Western Antelope Valley, Including Holiday Lake, Quail Lake and Nebeker Ranch, Los Angeles County, CA               © 2010 Callyn Yorke




OCTOBER 27, 2010  Quail Lake and Holiday Lake (49 Species)

Weather: Fair with some high clouds; 43F to 52F; winds ENE 5-12mph.

Time: 0743 -0950 hrs.(QL); 1011-1115 hrs. (HL)

Areas Covered:  1) Quail Lake Outlet: I briefly surveyed the QLO segment of the California Aqueduct, finding only 5 Bufflehead.

2) From the west parking lot at Quail Lake (QL) I surveyed the lake from the southern, western and northern shore, extending to the California Aqueduct inlet (high, turbulent flow) on the north-central side using a bicycle. I included a brief survey of the western QL impoundment (QLW) but found no birds there, instead, only two fishermen on the shore. Most of the waterbirds (e.g. grebes and ducks) were found in the central and northern portions of the lake, where I studied them using a 35-55x scope, 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera. First of the season (FOS) birds for the Antelope Valley, found at QL this morning were: Lesser Scaup and American Pipit .

3) I walked around Holiday Lake (HL) once, counter-clockwise, using a 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera. Increasing winds made identification of bird vocalizations difficult. Fifteen bird species were added to the day-list at HL.


Canada Goose  15  (at least 2 sub spp. by size; no cackling goose)  mid-lake; wary but reluctant to flush, HL.

Mallard  40 (m,f) QL;   15 (m,f) HL. flighty.

Green-winged Teal   4 (f) swimming, dabbling along northern margin of HL.

Lesser Scaup   30 (m,f) open water, many resting, QL. FOS for my Antelope Valley records.

Bufflehead  5  (m,f) QLO;  60(m,f)  diving, QL.

Ruddy Duck   200 (m,f)  resting, diving, flying, QL.

California Quail   20  flushed from brushy area, NE  HL.

Pied-billed Grebe  10  QL;  1 HL.

Horned Grebe  3  diving, sw QL.

Eared Grebe   60  diving, QL; 1 HL.

Western Grebe  80  resting, diving, QL.

Clark's Grebe  10  QL.

Double-crested Cormorant  2  resting on island, N-central QL.

Great Blue Heron  1  n marsh, HL.

Black-crowned Night Heron  4 (ad, imm) n marsh and riparian edge, fly, call, HL.

Cooper's Hawk  1  flying low over open field, landed on utility pole, N-central QL.

Red-tailed Hawk  1  flying over lake, HVL. (about 6 on utiliity poles, for about 10 miles along HWY 138 ).

Northern Harrier  1 (f) flying low, back and forth over lake, HL.

American Kestrel  2  flying together over adjacent field, S,  HL.

American Coot   60  QL;  10 HL.

Killdeer   5  s edge of QL;  3  HL.

Sandpiper (Calidris sp.) medium sized, pale, possibly WESA,  foraging on mudflats, s shore QL. Flew away before I could get the scope on it.

Ring-billed Gull 4 (ad) middle of lake, QL.

California Gull  3 (ad, C2, C3) on water, middle of lake, QL.

Herring Gull  1 (ad) middle of lake, separated from CAGU.

Mourning Dove  60  edge of lake; flushed from trees, HL.

Anna's Hummingbird  1  (m imm) calls, fly, riparian edge, w HL.

Nuttall's Woodpecker  1  calls from riparian edge, n HL.

Northern Flicker (red-shafted)  1  pines, n HL; calls.

Black Phoebe  1  s edge of lake, HL; calls.

Common Raven  6  flying around lake, QL;  10  around adjacent fields and in pines, HL.

Horned Lark   2  fly, call, adjacent fields, s QL.

Tree Swallow?   6  flying high over lake,  eastern QL

Marsh Wren  5  calls and song in marsh, s QL;  2 HL.

Ruby-crowned Kinglet  2 in pines, calls, HL.

American Pipit  1 foraging next to a killdeer on edge of s-central mudflat, QL. FOS for my Antelope Valley records.

Yellow-rumped Warbler   10  marsh-riparian, QL;  8 some hawking insects in tules, HL.

Common Yellowthroat  1  calls from marsh-riparian, s QL;  2  calls from marsh, HL.

Song Sparrow  1  calls from marsh, QL;  1 calls from marsh-riparian, HL.

Savannah Sparrow  2  calls from field, QLO;  1 calls from edge of marsh-riparian, HL.

Lark Sparrow   20  Cottonwoods between aqueduct and lake, n QL; calls.

White-crowned Sparrow  30  brushy areas around the lake, QL;  15   HL  calls and song.

Red-winged Blackbird   10  flying, calls, QL;  5 (m,f) marsh, HL.

Great-tailed Grackle   5  s side of lake, QL;  3  n marsh, HL; calls.

Brewer's Blackbird  10 s edge of lake, QL.

Western Meadowlark  5  singing, calls, adjacent field, n  QL; 3 HL.

House Finch  20  n riparian edge of lake, QL;  30  riparian, brushy areas, e HL.

Lawrence's Goldfinch  3  calls  s riparian, QL.

House Sparrow   8  around the clubhouse, HL.









OCTOBER 20, 2010  Holiday Lake (46 Species)

Weather: Overcast; heavy thundershowers intermittently over the past 36 hours; 55F; winds NNE  2-7 mph.

Time:  0750 - 1100 hrs.

Area Covered: I walked the entire perimeter of Holiday Lake from the clubhouse, first clockwise, then counter-clockwise. All habitats were surveyed using a 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera. The water level of the lake was relatively low, exposing extensive mudflats, especially S and E. A woman who introduced herself as 'Joy' from New Hampshire, arrived at the lake around 1045 hrs. to begin birding. No other people were at the lake during my survey. Conditions were good for identifying bird vocalizations. Birds became more active and conspicuous later in the morning as overcast skies began to clear briefly and ENE winds steadily increased to about 7 mph. Unpaved roadways leading to HVL were muddy, slick and flooded in places.


Mallard  40 (m,f) dabbling around the edges and in the middle of the lake; flighty.

Northern Shoveler  1 (f)  dabbling, nw.

Northern Pintail 2 (f) dabbling, nw.

Green-winged Teal  1 (f) following coots and mallards, nw.

Ruddy Duck   4 (m,f; imm)  n edge of lake.

California Quail   14  flushed from brushy area and marsh, E.

Eared Grebe  6  (bsc. plmg.) tight flock, open water, central lake.

Great Blue Heron  1  n edge of lake in marsh.

Great Egret 2  flying around together; landing in trees and marsh, N. One trying to swallow 5 in. fish, S shore,

Black-crowned Night Heron  5  (ad, imm) flying, calls; landing in trees and marsh, N, S; one imm wading, NE.

Red-tailed Hawk  2  on separate utility poles in adjacent field, N; calls.

Sora  2  calls from marsh, N and NE.

American Coot   16  swimming and wading around edges of lake.

Killdeer  6  mudflats, E; calls.

Pectoral Sandpiper  1 (imm) wading in shallows and along muddy shore with Killdeer (photo).


                                                                                 ©  2010 Callyn Yorke                                                    

Long-billed Dowitcher  4  foraging and flying together in middle of lake, E.

Mourning Dove  20 (ad, imm) trees and utility lines, E.

Anna's Hummingbird  1  calls from brushy edge, E.

Nuttall's Woodpecker  1  calls from wooded fringe, N.

Northern Flicker 1  calls from wooded fringe, N.

Black Phoebe  2  edge of lake and marsh; calls.

Loggerhead Shrike  1  calls from adjacent field, SE.

Common Raven   12  pairs and singles flying around lake; one relatively fresh adult DOR, SW.

Horned Lark  1-2  flying, calls, adjacent fields, S.

Tree Swallow  6  flying back and forth over lake and also 100 ft.+.

Mountain Chickadee  1  foraging in Willow and pines, E; calls.

Marsh Wren   6  calls and song in marsh around lake.

Pacific Wren?  1:  distincitively sharp, loud, paired call notes repeated 10-12 times from ground-level at edge of marsh, S (unseen).

Ruby-crowned Kinglet  4  in Willows, Cottonwoods and Pines around the lake; calls.

European Starling  2  on utility pole in adjacent yard, SW; calls.

Orange-crowned Warbler  2  foraging in small Willow, SW; calls.

Yellow-rumped Warbler  12  foraging in all vegetation types around the lake; calls.

Black-throated Gray Warbler  1 (f) foraging in Aleppo Pine, W.

Common Yellowthoat   4  active and calling in marsh, W and S.

Wilson's Warbler  1 foraging low in small Willow and Salt Cedar, E.

Lark Sparrow  2  in dead branches of Cottownood, NE.

Savannah Sparrow  2  in Willow and Cottonwood, E.

Song Sparrow  1  in marsh, W.

Lincoln's Sparrow  1  calls from edge of marsh, S.

White-crowned Sparrow  60 (ad, imm)   brushy areas and marsh around the lake; calls and song.

Red-winged Blackbird  6  flying over and landing in marsh, E. One RWBL (right) perched near TRBL (left: photo).

                                                                                                                                                                                                   © 2010 Callyn Yorke

Tricolored Blackbird  40  large flock (mostly ff and imm) landing in trees and marsh, E (see above photo, left side).

Western Meadowlark  6  partial song from several in adjacent fields, NE, E.

Great-tailed Grackle   6 (m,f)  in marsh, N.

House Finch   20  in Willows and Cottonwoods, E and N; calls and song.

House Sparrow  6  around clubhouse; calls.




OCTOBER 7, 2010  Holiday Lake (46 Species)

Weather: Partly cloudy, 49F to 60F; winds WSS 5-10 mph. Intermittent showers over past two days.

Time: 0730 - 0930 hrs.

Area Covered: I walked around the lake twice, counter-clockwise then clockwise, surveying all habitats (see previous notes), using a 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera. The water level continues to decline, exposing extensive mudflats around the lake and reducing maximum water depth to less than 5 inches. Conditions were fair for finding birds and identifying their vocalzations. No other people were present during the survey.


Gadwall   4  (f) dabbling, W end of lake

Mallard  20 (m,f) dabbling around the edges of the lake.

Northern Shoveler  2 (f) flew into W end of the lake; walking and dabbling in shallows.

Cinnamon Teal  1 (f) west end of lake.

Ruddy Duck  7 (m - alt . plmg.,  f ; 5 imm)  ducklings following male; female behind, N-central along edge of cattails.

Great Blue Heron  1  S edge of lake.

Black-crowned Night Heron  7  (ad, imm) edge of lake and in trees.

White-faced Ibis  9  flying low over lake.

California Quail  12 in marsh, N; calls.

Cooper's Hawk  1 (imm) flushed from trees, S.

Prairie Falcon  1 (ad) chased by ravens over adjacent field, W.

Falco sp.  1 dark, fast flight, flushed from pines, SW.

Sora  3  calls (numerous) from marsh.

American Coot  5  edge of lake near marsh.

Killdeer  2  wading in shallows.

Long-billed Dowitcher  9  foraging in shallows, middle-W.

Mourning Dove  8  flushed from Cottonwoods around the lake.

Anna's Hummingbird  1 (m, imm) hovering around pines and willows, E; calls.

Northern Flicker  1  calls from SW.

Nuttall's Woodpecker  1 (f) fly, call, landing on tall snags, N.

Horned Lark  2  fly, call, adjacent field, S.

Common Raven  8  flying around the lake; in pines; clucking calls.

Tree Swallow  3  flying high (100 ft.)over lake, back and forth.

Violet-green Swallow  1  flying high over lake.

Northern Rough-winged Swallow  1  flying over E end of lake.

Barn Swallow   10 flying back and forth, low over lake.

Cliff Swallow  1  flying at medium height (20-30 ft.) over lake with other swallows.

Mountain Chickadee 1  called once from pines, W.

Marsh Wren  4  calls and song from marsh around the lake.

Loggerhead Shrike  1  shrubby margin of lake, N; calls.

Black Phoebe  1  shoreline snag, SE.

Western Wood Pewee  1  Cottonwood and Willow snags, S.

Orange-crowned Warbler  16  pairs foraging in salt cedar, willows; calls.

Yellow-rumped Warbler  25  ubiquitous in pines, willow and cottonwood; calls; also going to ground.

Wilson's Warbler  1 gleaning foliage in Cottonwood, S; calls.

Savannah Sparrow  1 calls from grassy area at edge of lake, S.

Lincoln's Sparrow   1 calls from edge of marsh, S.

White-crowned Sparrow  20 (ad, imm)   ubiquitous in marsh, brushy areas and trees around the lake; calls and song.

Dark-eyed Junco  1  calls from pines, W.

Tricolored Blackbird  4  fly, calls.

Great-tailed Grackle  5 (m,f) in marsh, N; calls. adult male with short tail.

Western Meadowlark  3  song in adjacent fields, N and S.

House Finch  30 (m,f)   ubiquitous in brushy areas and trees around the lake

Lawrence's Goldfinch  2  singing in Cottonwood, W.

Lesser Goldfinch  4  fly, call, S.

House Sparrow  5 around clubhouse; calls.





SEPTEMBER 30, 2010 (Holiday Lake: 41 Species)


Weather: Partly cloudy, 66F to 75F; no wind.

Time: 0720-0940 hrs.

Area Covered: I walked around the lake twice clockwise, surveying all habitats, using a 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera. Conditions were excellent for identifying bird vocalizations. Only one other person, Mark Crosby (West Valley Water District manager) was present during the survey. The lake water level remains relatively low, exposing mudflats and rocky shoreline around the southeast and eastern portions of the lake. Shorebirds foraging in shallows and on shorelines today included,  Great Egret, White-faced Ibis, Sora, Greater Yellowlegs, Long-billed Dowitcher, Least Sandpiper and Killdeer. Warblers (Yellow, Yellow-rumped, Orange-crowned) gleaned insects from foliage; dense swarms of diptera; many odonata around the lake.


Mallard  20 (m,f) dabbling around the edges of the lake; flighty.

Cinnamon Teal  2 (f)  dabbling in open water, W.

Ruddy Duck  3 (ad, imm) edge of lake, N.

California Quail   20  flushed from brushy area, N.

Great Blue Heron  1  edge of lake, N.

Great Egret  5  together at E end of lake; flew into pine tree.

Black-crowned Night Heron   7 (3 imm) north marsh and adjacent trees.

White-faced Ibis  3  foraging in middle of lake and edges, W and central; calls.

Sora  2-3  calls from marsh, N and SE.

American Coot  2  foraging along edges of lake, N.

Greater Yellowlegs  1  shallows, SE; calls.

Least Sandpiper  2 (ad, juv) mudflats, SE, E.

Long-billed Dowitcher  9  foraging in shallows, E (photo).

                                                                                                                                                                                            ©  2010 Callyn Yorke

Killdeer   5  shoreline, SE and E; calls.

Rock Pigeon  2  flying, adjacent suburbs, S.

Eurasian Collared Dove  1  on utility pole, S, calls.

Mourning Dove  2  perched in deciduous tree, adjacent yard, S.

Barn Owl  1  flushed from Aleppo Pine, W.

Anna's Hummingbird  2 (f, imm ) around pines, E; calls.

