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Ballona Freshwater Marsh: 3 November, 2018

November 8, 2018

Cinnamon Teal male (Ray Juncosa, Ballona FWM, 11-3-18

Did you know or did you remember that years ago what is now the Freshwater Marsh was a weedy field and a center of contention among land owners in Playa del Vista, developers and advocates of the Ballona Wetlands?

Cassin’s Kingbird with his or her white chin
(Ray Juncosa, Ballona FWM, 11-3-18

It was completed as the Freshwater Marsh in February of 2003 and wow! Look at it now!

A tiny dragon momentarily perches (AKA Variegated Meadowhawk – Sympetrum corruptum) (Ray Juncosa, Ballona FWM, 11-3-18)

Our annual “stroll” around the marsh in lovely sunny weather was marked by seeing 47 different species – a far bigger number than seen in 2002.

Greater Yellowlegs (Ray Juncosa, Ballona FWM, 11-3-18

The default birds were the usual American Coots and the Audubon’s Yellow-rumped Warbler (which has a conservation status of “least concern” = population increasing).

Yellow-rumped Warbler, Audubon’s subspecies (Ray Juncosa, Ballona FWM, 11-3-18

The group was quite interactive – everyone found something wonderful to show to the rest of us. One highlight was a Virginia Rail skulking in the reeds.

Virginia Rail caught mid-skulk (Ray Juncosa, Ballona FWM, 11-3-18

Another was a selection of Kingbirds – the expected Cassin’s and Western and a Tropical! There were discussions about a Yellowlegs (Greater or Lesser) and Dowitchers (Short-billed or Long-billed) – which and why.

Long-billed Dowitcher (Ray Juncosa, Ballona FWM, 11-3-18

A grand day and a grand group.   [Ellen Vahan]

Ballona FreshWater Marsh November 3, 2018
American Wigeon Belted Kingfisher
Mallard Northern Flicker
Cinnamon Teal American Kestrel
Northern Shoveler Black Phoebe
Green-winged Teal Say’s Phoebe
Ruddy Duck Tropical Kingbird
Pied-billed Grebe Cassin’s Kingbird
Western Grebe Western Kingbird
Great Blue Heron Bushtit
Great Egret House Wren
Snowy Egret Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
Green Heron Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Black-crowned Night-Heron Hermit Thrush
Turkey Vulture Northern Mockingbird
Osprey Orange-crowned Warbler
White-tailed Kite Common Yellowthroat
Red-tailed Hawk Yellow-rumped Warbler
Virginia Rail CaliforniaTowhee
Sora (Heard only) Savannah Sparrow
American Coot Song Sparrow
Greater Yellowlegs White-crowned Sparrow
Long-billed Dowitcher Red-winged Blackbird
Mourning Dove Great-tailed Grackle
Anna’s Hummingbird
Allen’s Hummingbird Total: 48 species
  1. Anne Slattery permalink
    November 23, 2018 10:56 am

    Hi, so fun to see this, after having been on that walk. Hopefully my email was received about the birds I saw the next day, that we had heard but not seen on Saturday. Question regarding the Sunday Malibu walk: I would like to join in, but I will have to leave at 10:30 sharp in order to get home and to another commitment. Is it appropriate to leave mid-walk if needed?

    Thank you – Anne



    • Chukar permalink*
      November 23, 2018 3:16 pm

      Anne – You can leave anytime you like. You’re never more than 10 minutes walk from the highway and it would be extremely difficult for you to become lost.


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