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Volume 76, Number 3 January/February 2010

WESTERN
TANAGER
a publication of Los Angeles Audubon www.laaudubon.org

Yellow-rumped Warblers and Titans of American Culture


Or, How Los Angeles Audubon Helped an Elementary School Install a Native Habitat

—by Mary Loquvam, Exec. Director, Los Angeles Audubon

wo titans of American culture they can explore all the wonders of months of planning, study, and site

T crossed paths on Saturday,


November 7th, their spirits and
joy of life blessing an historic Los
the natural world.

Recently, Los Angeles Audubon


preparation: Dorsey High School
students, participating in Los Angeles
Audubon’s Restoration Leader
Angeles Audubon event. Johnny formed a partnership with Leo Politi Program, developed a restoration
Mercer, iconic American songwriter, is Elementary School to expand the curriculum and spent three afternoons
known and loved for hundreds of scope of science-based nature engaging Leo Politi students in soil
songs including “Satin Doll”, “Black activities it offers its students. As a first and native plant analysis, slope,
Magic”, “Autumn Leaves”, and step, we successfully applied for a direction, and hydrology; Leo Politi
“Blues in the Night”. Leo Politi, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Grant to teacher, Linda Dowell, spent
beloved for his children’s books install a native habitat on 6,000 square afternoons exploring topics such as
embracing Los Angeles’ feet of underutilized school yard. JOHN JAMES AUDUBON, the water
multiculturalism, children, history, cycle, and native plants with GATE
flora and fauna, wrote the 1950 What followed the award of the (Gifted and Talented Education)
Caldecott Medal winner, The Song of $18,000 F&WS grant was several students, so that they could mentor
the Swallows. Both men, I am sure,
looked down upon the events
unfolding in a school yard deep in our
urban core, and smiled.

Leo Politi Elementary School is


located in the midst of the Pico-
Union neighborhood, one of the
densest and most park poor in all of
Los Angeles. Yet since its
construction in 1991, the school has
emerged as an urban oasis for its 818
K-5 students, their families, the
community, and hundreds of birds—
some resident, some migratory. The
school’s vision seeks to fulfill Leo’s
dream of making this city a peaceful,
safe and happy place for its youngest
citizens—a place where their
imaginations can run wild and where
Over 300 volunteers turned out to help.
other students; Principal Brad Rumble,
coordinated the school’s baseline bird
count; dozens of Leo Politi families
and teachers spent many a Saturday
morning removing Bermuda grass and
The mission of Los Angeles Audubon Society is to tilling the soil in preparation for the
promote the enjoyment and protection of birds and
other wildlife through recreation, education,
installation; and, Dr. Margot Griswold,
conservation and restoration. gave of her time and expertise
Los Angeles Audubon is a non-profit volunteer designing the habitat and procuring a
organization of people with a common interest in
birding and natural history. Los Angeles Audubon palette of native plants and trees.
maintains offices, a library, and bookstore, the
proceeds of which benefit all of its programs.
Then, on the cool and dewy
Los Angeles Audubon Society morning of November 7th, over 300
Audubon House
7377 Santa Monica Blvd.,
students, teachers, families and friends
The community pitches in.
W. Hollywood, CA 90046-6694 of Leo Politi Elementary School turned
Mailing Address
out to assist with the installation.
P.O. Box 931057, Los Angeles, CA 90093-1057 Dorsey Restoration Leaders guided
(323) 876-0202 (voice/messages)
teams of community volunteers with
(323) 876-7609 (fax) the planting and watering of over 500
LAAS@laaudubon.org (general email)
www.laaudubon.org
trees and plants. It was magical,
marvelous creative chaos!
Board Officers
President David De Lange
1st Vice President Garry George
2nd Vice President Paul Fox
At eleven, everyone took a break
Executive Secretary
Recording Secretary
Linda Oberholtzer
Eleanor Osgood
to celebrate, gathering in the school’s
Treasurer Lisa Fimiani courtyard. City Council Member Ed
Executive Past President Dexter Kelly
Reyes, in whose district Leo Politi
Programs & Activities Leo Politi choir sings Johnny Mercer.
Conservation Garry George ElementarySchool resides,
Field Trips
Bird Walks
Nick Freeman
Eleanor Osgood
commended the community for the
Pelagic Trips Phil Sayre restoration and gave the school and
Membership Meetings Mary Freeman
Ornithology Consultant Kimball Garrett Los Angeles Audubon a proclamation
Rare Bird Alert Jon Fisher
Report Rare Birds (323) 874-1318 from the City honoring our
Volunteer Coordinator Eleanor Osgood
Library Dorothy Schwarz
collaboration. Leo Politi fifth grader
Staff
Kevin Martinez, gave a speech
Executive Director Mary Loquvam describing how this project had
Director of Interpretation Stacey Vigallon
Audubon House Administrator Martha Balkan changed his life (please see text on
Membership Services Susan Castor
next page). Los Angeles Audubon
Audubon House Bookstore
Orders (888) 522-7428
then dedicated the habitat to its angel
Fax (323) 876-7609 patron, Johnny Mercer, to celebrate the
Bookstore Manager (323) 876-0202 Dorsey Restoration Leaders hard at work.
Hours Mon-Thurs 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. centennial of his birth and the Leo
1st Sat. ea. month 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Politi choir sang Johnny’s “Ac-cent-
Online Nature Store
www.losangelesaudubon.org/store
tchu-ate The Positive” and “Moon
River” as the grand finale!
WESTERN TANAGER
Published by Then it was over— the plants were
Los Angeles Audubon Society
in, the cookies were eaten, and the
Western Tanager is published bi-monthly. For address changes or
subscription problems call (323) 876-0202, or write to Member
crowds had gone home. Just a few
Services, Los Angeles Audubon, PO Box 931057, Los Angeles, CA
90093-1057. Submissions are due the 1st of the month, two months
lingered on, giving a final douse of
before the date of the issue. Please send submissions as Microsoft
Word or RTF documents, or plain text files, to Linda Oberholtzer at
water to the plants, when suddenly, out
westerntanager@laaudubon.org. of nowhere, two Yellow-rumped
Editor Linda Oberholtzer
Layout Susan Castor
Warblers lit on two of the newly
Principal Rumbel and Los Angeles Audubon Exec.Dir.,
Proofreaders Hanna Hayman, Kimball Garrett planted oak trees! It was then I was Mary Loquvam receive commendation from
Printed on Recycled Paper sure that Johnny Mercer and Leo Politi City Councilman Ed Reyes.
were smiling on the new habitat!
2 Western Tanager Vol. 76, No. 3
Transcript of speech by Leo
Politi Elementary School fifth
grader, Kevin Martinez, at
dedication of schoolyard habitat.

Good morning.