Nuttall's Woodpecker  1 (f) foraging in Chinese Elm, E; calls.

Black Phoebe  2  edge of lake, N and NW; calls.

Loggerhead Shrike  1  calls, adjacent field, N.

Common Raven  3  flying by, S.

Horned Lark  3  flying over adjacent field, N; calls.

Swallow sp. (possibly CLSW)   10 very high over adjacent fields, N.

Marsh Wren  2 singing in marsh, E and NE.

Orange-crowned Warbler  2  in pines and willows, E and NE; calls.

Yellow Warbler  2 (m,f) in Willow and Cottonwood, N; call.

Yellow-rumped Warbler  5 (m,f)   in pines, willows and cottonwoods; calls.

Common Yellowthroat   6  in marsh and Cottonwoods around the lake; calls.

Lark Sparrow  10 in pines, deciduous trees and on shore, E and NE; calls.

Savannah Sparrow  3  foraging on mudflats near marsh, SE and E.

White-crowned Sparrow  20  ubiquitous in brushy areas and trees around the lake.

Red-winged Blackbird  3  marsh, S; calls.

Tricolored Blackbird  10  marsh, NE; calls, flying.

Great-tailed Grackle  5  in marsh, N.

Western Meadowlark 2  singing in adjacent fields, S and N.

House Finch   40 (m,f)   ubiquitous in trees around the lake.

Lesser Goldfinch  2  calls from trees, E.

Lawrence's Goldfinch  3 (m,f) singing in elm; flew SE.

House Sparrow  8  around clubhouse; calls.








SEPTEMBER 23, 2010 (Holiday Lake: 42 Species)


Monarch (Danaus plexippus) on a Sunflower (Helianthus annuus) at Holiday Lake.  Sept. 23, 2010.


                                                                                                  © 2010 Callyn Yorke


Weather: Fair, 57F to 70F; winds WSW 0-2 mph.

Time: 0715-0957 hrs.

Area Covered:  From the clubhouse parking lot, I walked first a clockwise route, then counter-clockwise around the entire lake, surveying all habitats (see previous survey notes) using a 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera. My efforts were concentrated on the eastern half of the lake where most of the migrant landbirds were found. Conditions were excellent for identifying bird vocalizations.

Toward the end of the survey I spoke briefly with the West Valley Water District manager, Mark Crosby, who informed me that some vegetation around the lake is scheduled for removal. This work will be  conducted under the supervision of a USFWS representative to insure compliance with the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and other environmental legislation.

Noteworthy birds found today included Greater White-fronted Goose, Mountain Chickadee, Red-breasted Nuthatch and Pine Siskin. In addtion, Ruddy Duck chicks were found, indicating this species has successfully bred this year at HVL.



Greater White-fronted Goose  1 (ad)  flew into the lake at the west end; calls; swam around for a few minutes (photo) and flew away to the east (photo). This is an early record for WHFG at Holiday Valley Lake.


                                                                                                     © 2010 Callyn Yorke

Mallard  4 (m,f) dabbling at both ends of the lake; flighty.

Gadwall  2 (m,f)  w end of lake.

Cinnamon Teal 2 (f) w end of lake near cattails.

Ruddy Duck  8 (3 ad; one alt. plmg.; 5 immatures)  adults staying close to marsh; young (about 1/2 size of adult) diving in open water, w-central

California Quail  30  coveys flushed from brushy areas around the lake.

Great Blue Heron  1  edge of the lake, w-central; flying out to S.

Black-crowned Night Heron  3 (ad, imm) edge of marsh and in pines, N and S.

Cooper's Hawk  1 (imm) flushed from pines, SW, flew and perched in trees in NE.

Red-tailed Hawk  1 (ad) on utility pole in adjacent field, NE.

Sora  2  calls from marsh, E.

Virginia Rail  1  calls from marsh, NE.

American Coot  2  edge of lake, N-central.

Killdeer  5 (ad, imm) shoreline, E and SE.

Least Sandpiper  1  shoreline, E.

Caspian Tern  2 ?  calls from overhead; unseen.

Mourning Dove  8  in Cottonwoods and Willows around the lake.

Anna's Hummingbird  3 (f) in pines and Willows around the lake; calls.

Belted Kingfisher 1  (f) fly, call around the lake.

Black Phoebe  2  edge of lake, S and N.

Loggerhead Shrike  2  calls from adjacent fields, NE and S.

Common Raven  4  flying adjacent to the lake, S.

Horned Lark  6  flying over the lake; calls; abundant in adjacent fields and yards.

Rough-winged Swallow  1  flying low, back and forth over the water.

Mountain Chickadee  1 (continuing)   calling from pines, S

Red-breasted Nuthatch  1 calling from pines, S.

Marsh Wren  6  calls and song in marsh around the lake.

Orange-crowned Warbler  2  in Salt Cedar and Willows, N; calls.

Yellow Warbler  6 (m,f) in Willows, Salt Cedar and other trees; calls.

Lark Sparrow  10 in pines and on shoreline, SE (photo); calls.

                                                                                                                             © 2010 Callyn Yorke

Song Sparrow  1  in marsh, E; calls.

Savannah Sparrow  3  in marsh and riparian edge; shoreline (photo); calls.

                                                                                                                       © 2010 Callyn Yorke


White-crowned Sparrow  2  marsh and brushy edge, N; calls.

Lincoln's Sparrow  2  marsh and brushy edge, NE; calls.

Red-winged Blackbird  10 (m, f) calls and flying W from marsh.

Tricolored Blackbird  20 (f, imm. molting) marsh and shoreline (photo).

                                                                                                                               © 2010 Callyn Yorke

Great-tailed Grackle   8  (m,f; molting) marsh and shoreline, N and E; calls.

House Finch  40 (m,f)   trees and shrubs around the lake.

Pine Siskin  1(imm)   preening in Chinese Elm with HOFI, E (photo).

                                                                                                                      © 2010 Callyn Yorke

Lawrence's Goldfinch  2 (m,f) in Chinese Elm; calls, E.

Lesser Goldfinch  4  in Cottonwood, NE; calls.

House Sparrow  4  around clubhouse; calls.


SEPTEMBER 19, 2010 (Holiday Lake: 43 Species)

Weather: Fair, 64F to  80F; winds WSW 10-15 mph.

Time: 0745 - 1040 hrs.

Area Covered: From the Holiday Lake clubhouse parkinglot, I walked a clockwise and counter-clockwise routes around the entire lake. The water level was about the same as for the last survey (September 10: see previous survey notes), allowing waders (e.g. Greater Yellowlegs and White-faced Ibis) access to the central lake, no more than six inches in depth. Exposed shorelines along the south and eastern edge of the lake attracted several species of sparrow, Killdeer and Least Sandpiper. Only one vehicle (West Valley Water District) entered the area during my survey. Conditions were fair to poor for finding migratory landbirds; gusty winds kept most small species concealed in shrubs and trees. Noteworthy migrants included, Mountain Chickadee (continuing) , Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, Brewer's Sparrow, Vesper Sparrow, White-crowned Sparrow, Savannah Sparrow and Lark Sparrow.


Mallard  40 (m,f) edges of the lake; flighty.

California Quail   12  flushed from brushy border of the lake, NE.

Great Egret  1  edge of the lake, W.

Snowy Egret  1  middle of lake, W.

Black-crowned Night Heron  9  (ad, imm) flushed from pines and Cottonwoods, S and N.

Green Heron 1 (ad) flying along the N margin of the lake.

White-faced Ibis  18  foraging in the middle and edges of the lake.

Cooper's Hawk  1  flying low over the NE edge of the lake.

Northern Harrier  1 (f) flying low, back and forth around the lake.

American Kestrel  1 (f) landed on utility pole with food item, E.

Virginia Rail 2  calls from NW and NE marsh.

Sora  1 calls from N and SW marsh.

American Coot  4  edge of lake.

Killdeer  7 (ad, imm)   shoreline, E, SE.

Greater Yellowlegs  1  foraging in middle of lake; calls.

Least Sandpiper  3  (ad, juv)  foraging on shore, SE and E.

Mourning Dove  10  flying around the lake.

Eurasian Collared Dove  2  flying over adjacent suburban yards, S.

Anna's Hummingbird  5 (1 m; 4 f) pines and brushy edges of lake; calls.

Selasphorus sp.  1 (m) flying around elm, E.

Black Phoebe  3  marsh and riparian edge; patio of clubhouse.

Common Raven   4  flying by the lake, N.

Horned Lark 5  fly, call, adjacent fields, N, S.

Barn Swallow  3  flying low over W lake; calls.

Mountain Chickadee  1 calling in Aleppo pines near entrance (continuing from previous survey of Sept. 10).

House Wren  calls, N pines and brushy border of lake.

Marsh Wren  2  singing in marsh, NE and N.

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher  1  in Chinese Elm, E.

Orange-crowned Warbler   4  staying well concealed in low shrubs; calls.

Yellow Warbler  3  in Willows, Salt Cedar and pines, E, N; calls.

Common Yellowthroat  2  calls in marsh-riparian, S and N.

Lark Sparrow  20  on shore and nearby trees, SE and E.

Savannah Sparrow  6 (ad, imm)   on mudflats and shallows on shoreline, E (photo).

                                                           © 2010 Callyn Yorke

White-crowned Sparrow  2 (imm) in pines near clubhouse; calls.

Brewer's Sparrow  1 (imm) seen briefly in elm with several HF, E.

Vesper Sparrow  5 (ad, imm)   on shore and in trees, E (photos).


                                                                          © 2010 Callyn Yorke


Red-winged Blackbird  3 (m,f; imm)   calls in marsh; flying W.

Tricolored Blackbird   4-6  well concealed in marsh; calls.

Western Meadowlark  1  singing in adjacent field, S.

Great-tailed Grackle  2 (m - molting) in marsh, S; calls.

House Finch  40 (m,f)   ubiquitous in shrubs and trees around the lake.

Lesser Goldfinch  2  calls from Cottonwood, NE.

House Sparrow  6  around clubhouse.






SEPTEMBER 10, 2010 (Holiday Lake and Quail Lake: 57 Species)

Weather: Fair 54F to 72F; winds 0-2 mph (HVL); 8-10 mph (QL).

Time: 0720- 1020 hrs.(HVL); 1050-1150 hrs. (QL).

Area Covered: Beginning at the clubhouse at Holiday Lake (HL) I first walked a clockwise route, then counterclockwise route around the entire lake. All habitats were surveyed using a 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera, including, open water (maximum depth about 5 inches), shoreline (extensive mudflats exposed around the lake), freshwater marsh, Willow and Cottonwood borders (i.e. Riparian), adjacent fields of predominately Rabbitbrush scrub, ruderal roadways, a small watered lawn at the clubhouse and mature Aleppo pines around the lake. The low water level of the lake provided excellent mudflats for a variety of shorebirds; shallows were used by Mallard, Cinnamon Teal and Gadwall, Great and Snowy Egret, Western and Least Sandpiper, and a flock of about 35 White-faced Ibis. Conditions were excellent for identifying bird vocalizations. No other people were around the lake during the survey. Waterfowl were wary but not particularly flighty (c.f. previous survey notes)

I drove from HVL directly to the western parking area of Quail Lake (QL) and surveyed the main lake (WQL) by bicycle along the south roadway (inside the Hwy 138 fence), including the small eastern impoundment (EQL) and the California Aqueduct inlet on the north side. I carried a scope (not necessary today) and used a 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera. Almost the entire lake (WQL) was devoid of birdlife; only five new species were added to the day-list (Great Blue Heron, Western Grebe, Double-crested Cormorant, Brewer's Blackbird and Red-winged Blackbird). About ten fishermen were on the western and northern shorelines. All of the lake and most of the shore was undisturbed by human activities during the survey.


Gadwall  2 (m,f) open water with Mallards, HL.

Mallard  50 (m,f)   dabbling all over the lake; wary; HL.

Cinnamon Teal  8 (m,f; imm?) one female with three young ducklings? N edge of marsh, HL.

California Quail  16 HL; 10 QL.

Western Grebe  1  open water in middle of lake, WQL.

Double-crested Cormorant  5  three standing on short sticks in water,  EQL.

Great Blue Heron  3  edge of marsh, EQL.

Great Egret  1  flew in to edge of marsh, N HL;  2 N shore WQL and EQL.

Snowy Egret  1 (imm) N edge of marsh, HL.

Black-crowned Night Heron  5 (ad, imm)   marsh, N and pines, S HL; 2 (imm) flushed from marsh, EQL.

White-faced Ibis  35 ( one with unreadable metal USFWS leg band)  foraging in shallows, reluctant to fly as I approached, HL.

Sharp-shinned Hawk 1 (imm) hunting low in brushy margin, N HL (photo).


                                                                  © 2010 Callyn Yorke


Red-tailed Hawk  1  on utility pole in adjacent field, E HL;  5 on utility poles along HWY 138 between HVL and QL.

American Kestrel  1  on utility pole along HWY 138 between HL and QL.

Sora  3 (2 imm., 1 ad)  S edge of marsh and foraging on mudflat, HL;  several calls.

American Coot  6  edge of marsh, HL;  4  edge of marsh, WQL.

Killdeer   6  mudflats, HL;   2 concrete peninsula, WQL; calls.

Spotted Sandpiper  1 rocky shoreline, SE, HL.

Western Sandpiper  2  shallows, S HL.

Least Sandpiper  25  shallows and mudflats, HL.

Greater Yellowlegs  3  shallows and mudflats, HL; calls.

Red-necked Phalarope  1 (bsc. plmg) swimming in shallows, S-central HL.

American Avocet  2 (bsc. plmg.) foraging in shallows, N HL.

Mourning Dove  20 (ad, imm)   flying around riparian areas, HL.

Eurasian Collared Dove 3  a pair landed on the shore, frightening several sandpipers, HL.

Barn Owl  1  flushed from pines, SW HL.

Anna's Hummingbird  3 (f) riparian and pines around the lake; calls, HL.

Nuttall's Woodpecker  1  calling in pines, SW HL..

Western Wood Pewee  2  sally-flycatchng, aerial flycatching from fence and cottonwoods, S and N, HL.

Black Phoebe  1  sally-flycatching over mudflats from low perch in cattails, HL.

Ash-throated Flycatcher  1  flying at eye-level along N shore; tried to land in cattails but failed, HL.

Loggerhead Shrike  2  calls from adjacent field; perched in Willow snag, S HL (photo).

                                                                                                                         © 2010 Callyn Yorke


Common Raven   10  several soaring high over adjacent fields, S HL; 6 QL.

Horned Lark   20 adjacent fields, call, fly, HL;  10 N fields, WQL.

Tree Swallow  2  in cattails and flying low over lake, HL.

Barn Swallow   10   flying back and forth, low over lake, HL.

Cliff Swallow   5   flying back and forth; landing in cattails, S HL.

Mountain Chickadee  1 calling from pines, NW (unseen, but calls distinctive), HL.

Oak Titmouse  1  pounding pine seed in mature Aleppo Pine, SW; calls, HL.

Bewick's Wren  2  foraging low in Salt Cedar, E HL.

Marsh Wren  3  calls and partial song in marsh, S, E and N   HL.

Northern Mockingbird  3  flew into alders, N HL.

