Sunday, March 11, 2012

What's up, dock?

Island foxes up, island jays down.

To fill a few days, John decided to go to Santa Cruz Island. Because it was short notice, he could only land at Scorpion Anchorage. His books said jays were everywhere. A naturalist at that dock said there used to be jays right there. Turns out the recovery program for foxes has been so successful that jays are better seen in the interior, more easily accessible from Prisoner's Harbor. He was at the wrong dock.

When doing a big year, relying on books alone doesn't work well. John knows he should be finding local contacts that have up to date status of birds, but that is hard for him to do. At least, he can go back to Santa Cruz during slack time in the fall.

John started out this trip exploring Mt. Pinos. Lots of juncos, not the birds he was hoping for. Looking for the LeConte's Thrasher, again, he did find a Sage Sparrow near Maricopa. On the way home, he stopped by Malibu and found about 50 Snowy Plovers. I need to learn how to share his photos.

In a few days he will start on a longer road trip, hitting Texas, Colorado, and Arizona. He needs to get reservations for the Dry Tortugas so I know when to join him in Florida. Then we will comb the Gulf Coast for migrants back towards Texas. There is going to be a bit of car juggling to be done.

The trip to Attu is right when he would love to be several other places, but choices must be made. There is only one spring per year.

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