I have attended this fantastic school


since kindergarten, and every year has Conservation Conversation
been memorable. A REPORT ON CONSERVATION EFFORTS BY LOS ANGELES AUDUBON
—By gARRY gEORGE
But the only word I can think of to MONTEBELLO HILLS
describe this year, my final year here at
BACKGROUND: ELEPHANT HILLS (EL SERENO)
Leo Politi, is unforgettable. And that
An Audubon California “Important BACKGROUND:
is because I never expected I would
Bird Area” located west of Whittier Big developer, Monterey Hills
get to learn so much about nature.
Narrows, is slated for a suggested Investors, planned to build homes on
My friends and I—and when I say housing development by its owner. a hillside in El Sereno in the NE hills
friends, I mean the nearly 800 The site contains approximately of Los Angeles near Debs Park using
students of Leo Politi—my friends— 480 acres of coastal sage scrub habitat an EIR approved over twenty years
and I are proud to be part of a project and has California Gnatcatcher and ago. Local residents, led by former
which restores a portion of our campus Cactus Wren populations. Plains Audubon Center at Debs Park
to how it might have looked before Los Exploration and Production Company’s Director, Elva Yañez, protested the
Angeles even existed as a city. (PBX) real estate development arm, development to the City of Los
wants to develop half of it with Angeles Planning Commission and
We have learned how native plants housing and turn the other half of it Los Angeles City Councilman Jose
and trees can help the native birds, into a “gnatcatcher reserve.” Huizar. The city demanded an
insects and wildlife—even the The owner of the property is Plains updated EIR from the developer, the
arachnids. Our schoolyard habitat will Exploration and Production Company, developer sued, and the city just
be a very lovely home for all of them, the Texas and Bakersfield oil and gas settled the lawsuit and bought the
and a place where we kids can learn company currently drilling in the land for around 12 million dollars to
about them. Baldwin Hills. The company also wants be 20 acres of open space.
to drill off the Coast of California. OUR CONTRIBUTIONS :
I will leave Leo Politi at the end of this
OUR CONTRIBUTIONS: We wrote letters and met with Los
school year. I cannot be like the Black
We wrote comments on the The Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar
Phoebe or Northern Mockingbird who
California Environmental Quality Act and testified publicly at the City of Los
are residents here all their lives. But,
like the Yellow-rumped Warblers who (CEQA) Notice of Preparation (NOP), Angeles Planning Commission and City
migrate here, I will return to see the to focus the City of Montebello (lead Council meetings.
garden grow. And as a big brother of agency) on Gnatcatchers and Cactus
Kenny in grade 3 and Leslie in first Wrens. We partnered with Sierra Club, LOS ANGELES RIVER
grade, I am thrilled that they will grow Endangered Habitats League and the The U.S. Army Corps of
up in a school with a native California Natural Resources Defense Council Engineers has invited Los Angeles
schoolyard habitat. (NRDC) on strategy, and contributed fi- Audubon to be one of a small group
nancially to an extensive biological sur- of participants in a workshop on the
We appreciate the U.S. Fish & Wildlife vey and comment letter filed on behalf Los Angeles River Ecosystem
service for giving us this grant. Mary of Endangered Habitats League. Restoration Study to be held on
and the people of L. A. Audubon—you LATEST REPORT: December 2, 3, & 4, 2009. This is
changed our lives. Dorsey High The development lost its support in because of our five year participation
School, thank you for teaching us more the Montebello City Council as the on the Los Angeles River
about nature, and making us laugh at Mayor was ousted and two new City Stakeholders Committee. We will be
the same time. Council member Council members have been elected that briefed by the Army Corps on their
Reyes...LAPD Olympic Division: we give a majority on the Council that does restoration alternatives from Verdugo
know you care a lot about what not support the development, according Wash downstream to 1st Street, and
happens to us. That means a lot.
to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune. discuss and provide ecosystem
http://www.sgvtribune.com/ci_13714891 restoration alternatives in the three
At Leo Politi, we are surrounded by
day session.
really awesome people—and birds.
OUR CONTRIBUTIONS :
Thank you.
Western Tanager January/February 2010 3
We have been on the Los Angeles Tom Ryan and Stacey Vigallon, led Angeles Audubon, Urban Wildlands
River Stakeholders Committee since the meeting attended by beach Group, Endangered Habitats League,
around 2004, and have provided the managers from Los Angeles County and American Bird Conservancy have
Los Angeles River Revitalization Beaches and Harbors, Hermosa entered into an agreement which
Master Plan with comments, and Beach, program partners from Palos extends the deadline under the
testified twice before the Los Angeles Verdes/South Bay Audubon, Santa California Environmental Quality Act
City Council Ad Hoc River Monica Bay Audubon, potential (CEQA) for filing of a lawsuit on the
Committee, chaired by partners Heal the Bay, Cabrillo City’s adoption of an ordinance
Councilmember Ed Reyes. We Marine Aquarium, CalCoast, and by allowing Trap, Neuter, Return (TNR)
discussed the importance of water representatives from California of feral and domestic cats without
flow in the Los Angeles River to Department of Fish & Game and U.S. environmental review. This gives the
migratory shorebirds that feed and Fish & Wildlife Service. coalition of environmentalists the
congregate on the lower Los Angeles Protection of the Plovers on opportunity to work with the City of
River, the impacts of the river Dockweiler Beach with symbolic Beverly Hills on the enactment of the
revitalization on birds in general, and fencing and a permitted docent ordinance to address our concerns for
opportunities that might be available program run by Los Angeles the welfare of birds and other
for nature education and public bird Audubon, will hopefully be wildlife. The city concluded that an
watching on the Los Angeles River. completed in the near future, pursuant environmental review was not
to a Memorandum of Understanding necessary in adopting the ordinance,
ANTELOPE VALLEY between the U.S. Fish & Wildlife an opinion which the coalition of
Los Angeles Audubon is Service and the Los Angeles County environmentalists does not share.
considering partnering with San Beaches & Harbors. OUR CONTRIBUTIONS :
Fernando Valley Audubon on a study Attending for Los Angeles Los Angeles Audubon joined the
and confidential mapping of sensitive Audubon were Mary Loquvam, Garry coalition of environmental groups in
species including: Swainson’s Hawk, George, and Stacey Vigallon. Tom opposing the ordinance publicly and
Ferruginous Hawk, Mountain Plover, Ryan’s Power Point presentation is in written comments, and has joined
Burrowing Owl, Le Conte’s Thrasher available upon request. Email the coalition in a lawsuit against the
and other species of birds from our requests to: City of Los Angeles for adopting a
article “Los Angeles County Sensitive snowyplover@laaudubon.org TNR policy without environmental
Bird Species” which appeared in the OUR CONTRIBUTIONS : review. Los Angeles Audubon and
Western Tanager Vol. 75 No. 3, Jan/Feb 2009. Los Angeles Audubon, in National Audubon Society do not
This study could inform partnership with Tom Ryan, initiated support TNR as we do not support the
permitting and wildlife agencies on this program in 2005, funded by release of domestic or feral cats into
applications for large and small scale grants. Stacey Vigallon first joined the natural environment. Scientific
solar and wind projects in the Los Angeles Audubon as Volunteer evidence shows that TNR does not
Antelope Valley. This would add Coordinator and biologist for this reduce the number of cats in a colony
another layer to the GIS layers of project, replacing Jenny Jones when and may actually increase them, and
other environmental groups on plants, she moved. This is a citizen science the impacts on native wildlife is not
animals and other resources in the project with data provided mostly by considered in TNR programs.
desert that should be avoided by solar volunteers from the three chapters of Predation by cats is one of the biggest
projects, and hopefully direct them to Audubon that are partnered. The first reasons for the decline of migratory
areas where environmental permits surveys found a freshly killed Snowy and resident songbirds in North
may be easier to obtain. We hope. Plover in a tire track at Zuma, which America after habitat loss and
added a sense of urgency to the work. collision with man made structures.
SNOWY PLOVER ON The project hopes to find the first
LOS ANGELES COUNTY BEACHES breeding record of Snowy Plover on Follow Los Angeles Audubon’s
Los Angeles Audubon held the Los Angeles County beaches since conservation efforts on our
third conference for beach managers 1949, and has already recorded pre- Conservation Blog.
and interested parties to present the breeding behaviors. Western Snowy Go to our website
results and recommendations of the Plover, is a threatened species under www.laaudubon.org,
2009 surveys of Snowy Plovers on the Endangered Species Act. under MAIN MENU, click
Los Angeles County Beaches. The CONSERVATION & RESTORATION,
conference was held at Los Angeles TNR ORDINANCE AT CITY OF click CONSERVATION BLOG.
County Museum of Natural History. BEVERLY HILLS
Kimball Garrett welcomed the group. The City of Beverly Hills, Los

