In most Yolo County landscapes, birds are usually hidden from view, while fly-overs are often too distant to be identified by eye. And some birds fly by night. In all those instances, birding by ear is essential for knowing who they are, and thus essential for better understanding of the bird life of our county. […]
Despite record heat, fires, smoke, and poor air quality, migration seemed largely the same. As with any September, there were plenty of rarities to chase, highlighted by six eastern warblers. Top of the ticket was the county’s first Blackburnian Warbler, found Sept 4 at the Putah Creek Riparian Reserve (EM) and seen by dozens for […]
The migrating warblers have decreased significantly in my yard and are being replaced primarily by yellow-rumps. Other old friends are showing up: White-crowned Sparrows, Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Spotted Towhees, Hermit Thrushes, Fox Sparrows, etc. Their presence is soothing and provides a sense of normalcy after all the recent terrible wildfires, especially at our own Bobcat Ranch. […]
In the field of endangered species management, the term Safe Harbor refers to agreements with the US Fish and Wildlife Service by which a landowner voluntarily improves or expands habitat for a species and, sometime later, can decide to return the property to its original condition without penalty. The aim is to encourage otherwise hesitant […]
It’s been a challenging summer for all of us with Covid and the fires, but I hope you’ve managed to do some birding close to home. I’ve had fun photographing warblers in my yard. So much has happened since our last newsletter in early May. Good news on the national front was the passage of […]
There are few birds more spectacular than a breeding plumaged Red Phalarope. Three of them arrived on May 18 during a morning thunderstorm and spent a few hours in a rice paddy just north of the Davis Wetlands (JT). This was the first chaseable record in decades. A breeding plumaged Sanderling was at the Woodland […]
Late last year National Audubon published Survival by Degrees–389 Bird Species on the Brink, an analysis of the likely effects of climate change on the abundance of North American bird species in the next several decades. The study modeled three levels of temperature increase, corresponding to levels of effort to reduce the discharge of greenhouse […]
On May 21, 2020, Yolo Audubon Society submitted the following Forum Commentary for publication in the Davis Enterprise. It concerns the development of a commercial solar array on former ponds at the Davis Wastewater Treatment Facility. It reiterates several concerns that were left out of Mayor Brett Lee’s and Davis City Council Member Dan Carson’s April 26 Forum Commentary that mentioned YAS’s letter to the Davis City Council about this matter.2020-05-21-YASop-ed
A lot has been happening at Audubon California’s Bobcat Ranch recently.
Nina Tortosa, Restoration Intern at the ranch, compiled a comprehensive report of ranch restoration work that she was involved in from September 2019 through March 2020. One of many projects involved repair of part a birding trail used by the Yolo Audubon phenology group. You can read her full report below.
In addition, quite a few nesting boxes have been refurbished for some lucky new owners. (Photo above.)2020-05-05-Tortosa-Bobcat-Restoration-Report
On Friday, May 1st, I did a biking big day in Yolo county, starting at 3am from my house in Davis and finishing at 8:10pm back at home, after looping out to Babel Slough, north to Woodland, and back to Davis. In total I biked about 91 miles, seeing/hearing 139 species in total, while drinking […]
Which local program has finished nearly three hundred habitat improvement projects, mostly on farms, as part of formal high school course work? The answer is SLEWS (Student and Landowner Education and Watershed Stewardship), which teaches the next generation of farmers and natural resource stewards to restore habitat, while learning science hands-on. SLEWS is a program […]
Local birding, at least at certain locations, may have increased under the COVID shutdown, allowing many to enjoy the start of spring migration. The highlight was the county’s first ever Virginia’s Warbler, well-described on Apr 26 from the last stand of trees below the crossroads at the summit of Rayhouse Rd (AH). This is a […]