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Bigdaddy44

Vesper Sparrow

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Sparrows aren't my strong point.  This was taken on  04/24/16 in Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge.  The eye ring keeps bringing me back to Vesper, but still not 100%.  

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Vesper is a new one for me.  What makes you say that definitely?  Appreciate any input.  There used to be a sparrow expert on this that would explain everything.

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1 hour ago, Bigdaddy44 said:

Vesper is a new one for me.  What makes you say that definitely?  Appreciate any input.  There used to be a sparrow expert on this that would explain everything.

Yes, the eyering really pops on these birds. Almost like it was borrowed from a Solitary Sandpiper. Beyond that, the fairly drab streaky appearance, face pattern, bill shape and color all look good for Vesper. Another mark not always seen, but visible in your photo is the rusty shoulder patch.

For a lifer, definitely wait for a second opinion. 

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On 11/10/2018 at 9:31 PM, Bigdaddy44 said:

Vesper is a new one for me.  What makes you say that definitely?  Appreciate any input.  There used to be a sparrow expert on this that would explain everything.

Ah, Poormatty. I got to bird with him when he came to San Diego.

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6 hours ago, Creeker said:

Ah, Poormatty. I got to bird with him when he came to San Diego.

Yeah, that was him.  There was someone that was the go to gull person as well.  

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1 hour ago, Bigdaddy44 said:

Yeah, that was him.  There was someone that was the go to gull person as well.  

That might have been psweet. He hasn't been on in a month or so. But he is amazing at gulls and an all-around bird genius. There are other really sharp birders on here as well. If I start naming names I will inevitably leave somebody out.

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6 hours ago, Bigdaddy44 said:

Yeah, that was him.  There was someone that was the go to gull person as well.  

The gull guy was aberrant. 

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12 hours ago, HamRHead said:

That might have been psweet. He hasn't been on in a month or so. But he is amazing at gulls and an all-around bird genius. There are other really sharp birders on here as well. If I start naming names I will inevitably leave somebody out.

I'm sure there are some fine birders on the forum.  I wasn't trying to insinuate otherwise.  Folks come and go, but these (02) were really good at not only IDing the birds, but explaining why.  It makes it easier for the ones asking for an ID to later ID them on their own later.  I'm Creeker understands what I am talking about.  And yes, Psweet has helpful as well.  I wish I had more time to spend on this forum.  

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8 hours ago, Creeker said:

The gull guy was aberrant. 

Yeah, that's it.  Was really good with the gulls.  Thanks Creeker for a walk down memory lane.  Hopefully they are all doing well.  

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8 hours ago, Creeker said:

The gull guy was aberrant. 

My wife and I are going to be in the SD area for a few days with another couple, so I will be limited on my birding time, but are there any must see places for birding in SD?  I have to tread lightly when I have several others vacationing as well.  We are also going out to Santa Cruz Island to hopefully see an Island Scrub Jay.  My wife and I are trying to see all the National Parks as a life bucket list item and I was able to package this in the deal.  I'm sure you have been out there and seen them.  Are they pretty easily seen when you get out there?  Just trying to figure out how much searching will be needed.  Also, are both landing spots relatively OK for the opportunity to see one?  Sorry to ask so many questions.    

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What time of year are you coming to SD? What are your target birds? That will help decide on the best place.

 

as for the island scrubs...I believe you can see them from both docks, but the second dock is suppose to be the best, problem is the 1st dock is best for other endemic species...got to pick your poison!

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3 hours ago, Bigdaddy44 said:

  Hopefully they are all doing well.  

Poormatty ( Matt Morrow ) is a singer/songwriter. He lives in Alabama. I'm friends with him on Facebook, and he seems to be doing well. I last swapped emails with Aberrant like four years ago, and lost track of him since. I don't even remember his real name. Like Toofly said, where you go depends on what you need, when you come, and where you'll be staying. There are a lot of good places close together here, so you should have no problem breaking away for a couple hours say 0600-0800, and bagging a bunch of lifers. PM me or Toofly (he's my birding buddy) your life list or hit list of what you're looking for. If you don't have a hit list, we can work your life list to make one. Have you been to California before? Where do you live? These questions also help with the hit list. Obviously you want to target birds you can't get at home, even if you haven't seen them at home yet. Oh, and I haven't been to see the Island Scrub Jays, even though Toofly has tried to get me to go. Lack of free time is my problem. And when you grow up in  California, with California Scrub Jays squawking in your ear your whole life, the thought of taking a boat trip to see scrub jays loses it's luster.

Edited by Creeker
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18 hours ago, Creeker said:

Poormatty ( Matt Morrow ) is a singer/songwriter. He lives in Alabama. I'm friends with him on Facebook, and he seems to be doing well. I last swapped emails with Aberrant like four years ago, and lost track of him since. I don't even remember his real name. Like Toofly said, where you go depends on what you need, when you come, and where you'll be staying. There are a lot of good places close together here, so you should have no problem breaking away for a couple hours say 0600-0800, and bagging a bunch of lifers. PM me or Toofly (he's my birding buddy) your life list or hit list of what you're looking for. If you don't have a hit list, we can work your life list to make one. Have you been to California before? Where do you live? These questions also help with the hit list. Obviously you want to target birds you can't get at home, even if you haven't seen them at home yet. Oh, and I haven't been to see the Island Scrub Jays, even though Toofly has tried to get me to go. Lack of free time is my problem. And when you grow up in  California, with California Scrub Jays squawking in your ear your whole life, the thought of taking a boat trip to see scrub jays loses it's luster.