4 Western Tanager Vol. 76, No. 3


Interpreting Nature —By Stacey Vigallon,
Director of Interpretation

Students Teaching Students: Most students found the obstacles common among inner-city
Creating Opportunities for challenges of writing the curriculum Los Angeles public schools, from
Environmental Mentorship manageable, but actually extreme budget shortfalls to student
implementing that curriculum with populations that come from
“I expected it to be a piece of younger students was a different story. economically challenged
cake, but I was really nervous being a communities. In bringing these
teacher,” explained June Blassingame “Writing the curriculum was a lot students together, we hoped to
about his experience teaching more organized than teaching the create an opportunity for students to
elementary school students about kids!” said Joyce Realegeno. find common ground in the cause of
habitat and wildlife. environmental stewardship. That
Kimberly Garcia agreed. “Writing commitment to habitat restoration
June is one of more that 20 high and teaching are way different.” was made abundantly clear on
school students in Los Angeles November 7th, 2009, when students
Audubon’s Baldwin Hills Greenhouse Greenhouse Program students, all from both schools, parents, teachers,
Program who developed from Dorsey High School, visited Leo and members of the local
environmental curriculum and taught Politi Elementary School three times community worked together to
dozens of students in first through fifth in the fall of 2009. For all three visits, install the 6000 square foot native
grade at Leo Politi Elementary School high school students found themselves plant garden during one of Los
during the 2009-2010 school year. The coordinating over 40 enthusiastic Angeles Audubon’s TogetherGreen
goal of the curriculum was not only to elementary school students eager to Volunteer Day’s events.
place high school students in a learn and thrilled to be outside the
mentorship role, but also to give the classroom. High school students had “It makes me feel like I’m doing
elementary school students the to implement their curriculum something important,” summed up
knowledge and skills they needed to outdoors, without chairs and Hana Kim, “Creating those bonds and
convert 6000 square feet of their chalkboards, engaging younger being somewhat of a role model is
school yard into native habitat for students in hands-on learning like leaving footprints in their hearts.”
wildlife. Beginning in the summer of experiences, a daring feat for any
2009, Greenhouse Interns and teacher. Everyone got their hands in Greenhouse Program students
Restoration Leaders spent several the soil. Everyone ran around for will return to Leo Politi in March
afternoons writing their environmental “Foxes Through the City,” a version 2010 to teach younger students about
curriculum. They studied California of “tag” that taught young students birds and pollinators in the new
State Education Science Standards, about the challenges that urban native plant garden.
elementary school science textbooks, wildlife species face. Though it
and used the information they wasn’t easy, Greenhouse Program The Baldwin Hills Greenhouse
themselves learned at Greenhouse students found the process extremely Program is the result of a partnership
Boot Camp to craft lessons that rewarding and felt they had a big between Los Angeles Audubon and
addressed how to use a compass, how impact on the younger students. NewFields, with funding from the
to sample soil, the differences between Baldwin Hills Conservancy and
native and invasive plants, and the “It was very exciting when I TogetherGreen. This is the program’s
concept of biodiversity. would ask them a question on what I second year. A huge THANK YOU! is
taught them and they answered it,” extended to the faculty and staff of Leo
“We wanted to make sure they described Jessica Sosa, “I was like, Politi for their support and faith in this
were equipped with the knowledge ‘Yeah, I did my job.’” mentorship project, as well as to the
they needed,” June explains again, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service for
“but in a fun, interesting way.” “You get inspired because they providing funding for the new native
look up to you and you want to help plant garden.
Danya Ruiz added, “We needed to more,” said Emily Cobar.
make sure that we could fit important
information in small activities.” Both Dorsey High and Leo Politi
Elementary face many of the

Western Tanager January/February 2010 5


birds of the season —by Jon Fisher

id-September through Other waterfowl included two (Kimball Garrett) and one was

M early November encom-


passes the second half of
fall passerine migration, the arrival
rather early Bufflehead at the
Ballona Creek mouth on
September 26 (Roy Van de Hoek).
seen flying over Calabasas on
November 1 (Jon Fisher).

of increasing numbers of waterfowl Two adult Sabine’s Gulls


and the end of ‘shorebird season’. Always unusual inland was an were at the Piute Ponds on
Thus autumn always presents bird- immature Brown Pelican at Edwards AFB on September 14
ers with the challenge of how to go Bonelli Park in San Dimas from (Jim Abernathy, Jim Hardesty).
everywhere we’d like to with a fi- October 1-9 (Rod Higbie).
nite amount of time. Pectoral Sandpipers,
Increasing along the southern typically uncommon but regular
Things quieted down on the California coast but still quite rare migrants in fall, moved through
lower LA River after August and in LA County was a Brown the area in good numbers in late
September, but passerines picked up Booby seen well offshore on September. Sixteen were seen on
the slack. As expected, the period September 7 (Terry Hunefeld). the lower LA River on September
produced a wide variety of vagrants. Of much less regular occurrence 24 and nineteen were still there
Reports ranged from waterfowl to was a Red-footed Booby which on October 5 (Richard Barth,
buntings and orioles and included rode into Santa Monica Bay Andrew Lee).
nearly everything in between. aboard a ship it alighted on near
Anacapa Island on September 20. Elsewhere, a half dozen
There was a notable movement It departed the ship the following Pectorals were at the Piute Ponds
of Greater White-fronted Geese in morning near Point Dume from September 26-October 1
early October. In the San Gabriel (Michael Force). (Mike San Miguel) and three were
Valley at least one flock of up to at Bonelli Park in San Dimas from
twenty birds was at both Peck Park There were a number of September 27-October 4 (Sister
and Santa Fe Dam between October coastal slope reports of White- Mary Colombiere).
1-3 (Andrew Lee, John Garrett). faced Ibis including an
Smaller numbers were found at impressive flock of over 400 birds The last report of Baird’s
Hansen Dam, Peck Park in Arcadia, above Pasadena on September 17 Sandpipers was of two on the
Bonelli Park, Harbor Regional Park (Dan Cooper). lower LA River on September 24
and along the lower LA River. In (Richard Barth).
the desert, twenty-seven were at the Raptors of note included a
Piute Ponds on October 1 (Mike flock of sixty-three Swainson’s A Dunlin was at an odd
San Miguel). Hawks over Westchester on location- Polliwog Park in
October 17 (Kevin Larson) and a Manhattan Beach- on September
Three White-winged Scoters rather early Ferruginous Hawk 25 (Don Sterba), and unusual
were at Quail Lake near Gorman in the Ballona area on October 1 inland were two at the gravel pits
on November 8 where small (Dan Cooper). Away from the near Irwindale on September 26
numbers were present last winter deserts, a Prairie Falcon was at (Ed Stonick).
(Jon Fisher). Hansen Dam on October 11

