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Field trip report: Ballona Lagoon and environs, Nov.15, 2014

November 18, 2014
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Our apologies to the birders who were confused by our multiple postings about the Ballona Lagoon field trip. Due to tidal data we switched from the 8th to the 15th of November and somehow we were not effective in deleting the previously planned postings on this blog. Ellen and I were there on the 8th and so were three other birders. We did have the opportunity to see some birds, despite the high tide.

Trapped

Trapped!!

Cutting free

Cutting Free

Our main effort was on the 15th and we were rewarded with some fine birding, both on Ballona and at the freshwater marsh across from Playa Vista. As we walked out on the jetty between the creek and the marina channel, we were hailed by an outraged nature-lover who had just witnessed fishermen harassing a bird. A few moments later we were rewarded by the opposite: a couple of fishermen making a valiant and successful effort to free a Brandt’s Cormorant from another’s fishing line that had tangled the cormorant’s foot and trapped him, not far from shore. (photos by Randy Ehler and Grace Murayama).

Let me out!

Let me out!

Free again

The prize of the day goes to the numerous–at least four—Black Oystercatchers, one of which was probably a juvenile with a dark portion of the bill. We also identified our first loon of the season, a Red-throated juvenile fishing in the marina channel. A few of us extended the trip to the freshwater marsh at Lincoln and Jefferson where we had great views of two active Green Herons. Note for your future strolls: Blue-gray Gnatcatchers seem to be exceptionally abundant in that area this season.

Here is a list of our sightings. If I’ve missed anything, please feel free to comment below.
[LucienP]

Gadwall 6
American Wigeon 28
Mallard 11
Cinnamon Teal 2
Northern Shoveler 16
Lesser Scaup 11
Surf Scoter 20
Bufflehead 5
Red-breasted Merganser 1
Ruddy Duck 8
Red-throated Loon 1
Pied-billed Grebe 8
Horned Grebe 4
Eared Grebe 6
Western Grebe 6
Brandt’s Cormorant 3
Double-crested Cormorant 11
Pelagic Cormorant 1
Brown Pelican 32
Great Egret 2
Snowy Egret 7
Green Heron 2
Osprey 1
Red-tailed Hawk 1
American Coot 21
Semipalmated Plover 6
Black Oystercatcher 4
Willet 6
Whimbrel 1
Marbled Godwit 2
Black Turnstone 2
Sanderling 4
Least Sandpiper 3
Heermann’s Gull 12
Western Gull 20
California Gull 6
Elegant Tern 10
Rock Pigeon 30
Anna’s Hummingbird 2
Black Phoebe 1
Cassin’s Kingbird 1
Western Scrub-Jay 1
American Crow 10
No. Rough-winged Swallow 2
Northern Mockingbird 2
Bushtit 8
Yellow-rumped Warbler 8
Common Yellowthroat 4
White-crowned Sparrow 20
House Finch 6
House Sparrow 6
      Total Species  52

 

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