We have been out to CA once on vacation for a couple of weeks and I was able to see a lot of new birds, though I had to keep my wife interested in the trip as well.  I have been in and out a couple of times for work, but no time to do any birding.  We have been to UT a few times now and have had an opportunity to see some western birds on those trips.  We live just north of Tampa.  Because we are coming out with another couple, I will definitely have to sneak out early to get in a little birding.  I already have a wish list made out.  I already have some of these, but would love to get a better picture if possible.  Some of these are not in the SD area.  It is below.  

Bird Wish List
Wood Duck Common Poorwill
Cinnamon Teal White-throated Swift
Surf Scotor Anna's Hummingbird
Mountain Quail Allen's Hummingbird
Pacific Loon Lewis's Woodpecker
Red-throated Loon Red-breasted Sapsucker
Western Grebe Nuttall's Woodpecker
Clark's Grebe White-headed Woodpecker
Northern Fulmer Peregrine Falcon
Pink-footed Shearwater Prairie Falcon
Sooty Shearwater Cassin's Kingbird
Black-vented Shearwater Island Scrub-Jay
White-tailed Kite Horned Lark
Ferruginous Hawk Oak Titmouse
Golden Eagle Bushtit
Pacific Golden-plover Bewick's Wren
Snowy Plover Pacific Wren
Long-billed Curlew (SD River Mudflats) Marsh Wren
Black Turnstone (Point La Jolla) Canyon Wren
Wanderling Tattler (Point La Jolla) Rock Wren
Surfbird California Gnatcatcher
Red Knot Wrentit
Red Phalarope Golden-crowned Kinglet
Black-legged Kittiwake Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Mew Gull Townsend's Solitaire
Thayer's Gull Hermit Thrush
Glaucous-winged Gull Varied Thrush
Heermann's Gull California Thrasher
Parasitic Jaeger Phainopepla
Pomarine Jaeger Orange-crowned Warbler
Cassin's Auklet Townsend's Warbler
Rhinoceros Auklet Spotted Towhee
Band-tailed Pigeon Bell's Sparrow
Long-eared Owl Lincoln's Sparrow
Short-eared Owl Tricolored Blackbird
Spotted Owl Scott's Oriole
Northern Saw-whet Owl Lawrence's Goldfinch
Western Screech-Owl Lesser Goldfinch
Northern Pygmy-Owl  

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Just now, Bigdaddy44 said:

We have been out to CA once on vacation for a couple of weeks and I was able to see a lot of new birds, though I had to keep my wife interested in the trip as well.  I have been in and out a couple of times for work, but no time to do any birding.  We have been to UT a few times now and have had an opportunity to see some western birds on those trips.  We live just north of Tampa.  Because we are coming out with another couple, I will definitely have to sneak out early to get in a little birding.  I already have a wish list made out.  I already have some of these, but would love to get a better picture if possible.  Some of these are not in the SD area.  It is below.  

Bird Wish List
Wood Duck Common Poorwill
Cinnamon Teal White-throated Swift
Surf Scotor Anna's Hummingbird
Mountain Quail Allen's Hummingbird
Pacific Loon Lewis's Woodpecker
Red-throated Loon Red-breasted Sapsucker
Western Grebe Nuttall's Woodpecker
Clark's Grebe White-headed Woodpecker
Northern Fulmer Peregrine Falcon
Pink-footed Shearwater Prairie Falcon
Sooty Shearwater Cassin's Kingbird
Black-vented Shearwater Island Scrub-Jay
White-tailed Kite Horned Lark
Ferruginous Hawk Oak Titmouse
Golden Eagle Bushtit
Pacific Golden-plover Bewick's Wren
Snowy Plover Pacific Wren
Long-billed Curlew (SD River Mudflats) Marsh Wren
Black Turnstone (Point La Jolla) Canyon Wren
Wanderling Tattler (Point La Jolla) Rock Wren
Surfbird California Gnatcatcher
Red Knot Wrentit
Red Phalarope Golden-crowned Kinglet
Black-legged Kittiwake Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Mew Gull Townsend's Solitaire
Thayer's Gull Hermit Thrush
Glaucous-winged Gull Varied Thrush
Heermann's Gull California Thrasher
Parasitic Jaeger Phainopepla
Pomarine Jaeger Orange-crowned Warbler
Cassin's Auklet Townsend's Warbler
Rhinoceros Auklet Spotted Towhee
Band-tailed Pigeon Bell's Sparrow
Long-eared Owl Lincoln's Sparrow
Short-eared Owl Tricolored Blackbird
Spotted Owl Scott's Oriole
Northern Saw-whet Owl Lawrence's Goldfinch
Western Screech-Owl Lesser Goldfinch
Northern Pygmy-Owl  

Have you done any birding in AZ as far as the hummingbirds?  We are wanting to make a trip out to AZ in the summer.  That is the one bird my wife loves and she will not not pull me away when they are around.  