European Starling  12 flock flying over adjacent field, W.  HL.

Orange-crowned Warbler  1  low in Salt Cedar with YW and WW, E HL.

Yellow Warbler  10  ubiquitous in singles and pairs, riparian edge; Salt Cedar, HL.

Common Yellowthroat  5  marsh and riparian edge around the lake; calls. One individual with broken white eye-ring, suggesting YB Chat; HL.

Wilson's Warbler  2  low in Salt Cedar, E HL

Lark Sparrow  20  trees and shoreline around the lake, HL.

Savannah Sparrow  1  brushy edge of lake, S HL; call.

Song Sparrow  1-2  calls from marsh, S HL.

Red-winged Blackbird  2  deep in marsh, EQL; calls.

Tricolored Blackbird   10  in marsh and flying over lake, HL; calls;  20 S marsh, WQL; calls.

Brewer's Blackbird   20  parking and ruderal edges of roads, QL.

Great-tailed Grackle  2 edge of S marsh (molting m); calls, HL.

House Finch   50  trees and shrubs around the lake, HL.

Lesser Goldfinch   3-5  flying, calls, HL.

House Sparrow  10 around clubhouse, roadway and brushy edges of fields, HL.







SEPTEMBER 5, 2010 (Holiday Lake:  33 Species)

Weather: Fair, 78F; winds WSW 7-10 mph.

Time: 0740 - 0905 hrs.

Observers: Merissa Mendez and I.

Area Covered: We walked the entire perimeter of the lake beginning at the clubhouse; first clockwise, then counter-clockwise (the second trip around was abbreviated on the NW side by a (dove?) hunter firing a shotgun repeatedly just outside the eastern boundary of the lake property).The noise from fired shots appeared to make the waterbirds in and around the lake very flighty, and probably drove some species deeper into the marsh where they couldn't be seen. Some of the pellets from the shotgun blasts could be heard hitting the nearby vegetation and water. Relatively low water level had exposed a 10 -12 ft.- wide shoreline (mud, pebbles and dead branches) on the S and SE sections of the lake. We used binoculars and a DSLR camera for the survey.


Mallard  40 (m,f) wary and flighty during the survey, moving to the opposite (west) side of the lake from the shotgun blasts.

Gadwall   2 (f) open water, W

California Quail   10  brushy border, SW.

Great Egret  1  edge of marsh, S.

Great Blue Heron  1  flying over trees, N.

Black-crowned Night Heron  5 (ad, imm) in pines and edge of marsh, S, N; flying.

White-faced Ibis  13  feeding in shallows, central.

Cooper's Hawk  1  chasing a bird in the marsh, SW.

Red-tailed Hawk  1  on utility pole in adjacent field, NE.

Virginia Rail  1 called once, S (unseen).

Sora  2   separated individuals called repeatedly, S, SE(unseen).

Killdeer  5  shoreline and edge of marsh, S, SE.

Least Sandpiper  10 foraging in shallows, SE.

Western Sandpiper  (ad, imm)  foraging in shallows, SE.

American Avocet 16 (bsc. plmg.) foraging in shallows with WFI.

Eurasian Collared Dove  3  flying and perched around lake in dead trees.

Mourning Dove  30  flying erratically following shotgun blasts on E side.

Barn Owl  1 flushed from pines, W; pellets, droppings and feathers under pines around the lake.

Anna's Hummingbird  2 (m,f) riparian edge of lake, S and SE.

Black Phoebe  2  riparian and edge of marsh; under patio of clubhouse, SW and E.

Loggerhead Shrike  1  calls from adjacent field, N.

Common Raven   8  flying around the lake.

Horned Lark  10  flying and on shore, SE.

Cliff Swallow  1  flying low over aqueduct on entry road.

Marsh Wren  1  singing in marsh, E.

Yellow Warbler  2 in willows, E.

Common Yellowthroat  2  calls from marsh, S and NW.

Lark Sparrow  10  shoreline and riparian, SE.

Red-winged Blackbird  2  calls from marsh; flying W.

Tricolored Blackbird  8 (m,f) tight flock landing in marsh, N; calls.

Great-tailed Grackle  1 (f) flew into marsh, S.

House Finch 40 ubiquitous in riparian and edge around the lake.

House Sparrow  6  around clubhouse.









AUGUST 25, 2010 (Holiday Lake:  31 Species)

Weather: Fair, 74F; no wind.

Time: 0711-0840 hrs.

Observers: Ethan Yorke and I.

Area Covered: We walked from the clubhouse, a counter-clockwise route around the entire lake, surveying with binoculars and a DSLR camera. I then walked the reverse route (clockwise) around the lake, adding five more species of bird to the day-list. No other people were present during our survey this morning. Conditions were good for identifying bird vocalizations. The water level in the lake was about the same as for the last survey (August 7); a narrow strip of exposed shoreline (mud and rock) occurs along the southeastern perimeter. A feral cat was found along the SW shore; two desiccated raven carcasses were nearby, under the pines.


Mallard  10 (ad) shallows around the W margin.

Northern Shoveler   4 (f) midlake, W.

Cinnamon Teal  4 (f) midlake, W.

California Quail  12 (ad, imm)   brushy edge of lake and roadside, NE; calls.

Pied-billed Grebe  1  open water, NE.

Great Blue Heron  1  in cottonwood, N.

Snowy Egret  1 (imm)  foraging at the edge of  the lake; initially in a cottonwood, S.

Black-crowned Night Heron   3  (ad (1); imm)  flushed from pines and cottonwoods, S.

American Coot  2 (ad, imm)  swimming near cattails, NE; calls.

Killdeer  2  SE shore; calls.

American Avocet   4 (bsc. plmg.) foraging in central W shallows.

Spotted Sandpiper   2  SE shoreline; calls.

Mourning Dove  30 perched in cottonwoods; flying over lake.

Eurasian Collared Dove  2  on utility poles, SW; calls.

Barn Owl  2  flushed from pines and cottonwoods, SW.

Anna's Hummingbird  2 aerial hawking near trees, SW; calls NE.

Black Phoebe   2  edge of lake, NE and S.

Ash-throated Flycatcher  1 (imm) in small cottonwood, SW.

Loggerhead Shrike   2  calls and flying in adjacent fields, NE.

Common Raven  4  flying near the lake.

Horned Lark  2  flying over the lake, E.

Cliff Swallow   4  (ad, imm) flying low over the lake, E.

Barn Swallow  2  flying low over the lake, E.

Tree Swallow  4 (ad, imm) flying low over the lake, E; perched in cottonwood.

Marsh Wren  2  singing in cattails, NE and E.

Northern Mockingbird  1 flew in to cottonwood, SE.

Common Yellowthroat  2  calls from cattails, S and NE.

Lark Sparrow   4  in cottonwood, SE.

Tricolored Blackbird  4 (ad, imm) calls and flying from cattails, NE.

House Finch   20  (m,f) cottonwoods around the lake; calls and song.

House Sparrow  4  calls in brushy areas, SE.




AUGUST 7, 2010 (Holiday Lake and Quail Lake)

Weather:  Fair,  75 to 80F; winds WSW  5-10 mph.

Time: 0705- 0810 hrs.(HVL); 0835-1015 hrs, (QL).

Area Covered: 1)  I walked a counter-clockwise route around Holiday Lake (HL) beginning and ending at the clubhouse. I used a 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera. No other persons were present during my survey. Conditions were good for finding birds, Water level of the lake is steadily decreasing with evaporation, exposing mudflats both along the south, southwest and southeast shoreline. Several shorebirds were foraging in the shallows and along the shore during the survey. Most flushed as I approached but flew only 25-60 yards away to the western and southern sections of the lake. 30 species of bird (no rarities) were found in and around the lake during the survey. Several bird species found today at HVL were not found during the survey two days ago (e.g.  Greater Yellowlegs, Califronia Gull, Nuttalls's Woodpecker, Ash-throated Flycatcher and Phainopepla).

2) From the west parking area of Quail Lake (QL), I bicycled around the entire lake, beginning with the south, east and north-central shores. A gated and fenced aqueduct facility at the Los Robles inlet (north-central area of QL) has blocked access to the remainder of the roadway around the northwestern part of the lake. So, I returned to the parking area by the same route (i.e. along the southern shore), took a paved road along the western and northern shore to the west side of the California Aqueduct inlet, a brief visit to the aqueduct under the Los Robles 4.24 bridge, then returned the same route. I carried a scope (which wasn't necessary for this particular survey but would definitely be useful at other seasons when hundreds of waterbirds are usually present), 10x42 binocular (very useful) and a DSLR camera and telephoto lens (always carried for documentation of rarities). A few fishermen were around the lake (i,.e W, E and N); conditions were good for identifying bird vocalizations; the winds subsided for about an hour during the survey, then picked up again as I was leaving. This was the first time I had covered the entire perimeter of Quail Lake; a bicycle was very useful, since the perimeter road is quite lengthy and hilly (perhaps 3 miles ). Also, some of the small islands and shoreline on the north side of the lake is largely obscured from view when scoping from the south shore. Views of these features are greatly improved from elevated roadways along the northern perimeter of the lake. 32 species of bird (no rarities) were found at QL today.


Mallard  24 (m,f)  flushed from E side as I approached; flew to edge of marsh on W side HL; 20 (m,f) resting on concrete peninsula, S QL.

Teal sp.  a profile view when flying with mallards, HL.

Common Merganser  6 (f) flushed to lake from concrete peninsula, S  QL.

Ruddy Duck  2 (m,f)  N-central edge, HL.

Califronia Quail   2, edge of feild, HL; .4  brushy area, N QL.

Pied-billed Grebe  1  quiet backwater area of EQL.

Western Grebe  1  open water, middle of lake, QL.

Clark's Grebe  4  open water, middle of lake near WG  QL.

Great Blue Heron  one at S edge of lake; flushed as I approached, HL;  1 hiding in dense riparian-marsh, S QL.

Black-crowned Night Heron   3 (ad, imm)   flushed from pines; calls; one (ad) in middle of shallows, E HL.

Red-tailed Hawk  1 (ad) soaring on thermals above N hillside and lake, QL.

Turkey Vulture  3  (ad, molting some wing feathers) on thermals along N hillside, QL.

Sora  1  called loudly from W part of lake, HL.

American Coot   4  HL;   20 (ad, imm)   around edges, W and E.

Killdeer  2  E shore, HL.  4   S and SE shore, QL.

Spotted Sandpiper   1 foraging on shore, E  HL.

Calidris sp.   (basic plmg.)   flying, calls (sounded like Western Sandpiper) low over water, E QL.

Wilson's Phalarope  2 (basic plmg.) foraging in shallows near Greater Yellowlegs, HL.

Greater Yellowlegs  1 (basic plmg,) foraging in shallows; flushed and called E  HL.

California Gull  1 2nd cycle  flew in from E and landed in lake, then flew off, HVL;  3 (ad, imm)  flying W; one using hillside thermals, QL.

Ring-billed Gull  2 (ad, imm) flying behind Calif. Gull, west across QL.

Herring Gull  ? 1 (2nd cycle) relatively long wings, slow, deliberate, wingbeats compared with Calif. Gull; flying W over QL.

Caspian Tern  6 (ad, imm)    a cohesive flock flying back and forth over mash; diving, flying W then landing on concrete peninsula; calls E QL

Eurasian Collared Dove  4  two pair flying around pines and Cottonwoods, HL.

Mourning Dove   8-10  flushed from Cottonwoods, E  HL.

Barn Owl  1  flushed from mature Aleppo Pine, S HL.

Anna's Hummingbird  6 (f, imm)   riparian and pines around the lake, HL.

Nuttall's Woodpecker  1  calls from pines, S  HL;  called from riparian woodland , SE QL.

Ash-throated Flycatcher  1  perched low in Cottonwood near clubhouse, SW  HL.

Western Kingbird   1  on fence in yard adjacent to HL.

Loggerhead Shrike   1  calls from NW area, HL.

Common Raven   4  flying around, HL;   16: large flock of ravens (some in pairs) perched in tree at E QL.

Horned Lark  5   flying, calls, open fields around HL;  20 open fields next to aqueduct, N QL.

Cliff Swallow  6  flying around bridge over aqueduct S of HL.

Bewick's Wren  2   singing and scolding in riparian area, SE QL.

Marsh Wren  2  singing, scolding, calls in marsh, S QL.

California Thrasher  1  calls from hillside chaparral on S side of QL across HWY 138.

European Starling  6 (ad, imm)   mixed flocks with Brewer's Blackbird and Tricolored Blackbird, along aqueduct,  N QL.

Phainopepla  1 (imm m) perched on Cottonwood snag, NW  HL.

Common Yellowthroat   2  calls from marsh, E QL.

California Towhee  1  calls from hillside chaparral across HWY 138, S QL.

Lark Sparrow   5  (ad, imm) in snags and on shore, S HL;  4 flying, singing, S QL.

Song Sparrow   1  calls from riparian-marsh  S QL.

Black-headed Grosbeak  1  calls from mature Cottonwood, N QL.

Red-winged Blackbird   6 (ad, imm)   concealed in cattails and riparian; sometimes coming into view and flying, HL;   20 (ad, imm)   marshy area, S QL.

Tricolored Blackbird  100 (est. ad, trans. plmg. imm)) a tight, vocal flock foraging in weedy area on hillside northwest and adjacent to aqueduct; coming to drink at aqueduct near Los Robles bridge , calls, N QL.

Brewer's Blackbird   10  parking area and path along S  shore; 20 in marsh and along aqueduct near Los Robles bridge with TCBL  N QL.

Great-tailed Grackle   6   in riparian area , S HL.  20   in marsh and  concrete peninsula, S QL.

House Finch   12   HL ubiquitous in brushy and riparian areas; 4 riparian strip along path, S QL.




AUGUST 5, 2010  (Holiday Lake and Quail Lake)

Weather: Fair, 72F; winds WSW 5-10 mph.

Time: 0910 - 1025 hrs.; 1200-1215 hrs.

Observers: Ethan Yorke and I.

Area Covered: I walked a counter-clockwise route around Holiday Lake (HL), surveying birds using a 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera. Ethan stayed with the vehicle parked at the clubhouse and observed the western and west-central portions of the lake using an 8x40 binocular. A vocal group of people were finishing their walk around the lake a few minutes after we arrived. Otherwise, conditions were good for finding birds. The water level of the lake was about 15 inches below the high-water mark on the inshore vegetation (cattail and tule); a narrow shoreline of rocks and mud was exposed on the southeastern and eastern edge of the lake. One bird species of interest was found and described by Ethan Yorke as a Blue-footed Booby (see notes below). I did not see that bird or anything resembling it during my survey.

We also surveyed Quail Lake (QL) and the Quail Lake Outlet of the California Aqueduct (QLO) from 1050-1145 hrs. from the Westfork Rd. oveerlook (QLO) and the paved path along the south shore of Quail Lake (QL), using binoculars, scope and a DSLR camera. A few fishermen were on the north shore of Quail Lake. Otherwise the lake was little used and conditions good for finding birds. We relied mostly on the scope to search open water and shorelines of Quail Lake; specifically searching for a Blue-footed Booby seen earlier today at Holiday Valley Lake.


1) Mallard 4 (m,f) west side of QL.