6 Western Tanager Vol. 76, No. 3


Columbids included a White- November 3 (Richard Barth). November 3 (both John Garrett).
winged Dove in Pico Rivera on
October 3 (Larry Schmahl) and a Tropical Kingbirds, rare but Plumbeous Vireos seem to
Common Ground-Dove- regular in fall, were along the increase every year. There were a
surprisingly scarce in the county- lower LA River on October 6, at number of reports of fall migrants
along the lower San Gabriel River El Dorado Park in Long Beach on and these will inevitably be
on October 10 (John Garrett). October 15 (Karen Gilbert, Jeff followed by the usual slew of
Boyd), and at Lindberg Park in wintering birds on the coastal
Burrowing Owls are always Culver City on November 5 (Don slope. This species now far
scarce on the coastal slope even Sterba). A probable Tropical was outnumbers Cassin’s in winter.
as transients. Two reports heard but never seen at Banning
included a bird returning to the Park in Wilmington on October 11 The only vireo of note was a
Ballona area- likely for another (Tom Wurster). very good one— a White-eyed
winter- present from September Vireo was at DeForest Park in
28-October 19 (Jonathan Coffin) A somewhat late Western Long Beach from September 22-
and one was found dead in Kingbird was at Legg Lake in 27 (Karen Gilbert, Jeff Boyd).
Exposition Park on 25 October South El Monte on October 10 With this year’s late spring bird
(Kimball Garrett). (Andrew Lee) and still later birds also at DeForest, the number of
were at Banning Park on October LA County records of this species
A Lewis’s Woodpecker at 11 (Tom Wurster) and at Forest has nearly doubled in the span of
Jackson Lake near Wrightwood on Lawn in Glendale on October 26 three months.
October 24 was the first in the (Richard Barth). The most recent
county this fall (Ron Cyger), and report was from Hansen Dam on A Northern Rough-winged
by November 7 eight were there November 7 (Kimball Garrett). Swallow at Holiday Lake in the
(Mark Scheel). On the coastal While Westerns were once Antelope Valley on November 2 was
slope one was in San Gabriel virtually unheard of after late for the high desert (Cal Yorke).
(Tom Wurster) and seven were in September, these days no kingbird
La Verne on November 5 (Dan in late fall and winter can be Several reports from last
Gregory). In addition, a number assumed to be Cassin’s. summer foreshadowed a
of others have already been movement of White-breasted
reported in southern California. Also running late were Ash- Nuthatches, and small numbers
throated Flycatchers at Hansen of birds did appear in the
Other unusual woodpecker Dam on October 4 (Kimball lowlands this fall, with reports
reports included a Nuttall’s Garrett), on the lower LA River scattered across the coastal slope,
Woodpecker away from expected on October 5 (Richard Barth) and generally close to the foothills.
locales, and a male Northern at Peck Park in Arcadia on
“Yellow-shafted” Flicker, both at October 9 (Jon Fisher). Infrequent away from
Harbor Park in Wilmington on breeding areas was a Brown
October 25 (Martin Byhower). Remarkable was an Eastern Creeper at Lacy Park in San
Another Yellow-shafted was at Phoebe found at the Ballona Marino on October 23. By early
Mountain View Cemetery in Freshwater Marsh on September November several were present
Altadena on October 31 (Rick 22 (Don Sterba). This is an there (John Garrett).
Swartzentrover), and one was at unprecedented early date for this
Quail Lake on November 11 species in the county. A Winter Wren near Chantry
(Kimball Garrett). Flat above Arcadia on November
The returning Gray 8 was the only one reported thus
Away from normal areas of Flycatcher continued at Bonelli far (Mark & Janet Scheel).
occurrence were Hairy Park in San Dimas and others
Woodpeckers in Calabasas on were at Santa Fe Dam on An influx of Golden-crowned
November 1 (Jon Fisher) and at September 3 and at Lacy Park in Kinglets was evident in southern
Veteran’s Park in Sylmar on San Marino from October 30- California in October and early

Western Tanager January/February 2010 7


November, but as yet reports from addition to our regular western at Banning Park in Wilmington
LA County have been sparse. migrants, a Tennessee Warbler on September 27 (both Andrew
was on the USC Campus in Los Lee) and again at Peck Park in
The first Varied Thrush Angeles on October 1 (Kimball Arcadia from September 29-
report was a bird in Evey Canyon Garrett) and Lucy’s Warblers October 1 (Mike San Miguel).
north of Claremont on November were at Peck Park in Arcadia on Finally, two were at Legg Lake in
8 (Brian Elliott), while another September 20 (Andrew Lee) and South El Monte on October 10
unusual thrush was a Townsend’s at Creek Park in La Mirada on (Andrew Lee).
Solitaire at Veteran’s Park in September 22-October 3
Sylmar on October 20 (Richard (Jonathan Rowley). American Redstarts were at
Barth). Solitaires are remarkably Sand Dune Park in Manhattan
scarce on the coastal slope. A female Northern Parula Beach on September 12 (Lori &
was at Apollo Park in Lancaster Mark Conrad) and at Creek Park
A Gray Catbird, a regular on September 19 (Nick & Mary in La Mirada on September 22
vagrant in Kern but quite rare in Freeman) and two left over from (Jonathan Rowley).
LA County, was at Holiday Lake last spring’s nesting attempt were
in the western Antelope Valley on at the Village Green Condos in Also at Creek Park was a rare
October 15 (Cal Yorke). This Los Angeles through October 6 Prothonotary Warbler on
locality has proven its potential as (Don Sterba). Another parula was September 23 (Jonathan Rowley).
a vagrant trap over the years and at Oak Park Cemetery in
could definitely benefit from Claremont from September 4-26 The only Northern
more regular coverage. (Mike San Miguel Jr.). Waterthrush was one at Peck
Park in Arcadia on September 29
The Claremont Colleges Also at Oak Park Cemetery (Mike San Miguel).
Campus hosted a Sage Thrasher was a Chestnut-sided Warbler
on October 25 (Cathy McFadden, seen from October 11-13 (Mike Black-and-white Warblers
Paul Clarke). San Miguel Jr.) while another were at Ladera Park in Ladera
was in Pico Rivera from Heights on September 25
While birders know that most November 6-8 (Larry Schmahl). (Richard Barth), at Sand Dune
anything is possible when it Park in Manhattan Beach on
comes to vagrants, some birds Other wood warblers included October 4 (Lori & Mark Conrad),
still inspire a double-take. One a Magnolia Warbler at El near Whittier Narrows on October
such example was a LA County’s Dorado Park in Long Beach on 24 (Andrew Lee), at Charles
first ever Curve-billed Thrasher October 15 (Karen Gilbert, Jeff Wilson Park in Torrance on
discovered by a consultant Boyd), a Blackburnian Warbler October 30 (Richard Barth) and at
working on private property in the at Creek Park in La Mirada on Neff Park in La Mirada on
San Gabriel Valley on September September 25 (Donna Bray) and October 31 (Jonathan Rowley).
1 (Kimball Garrett); there are a a rare Yellow-throated Warbler
handful of records from the at DeForest Park in Long Beach A female Summer Tanager
eastern deserts, but not even an on October 29 (Karen Gilbert, was at Creek Park in La Mirada
optimistic birder would have Jeff Boyd). on October 3 (Jonathan Rowley),
expected this bird at this locale. while another was at the
Palm Warblers were at Arboretum in Arcadia on October
Two Horned Larks, Harbor Park in Wilmington on 4 (Mary Jane Macy). One that
typically hard to find on the October 25 (Martin Byhower) and appeared to be of the western
coastal plain, were at Santa Fe at the Ballona Freshwater Marsh cooperi race- expected as a
Dam in Irwindale on October 3 on November 6 (Chris Lord). breeding bird in the interior but
(Andrew Lee). not coastally- was at Woodlawn
A handful of Blackpoll Cemetery in Santa Monica on
Wood warblers were well Warblers included birds at Peck October 6 (Richard Barth).
represented during the period. In Park in Arcadia on September 20,

