my hike with dog generally gave me the usual thrills. But the most thrilling moment came on our return, when I’d just seen a gang of magpies on the bluff, and the drizzle returned. I heard it before I felt it, but there it was. And then a sparrow popped up and posed.

The drizzle didn’t last very long, but it doesn’t take much to trigger a spark of hope these days.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 8:16 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. House Finch*
2. Black-capped Chickadee
3. Northern Flicker**
4. Pine Siskin
5. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay**
6. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
7. Spotted Towhee
8. Lesser Goldfinch*
9. Black-billed Magpie*
10. Chipping Sparrow

Elsewhere

11. Eurasian Collared Dove (v)
12. Song Sparrow (v)
13. California Quail
14. House Sparrow

Mammals

Red Squirrel
Gray Squirrel

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

Good Company

Wednesday, September 16th, 2020
Black-capped Chickadee, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 16 September 2020.
Black-capped Chickadee.

Within ten or fifteen minutes of hitting the trail this morning, I could tell last night brought fair migration winds. I say “fair” winds because of the good variety of species I spied early—Western Tanager, Western Wood-pewee, Yellow-rumped Warbler, and a few other species-in-a-hurry that I couldn’t ID. Has me psyched about the days to come.

Western Wood-pewee, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 16 September 2020.
Western Wood-pewee.

But the sweetest thing about my hike with dog this cool morning was the company of Black-capped Chickadees. What with the recent spate of western fires, a hurricane making landfall, and other dramatic climate events, it’d be easy to fall into a funk. But there they are, the chickadees, their optimistic-sounding voices as they check in with each other—voices so matter-of-fact and unworried that they attract other little silent species moving through the foliage.

One even flew within inches of my head today. I thought it might land on my hat, but it didn’t. Maybe someday.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 8:11 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Black-billed Magpie* (v)
2. House Finch*
3. Black-capped Chickadee**
4. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
5. Black-chinned Hummingbird
6. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
7. Spotted Towhee
8. Northern Flicker**
9. Western Tanager
10. Downy Woodpecker
11. Sparrow (sp)
12. Western Wood-pewee
13. American Robin
14. Yellow-rumped Warbler
15. Lesser Goldfinch*
16. Broad-tailed Hummingbird
17. House Wren

Elsewhere

18. California Quail

Mammals

Red Squirrel (v)

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

Friluftsliv

Tuesday, September 15th, 2020
Yellow-rumped Warbler, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, UTah, 15 September 2020.
Yellow-rumped Warbler.

I happened to encounter the word friluftsliv this morning soon after my hike with dog. A Norwegian concept, or practice, or custom—meaning something like “open-air living.” But it means more. It means spending time each day surrounded by, contemplating, and paying attention to Nature.

It’s what I’ve done for decades. Huge part of my life. Good living, too.

Hike-wise, another quiet one. But the voices of chickadees made me feel optimistic despite the crazy fires and winds and hurricanes and politics and disease. Plus, I came across my first migrating Yellow-rumped Warbler moving through.

Worth it—the time, the effort, the energy. Worth it always.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 8:13 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. Black-billed Magpie** (v)
2. House Finch*
3. Black-capped Chickadee*
4. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
5. Black-chinned Hummingbird
6. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
7. Spotted Towhee
8. Lesser Goldfinch**
9. Northern Flicker (v)
10. Yellow-rumped Warbler
11. Rock Pigeon

Elsewhere

12. Eurasian Collared Dove (v)
13. California Quail
14. House Sparrow

Mammals

Mountain Cottontail
Rock Squirrel

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

 
Bird Report is a (sometimes intermittent) record of the birds I encounter while hiking, see while driving, or spy outside my window. —Brian Willson



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