2) Cinnamon Teal  1 (trans. basic plmg.)  close to cattails, S edge of HL.

3) Ruddy Duck  1 (m  alt. plmg.)  N side of HL.

4) Clark's Grebe  5  resting, preening in middle of QL.

5) Great Blue Heron  1  standing in shallows of E side of HL; 2  shore and shallows of QL.

6) Black-crowned Night Heron   4 (ad, imm) flushed from cottonwood on south shore of HVL; dropped a dead, partly eaten 6 inch fish.

7) Blue-footed Booby? 1 (ad) north central edge of HL ( Ethan Yorke): Ethan's remarks following my return to the vehicle without having seen the bird in question, during several minutes of conversation, are summarized below::

"I saw a pale-headed, duck-like bird, about the size of a gull, in the water on the opposite (north) shore. With my binocular, I could see it wasn't a Mallard or any bird I recognized. When it flew I saw it had bright blue legs and stripes behind its wings." It flew with rapid wing-beats at first then slower as it headed off in that (southwest) direction. I looked at pictures of ducks in the book (Sibley, D.A. 2000. The Sibley Guide to Birds. pp. 70-103) but I couldn't find anything like it shown in the pictures."

I continued questioning Ethan (a 12-year-old novice with excellent vision and with above-average recall for plumage details) and asked him to look through the book again and see if he could find a match for the diagrams. He began flipping through the pages and suddenly stopped, exclaiming, "Here it is; this is the bird I saw!" He was pointing to an illustration in Sibley (p.56) of a Blue-footed Booby. Thus, without any suggestion from me, Ethan found a match in Sibley's illustrations. It was the only bird that would show "bright blue legs" that might ( note: no documented sightings I am aware of ) show up at this time of year at a lake in the Antelope Valley. Unfortunately, since I did not see the bird, we were unable to provide any additional documentation (e.g. photos). Nevertheless, we continued to search for the bird at Quail Lake and adjacent segments of the California Aqueduct, but without success. Based on my experience birding with Ethan for several years as his mentor, he is a very reliable observer, and his identification of a Blue-footed Booby is likely to have been correct. Of course, any of the larger lakes in the region, e.g. Lake Palmdale, Piute Ponds, Elizabeth Lake, Quail Lake or Castaic Lake, could attract this bird if it wandering around and essentially lost.     

8) American Coot  4  sw edge of HL;  8  w edge of QL.

9) Turkey Vulture  6  soaring along south slope on north side of QL.

10) Spotted Sandpiper  1 (bsc. plmg.)   foraging on E shore of HL.

11) Wilson's Phalarope  2 (alt. and trans. plmg.) one swimming, the other wading, S shore of HL with dowitchers.

12) Long-billed Dowitcher  4 (alt. plmg.)  foraging near S shore HL.

13) California Gull   3  (ad, imm) resting in middle of QL.

14) California Quail    6  brushy edge of eastern QL.

15) Mourning Dove  20  in Cottonwoods, E and SE  HL.

16) Eurasian Collared Dove   24  in Cottonwoods, SE  HL.

17) Anna's Hummingbird  2  in pines and Cottonwoods, N and SW   HL.

18) Common Raven  3  flying; 1 dead under a pine tree, HL;  4 flying around QL; 4 on embankment of QLO.

19) Tree Swallow  2 (imm) perched in dead Cottonwood; flying around HL.

20) Horned Lark   100  flock moving around adjacent yards, HL.

21) Loggerhead Shrike   1  calls from riparian area, sw HL.

22) Western Kingbird  2  (ad, imm)  perched in dead Cottonwood (photo).

                                                  © 2010 Callyn Yorke

23) Common Yellowthroat  1 calling in marsh, HL;  1 calling from marsh-riparian, QL.

24) Western Bluebird   1  (m) flying W over HL.

25) Hooded Oriole   1 (f) flying around Cottonwoods and pines, ne HL.

26) Tricolored Blackbird  6 (m,f) flying over marsh on s shore of QL.

27) House Finch   10  riparian areas around HL.











JUNE 1, 2010  Holiday Lake   (22 Species)

Weather: Partly cloudy; 60 to 63F; winds WSW 10 -15 mph.

Time: 0705- 0750 hrs.

Area Covered: I walked a counter-clockwise route around the lake, surveying Aleppo Pine, Cottonwood-Willow Riparian, Freshwater Marsh, Shoreline (rocks and mud) ruderal roadside and adjacent Rabbitbrush fields.  Steady WSW winds made identification of bird vocalizations difficult. Except for a noisy colony of Tricolored Blackbird, birdlife was generally inconspicuous; few migrant landbirds were found.


1) Mallard  3 (m) swimming near cattails, W.

2) Ruddy Duck  5 (m alt. plmg.)  swimming, resting near cattails, W.

3) Great Egret  2 (alt. plmg.) on NE shore; flushed as I approached within 100 yards, flew to N edge.

4) Black-crowned Night Heron  5 (ad, imm) flushed from Cottonwood and Aleppo Pine, S; calls.

5) White-faced Ibis  5 (alt. plmg.) resting near cattails, SW.

6) Spotted Sandpiper  2 (alt. plmg.) a pair foraging along rocky shoreline, SE.

7) Killdeer  2  on S muddy shore; calls.

8) Black-necked Stilt  2 (alt. plmg.) foraging near cattails, SW.

9) California Quail  1  calls from brushy area, NE.

10) American Coot  10  near cattails, W, SW and N.

11) Mourning Dove  6  flushed from riparian edges around the lake.

12) Eurasian Collared Dove  2  foraging on ground, adjacent yard, S.

13) Anna's Hummingbird  3 (f) low perch in riparian edge; flying close to me near nest site, N.

14) Common Raven  4  (ad, imm) flying around lake; one imm dead on ground, SW.

15) Warbling Vireo  1  singing in Aleppo Pine near clubhouse, SW.

16) Common Yellowthroat  3 singing in marsh, SE, S and N.

17) Song Sparrow  2  calls from marsh, E.

18) House Finch  6 (m,f) singing in riparian and pines throughout.

19) Red-winged Blackbird  4  flying W into field.

20) Tricolored Blackbird  100 (conserv. est.) noisy colony in N and S cattails; males displaying; flocks of 10-14 individuals commuting between lake and adjacent fields.

21) Great-tailed Grackle  3  calls from SW marsh.

22) House Sparrow  10 adjacent yard, S.



MAY 21 , 2010  Holiday Lake  (32 Species)

Weather: Fair,  55F; winds W 25-35 mph.

Time: 0802 - 0911 hrs.

Observers: Merissa Mendez and I.

Area Covered:  I walked around Holiday Lake (HL) once, in a counter-clockwise direction, beginning and ending at the clubhouse. We then drove slowly around the lake in the same direction. Habitats surveyed included, Aleppo Pine, Rabbitbrush scrub, shoreline, fresh water marsh, and open water. High winds hampered observations. Birds were generally reluctant to fly and seeking shelter in trees, shrubs and on the leeward side of the lake. No oher people were present during the survey. We also stopped briefly at the California Aqueduct, at 255th Street West; California Gull (1 imm) and Cliff Swallow (6) were added to our day list at that location.


1) Mallard  4  (m,f) edges of lake

2) Gadwall  2 (m,f)  N edge of lake.

3) Ruddy Duck  1 (m alt. plmg.)  S edge of lake in tules.

4) Great Egret  3 (alt. plmg.) W and S edge of lake.

5) Black-crowned Night Heron  10 (ad, alt. plmg.) imm)   in trees around edge of lake; flying; calls.

6) White-faced Ibis  4  flew into S edge of lake, then W.

7) Black-necked Stilt  10 (alt. plmg.)   S edge of lake.

8) Spotted Sandpiper  3 (alt. plmg.)   S shoreline.

9) Mourning Dove  8  in Cottonwoods and Aleppo pines around the lake.

10) Eurasian Collared Dove  2  in pines, S; calls.

11) American Coot  6  edges of lake, W and S.

12) Common Raven  3  flying and calling.

13) Warbling Vireo  1 Aleppo Pine, SW; calls.

14) Western Kingbird  2  in pines, S, SE; calls.

15) Cassin's Kingbird   1  in elm, SE.

16) Western Wood Pewee 3  in willows and low shrubs, S, SE and N; calls.

17) Pacific Slope Flycatcher  2  in pines and willows, S and N.

18) Say's Phoebe  1  on patio and under eaves of the clubhouse.

19) Swainson's Thrush  1  flying W over lake.

20) European Starling  3  flying around lake; calls.

21) Yellow Warbler  3  in pines, S ; calls.

22) Yellow-rumped Warbler  1  in pines, S.

23) Wilson's Warbler  5  in pines, elms and willows; calls.

24) Common Yellowthroat  2  singing in marsh, s and NW.

25) Western Tanager  2  (m) in pines and Cottonwoods.

26) Song Sparrow  2  calls from edge of marsh, SW.

27) House Finch   4  Cottonwoods, Willows and Aleppo Pines; calls and song.

28) Bullock's Oriole 2  (f)  in Aleppo Pine and Cottonwoods; calls.

29) Red-winged Blackbird  2 (m)  edge of marsh, S.

30) Tricolored Blackbird  10  marsh, N; flocks of 5-10 birds flying to and from adjacent fields.

31) Great-tailed Grackle  5 (m,f) edge of marsh; calls.

32) House Sparrow  2   nesting under roof tiles of clubhouse.









MAY 17, 2010  Holiday Lake (30 Species)


White-faced Ibis (Plegadis chihi) Holiday Lake   May 17, 2010                                                                                         © 2010 Callyn Yorke


Weather:  Overcast, 54F; winds WNW, variable, 2- 15 mph.

Time: 0737 - 0857 hrs.

Area Covered: I walked slowly around Holiday Lake, first counter-clockwise, then clockwise, using a 10 x 42 binocular and DSLR camera. Habitats surveyed included riparian (Cottonwood, Willow, Tamarisk), shoreline (rocky), fresh water marsh (Cattail and Tule), open water, Rabbitbrush scrub, Aleppo Pine, and open ruderal areas around the roadway. Someone began grading the entrance road with a backhoe near the end of my survey. Conditions were generally good for identifying bird vocalizations. Waterbirds on the lake and shore were flighty.

I then drove west on HWY 138, passing a windswept Quail Lake (no birds seen on the lake or shoreline), then up Westfork Rd. overlooking the California Aqueduct at the Quail Lake Outlet (QLO). No birds were found in the aqueduct. Only two landbirds were added to the day-list, Cliff Swallow (6) flying around the aqueduct overpass at 155th St. West, and Horned Lark (1), singing in the field adjacent to QLO. Winds increased to about 30mph at Quail Lake by his time (0930 hrs.) so I canceled my plan to survey the lake this morning and returned home to update my website field notes.


1) Mallard  4 (m,f)  shoreline and open water; flighty.

2) Gadwall 1 (m)  open water.

3) Ruddy Duck  4 (m,f  alt. plmg.) )  open water near tules.

4) White-faced ibis   10 (alt. plmg.)   feeding near S shore; flushed, circled and did not return to the lake (see above photos).

5) Great Egret  2  (alt. plmg.) flushed from W marsh; flew into pines, S.

6) Black-crowned Night Heron  8 (ad) flushed from pines, riparian and marsh.

7) Semipalmated Plover  1 (alt. plmg.) foraging on E shore (photo).

                                  Semipalmated Plover (Charadrius semipalmatus)  Holiday Lake  May 17, 2010



8) Spotted Sandpiper  6 (alt. plmg.) on the S and E shore.

9) Red-tailed Hawk  1 (ad) on utility pole, N.

10) American Coot  8  open water and shoreline around the lake.

11) Anna's Hummingbird  1 (f) feeding on a yellow-flowered shrub, NE.

12) Mourning Dove  10  flushed from Cottonwood, SE.

13) Eurasian Collared Dove  2  calling in pines, S.

14) Common Raven   6  pairs flying over and around the lake.

15) Marsh Wren  1  calls in marsh, S.

16) European Starling   2  flying S from shoreline and pines; calls.

17) Western Kingbird  1  flying E over lake.

18) Willow Flycatcher  1  sally-flycatching in young willow, NE.

19) Yellow Warbler  2  singing in Cottonwoods, S and N.

20) Common Yellowthroat  3  singing in marsh, S and N.

21) Wilson's Warbler   3 (m,f)  in low willows, S; calls.

22) Song Sparrow   3  calls from riparian and marsh around the lake.

23) Brewer's Blackbird  2 (m,f) shoreline, E.

24) Yellow-headed Blackbird  1 (m)  marsh, S; calls.

25) Tricolored Blackbird  35 (m,f)   flocks of 10-20 flying around the lake; several flying over adjacent fields, S. a few in the marsh, S, N.

26) Great-tailed Grackle  10 (m,f)   riparian,marsh and shoreline around the lake; calls.

27) Brown-headed Cowbird  1  calls from riparian, S.

28) House Finch  10 (m,f)   pairs in riparian, pines and ruderal; song.

29) Lawrence's Goldfinch  2 (m,f) drinking and bathing on SE shore.

30) House Sparrow  6 around clubhouse and pines.




MAY 1, 2010    Holiday Lake ( 52 Species)


Great Egret (Ardea alba) in a field adjacent to Holiday Lake, CA  May 1, 2010


© 2010  Callyn Yorke                                                                            Solitary Sandpiper (Tringa solitaria)  HL   May 1, 2010


White-faced Ibis (Plegadis chihi)  Holiday Lake, CA  May 1, 2010

                                                                                                              © 2010 Callyn Yorke


Weather: Fair; 52 to -55F; winds WNW 5-10 mph.

Time: 0745 - 1042 hrs. (HL); 1120-1140 (QLO).

Observers: Ethan Yorke and I.

Area Covered:  We walked around Holiday Lake (HL) three times, first clockwise and twice counter-clockwise, surveying open water, marsh (cattails and tules) shoreline (mud and rocks), riparian (Willow and Cottonwood), ruderal edge and adjacent fields of Rabbit brush and California Poppy. Binoculars and DSLR camera were used. No other people were present during our survey of HVL this morning. Conditions were fair for identifying bird vocalizations. A relatively high diversity and abundance of migrant landbirds was found in the riparian strip along the north and west shores. Shorebirds were concentrated on the south side with a narrow, exposed mudflat. Ducks and other waterbirds were generally flighty and difficult to approach. Other animals found here included Cottontail (2), California Ground Squirrel (2) Side-blotched Lizard (1) and Gopher Snake (1 feisty adult on the road near the clubhouse), and a colony of Honey Bees on the S side of the clubhouse.

We then drove west on HWY 138 to West Fork Rd. and the hill overlooking the Quail Lake Outlet of the California Aqueduct (QLO). We used binoculars and a scope. Relatively few birds were found in and around QLO. Several fishermen were on the west shore of Quail Lake. Many waterbirds could be seen on the central and eastern portion of Quail Lake as we drove by, but with the increasing thermals, were too distant from QLO to be identified with certainty.



1) Gadwall  1 (m) HL   open water, N.

2) Mallard  6 (m,f) HL near N shore.

3) Green-winged Teal  2  (m,f) HL   flushed from NE shore.

4) Bufflehead  12 (m,f)  QLO  diving in scattered small groups.