8 Western Tanager Vol. 76, No. 3


Green-tailed Towhees were at A Rose-breasted Grosbeak time to check out these ‘new’
Oak Park Cemetery in Claremont was at Bonelli Park in San Dimas and under-birded areas.
on September 18 (Tom Miko) and on September 29 (Rod Higbie),
again on October 11 (Cathy while Indigo Buntings included On another front, the Station
McFadden, Paul Clarke). Another one at Peck Park in Arcadia on Fire has resulted in the closure
was at a feeder in Malibu in late September 20 (Andrew Lee) and of a good chunk of the Angeles
September (Scott King) while the another at Oak Park Cemetery in National Forest, supposedly
latest was at Sepulveda Basin on Claremont on October 11 (Cathy through September of 2010.
November 7 (Hiroshi Kano). McFadden, Paul Clarke). This puts a number of birding
locations off limits, but there is
A Black-throated Sparrow at Only a few Bobolinks were still access to that portion of the
Peck Park in Arcadia on October reported, with up to three at San Gabriels east of Highway
1 was the only one reported Hansen Dam from September 20 39, and to the ANF north and
during the period (John Kelly). - October 11 (Kimball Garrett) west of the 14 Freeway.
and one at Bonelli Park in San
Several Vesper Sparrows Dimas from October 4-10 If you’re looking for
were found, with birds at Creek (Andrew Lee). Population something to do, Christmas Bird
Park in La Mirada on September declines are undoubtedly Counts are nearly upon us and
23 (Jonathan Rowley), at Santa Fe affecting the numbers of birds most of them can benefit from
Dam from October 3-9 (Andrew appearing in California. additional help. If you don’t
Lee), at Hansen Dam on October already participate in one or
4-24 (Kimball Garrett) and one Orchard Orioles were at Peck more CBCs, it’s a worthwhile
near Balboa Lake in Van Nuys on Park in Arcadia on September 26 endeavor and quite a lot of fun to
October 11 (Jon Fisher). (Jon Fisher) and at DeForest Park boot.
in Long Beach on September 29
A few Clay-colored (Jeff Boyd, Richard Barth) and a Otherwise, the Antelope
Sparrows turned up, with birds Baltimore Oriole was at the LA Valley offers good- though often
at Ladera Park in Ladera Heights National Cemetery on October 1. cold and windy- winter birding,
on October 3 (Richard Barth), at A female oriole, presumed to be a and checking the northwest
the Huntington Gardens in San Hooded Oriole, was at Lacy Park county’s lakes and reservoirs can
Marino on October 31 (Ron in San Marino on November 2 also pay off. These often
Cyger), at Valhalla Cemetery in (John Garrett). produce unusual gulls and
Burbank on November 4 and at waterbirds. There’s an awful lot
Los Angeles State Historical The only Yellow-headed of territory in this part of the
Park on November 7 (both Blackbirds reported were along county and it makes for a nice
Richard Barth). the lower LA River in Paramount quiet change from birding the
on September 20 (Richard Barth). crowded LA basin.
There were few reports of
Brewer’s Sparrows, but singles A review of these reports Also worthwhile are Pt.
were at Hansen Dam on reveals that many vagrants are Vicente, Pt. Dume and Leo
September 24 and October 4 found in just a few prime Carrillo which are often good in
(Kimball Garrett) and four were locations. Clearly these are winter for pelagics close to
at Santa Fe Dam on October 3 productive birding spots and shore— tubenoses, jaegers, alcids
along with a rarely recorded well worth covering, but how and others. Patience is required
migrant Grasshopper Sparrow many other unknown patches are though, as some days are fruitless.
(Andrew Lee). out there? The county is loaded But not knowing what you’re
with parks, cemeteries, riparian going to find is one of the most
One and possibly two corridors and miscellaneous intriguing aspects of birding.
Dickcissels were at Malibu Lagoon patches that get little to no
on September 13 (Dan Cooper). attention. The comparatively
slow winter season is a good

