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Friday, May 4, 2012

Nerdy Birdy: Idyllwild Exploring the Mountain Hot Spots

I went back to the Visitor Center at 7am this morning and I stayed for a good three hours. I was hoping again to try to find the White Headed Woodpecker but the bird refused to show up. I had spent all the time I wanted searching for this bird, more time in fact, it was time to move on. I checked out a few parklets and places to see if I could find some more birds.

I first stopped at Humbar Park. I parked and wandered around but nothing was really jumping out at me. I had a pretty strict timeline for today and I wanted to be home for dinner so I only stayed about a half hour.

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I then swung by for a drive by Foster Lake. There were a pair of breeding Bald Eagles I was hoping to see however it was early and cold... the mist was not working in my favor. But after a while it evaporated.

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I did stay and bird some but nothing super interesting turned up. I did find a few Northern Flickers far off in the distance and The Western Scrub Jay but the Eagles stayed out of sight.

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NORTHERN FLICKER OFF IN THE DISTANCE

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WESTERN SCRUB JAY

I then drove down the road beside the Hurkey Creek a sure place the visitor center workers said I would find the Mountain Quail. I was super excited that within 20 minutes I heard a few different sets of quail. I waited until I found a group that sounded a little closer to the road, I parked and I hiked in.

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BEAUTIFUL VIEW ON THE HURKEY ROAD

Mountain Quail are super shy but I was determined. I tramped through the woods chasing their calls but even though I caught glimpses of them I wasn’t able to get any photos. I was just too loud in the brush and they were running away from my footsteps. So I decided to change my tactic. I found a nice open spot and I stood and waited. After an hour I could hear THREE groups of quail all around me, calling and feeding. I was so excited, this was the moment I was going to get a KODAK shot of a Mountain Quail. Although I saw several STILL I couldn’t get any photos. At least 1520 birds were literally surrounding me but not one would come out to get a photo taken. At this point I would settle for a terrible blurry picture.

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MY MEADOW

While I waited for the Quail I got to see a bird but I am not really sure what it is... maybe a female Oriole? If you know leave a comment.

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MYSTERY BIRD

After three hours I had to give up. I was hungry, I was thirsty and these dang Quail had eaten up a large part of my day. If I left now I would have time to make my last stop on the way home. Disappointed I admitted defeat. I was leaving Idyllwild without a photo of the Mountain Quail and the White Headed Woodpecker.

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NO MOUNTAIN QUAIL FOR ME

Although the Idyllwild birds didn’t quite cooperate with me today I was happy with the two new birds that I did find here. And now it gives me a great excuse to come back!

1 comment:

Jennifer Arens said...

Any excuse to get back to nature and to bird is completely worth it! Its better than sitting at home!

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