5) Ruddy Duck  6 (m,f  alt. plm.) HL   N and NE.

6) California Quail  8 HL   in brushy areas, N and NE; calls.

7) Double-crested Cormorant  1(ad) HL flying W over lake.

8) Great Egret  5  (3 in alt. plmg.) HL   together in Willows at W end of lake;  one in adjacent open field of poppies (photo).

9) Snowy Egret  2  SW shore of Quail Lake, as seen from HWy 138.

10) Black-crowned Night Heron   4 (ad, imm) HL flushed from W riparian; flying and calling around the lake.

11) White-faced Ibis  55  HL  intially flushed from S shore; flock returning about an hour later to forage along the S shore (photo).

12) Turkey Vulture  2  HL  flying over the lake and adjacent fields.

13) Sora  1  HL  calls from NE marsh.

14) American Coot  16  HL   on mudflats and staying close to shore.

15) Cooper's Hawk  1  (imm)  HL  soaring on thermals over the lake.

16) Red-tailed Hawk  1 on utility pole, HWY 138 and about  270th St. West.

17) Killdeer  2  HVL  south shore; calls.

18) Solitary Sandpiper  1   (trans. alt plm.)  HL foraging on S shore (photo).

19) Spotted Sandpiper  4 (alt. plm)  HL   foraging on S and SE shore; 1 QLO  on S slope of aqueduct.

20) Least Sandpiper  2  ( trans. alt. plm.) HL foraging on S shore.

21) Eurasian Collared Dove  8  HL  flying around trees; one nearly white individual around clubhouse; calls.

22) Mourning Dove  20  HL  flushed from trees; flying around lake; calls.

23) Black-chinned Hummingbird  1  HL   flying, calling from pines, N.

24) Anna's Hummingbird    3  HL  calling from N  shrubby area; one female hovering, defending and on nest, @ 6 ft. above ground, N (photos).


Anna's hummingbird (Calypte anna)  HL  May 1, 2010

                                 © 2010 Callyn Yorke                                                                                                           ©  2010 Callyn Yorke



                                                                                                                                      © 2010 Callyn Yorke



25) Willow Flycatcher   1 HL   flycatching around Willows, W 

26) Pacific Slope Flycatcher   6  HL flycatching from low to medium heights, N and NW .

27) Say's Phoebe  1  HL singing atop mature tree in adjacent yard, S.

28) Cassin's Kingbird  1  HL  top of Willow, NE.

29) Western Kingbird  3  HL  open field, S; individuals calling and chasing.

30) Common Raven  8  HL   flying around the lake and adjacent homesteads;  2 QLO, pair flying over.

31) Barn Swallow  1 HL   flying low over lake.

32) Cliff Swallow  3  HL flying over open field, S.

33) House Wren  1  HL  singing from adjacent homestead, S.

34) Hermit Thrush  1  HL  flushed from beneath shady pines, N.

35) European Starling   2  HL  flying over open field, S.

36) Orange-crowned Warbler  3  HL  in Aleppo Pines, Cottonwoods and Willows; calls.

37) Yellow Warbler  2  (m)  HL   in Willows, and Cottonwoods, N.

38) Common Yellowthroat  6  HL  singing in marsh and riparian areas around lake; calls.

39) Wilson's Warbler  12 HL    foraging in Willow, Cottonwood and Aleppo Pines around the lake; song and calls.

40) Brewer's Sparrow  1  HL  low in dead branches, NW.

41) Savannah Sparrow  1  HL  calls from edge of marsh, W.

42) Lincoln's Sparrow  1  HL low, brushy edge of marsh, NW.

43) Golden-crowned Sparrow  1 HL  atop Rabbit brush in open field, S.

44) White-crowned Sparrow  20 HL   in brushy areas, especially N .

45) Black-headed Grosbeak  1  HL  calls from trees around clubhouse.

46) Red-winged Blackbird  6 (m,f)  HL  marsh and riparian around the lake; calls and song.

47) Tricolored Blackbird  20 (m,f)  HL   small flocks flying over adjacent fields; shifting around in cattails, S and N shore; calls and song (photo).


     Tricolored Blackbird (Agelaius tricolor)  Holiday Lake   May 1, 2010                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                                                                                © 2010 Callyn Yorke


48) Yellow-headed Blackbird   2  (f) HL   landed in marsh, NE.

49) Great-tailed Grackle  10  (m,f)  HL singing in marsh, SW and W.

50) Brewer's Blackbird  1 (m) HL  on S shore.

51) Brown-headed Cowbird  3  HL  calls from trees around the lake.

52) Western Meadowlark   2  QLO  singing in open fields.

53) House Finch  20  HL  singing in Aleppo Pines, Willows and Cottonwoods.

54) Lesser Goldfinch  3  HL  calls and song from Aleppo Pines and Cottonwoods, SE.

55) Lawrence's Goldfinch  6  HL  pairs singing in Aleppo Pines and Cottonwoods; N and S.

56) House Sparrow  10  HL  around clubhouse and adjacent homestead, S.















MARCH 31, 2010    Holiday Lake (34 Species)

                                            Tricolored Blackbird (Agelaius tricolor) Holiday Lake, March 31, 2010


                                                                                                                                                                              © 2010 Callyn Yorke

Weather: Scattered showers, 42 to 45F; WNW winds 10-15 mph.

Time 0740 - 1000 hrs.

Observers: Ethan Yorke and I.

Area Covered:  We drove W on Avenue I from 110th Street West, intersecting HWY 138 (Avenue D) and then to Holiday Lake (HL).  We walked a clockwise route around the entire lake, surveying pines, rabbitbrush scrub, marsh and open water habitats. No other people were present during our survey and conditions were adequate (though cold and windy) for identifying bird vocalizations. From HVL, we drove W onHWY 138 to West Fork Road overlooking the California Aqueduct at the West Quail Lake Outlet (QLO). We scoped the aqueduct for a few minutes, then returned to HWY 138, heading back to Lancaster via 70th Street West and 60th Street West to Avenue L, as the rains steadily increased.


1) Gadwall  4 (m,f) W end of HL; flighty.

2) Mallard  3 (m,f) W end of HL; flighty.

3) Northern Shoveler  1 (m) HL   "           ".

4) Cinnamon Teal  3 (m) HL   "          ".

5) Bufflehead   10 (m,f)   QLO  diving.

6) Common Goldeneye  1 (f)  QLO.

7) Ruddy Duck   3 (m,f) HVL; m in alt. plumage.

8) Pied-billed Grebe  1 (ad) QLO.

9) Black-crowned Night Heron  5 (ad, imm) HL, flushed from W side.

10) Great Egret  1  HL  "           ".

11) Northern Harrier   1   HWY 138 near 200th St West,  S hillsides, flying low.

12) Red-tailed Hawk  2 (ad)   HL  pair on utility pole.

13) Virginia Rail 2 (?) HL  calls from S marsh.

14) American Coot   3  QLO;  5  HL.

15) Killdeer  1  HL  calls.

16) Eurasian Collared Dove  2  HL   S, adjacent yard.

17) Northern Flicker  1  HL  in Cottonwood.

18) Black Phoebe  1  HL  N side.

19) Barn Swallow  1 Ave. I and 120th Street West, flying low.

20) Common Raven   25  ubiquitous.

21) Marsh Wren  2  HL   S side, calls.

22) European Starling  6  HL   S adjacent yard.

23) Common Yellowthroat   5  HL  calls from N and S marsh.

24) Yellow-rumped Warbler  2  HL  in pines, S.

25) Ruby-crowned Kinglet  1  HL  in pines, S.

26) Sage Sparrow  1  top of Joshua Tree in Ripley Desert Woodland, Ave. I.

27) Savannah Sparrow   6  flying across Ave I at about  150th St. West.

28) White-crowned Sparrow   4  flying across Ave. I "          '.

29) Red-winged Blackbird  1 (m) HL. singing in cattails, S.

30) Tricolored Blackbird   30 (m,f) HL. One flock of about 20 in S yards; others setting up territories in dead cattails, S (photo).

31) Brewer's Blackbird   10 (m,f)   HWY 138, 240th St. W, along roadway.

32) Western Meadowlark   4  Ave. I  between 120th and 160th St. West

33) House Finch  2  HL around clubhouse.

34) House Sparrow  5  HL  around clubhouse.





MARCH 15, 2010  Holiday Lake  (46 Species)

Weather:  Fair, 41F to 57F; winds NNW 0-15 mph.

Time:  0800-1106 hrs.

Areas Covered: I drove W on Avenue I (Lancaster Rd.) , turning W on HWY 138 to my first stop at   1) Quail Lake Outlet from Westfork Rd. overlook (QLO). I Scoped the aqueduct from the road next to the fenced and gated slope S of the California Aqueduct. Winds and waters were calm during the survey (0806-0815 hrs.). I Drove across HWY 138 to the parking area adjacent to     2) West Quail Lake (WQL). I Walked along the S shoreline and roadway, surveying marsh, riparian, shoreline and adjacent chaparral. A relatively low water level left exposed a sandbars and mudflats. Continued with scope, binocular and DSLR camera to the smaller East Quail Lake (EQL), returning the same route. Winds steadily increased to 15 mph, beginning at about 0900 hrs. Two or three fishermen were on the S shoreline. Conditions were fair to poor for detecting bird vocalizations (0817- 1010 hrs.). I Drove to Holiday Lake (HL) and parked next to the clubhouse. I surveyed the lake for a few minutes with a binocular, then drove slowly around the perimeter, counter-clockwise. One vehicle left the lake from the clubhouse, otherwise I was alone during the survey (1030-1050 hrs.). Very few birds were found in and around the lake during the survey. I returned to Lancaster via HWY 138 and 110th Street West, turning E on Avenue J.

                                                                                  Horned Lark (Eremophila alpestris) at Quail Lake Outlet, CA  March 15, 2010


                                                                                                                                                                                                         © 2010 Callyn Yorke



1) Gadwall   1 (m)  W end of HL.

2) Mallard   25 (m,f)    WQL  along shore and near outlet, W; 2 (m,f) HL  resting in marsh.

3) Lesser Scaup   2 (m)   QLO;  23 (m,f)   WQL  open water, diving.

4) Greater Scaup  6 (m,f) WQL  open water, near shore; diving.

5) Bufflehead   20 (m,f)   QLO;   120 (m,f)   WQL;  resting, swimming, diving.

6) Common Goldeneye     16 (m,f) WQL, diving, swimming and flying.

7) Common Merganser   48 (ff, 1 m)  WQL,  large flock (43 ff's 1 m) swimming E in open water; 4 (f) resting on shore of N island.

8) Red-breasted Merganser  1 (f) WQL, swimming W fast; diving near N shore and outlet.

9) Ruddy Duck   1  QLO;  60  WQL and EQL;  about 30% in breeding plumage; most resting in open water.

10) Pacific Loon  1  WQL  diving with nearby CMLN; good comparisons of the two species' bill, head and neck in basic, non-breeding plumage.

11) Common Loon  5  WQL  diving repeatedly, staying submerged 2-3 minutes, in a loose group, SW. All in basic, non-breeding plumage.

12) Pied-billed Grebe  1  QLO;  4  WQL, near north shore.

13) Horned Grebe  2   WQL   swimming along N shore.

14) Eared Grebe   40 (est.)  WQL  open water; two engaged in "walking,  alternate head turning" courtship dance.

15) Western Grebe   75  WQL  mostly in an aggregation near N shore;  scattered in open water elsewhere; calls.

16) Clark's Grebe  4  WQL  mixed in with WSGR, near N shore.

17) American White Pelican  13 (several in breeding plumage with bill knobs) WQL, resting on N sandbar (photo).

White Pelicans and Double-crested Cormorants at Quail Lake, March 15, 2010.                                               © 2010 Callyn Yorke

18) Double-crested Cormorant   18 (ad, imm)    WQL  resting on sandbar and shoreline; flying low across lake; diving, N.

19) Great Blue Heron  1 HL,   flushed from marsh, N.

20) Black-crowned Night Heron  2 (ad, imm)   WQL, on N shore;  1 (ad) HL, N edge of marsh.

21) Northern Harrier  1 (f)  QLO flushed from perch on  short post at top of West Fork Rd.

22) Red-tailed Hawk   3 (ad)   HWY 138 W, on utility poles;  1 (ad) HL gaining altitude over adjacent field.

23) American Kestrel   2  Ave. I  W, on utility poles.

24) American Coot   2  QLO;   30  WQL, EQL  mostly around margins of lake; 4  HL.

25) Killdeer   10  WQL  along shore and on mudflats; calls.

26) Spotted Sandpiper   3   WQL    foraging along  W and N shore.

27) Lesser Yellowlegs   1  QLO  at water's edge; foraging.

28) Eurasian Collared Dove   1   Ave. I  farmyard; flew up to utility line.

29) Mourning Dove  1  HL,  flying S across lake.

30) Black Phoebe  1  HL,  NE riparian-marsh.

31) Common Raven   15   WQL;  6 HL, adjacent homesteads;  20   Ave. I; HWY 138 alfalfa fields.

32) Horned Lark  2  QLO  singing from hillside (photo).

33) Tree Swallow   1  WQL  low over water, N.

34) Marsh Wren   4  WQL, calls and song from S marsh.

35) California Thrasher   1  EQL   singing in Rabbitbrush scrub near homestead, SE.

36) European Starling  25  Ave I  farmyards.

37) American Pipit  4  WQL  S shore; calls and flying.

38) Common Yellowthroat   2  WQL calls from marsh, W.

39) Lark Sparrow   6  WQL   small flock in adjacent roadside chaparral; calls.

40) Song Sparrow   12  WQL  riparian and marsh; calls and song; foraging on mudflats.

41) White-crowned Sparrow  2  QLO brushy roadside;  6  WQL  brushy edge of marsh;  10 HL.

42) Red-winged Blackbird  25  WQL  singing in trees and marsh, S.

43) Brewer's Blackbird   20  WQL roadside and riparian; calls and song; 30  Ave. I and HWY 138 roadsides.

44) Great-tailed Grackle   10 (m,f)   WQL  flying, calls, song; shoreline, riparian and marsh.  2  HL.

45) House Finch   3 QLO  fly, calls;  4  WQL  riparian, calls;  2  HL, riparian, calls.

46) Lesser Goldfinch  1  WQL  fly, calls, S riparian.
















January 9, 2010   Elizabeth Lake Rd. , Lancaster Rd., Quail Lake,  Holiday Lake   (55 Species)

Weather:  Partly cloudy. 43 to 55F.  Winds ENE 5-7 mph. Lake becoming choppy with increasing winds.

Time: 0750-0846 hrs.(QLO); 0900-1100 hrs. (QL); 1145-1300 hrs. (HVL). 0710-0750; 1300-1350 (In transit (T): Elizabeth -Lake Rd. - Hughes Lake Rd.- Three Pts. Rd.- HWY 138-Lancaster Rd.- 110th Street West- Elizabeth Lake Rd.).

Observers: Ethan Yorke and I.