Western Tanager January/February 2010 9


Field Trips
Field trips often require more January 23 & 24 Weekend
time or effort than do bird Salton Sea
Leaders: Nick & Mary Freeman. leave the Plain heading north via
walks. They delve more deeply
Meet at 7:00 a.m. Saturday at the Bitterwater Road on Sunday before we
into identification, natural Wister Unit parking lot, 5 miles north away to L.A. If possible, please carpool
histories and interactions of Niland. Calipatria Inn (800) 830- or avail your vehicle to others when you
observed in the field. No pets 1113 (leader’s preference) and reserve. Your phone number will be
or small children, please. Brawley Inn (760) 344-1199 are released for carpooling unless you
Contact information will be recommended. Yellow-footed Gull, request otherwise. Send name, phone
released for carpooling unless Snow & Ross's Geese, Sandhill number, email address SASE, and $15
requested otherwise. Cranes, Stilt Sandpiper, and Gila per person to sign up. Reserve a room
Woodpecker all hopeful to certain. in Buttonwillow for Saturday night.
Before setting out on any event, No limit, but sign up with $15 check, Motel 6 is one option here. FRS radios
please call the LAAS bird tape at phone number, your email address (or & ‘scopes helpful. Limit 14.
(323) 874-1318, Option #4. SASE for confirmation and more
For a recorded message with details. Meet at 7:00 a.m. Saturday at Friday, February 19
special instructions or possible the Wister Unit parking lot by the Gull Study Workshop Lecture
cancellations that may have port-a-potty. This is 5 miles north of Speaker Larry Allen will discuss most
occurred. Niland where Davis Road joins Hwy gulls that have appeared in North
Same will be posted on our 111. FRS radios & 'scopes helpful.
website. America –most of which have made it to
Arrive fed and gassed up, bring California. Larry will specifically
www.laaudubon.org
lunches, those who wish will dine address general aspects of gull
Saturday, January 9 together in Brawley. topography, the confusing logic of molt
East Antelope Valley sequences, and the finer aspects of
Leader: Stan Gray. We will be birding Saturday, January 30 identification to age and species. Slides,
beyond 50th Street East for much of the Newport Back Bay study skins and handouts will be used.
day, in areas sometimes neglected by Leader: Mary Freeman. Meet at 8:00 Meet at Audubon House, 7-10 p.m., with
birders. However, Stan birds this area a.m. for the 6.8’ high tide, and a full day one break. 20 maximum. Provide $15
regularly, and knows that Mountain of birding. High tide at the mouth of the fee, phone number, your email address
Plover, raptors, Le Conte’s Thrasher and bay is 8:37. Nelson’s Sparrow and and a SASE to Los Angeles Audubon,
other AV specialties are sometimes Short-eared Owl (both rare), California which reserves you for the lecture & field
easier to find in the far eastern reaches Gnatcatcher, three rails, and American trip. We will send your confirmation and
of the Valley. Take Hwy 14 N to Avenue Bittern will be target birds. Take the 405 directions in the SASE (or to your email
S (next to Lake Palmdale). Drive into Fwy. S to the 73 Toll Road (free this far) address). Lecture and Field Trip NOT
the Park-and-Ride just to the east of the to the Campus Dr. exit, which becomes offered separately. Park in the south lot,
off-ramp. Meet at 8:00 a.m. at the W end Bristol St. Turn right on Irvine Ave., so you don't get locked in.
of the main lot. Bring lunch and a full drive 1.4 miles, then turn left on a small
tank of gas for a full day of splendor in street called University Drive. Park at the Sunday, February 21
the alfalfa. No fee, no reservation. end, walk down the hill, over the bridge, Gull Study Workshop Field Trip.
‘Scopes and FRS radios helpful. and to the end of the boardwalk. No sign Leader: Larry Allen. Put your new
up or fee. Bring lunch. knowledge to use in the field, perhaps even
Saturday, January 16 identifying California & Ring-billed Gulls
Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Area February 6 & 7 Weekend as they fly overhead! Meet at 7:45 a.m. at
Leader: Kris Ohlenkamp. “Freeway Carrizo Plain Doheny State Beach in Orange County, and
close” morning of birding. Kris has led Leaders: Mary & Nick Freeman. Meet ogle the gulls until we’re all gull
this walk on-and-off for over 30 years, at 8 a.m. in Maricopa. Spectacular identification experts! Doheny is a drive,
noting 240 species, and averaging 60-65 scenery. We will see Ferruginous but we have seen large numbers of gulls on
per walk. Take the 405 Fwy N into the Hawks, Golden Eagles, Le Conte’s our workshops here, including a Glaucous
San Fernando Valley, turn W on Thrasher, and pronghorn; with likely and a Lesser Black-backed! 20 maximum.
Burbank Blvd. and N (Rt.) on Woodley Rough-legged Hawk, Mountain Plover See above instructions to reserve. Lecture
Ave. to the second Rt., which is marked and possible Sandhill Crane. We will and Field Trip NOT offerred separately
“Wildlife Reserve”. Turn here and park meet in Maricopa, drive around the Parking fee. Usual start time 8:00
in the lot at the end. Meet at 8:00 a.m., Plain all weekend (exact route a.m.(details in confirmation) Bring a lunch.
and bird until about 11:30 a.m. depending on road conditions), then

10 Western Tanager Vol. 76, No. 3


Field Trips
Sunday, February 28 Le Conte’s Thrasher, Long-eared Owl of year, as well as searching out
Seal Beach National Wildlife Refuge (hopeful). Suggested vagrants that frequently show up
Refuge staff, volunteer John Nieto, and accommodations: Tamarisk Grove with them. Reservations needed.
Nick Freeman will drive up to 24 lucky Campground (reserve through This joint field trip is being
participants around this prime limited- www.reserveamerica.com), or organized by Sea and Sage
access wetlands site where wintering Stanlund Motel in Borrego Springs Audubon. For more information
birds such as Pacific Golden-Plover, (760) 767-5501. Anticipate a busy and to reserve visit
Mountain Plover, Sage Thrasher, weekend, and reserve camping (up to www.seaandsageaudubon.org.
numerous raptors, and often Nelson's 3 months early) and motels very
(Sharp-tailed) Sparrow are sighted. early. Meet at 7a.m. at Yaqui Wells June 11-14 Long Weekend
The refuge is part of the Naval across from Tamarisk Grove High Sierra Breeding Birds
Weapons Station. Send SASE, with Campground. Limit 20 people. Leader: Bob Barnes. 150 species
your email address and phone number Reserve with phone number, your likely in 4 days. Meet in Inyokern
(phone # required) by February 18. email address, SASE and $15 fee to for Friday morning's start. All other
Only SASE-confirmed U.S. citizens Los Angeles Audubon to learn more days start early in Kernville. Joint
with photo ID are allowed on base. No details. Pleasant to warm days, cool trip with our good neighbors in Sea
cameras or weapons. Meet at the main to cold nights (30-100°F!). & Sage Audubon Society. To
public lot at 800 Seal Beach Blvd. at reserve, and receive trip
7:30 a.m., and bird until noon. Take April 10 & 11 Weekend information including lodging, send
Seal Beach Blvd. S from the 405 Fwy, Owens Valley Grouse Trip SASE, email address, phone number
pass Westminster Blvd., turn left onto Mary and Nick Freeman lead. and $15 for each day attended ($60
the base at the Forrestal Lane light, and Greater Sage Grouse on the lek, for 4 days), to Los Angeles
left again into the lot. No fee, but breathtaking scenery. Meet early Audubon. Maximum 15. Lots of
SASE sign-up required. Saturday and Sunday mornings in driving, so bring a friend, and we
Bishop. Limited to 20. To sign up, will carpool. Contact information.
Sunday, March 7 send $55 (Schreiber Grant will be released for carpooling.
Ventura County Game Preserve fundraiser), phone number, your More information in March/April,
Leader: Irwin Woldman. The private duck email address and SASE to Los 2010 Western Tanager.
hunting club in Ventura has a long history Angeles Audubon. More details in
of producing the kinds of birds that most confirmation mailer/emailer. Reserve
rich, well-birded and disappearing habitats rooms early. Motel 6, Mountain TO RESERVE FIELD TRIPS BY MAIL–
can lay claim to, including Sora and View Inn, Bishop Elms are some of Send check, complete contact
Virginia Rails, American Bittern, Eurasian many hotels in Bishop. information for each
Wigeon, dark morph Red-tailed Hawk, participant, and a Self-
Golden Eagle, and one Lesser Sand- May 1-2 Weekend Addressed Stamped Envelope
Plover. Emphasis on shorebirds for this 16th Annual Kern River Valley
(SASE) (for your confirmation
date. Get to the preserve by taking the 101 Spring Nature Festival
Fwy W to Rice Avenue S, following the Come visit "America's Birdiest Inland
and detailed information
Rice Ave. prompts to the T-intersection, County" ’04 -‘07. Over 200 bird species mailer) to:
then take Hueneme Rd. west just past the seen during the festival! Trips spanning
buildings on the right. Meet on the side of Central Valley/Giant Sequoias/Kern Los Angeles Audubon
the road at 7:30 a.m. Free. No sign-up River Valley/Mojave Desert/Owens PO Box 931057
required. We will walk the property, so Valley. Check the Audubon California Los Angeles, CA 90093-1057
good hiking/mud shoes with energetic legs Kern River Preserve website for
inside a plus. We may have one car. complete details and instructions on how TO RESERVE BY PHONE–
‘Scopes & FRS radios helpful. to participate. When phone sign-up is
www.kern.audubon.org/KRVSNF.htm
requested, but no fee is
March 20 & 21 Weekend
Anza Borrego Birds, Butterflies May 14-17 Long Weekend
necessary:
and Beyond Kern River Valley Spring
Leader: Fred Heath. High points Migrants and Vagrants Call (323) 876-0202, M-Thur.
over the years: blooming desert Leader: Bob Barnes. This trip will 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
evening-primrose and indigo bush, be devoted to experiencing the
chuckwalla, collared lizard, desert waves of Spring migrants that push
bighorn (annual), Swainson’s Hawks up through the mountains this time
Western Tanager January/February 2010 11
Bird Walks
Bird Walks are geared for the beginner/intermediate bird watcher looking for an introduction to local birds or a less
strenous excursion. Appropriate for young bird watchers age 6 years and older. Carpooling is encouraged. Binoculars
are provided on some walks as noted below. NO sign-up, NO fees, just show up!