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1 minute ago, Bigdaddy44 said:

We have been out to CA once on vacation for a couple of weeks and I was able to see a lot of new birds, though I had to keep my wife interested in the trip as well.  I have been in and out a couple of times for work, but no time to do any birding.  We have been to UT a few times now and have had an opportunity to see some western birds on those trips.  We live just north of Tampa.  Because we are coming out with another couple, I will definitely have to sneak out early to get in a little birding.  I already have a wish list made out.  I already have some of these, but would love to get a better picture if possible.  Some of these are not in the SD area.  It is below.  

Bird Wish List
Wood Duck Common Poorwill
Cinnamon Teal White-throated Swift
Surf Scotor Anna's Hummingbird
Mountain Quail Allen's Hummingbird
Pacific Loon Lewis's Woodpecker
Red-throated Loon Red-breasted Sapsucker
Western Grebe Nuttall's Woodpecker
Clark's Grebe White-headed Woodpecker
Northern Fulmer Peregrine Falcon
Pink-footed Shearwater Prairie Falcon
Sooty Shearwater Cassin's Kingbird
Black-vented Shearwater Island Scrub-Jay
White-tailed Kite Horned Lark
Ferruginous Hawk Oak Titmouse
Golden Eagle Bushtit
Pacific Golden-plover Bewick's Wren
Snowy Plover Pacific Wren
Long-billed Curlew (SD River Mudflats) Marsh Wren
Black Turnstone (Point La Jolla) Canyon Wren
Wanderling Tattler (Point La Jolla) Rock Wren
Surfbird California Gnatcatcher
Red Knot Wrentit
Red Phalarope Golden-crowned Kinglet
Black-legged Kittiwake Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Mew Gull Townsend's Solitaire
Thayer's Gull Hermit Thrush
Glaucous-winged Gull Varied Thrush
Heermann's Gull California Thrasher
Parasitic Jaeger Phainopepla
Pomarine Jaeger Orange-crowned Warbler
Cassin's Auklet Townsend's Warbler
Rhinoceros Auklet Spotted Towhee
Band-tailed Pigeon Bell's Sparrow
Long-eared Owl Lincoln's Sparrow
Short-eared Owl Tricolored Blackbird
Spotted Owl Scott's Oriole
Northern Saw-whet Owl Lawrence's Goldfinch
Western Screech-Owl Lesser Goldfinch
Northern Pygmy-Owl  

What time of year are you visiting?

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Looks like you need to make time for a Palegic Trip! Or you will need to find someone with a scope! The waters might be rough in January though 🤔

Jaeger’s, Shearwaters, Loons, Scotors, Auklet’s, Turnstones and tattlers need scope or boat...From Land you can check out La Jolla Cove, 

https://ebird.org/hotspot/L233548?m=1&yr=all&changeDate=Set

or you could try imperial beach for some of those and also the snowy plover and pacific golden plover. It’s a long walk on a sandy beach though, time consuming. At La Jolla you just park (if you can find a spot), and walk a 100 ft to the viewing point.

Imperial Beach

https://ebird.org/hotspot/L716959?m=1&yr=all&changeDate=Set

For the eagles, Jays, Kinglets, Sapsuckers, wrens, thrashers, Phainopepla, warblers, towhees, Solitare, owls, Thrush, woodpeckers, sparrows,  finches and such I would check Lake Cuyamaca. It’s a drive (about 40 minutes from down town), and you want to get there early for the owls. It will be cold in January.

https://ebird.org/hotspot/L241746/all/1

No guarantees any of the birds will be there, and some of your birds are rare for us. Now obviously the best way to find these is with a guide...and to keep an eye on the list server. 

https://groups.io/g/SanDiegoRegionBirding

Im sure @Creeker will have some better ideas, if he contradicts anything I say, go with his word. He’s been birding this area for 100 years!!! 😂🤣 But if you went to La Jolla and Lake Cuyamaca you would probably get a lot of your birds.

Good Luck!!!

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I like the Ssn Diego River, from I-5 west.  There is a paved path and you could easily get six or more of your list from there alone. It's right across from SeaWorld. If you're staying anywhere near downtown or mission valley it's within minutes. On the other side of SeaWorld is Fiesta island. You can get White -tailed Kite and probably Short-eared Owl there. J street pier in Chula Vista is also good for shorebirds and gulls, and is close . Talk the others into going to the zoo. Lots of visiting ducks and things there. Same with SeaWorld and the safari park. Stay close to the coast and your hotel to maximize birding time. As for Seaz and hummers, my first trip there in two different areas, I saw too many types to put in on my phone. I'll add them later. Madera Canyon inn has an awesome viewing area. Ramsey canyon's viewing area is smaller but also good. 

 

 

 

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