Area Covered:  1) Drove directly from Green Valley to the Quail Lake Outlet on West Fork Rd.. Surveyed Calif. Aqueduct outlet section (QLO)using binoculars, 35-55x scope and two Nikon digital cameras. Made a few photos from the hill overlooking the aqueduct first using a Nikon Coolpix P5100 digiscope attachment (pretty much worthless) then a Nikon D3X with 80-400 VR AF camera (see photo below).   2) Parked across HWY 138 in the west Quail Lake parking area (WQL) and walked about 1.2 miles east along the shoreline pathway to the eastern section of Quail Lake (QLE). Returned to the parking area along the same route. Surveyed open water, riparian and surrounding chaparral-covered hillsides. Quail Lake had a high water level with most of the shoreline vegetation innundated. A few fishermen were on the S and N shore. Gun shots were heard in the distance.

3) Drove to Holiday Lake (HL) and parked at the clubhouse. Walked counter-clockwise around the entire lake, surveying open water, riparian, rabbitbrush scrub, pines, and ruderal habitats. No other people at the lake during our survey.


1) Canada Goose   95 ( highly variable sizes ) HL  Geese spread over almost the entire lake; wary but didn't flush during my survey.

2) Mallard  25 (m,f)   WQL  many on shore of N-central island.

3) Gadwall   4 (m,f) HL  W end along edges.

4) American Wigeon 4 (m,f)   WQL  N-central island.

5) Green-winged Teal  10 (m,f)   HL  west end; flighty.

6) Greater Scaup   4  QLO  with LSCP.

7) Lesser Scaup   30 QLO diving ;  250 (m,f)   WQL; EQL.

8) Bufflehead  10 (m,f)  QLO diving; 120  (m,f) WQL; EQL.

9) White-winged Scoter (Melanitta fusca)    1 (imm. m)  QLO  swimming and diving amongst LSCP and BFH (see photo below).


                                             ©  2010 Callyn Yorke                                                              


10) Common Goldeneye   10 (m,f) QLO;  30 (m,f)   WQL;  15 (m,f) EQL  males doing head-tossing courtship displays.

11) Ruddy Duck    5 (m,f)    QLO;  70 (m,f)   WQL.

12) California Quail    20   HL  brushy border of lake, NE.

13) Common Loon   2   WQL pair together, preening.

14) Red-throated Loon WQL    diving ( > 5 minutes submerged ) and preening; scoped at  about 200 yards (too distant for a usable photo) near N-central island: relatively small size, c.f. CMLN and nearby WSGR; pale overall, white face, thin bill; head angled slightly upward; conspicuous speckling on darker back; similar to an individual RDTL I photographed a few days ago at Cabrillo Beach, L.A. County.

15) Pied-billed Grebe   15  WQL; 3 EQL;  2  HL.

16) Eared Grebe  20  WQL   open water; diving.

17) Western Grebe  30 WQL, resting, preening.

18) Clark's Grebe  2  WQL, near N-central shore.

19) Double-crested Cormorant   15 WQL  on and around N-central island.

20) Great Blue Heron  1  WQL  flushed from S shore; 1 HL  E.

21) Black-crowned Night Heron  12  (ad, imm)  HL  fairly evenly spaced in cattails at N edge of lake; two flying over; calls.

22) Red-tailed Hawk   6 (ad, imm)    T  on utility poles adjacent to open fields.

23) Ferruginous Hawk   3  (ad)  T  on utility poles; one at NEC of 120th Street West and Ave. I, adjacent to burrowing owl location (see Dec. 9 notes below); allowed close approach of our vehicle. Another individual near location where I photographed a FRHK, Nov. 2, 2009 (see notes below) on the S side of Lancaster Rd. about 1 mile W of Munz Ranch Road.

24) American Kestrel   2  on utility poles adjacent to open fields.

25) Northern Harrier   1 WQL  flying and landing on N-central island;  1 EQL in short willow.

26) American Coot   3  QLO;  200  ubiquitous   WQL, EQL.

27) Sora   1  HL    loud calls from W (unseen).

28) Long-billed Curlew  1  T  field on W side of 110th Street West, between Avenues. J and K.

29) Mourning Dove  2  HL  flying NW.

30) Eurasian Collared Dove  1  HL   flying NW toward mobile home with evergreen trees in yard.

31) Anna's Hummingbird   1 (imm. m) HL  around clubhouse shrubs ; calls.

32) Downy Woodpecker  1 (m)  HL  working small branches on willows, N side; flying quickly between trees; calls.

33) Northern Flicker   1  HL   calls (unseen).

34) Black Phoebe  1  HL   near clubhouse; calls.

35) Common Raven   20  WQL   foraging in trash and smoldering  camp fire left by fishemen on S shore;  10  HVL  flying; calls.

36) American Crow  1  QLO   on aqueduct embankment.

37) European Starling  20  T   utility lines and farm yards.

38) Bewick's Wren  1 HL   in tree next to clubhouse; scold calls.

39) Marsh Wren  3 WQL  cattails along S shore; calls.

40) Ruby-crowned Kinglet  1  HL   foraging in pines on N side.

41) California Thrasher  1   WQL  calls from adjacent chaparral across HWy 138.

42) Yellow-rumped Warbler   1  HL  in pines, SWC, calls.

43) Common Yellowthroat    1  WQL   W shore;  2  HVL  S and SW shore; calls.

44) Savannah Sparrow  2  QLO  brushy roadside area; calls.

45) White-crowned Sparrow   8  WQL in deciduous trees at W end; calls and song.

46) Song Sparrow     3  WQL   S shore marsh and brushy border;  2  HL; calls.

47) Dark-eyed Junco  10  HL   gravel parking area near pines; calls.

48) American Goldfinch   20   HL   cohesive flock arrived together from E and began drinking from the lake, SE; calls.

49) House Finch  15  WQL  trees and brushy areas along shoreline; calls and song.

50) Red-winged Blackbird   15 (m,f)    WQL   trees and cattails along S shore; calls and song.

51) Tricolored Blackbird  2 (f)  HL  cattails, E; calls.

52) Brewer's Blackbird   8  (m,f)   WQL   W parking lot; calls.

53) Great-tailed Grackle   3  (m,f)  WQL   "                ".

54) Western Meadowlark   1   HL   calling, flitting tail in willow, E.

55) House Sparrow   20   HL   adjacent mobile home yard with trees, N ; calls.





December 15, 2009  Quail Lake and Holiday Lake  (47 Species)

Snow, Ross' and Canada Geese at Holiday Lake, December 15, 2009.                                         © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke

Weather: Overcast; 44F; winds NE 5-20 mph.

Time:   1030 - 1230 hrs. (QL); 1300-1330 hrs. (HVL).

Area Covered:  (1) Quail Lake (QL): I walked along the southern fence line path about 1.4 mi. E ( including about 0.3 mi. on the exposed concrete shore) to the levee separating the main (W) lake from the smaller (E) one; returning along the fence line walkway. Using a 25-55x scope, 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera, I surveyed open water, N and S shorelines, riparian vegetation and ruderal areas bordering the parking lot and roadways. There were no other people on the south side of the lake during my survey; one fisherman was on the northeast shore. Most waterbirds flushed from the shoreline area when I approached to within about 100 feet. (2) Holiday Lake (HL): I walked along the southern roadway and back to the clubhouse, using a 10x42 binocular and DSLR camera. Geese in the lake were extremely nervous and took flight as I approached to within 300 feet. No other people were around the lake durning my survey. The remainder of the lake perimeter was surveyed visually from the south side.


1) Canada Goose   60 (est.) HL: most crowded at the E end of lake when I arrived; some taking flight but returning to W end.

2) Snow Goose   12  HL:  as above; all taking flight and returning to W side (see above photo)..

3) Ross' Goose  4  HL:  as above; all taking flight and returning to W side (see above photo).

4) Mallard   10 (m,f) QL;   12 (m,f) HL : most around edges of lake.

5) Gadwall   2 (m) HL, NW side.

6)  American Wigeon  3 (m,f)    QL  E.

7) Northern Shoveler  4 (m,f) HL, W side.

8) Green-winged Teal  5 (m,f)   QL; 4 (m,f) HL: around southern edge and dabbling in mud (QL).

9) Greater Scaup   6 (m,f)   QL, W side. staying apart from LS.

10) Lesser Scaup  60 (m,f)    QL, around the edges and in open water; some diving.

11) Bufflehead  80 (m,f)  QL  ubiquitous.

12) Common Merganser   45 (90% m's)   QL, resting on N shore; swimming near shore.

13) Hooded Merganser  5 (1 m, 4 f); QL  E lake; m raising crest.

14) Common Goldeneye   30 (m,f) QL, ubiquitous; E  lake males displaying with head-throws.

15) Ruddy Duck  70 (m,f)   QL; 10 (m,f) HL: ubiquitous.

16) Common Loon   2 QL, peering and diving, E-central.

17) Pied-billed Grebe   4 QL  W (diving); SE.

18) Eared Grebe  15  QL   ubiquitous.

19) Western Grebe   20  QL, most in N-central area, close to shore.

20) Clark's Grebe 6  QL,  N side, close to tules; resting, preening.

21) Double-crested Cormorant   12 (ad, imm)  QL, on N shore; flying low.

22) Great Blue Heron 3 QL; 1 HL. shorelines.

23) Snowy Egret  1  QL  E lake edge.

24) Black-crowned Night Heron  10 (ad, imm) (ad, imm)   QL;   3 HL, edge of tules.

25) Northern Harrier   1 (f) QL, working the S shore.

26) Red-tailed Hawk   3    HWY 138 between QL and HVL, on utility poles.

27) Red-Shouldered Hawk   1   QL    SW, calls (unseen)

28) Sora   1  HL, calls, S shore.

29) American Coot  100 (est.) QL;  10 HL. ubiquitous around edges.

30) Killdeer   5  QL  south shore mudflats; calls.

31) California Gull   3  QL   resting on lake; fly.

32) Mourning Dove   2  HL, E end, fly.

33) Hairy Woodpecker   1  HL, calls, S (unseen).

34) Common Raven    10  QL;  16  HL, fly, calls.

35) Oak Titmouse    1  QL, near homestead across HWY 138; calls.

36) Mountain Chickadee   2 QL   calls from trees in marsh, SW.

37) Marsh Wren   2  QL,  calls from cattails, S.

38) American Pipit   1  QL  calls from S shore.

39) Yellow-rumped Warbler    15 QL;  2 HL.  Foraging on mudflats and in marsh(QL).

40) Common Yellowthroat   1  QL,  calls from SW marsh.

41) Red-winged Blackbird  5 (m,f)   QL shoreline; fly, calls.

42) Brewer's Blackbird  20  QL, W and S shoreline.

43) Song Sparrow   10 QL   marsh and mudflats, S; calls.

44) White-crowned Sparrow    20   QL;  10 HL, ubiquitous in brushy areas; call and song.

45) Dark-eyed Junco  6   HL, beneath pines; calls.

46) House Finch  10  QL;  5 HL, brushy areas; calls.

47) American Goldfinch   5   HL, calls from SE.



    December 9, 2009  Western Antelope Valley, Quail Lake Outlet and Holiday Valley Lake (50 Species)


Canada Geese (Branta canadensis) at Holiday Lake, Dec. 9, 2009.                                                © 2009   Callyn D. Yorke  

Weather: Fair,  27 to 33F; winds NNE 5-7 mph. Patches of snow on the ground.

Time: (QLO) 0840 -0923 hrs.; (HVL) 0953-1045 hrs.; Avenue I (in transist: 0800-0820; 1045-1145 hrs).

Area Covered: (1) Avenue I West (Lancaster Rd.) to HWY 138, to the Quail Lake outlet of the California Aqueduct (QLO). Parked on hilltop along West Fork Rd. overlooking the aqueduct outlet, surrounding hillsides and the western portion of Quail Lake. Scoped the outlet and part of Quail Lake. (2) Walked counter-clockwise around Holiday Lake (HL) using a 10x40 binocular.All of the lake surface was frozen, except the western edge, where most of the waterbirds were crowded near the cattails. (3) Returned to Lancaster the same route (Avenue I) stopping to observe and photograph burrowing owls (see photo below) in a field at the southeast corner of 120th Street West and Avenue I. Birds of prey seen along the route (i.e. on utility poles). Survey Total = 50 species.

                          Burrowing Owls (Athene cunicularia) at the SEC of Avenue I and 120th Street West, Antelope Valley, CA  ©  2009 Callyn Yorke          


                                        BIRDS NOTED

1) Canada Goose 12 (QL) flew into N cove;  35 HL (variable sizes: 25-35 inches BL); standing on ice (see photo below), then took flight.

2) American Wigeon 2 (m,f) west HL.

3) Mallard  30  (m,f) west HL; flighty.

4) Northern Shoveler  5 (m,f) west HL.

5) Green-winged Teal  4 (m,f) west HL.

5) Greater Scaup  5 (m,f)  QLO  diving.

7) Lesser Scaup  20 (m,f) QLO  tight flock, diving.

8) Bufflehead 20 (m,f)  QLO, diving.

9) Common Goldeneye  10 QLO, mixed in with LS, BH and RD.

10) White-winged Scoter  1 (f) QLO  diving with LS; white marks on head and large bill seen clearly with scope at about 200 yards; too far for a satisfactory photo. WWS had recently (Nov.-Dec) been reported at this location.

11) Ruddy Duck  3 (m,f)   QLO   with LS and GE.

12) California Quail  20  HL  flushed from brushy areas, E and N.

13) Western Grebe  1  QLO  preening. '

14) Double-crested Cormorant    6  QL  resting on island.

15) Great Blue Heron  1  HL  flushed from edge of N shore cattails.

16) Black-crowned Night Heron   10 (ad, imm)   HL conspicuous along edge of cattails and ice.

17) Osprey   1  QL, on S shore.

18) Northern Harrier  1 (f) flying low over field N of Ave. I and Calif. Aqueduct (200th St. West)

19) Cooper's Hawk   1 (ad)   perched on utility pole   Ave I and Calif. Aqueduct.

20) Red-tailed Hawk   10  (ad, imm; light and medium morphs.) utility poles, Avenue I.

21) Ferruginous Hawk  2  (ad, imm) utililty poles, Avenue I, (180th St. West and 210th St. West).

22) American Kestrel    10   utility poles along Ave. I.

23) Sora  1   HL  S shore   calls (unseen).

24) American Coot   1   QLO;  20  HL, west edge.

25) Wilson's Snipe   3  HL  in flight, N shore; calls.

26) California Gull   4  QL, flying over lake.

27) Mourning Dove   25  HL, flushed from NE corner and N side.

28) Burrowing Owl   2 (ad, imm) close together in large, crater-like burrow (former Calif. ground squirrel burrow); allowed close approach with vehicle; eventually lowered head so that only the eyes could be seen; turning head frequently when horned larks flew and called (see above photo). Several other burrows in this short-grass field; California ground squirrels active here.

29) Common Raven    20 in Aleppo pines and fields adjacent to  HL;  30 Ave. I; ubiquitous; many in fields; some on roadside utility poles..

30) Horned Lark   20   Ave. I, flying over fields; calls.

31) Oak Titmouse   2  HL, in Aleppo pines, N side; attracted to pshing.

32) White-breasted Nuthatch   1 HL in Aleppo pines, N side with OT and YRW; attracted to pshing (see photo below).

33) Bewick's Wren   1  HL in Aleppo pines, N side MSF with OT, YRW, WBN; attracted to pshing.

