#442 Rock Wren

I had a hard time deciding whether to walk over to San Joaquin this morning or drive up to Santiago Oaks for the monthly Sea & Sage Walk led by Susan Sheakley. San Joaquin’s been great lately, but I haven’t been up in the hills in the morning for quite some time. Fortunately I decided to go to the mountains because we had an exceptionally cool morning, which meant we walked further than usual, which meant we got all the way to the dam, which meant we found this Rock Wren, a bird I hadn’t even thought of looking for in Orange County:

small gray bird with rufous patches on rocks

(I’ve been focused on Black-chinned Hummingbird and Barn Owl.)

We found this (and a Wilson’s Snipe!) where the water exits the dam into the creek. I’ve never been that far before because we almost always run out of steam before getting that far, even though it’s probably less than a mile from the parking lot. It’s just usually really, really hot by 9:00. However this morning we had some really good cloud cover so we managed a longer loop.

All told, we got over 30 species in just under three hours and one and a half miles:

  • California Quail
  • Great Blue Heron
  • Turkey Vulture
  • Osprey
  • Red-shouldered Hawk
  • American Kestrel
  • Wilson’s Snipe
  • Mourning Dove
  • Red-crowned Parrot
  • Anna’s Hummingbird
  • Acorn Woodpecker
  • Nuttall’s Woodpecker
  • Downy Woodpecker
  • Black Phoebe
  • Western Scrub-Jay
  • American Crow
  • Common Raven
  • Barn Swallow
  • Oak Titmouse
  • Bushtit
  • Rock Wren
  • Wrentit
  • Northern Mockingbird
  • European Starling
  • Orange-crowned Warbler
  • Common Yellowthroat
  • Wilson’s Warbler
  • Spotted Towhee
  • California Towhee
  • Song Sparrow
  • House Finch
  • Lesser Goldfinch
  • Nutmeg Mannikin

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