Topanga State Park Birdwalk Franklin Canyon Dr is directly across


(Topanga, CA 90290) from the entrance to TreePeople at a
1st Sunday of every month somewhat complicated intersection (a
Sunday, January 3 5 way signal). At the signal make a 90
Sunday, February 7 degree left turn. Drive down the
Time: 8:00 a.m. residential road to the first stop sign;
Leaders: Ken Wheeland and Chris turn left into the parking lot. We will
Tosdevin be birding the area around the parking
Ken and Chris will lead participants lot for the first 15 minutes. Participants
through this beautiful and diverse coastal who are lost may call (424) 298-1376
mountain area. An ideal trip for a after 8:00 a.m.
beginning birder or someone new to the If you wish to carpool, or for more
area. Directions: From Pacific Coast information, contact Eleanor Osgood at
Hwy, take Topanga Canyon Blvd. 5 volunteer@laaudubon.org or call (310)
miles to Entrada. From Ventura Blvd, 839-5420. Binoculars provided.
take Topanga Canyon Blvd 7 miles S.
Turn E uphill on Entrada Rd. Follow the Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area
signs and turn left into Trippet Ranch (Los Angeles, CA 90056) in Baldwin Hills.
parking lot. Rd. Parking fee. 3rd Saturday of the month
Contacts: Ken: (310) 455-1401, Saturday, January 16 Ballona Wetlands Bird Walk
ksafarri@aol.com; Saturday, February 13 3rd Sunday of the month August
Chris: (310) 455-1270 Time: 8:00 a.m. through May, with the exception of
Leaders: Eric and Ann Brooks; December.
Franklin Canyon Eleanor Osgood Sunday, January 17
Sooky Goldman Nature Center This trip covers landscaped parkland, Sunday, February 21
(2600 Franklin Canyon Dr., a lake and natural coastal scrub Time: 8:00 a.m.
Beverly Hills, CA 90210) habitats and is paced for beginning Leaders: Bob Shanman and Friends
Second Sunday of the month birders. We will look for wintering Join us for a walk through L.A.’s
Sunday, January 10 birds such as Merlin, Hermit Thrush, only remaining saltwater marsh and
Sunday, February 14 White-crowned, Fox and Golden- the adjacent rocky jetty. Wintering
Time: 8:30 a.m. crowned Sparrows, various ducks, as shorebirds and terns should be
Leader: Eleanor Osgood well as resident birds such as Song present, plus the resident Black
This canyon is a hidden treasure where Sparrows, California and Spotted Oystercatchers frequent the rocky
the surrounding urban residences of Towhees, Red-tailed Hawks, herons shores of Ballona Creek.
Sherman Oaks and Beverly Hills and egrets among others. Directions: Directions: Meet at the Del Rey
disappear from view. We expect to see The park entrance is off of La Cienega Lagoon
wintering birds such as Hermit Thrush, Blvd. between Rodeo Rd. and Stocker (6660 Esplanade Place, Playa Del
Yellow-rumped Warblers, Ruby- St. After passing the entrance kiosk Rey, CA 90293) parking lot. Take
crowned Kinglets, White-crowned ($6.00 parking fee) turn left (leading the Marina Fwy (90) to Culver Blvd
Sparrows as well as the resident birds to the “Olympic Forest”) and park in and turn left for a mile. Turn right
such as Spotted Towhee, California the first available spaces. on Pacific Ave. The lot is on the
Thrasher and Acorn Woodpecker. If you wish to carpool, or for more right. Lot or street parking is
Directions from Sunset: Take information, contact Eleanor Osgood usually not a problem. Three hour
Coldwater Canyon to Mulholland Dr. at volunteer@laaudubon.org or walk. ‘scopes helpful.
Turn left on Mulholland. Make left (310) 839-5420. Contact: Bob 310-326-2473;
turn onto Franklin Canyon Dr. Binoculars provided. wbutorrance@gmail.com
12 Western Tanager Vol. 76, No. 3
International Birding Tours

Two Exceptional Countries, One Outstanding Journey


Join Olga Clarke, Los Angeles Audubon Travel director

COSTA RICA PANAMA


March 5 to 15, 2010 March 15 to 22, 2010

Two of the world's premier natural history Drake Bay in the south Pacific with miles of
destinations. Well known by birders throughout pristine beaches and tropical rainforest;
the world for their natural riches, offering Excursion to Cano Island.
numerous species of colorful birds and other
wildlife. This action packed itinerary for You may wish to extend your visit with an
incredible neotropical birding will excite the extension to Panama, or you can do
novice and enthrall the expert. Panama separately.

We'll be birding new areas on this Costa With a short flight from Costa Rica to
Rica trip. Spectacular scenery from the Panama, we will visit many of the world-
Caribbean slopes of the Talamanca Mountains famous birding areas such as Soberania N.P.;
at Rancho Naturalista for both Atlantic and Pipeline Road and Achiote Road; Chagres N.P.
Pacific birds; Piedras Blancas N.P., in humid Rainforest and a brief visit to the Embera native
tropical primary rainforest; Las Cruces tribe; Enjoy a partial transit to experience the
Biological Station and Wilson Botanical historic passage through the Panama Canal;
Gardens in the southwestern pre-montane range ending with birding in the Metropolitan N.P.
near the Panama border; Corcovado N.P. and

For information and itinerary on


Los Angeles Audubon’s International Birding Tours
contact: Olga Clarke oclarketravel@earthlink.net
Los Angeles Audubon, Travel Director
2027 El Arbolita Dr.
Glendale, CA 91208-1805
Ph/Fax: (818) 249-9511

Western Tanager January/February 2010 13


Pelagic Trips with Los Angeles Audubon The Great
Saturday, February 27, 2010 Saturday, May 1, 2010 Backyard Bird
Los Angeles Area Pelagic Trip “Condor Express” Trip:
Count
Palos Verdes Escarpment and A deep water trip toward the This year’s GBBC is scheduled for
Redondo Canyon San Juan Seamount Presidents Day Weekend
(February 12 - 15th).
This 8 hour trip departs from Ports This trip departs from the Santa Please save these dates!
of Call in San Pedro at 8:00 a.m. Barbara Harbor on the fast
on the m/v Pacific Adventure. catamaran Condor Express at 8:00
a.m. and will return approximately
Leaders: Jon Feenstra and Todd McGrath by 8:00 p.m.