34) Marsh Wren  1   HL, calls from cattails SW side.

35) Mountain Bluebird  2 (f)   Ave. I near 120th Street West; low in field.

36) European Starling   10   Ave. I near 200th Street West.

37) American Pipit  2  HL   calls (unseen).

38) Yellow-rumped Warbler (Audubon's)    3  HL  in pines, MSF, N side; calls.

39) Common Yellowthroat   1(m) HL N side cattails; calls.

40) Lark Sparrow   30   Ave. I  flying across road into fields with trees.

41) Savannah Sparrow    2  QLO   in hillside grassland; calls.

42)  Song Sparrow    2   HL   calls from cattails and brushy border of lake.

43) White-crowned Sparrow    150    QLO, HL, Ave. I; ubiquitous in brushy areas.

44) Dark-eyed Junco   12   HL  beneath pines, S and SW.

45) Red-winged Blackbird    6 (m,f)   QLO  roadside brush and edge of aqueduct.

46) Tricolored Blackbird  10 (m,f) QLO  edge of aqueduct.

47) Western Meadowlark   20   Ave. I,  flying low over fields.

48) Brewer's Blackbird    5  QLO  roadside brushy areas with RWB.

49) House Finch   10  HL  in pines and willows; 100  Ave. I roadside trees and shrubs.

50) House Sparrow   3  HL  in cattails near clubhouse.

              White-breasted Nuthatch (Sitta carolinensis) at Holiday Lake.        ©  2009  Callyn D. Yorke                                             




   November 9, 2009 Western Antelope Valley, Quail Lake (51 Species)

Weather: Fair, 47 to 62F; winds N 2-5 mph.

Time: 0640-1030 hrs.

Area covered: Drove W on Avenue I (Lancaster Rd.), stopping once to photograph a Golden Eagle on the north side of Avenue I near 120th Street West, then onward to HWY 138 and W to West Fork Rd. at W end of Quail Lake at the California Aqueduct Outlet (QLO). Scoped the aqueduct outlet and adjacent foothills (0735-0751 hrs.). Crossed HWY 138 and parked in lot at W end of Quail Lake. Walked along the S fence line about 1.5 miles to the levee separating the smaller E lake (QLE) section (bordered on the S, E and N sides by tules and riparian vegetation) from the larger W portion of Quail Lake (QLW). Carried scope, binocular and camera. Surveyed open water, shoreline, riparian and adjacent hillside chaparral and grassland. Only about 3 fishermen on the lake during the survey in the SE area of QLW. Walking at a fairly brisk pace on the return trip, with a couple of brief stops to scope the lake, I made it back to the car in 38 minutes. A bicycle would be a good alternative to walking for bird surveys of Quail Lake. Birdlife was dispersed throughout the lake (QLW and QLE), with large rafts of Scaup, Bufflehead and Ruddy Duck in the central portion of QLW. The water level of the lake was high enough to innundate most of the peripheral marsh and riparian areas.

Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) on utility pole near Avenue I and 120th St. West, Antelope Valley, CA.
Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) on utility pole near Avenue I and 120th St. West, Antelope Valley, CA.

© 2009 Callyn D. Yorke

Birds Noted

1) Mallard   15 (m,f)   QLW, near s shore in flooded tules; flighty.

2) Ring-necked Duck (m,f)   5 QLW, NE side with Scaup.

3) Lesser Scaup  250 (m,f) (QLW); 20 (QLE), central and NE, diving, swimming in large rafts of 60-80 ducks.

4) Greater Scaup  35 (m,f) QLW, 25 on southwest end; 10 on eastern side; staying close to same species with LS nearby. Green head sheen and large size noted.

5) Bufflehead  25 QLO, diving in tight raft; 150 QLW; 30 QLE; diving, open water and edge of lake. Males flying short distances, entering water, head and breast up.

6) Hooded Merganser  1 (f) QLW, preening in group of Scaup, S-central.

7) Common Merganser  2 (f) QLW open water, W.

8) Common Goldeneye 1 (m) QLW, open water, S-central (see photo below).

9) Ruddy Duck  120  QLW, QLE, open water and edge.

10) California Quail  15 QLO, going down cautiously to drink from the S side of the aqueduct.

11) Common Loon  3 QLW,  pair diving, open water and N edge near tules.

12) Pied-billed Grebe  10 QLW, QLE, diving, open water and near shore.

13) Eared Grebe  9  QLW, open water and near shore; preening; one following HG.

14) Horned Grebe 7 QLW, flock of 5 staying close, S-central, open water.

15) Western Grebe  25  QLW, QLE, open water and near shore; pair courting: one with dried tule in beak; head turning dance, E side; calls.

16) Clark's Grebe  10  QLW, QLE , open water; preening, sleeping; calls.

17) Double-crested Cormorant  4 QLO, diving in strong current; 5 swimming, flying, open water and near shore, E.

18) Great Blue Heron 1 QLO  standing on edge of concrete embankment.

19) Black-crowned Night Heron  4 (3 imm)   QLE, flushed from tules to E edge of lake; calls.

20) Northern Harrier  2 (f) QLO  flushed from short post as I drove around hillside overlooking aqueduct; QLE - flushed from W marsh, flew to N hillside area.

21) Cooper's Hawk  1 HWY 138, flew into Neenach residential area.

22) Red-shouldered Hawk  1 QLW, perched on short post on S hillside overlooking the lake; flew S.

23) Red-tailed Hawk   11 110th Street West and Ave. I  to Quail Lake, on utility poles (90 % light - medium morphs); QLE, in trees, E side of lake.

24) Ferruginous Hawk  1   170th Street West and Ave I, on utility pole.

25) Golden Eagle  1 (molting primaries) Avenue I near 120th Street West on utility pole (see photo above); flew off shortly after I approached in the vehicle.

26) American Kestrel  1  (f) 130 Street West and HWY 138; hovering over open field.

27) Merlin  1  Avenue I near 170th Street West, on utility pole adjacent to open field.

28) American Coot   80 QLW, 30 QLE, open water and near shore.

29) Killdeer  1  QLO, calls (unseen).

30) Wilson's Snipe  3 QLW flushed from marsh on S side (twice) flight calls; QLE, flushed from marsh, S side; flight calls.

31) California Gull   4  QLW, resting on open water.

32) Northern Flicker  1 QLE, calls (unseen).

33) Common Raven   25, ubiquitous; one with dead rodent, S side of QLW.

34) Cedar Waxwing 13  flying S across Ave. I around 200th Street West.

35) Rock Wren  1 QLE, on rocks along levee; calls.

36) Marsh Wren  4 QLW  marsh and riparian edge, S; calls.

37) Ruby-crowned Kinglet   1 QLW,  S flooded riparian area; calls.

38) American Pipit  1  QLE, calls (unseen).

39) Horned Lark   10  Avenue I between 110th Street West and HWY 138.

40) Yellow-rumped Warbler  2  QLW, riparian; calls.

41) Common Yellowthroat  3   QLW, riparian and marsh; calls.

42) Lark Sparrow   20  Avenue I between 150th Street West and HWY 138; flocks crossing road into open fields.

43) Savannah Sparrow   2 QLO, brushy hillsides, calls; 5 QLW, edge of riparian and shrubland; calls.

44) Lincoln's Sparrow  3  QLW, edge of marsh and riparian; calls.

45) Song Sparrow  5  QLW, innundated marsh and riparian, S; calls.

46) White-crowned Sparrow  30  QLO, QLW, QLE, brushy areas everywhere; calls.

47) House Finch  5 (m,f)   QLW  flew out of riparian, W.

48) Red-winged Blackbird   15 (m,f)   QLW, perched in snag and in tules; fly, calls.

49) Brewer's Blackbird   20 (m,f)    QLW, roadside walkway, parking area and riparian edge, calls.

50) Great-tailed grackle   8 (m,f)   QLW, riparian, flying W; calls.

51) Western Meadowlark  1 QLW, drinking on NE shore.

Common Goldeneye (Bucephala clangula) on Quail Lake, CA
Common Goldeneye (Bucephala clangula) on Quail Lake, CA

©  2009 Callyn D. Yorke                  

November 2, 2009 Western Antelope Valley, Quail Lake Outlet and Holiday Lake (44 Species)

Weather: Fair, 56-59F; NW winds 0-5 mph.        

Time: 0645-1020 hrs.

Area Covered:  (1) Avenue I West (Lancaster Road: LR) from 110th Street West to intersection with HWY 138. Stopped once along West Avenue I (Lancaster Rd.) at about 2 miles E of Antelope Poppy Reserve (EPR), to photograph a Ferruginous Hawk (see photo below). (2) Stopped at 205th Street West and Lancaster Rd. at the California Aqueduct (CA) for about 15 minutes, using a 10x40 binocular and 35-55x scope. (3) Continued to Holiday Lake (HL) and walked around the lake clockwise, twice, surveying in the usual manner with a 10x40 binocular (see previous surveys described below). No other people were at HVL during the survey.(4) Continued on HWY 138 to the west end of Quail Lake, taking Westfork Rd.(private) southward and then west uphill overlooking the Quail Lake outlet to the California Aqueduct (QLO) and scoped the aqueduct outlet (photo) and western section of Quail Lake. (5) Returned the same route via HWY 138 to Lancaster Road and back to Antelope Valley College for my 1100 Biology Lab class. During the outgoing and return trip, I kept count of the number of birds of prey seen on power poles and/or flying near the roadways.

Ferruginous Hawk  on a high voltage power pole located on Lancaster Rd.about 2 miles E of the AV Poppy Reserve.  © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke
Ferruginous Hawk on a high voltage power pole located on Lancaster Rd.about 2 miles E of the AV Poppy Reserve. © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke


The West Quail Lake Outlet (QLO) to the California Aqueduct, viewing northeast from Westfork Rd.   © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke

The West Quail Lake Outlet (QLO) to the California Aqueduct, viewing northeast from Westfork Rd. © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke

Birds Noted

1) Canada Goose 6 HL, open water.

2) Mallard  2 (m,f) in aqueduct near HL.

3) Northern Shoveler  3 HL, west end.

4) Lesser Scaup 5 (m,f) QLO, swimming with Bufflehead.

5) Bufflehead  40 (m,f) QLO, diving.

6) California Quail   3 HL, flushed from S shore.

7) Pied-billed Grebe 3 HL, near tules, SW.

8) Double-crested Cormorant  1 QL, flying E.

9) Great Blue Heron  1 HL, flying S across lake.

10) Black-crowned Night Heron  2 HL (ad, imm), edge of tules, N.

11) Cooper's Hawk  1(imm) CA; 1 (imm) HL - flying low across lake.

12) Buteo sp. 1(imm) HVL, flushed from W side; tail showed narrow, even banding, suggesting RSH (not seen well).

13) Red-tailed Hawk  11, HWY 138, W of 110th St. West; perched on cross-piece of power poles; 80% medium to light phase.

14) Ferruginous Hawk 1 EPR about 2 miles E of entrance to AV Poppy Reserve on LR; perched on cross-piece of high voltage power pole (photo).

15) Golden Eagle 1 (imm?) flying NE slowly, rather laboriously, about 20 feet off the ground, above a ridge-line of low hills on S side of HWY 138 near Neenach.

16) Prairie Falcon  1 flying fast, N across HWY 138 over a cattle pasture near 300th Street West.

17) Sora  1 HL, called once, W side.

18) American Coot  20 HL, W close to tules and open water.

19) Killdeer  1 QLO, calls (unseen).

20) Mourning Dove  8 HL, flushed from pines and cottonwoods, SE.

21) Northern Flicker  1 HL, calls (unseen).

22) Woodpecker (Picoides sp.) 1 HL, flying N.

23) Common Raven  15 HL, around pines near clubhouse and W side; several call types given, including deep clicks and variable pitched sqawks.

24) Horned Lark  5 LR; 2 HL, calls.

25) Tree Swallow  3  HL, 20-60 ft over lake, flying E.

26) Rough-winged Swallow  1 HL   50 ft. with TS., flying E.

27) Bewick's Wren  1 HL foraging 20-30 ft. in dry pine, W.

28) American Robin 7 HL, flock flying E, then returning to W side trees; calls.

29) American Pipit  1 CA; 2 HL, flying E, calls.

30) Ruby-crowned Kinglet  3  HL, in pines and deciduous trees; calls.

31) Yellow-rumped Warbler  3 CA; 10 HL; foraging on ground and in trees; calls.

32) Common Yellowthroat   2 HL, calls from N and S shore.

33) Lark Sparrow  20 CA;  5 HL, in trees and on ground; drinking and bathing at edge of aqueduct.

34) Savannah Sparrow  2 CA; 10 (ad, imm) HL, edge of water, brushy areas and in tules; calls

35) Song Sparrow   2 HL, edge of tules and in cottonwood, S; calls.

36) Vesper Sparrow  1 HL, in tules N side.

37) White-crowned Sparrow  5 CA; 20 (est.) HL. ubiquitous; calls and song.

38) Dark-eyed Junco  6 HL, under pines S; calls.

39) Red-winged Blackbird   30 (est.) HL, in tules and trees; calls; flying around lake.

40) Brewer's Blackbird  3 HL, flying W over lake.

41) Western Meadowlark  1 HL, in cottonwood, W.

42) House Finch  4 CA; 7 HL, call, flying around and landing in trees.

43) American Goldfinch   30 HL, drinking S, flock in cottonwood; flying together around lake; calls.

44) House Sparrow 4 HL, around clubhouse.

October 31, 2009 Western Antelope Valley, Quail Lake and Holiday Lake (56 Species)

Weather: Fair, 45-65F; NE winds 5-15 mph, increasing at 1030 hrs.

Time: 0830-0915 hrs. (Margalo Drive, Neenach); 0930-1020 hrs. (West Quail Lake and Aqueduct Outlet); 1040-1220 hrs. (Holiday Valley Lake).

Observers: Dan Byrne and I.

Area Covered(1) Margalo Drive, Neenach (MDN): Driving from Green Valley to 110th Street West to West Avenue I, to the intersection of HWY 138, we turned north on Margalo Drive, Neenach (about .25 mi. E of 288th Street West and HWY 138) and parked at the end of a a rutted, unpaved road through a rural neighborhood.  Fenced yards with livestock, corrals, watered lawns, gardens and tall trees ( e.g. Aleppo Pine, Arizona Cypress and Poplar) line the roadways. We walked around the quiet neighborhood, surveying trees, yards and open fields to the N (Rabbitbrush scrub), using 10x40 and 7x35 binoculars and a DSLR camera. A flock of Eurasian Collared Doves at the intersection of Margalo Drive and HWY 138 initially drew our attention to this area. (2) Proceeded W to a private road on the south side of HWY 138 opposite the W parking lot for Quail Lake.