Birds seen on prior trips: Leaders: Jon Feenstra, Todd McGrath


The Great Backyard Bird
Northern Fulmar; Short-tailed, and Terry Hunefeld
Black-vented, Sooty and possibly
Count (GBBC) is a great activity
Pink-footed Shearwaters; rocky We will cruise along the deep for families that’s both free and
shorebirds; Pomarine and Parasitic water shelf by the San Juan Seamount. educational, while also getting
Jaegers; Common Murre; Xantus's Birds seen previously: Black-footed kids outside. Led by the National
Murrelet; Cassin's and Rhinoceros Albatross; Northern Fulmar; Sooty Audubon Society and the Cornell
Auklets. Occasionally: Ancient and Pink-footed Shearwaters; Ashy Lab of Ornithology, the GBBC
Murrelet. Rarity: Manx Shearwater. and Leach's Storm-Petrels; Pomarine, provides an opportunity for
Gray Whales and several species of Parasitic and Long-tailed Jaegers; people of all ages to learn about
dolphins are often seen. Pigeon Guillemot; Xantus's Murrelet; birds and the environment we
Cassins and Rhinoceros Auklets. share. Start by exploring the
There is a galley on board, please restrict Uncommon species seen on prior trips: GBBC website at
your carry-ons due to limited cabin space.
Laysan Albatross; Fork-tailed Storm- www.birdcount.org. The
$85 credit card payment or Petrel; Red-billed Tropicbird; and website has photos from last
$80 for a cash discount. Tufted Puffin: Rarity: Murphy's Petrel. year’s count, a game, and other
Reservations for this trip: Send check and a materials, including a
SASE (self address stamped envelope) to: There is a complete galley on board downloadable PowerPoint
that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. presentation, a voice narrated
Los Angeles Audubon - Pelagic
PO Box 931057 tutorial, and regional bird lists.
Los Angeles, CA 90093-1057 $195 cash or credit card
Or, pay with Visa, MC or Discover, by
calling Audubon House (323) 876-0202 Reservations for the trip:
(Mon.- Thur.) from 9.30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
For reservations and trip status,
Include complete contact information
for each participant. Name, Address, contact Sea Landing in Santa
Phone number(s), and email address. Barbara (805) 963-3564.
Los Angeles Audubon’s
Note: Destinations may be changed to
maximize bird sightings, or minimize (Please do not call Audubon House Baldwin Hills Greenhouse Program
rough seas. With an increase in fuel for this pelagic trip.) will be hosting an opportunity to
costs there can be an energy surcharge participate in the Great Backyard
per person.
Bird Count (GBBC) on Saturday,
Refund Policy: You may receive a Visit our website for changes or February 13th, 2010, 9 a.m. to noon.
refund less a $5.00 handling charge if additions to
you cancel 31 days in advance or if a Join students and the local
paid replacement can be found. Los Angeles Audubon sponsored community to count birds at the
Pelagic Trips. Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook
www.laaudubon.org State Park.

14 Western Tanager Vol. 76, No. 3


Thank You for sUPPORTING lOS ANGELES AUDUBON!
41 Pounds.org Patty Garland
Michael L. Sandler
Larry W. Allen Garry George
Dr. Raymond A. Schep
Jonathan Armstrong Vernon & Winona Howe
John & Dorothy Schwarz
Kenneth & Marlene Abel Allen & Carol Goldstein
Sempra Energy Foundation
Marvin & Gloria Baker David Haake
Mark L. Serrano
Katheryn & David Barton Steven & Leslie Hartman
Phillip Skonieczki
Tracy Berge Winona & Vernon Howe
Jane Stavert
Lorna Bitensky June Inai
Timothy R. Steele
E. Waters Bjornen Linda D. Jaramillo
Dorothy Steiner
Peter H. Bloom Carol Louise Johnson
Martine Tomczyk
Barbara & Jay Boland Laurence M. Kaplan
Dr. Joshua Trabulus
Lorna Brown John A. Kirchner
Robert Roy Van de Hoek
Dr. Francis F. & Ande Chen Saran Kirschbaum
Marie Vester
Olga L. Clarke Muriel & Allan Kotin
Edith Weiner
Sydney Cortwright Jody M. Lawler
Liza C. White
Kathleen Crandall Martha Lesser
Billy Youdelman
Buford Crites Phoebe S. Liebig
Thomas E. Duque Mary Loquvam
D ONATIONS I N H ONOR O F :
Denver Museum of Margaret A. Maw
Nature & Science Katherine MacQueen
Ron & Beth Saul,
Mary Deutsche Jeanne McConnell
In honor of
Belinda Dombrowski Marilyn Morgan
Dr. Paul Fox
Thomas L. Drouet David & Joyce Oppenheim
Thomas E. Duque M. Louise Owens
Michele Schroeder,
Jon Dunn Robert W. Pann
In honor of
Lisa M. Fimiani Donald Pilling
Laurel Scott & Vic Warren
Michael Fishbein Paula K. Reynosa
Christine S. Francis Bradley J. Rumble

Los Angeles Audubon Centennial Bird-a-thon


Los Angeles Audubon is moving into its
Centennial Year!

To celebrate our first 100 years and to celebrate the birds of Los Angeles County,
Los Angeles Audubon is sponsoring a

Centennial Bird-a-Thon!

Save time the week of


May 1-8, 2010,
and get ready to join a team!

Watch the next Western Tanager for details!

Western Tanager January/February 2010 15


Volume 76, Number 3 January/February 2010

PO Box 931057
Los Angeles, CA 90093-1057
www.laaudubon.org

AUDUBON HOUSE HOURS


7377 Santa Monica Blvd@ Martel Ave
West Hollywood, CA 90046
Regular Hours:
Monday - Thursday 9:30a.m.-4:00 p.m.

Regularly Closed:
Friday, Saturday, Sunday.

Open: 2nd Wednesday of each month


9:30 a.m until 9:45 p.m.
for those attending the monthly
membership Program.

The office and store will NOT be open any


Saturday in January.

We WILL be open Sat., Feb. 6, 2010 from


10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Immature California Condor, Tejon Ranch, June 2009, Photo by Mary Freeman

mONTHLY pROGRAMS
Meet at 7:30 PM in the Community Building in Plummer Park
7377 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, CA 90046

Wednesday, January 13, 2010 Wednesday, February 10, 2010


Muriel Horacek presents Blake Massey presents
“Earthwatch Institute Adventures” "The California Condor Recovery Program Update"

Muriel Horacek has traveled the globe, volunteering Blake Massey is a US Fish and Wildlife Service
for Earthwatch Institute on many diverse projects: California Condor Biologist. He will discuss the
to re-establish a non-migratory flock of whooping status, management, and the research effort of the
cranes into Florida, describe the mating dance of Long- California Condor Recovery Program. Blake will
tailed Manakins in Costa Rica, tally and mist-net birds provide a perspective on the wild and captive
at the International Birding and Research Center Eilat in population of the past 25 years, and the status of the
Israel and Jordan, mist-net birds in Kenya with local species today. He will show information about the
ornithologists, and to study hummingbirds and other current nest guarding program and share video footage
tropical birds caught in mist nets in Manu National of first-hand account of nest entries. Blake will
Park, Peru for flight research by a scientist from provide up to date GPS transmitter data and illustrate
Caltech, Pasadena. insights into the seasonal reproductive and foraging
patterns of this species. Lastly, Blake will talk about
the Program's ongoing research and challenges of
recovering such a unique and amazing bird in a
changing landscape.