At the HWY 138 junction of Westfork Rd. (unpaved), we drove up to a hillside overlooking a section (Quail Lake Outlet: QLO)of the California Aqueduct, the western portion of Quail Lake and surrounding foothills (QL). NE winds increased to about 15 mph, turning the surface of Quail Lake into white-caps. We chose to stay on the hilltop overlook and scope (35-55x) the aqueduct and as much of Quail Lake as possible. Rafts of 200 or more ducks near the eastern end of Quail Lake could not be identified at this distance. (3) Drove E on HWY 138 to LaPetit and proceeded N to Holiday Lake (HL). Walked slowly, clockwise around the entire lake, surveying adjacent fields, Aleppo Pines, Elms and Cottonwoods, open water, shoreline (minimal on the SE side due to relatively high water level), and thickets of brush and tules on the perimeter of the lake. Finished the survey by driving slowly, counter-clockwise around the lake, using the vehicle as a blind. No one else was present at HVL during our survey; conditions were relatively good for detecting bird vocalizations despite increasing winds. See below for previous survey notes in October.

Eurasian Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) in Neenach, Los Angeles County, CA  © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke
Eurasian Collared Dove (Streptopelia decaocto) in Neenach, Los Angeles County, CA © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke

Birds Noted

1) Canada Goose  5:  HL, open water, swimming to opposite side of lake as we approached.

2) Gadwall  4 (m,f) HL, N side, staying close to the tules.

3) Mallard  5 (m,f)   HL, open water, wary and flighty, close to tules.

4) Northern Shoveler  5 (m,f) N side, foraging in open water and close to the tules.

5) Canvasback 4 (1m, 3f), NW and SW side, wary, staying close to the tules.

6) Bufflehead 17 (m,f) QLO, diving; flock staying fairly tight.

7) Lesser Scaup  (f) QLO, diving with B.

8) Ruddy Duck  2 (m,f) QLO, resting near B.

9) California Quail  3-6, HL, calls, NE side.

10) Double-crested Cormorant  1 QLO, flying E ; 5 QL - resting on island.

11) Great Blue Heron 1 QLO, standing on S side of aqueduct; flew W.

12) Black-crowned Night Heron  2 (ad, imm) HL, N side in tules; fly, call.

13) Cooper's Hawk  1 HL, flying W, low through trees with small bird in talons; reappearing 30 minutes later (without prey) on E side.

14) Broad-winged Hawk 1 (imm) HL, flew from low perch in pines on S side about 80 yards away from us to N side; perched in full view on tall snag. Conspicuous heavy horizontal streaks on flanks; otherwise mostly light underparts , light spotting or streaking on largely unmarked breast; short tarsus, un-marked shoulders; a relatively dark head (suggesting a small red-tailed hawk) contrasting with pale gray-brown upperparts. When flushed at about 25 feet from us, showed a rather uniform gray-brown back and wings; flight low and swift. This bird did not closely resemble a first-year red-shouldered hawk (c.f., Sibley, D.A. 2000. The Sibley Guide to Birds. pp 117 & 118), with which it may be most often confused. We were unable to find this bird about 20 minutes later when we returned with a scope and camera.

15) Red-tailed Hawk  8: Avenue I -- HWY 138, on power poles along roadways; 1 dark phase; rest medium to light phase.

16) American Kestrel 1 (f) Avenue I, on small tree along roadway.

17) Sora  1 HVL, called twice from SW side.

18) American Coot  10 (ad, imm) HL, open water and near tules.

19) Killdeer  1 QLO, calls.

20) Ring-billed Gull  2 (ad)QLO, on N embankment of aqueduct; one flying E toward QL.

21) California Gull  1 (ad) QLO, flying E toward QL.

22) Herring Gull  1 (ad) QLO, flying E toward QL; light iris, large yellow bill, pale mantle seen in flight, just above eye-level from a distance of about 50 feet.

23) Mourning Dove  6 MDN, flying around yards; 4 HL, in pines, flighty and wary.

24) Eurasian Collared Dove  13 MDN, loose flock on ground and in trees (see above photo). One relatively pale individual lacked a neck patch.

25) Great Horned Owl  1 HL, flushed from pines on NW side; flew to S side.

26) Nuttall's Woodpecker  1 HL, calls from pines (unseen).

27) Hairy Woodpecker  1 (f) MDN, in Poplars, fly, calls rep.

28) Northern Flicker  1 MDN;  2 HL, calls and perched in tall snags

29) Say's Phoebe  2 MDN; 1 HL, low perch, calls.

30) American Crow  3 MDN; in yards, on ground and in trees; calls.

31) Common Raven  1 MDN- peerched on fence; 4 HL; fly, calls.

32) Horned Lark  4-6 QLO, flight calls; 8-10 HL, flight calls.

33) Tree Swallow  4 QLO, flying low over water; 3 HL, 100-150 ft. above lake.

34) Mountain Chickadee  1 HL, mid-level in pines with YRW; calls.

35) Marsh Wren  4 HL, calls, active in tules and margins of lake, N and NE.

36) Ruby-crowned Kinglet  1 HL, active in pines; calls.

37) Northern Mockingbird  1 MDN, in and around yard with many trees and shrubs.

38) European Starling  3  MDN, on power lines near HWY 138.

39) Yellow-rumped Warbler   10 MDN, in trees,shrubs and on lawns; 3 QLO, shrubs and fence lines; 15 HL, foraging at all levels; calls rep.

40) Common Yellow-throat  4 HL, active in tules and brush around lake, mostly N side; calls.

41) Chipping Sparrow  1 QLO, fence line on shrubby hillside with WCS.

42) Lark Sparrow  25 MDN, in trees and shrubs throughout the neighborhood.

43) Savannah Sparrow  5 HL, tules and lakeside brushy areas, N and SE; calls.

44) Song Sparrow  3 HL, tules on N side; calls.

45) Vesper Sparrow  1 HL, tules on N side with SS and SVSP.

46) Lincoln's Sparrow  1 HL, calls from N side (unseen).

47) White-crowned Sparrow   35 (est.) MDN; 50 (est.) HL; ubiquitous; calls and song.

48) Dark-eyed Junco  2-3 HL, in and around pines, S side; calls.

49) Red-winged Blackbird  2 MDN, flying NE; 2 QLO, flying E; 13 HL (mostly f's) in tules, W side; retreated low and out of view when a Cooper's Hawk flew over.

50) Western Meadowlark  2  Ave I, flying low over field.

51) Brewer's Blackbird  1 MDN, flying over; calls; 5 QL, roadside near parking area; 2-3 HL, flying over; calls.

52) Great-tailed Grackle  2-3 (m,f)  QL, seen along HWY 138 adjacent to large southern-style mansion.

53) Purple Finch  2 (m,f) MDN, a pair perched in a snag near HF; flew S, low through neighborhood.

54) House Finch  9 MDN in yards on ground and in trees; 5 HL in pines and deciduous trees; fly, calls.

55) American Goldfinch  1 MDN, flying NE across open field; calls.  3-5 HVL in cottonwoods, S side; calls.

56) House Sparrow  3-5  HL, around clubhouse.

October 23, 2009 Quail Lake and Holiday Lake   (56 Species)

Weather: Fair, 46 to 77F; WNW winds 0-2 mph.

Time: 0750- 0930 hrs (QL); 1000- 1140 hrs. (HVL)

Observers: M. Mendez and I.

Area Covered: (1) Quail Lake (QL): Parked in west lot off HWY 138 and walked on paved pathway inside fence line, E to dam and back. Used 10x 40 binocular and 25-30x spotting scope. The water surface was smooth and visibility good to all parts of the lake west of the dam. Three or four fishermen were on the SE and NE part of the lake. Traffic noise from HWY 138 often made detection of bird vocalizations difficult. Most waterbirds were found on the east end of the lake as in the previous survey of October 15 (see notes below). Differences were noted between the birds species found this morning and those found during the previous survey of October 15. These could have been due in part to variation in detectability due to the weather (i.e. high winds vs. almost no wind) and time of day. (2) Drove E on HWY 138 to La Petit (250th Street West) and N to Holiday Lake (HL). Parked on E side of clubhouse and walked clockwise around the lake, returning to the southern section once before leaving. No one else was on or around the lake this morning; the quiet atmosphere allowed for easy identification of bird vocalizations. Birdlife was abundant in and around the lake. The relatively low water level left muddy shorelines exposed in the SE, E and NE sections. These areas were especially attractive to shorebirds and sparrows.

The west end of Quail Lake, viewing north.  © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke
The west end of Quail Lake, viewing north. © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke

Holiday Lake, viewing southwest from the northeast corner.   © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke
Holiday Valley Lake, viewing southwest from the northeast corner. © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke

Birds Noted

1) Gadwall  3 (m,f) HL, SW near tules.

2) American Wigeon  3 (f) HL, NW, open water.

3) Mallard  2 QL, N edge; 4 HL, NW, edge of tules.

4) Northern Shoveler  6 QL, W, open water; 3 HL, W near tules.

5) Lesser Scaup  3 (m,f) QL, W, open water.

6) Bufflehead 5 (m,f) QL, W open water with large flock of Ruddy Ducks.

7) Common Merganser  17 (f) QL, N, tight flock flying fast around lake.

8) Ruddy Duck  60 (est.) QL (m,f) four or five separate flocks resting in open water, E.

9) California Quail  5 HL, flushed from N edge of lake.

10) Common Loon  1 QL, preening, open water.

11) Pied-billed Grebe 2 QL, diving near tules, N.

12) Eared Grebe  2 QL, SE, pair in basic plumage showing brief courtship behavior (ritual preening; swimming together).

13) Western Grebe  12 QL, open water; small, loose flocks, SE.

14) Double-crested Cormorant 1 QL, NE, flying low over lake.

15) Great Blue Heron  1 QL, N shore, preening.

16) Great Egret  1 HL, N edge of tules.

17) Green Heron 1 HL, flew to S shore mud flats, then back when I approached for a photo.

18) Black-crowned Night Heron  2 (ad, imm) HL, N edge of tules, fly, call.

19) Cooper's Hawk  1 QL, flew into large cottonwood, N shore.

20) Red-tailed Hawk  5: power poles along HWY 138 between 110th St. West and Quail Lake.

21) Virginia Rail  1 QL, calling repeatedly, SW tules (unseen).

22) Sora   1-2  HL, calling repeatedly, S tules (unseen).

23) American Coot  30 (est.) QL;  7 HL, open water.

24) Killdeer  2 QL , S peninsula, calls; 2 HL, S shore, foraging on mudflats.

25) Western Sandpiper  1 HL, S shore mudflats, foraging near LBD and K.

26) Long-billed Dowitcher  1 HL, S shore mudflat, foraging in shallows and mudflats with K and WS.

27) Bonaparte's Gull  2 (ad, imm) QL, NE, pair flying low, back and forth over water, plunge-dive, then inactive on water in mid-E section.

28) California Gull  3 (ad) QL, flying low, W; resting, open water, E.

29) Mourning Dove  7 HL, flying, landing in tall, dead willow, S and E.

30) Barn Owl  1 HL, flushed from willow (same tree where two were found during last survey of Oct. 15), brushy W shore, flew to pine on SW side.

31) Northern Flicker  1 HL, on mudflat near tules, S; calls.

32) Loggerhead Shrike  1 QL, calls from shrubland S of HWY 138 (unseen).

33) Common Raven  8-10 HL, southern rural area adjacent to HVL property; flying over lake

34) Oak Titmouse  1  QL, calling from willow, S (unseen).

35) White-breasted Nuthatch  1 HL, calling from pines, S (unseen).

36) Bewick's Wren  2 HL, active in brushy area, S shore; singing.

37) Marsh Wren  3-5 QL, active in tules and cattails, S, N, calls and song; 3 HVL, active in dense tules, S and N, calls and song.

38) Ruby-crowned Kinglet  5 HL, foraging in willows and cottonwoods around entire lake.

39) Northern Mockingbird  1, HL , active in front yard Ave B-8 and Calcot.

40) American Pipit   2  QL, calls in flight over W parking lot.

41) Yellow-rumped Warbler  2 QL, S willows; 12 (est.) HVL, foraging at all foliage height levels; calls.

42) Common Yellowthroat  5 QL, S riparian; 2 (m) HVL, tules and low cottonwoods, W and S.

43) California Towhee  1 QL, S edge with willows, shrubs and and rock pile, on ground and in small tree.

44) Chipping Sparrow  2 HL, S, calls, flying from pines.

45) Vesper Sparrow  2 HL, S shoreline and brushy area nearby.

46) Lark Sparrow  10  HL, brushy areas around lake; singing near clubhouse (photo).

47) Savannah Sparrow  4 QL, S marsh and brushy fields; 4 HL, W edge of lake, including exposed shoreline.

48) Song Sparrow  2 QL, active in tules and riparian, brushy areas, S, calls; 2 HL, SE shoreline in tules.

49) Lincoln's Sparrow  1 HL, calls from E riparian (unseen).

50) Dark-eyed Junco (Oregon) 2 HL, on ground under pines near clubhouse.

51) White-crowned Sparrow   20 (est) QL, all along pathway in brushy areas; 30 (est.) HL, ubiquitous, call and song.

52) Red-winged Blackbird 30 (est.) (m,f, imm) QL, tules and willows, SW and S; 16 HL, mostly E end, tules; calls, flying around.

53) Great-tailed Grackle  15 (m,f)   QL, in tall snag and on power poles, S. one m in partial molt.

54) Brewer's Blackbird  12 QL, S pathway and adjacent riparian.

55) House Finch  5  QL, fly, calls and song; 13 HL, tall trees around lake, also drinking at S shore while clinging to tules; call and song.

56) American Goldfinch  3 (basic plumage) HL, willow snags; calls and partial song

Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus) at Holiday Lake, Los Angeles County, CA     © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke
Lark Sparrow (Chondestes grammacus) at Holiday Valley Lake, Los Angeles County, CA © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke

Holiday Lake and Quail Lake, Los Angeles County, CA

October 15, 2009  (45 Species)

Weather:  Fair, 65 to 75F; winds 2-5 mph (AM), increasing to 25 mph (PM).

Time: 1030-1244 hrs. (HVL); 1338-1355 hrs. (QL).

Area Covered:  (1) Holiday Lake (HL), beginning at the clubhouse, I walked slowly, first clockwise, then counter-clockwise around the lake, stopping frequently for extended observations, using a 10x40 binocular, a Nikon D3X  DSLR with a 80-400 mm AF VR lens, and a 25-30x scope on the south shore line. Before leaving HVL, I drove slowly counter-clockwise around the lake, using the vehicle as a blind, and listening and watching for any birds I might have overlooked earlier. I surveyed Aleppo pines, riparian vegetation along the lake shore, adjacent rabbitbrush scrub, and open water. The water level again this month is relatively low, leaving a shoreline exposed on the SE and S sides of the lake, and about a 2 ft. watermark on the tules. Met with Mark Crosby, General Manager of the West Valley County Water District, and showed him some of the photos I had just made of a Gray Catbird (see below). Mark is supportive of birders and leaves the property open for birding all day, year-round.

(2) I drove from HVL directly to the west parking lot of Quail Lake (QL) and scoped the lake from the shore line. The wind had stirred up quite a chop on the lake, hindering observations somewhat of distant waterbirds. I returned, easbound along HWY 138, making one brief stop on the north side of the road to quickly scan the eastern, downwind section of the lake (where most of the birds were). Returned to Lancaster on HWY 138 to 60th Street West, noting the number of red-tailed hawks (the only hawk seen along this route today) on the power poles.

Gray Catbird found on the northeast side of Holiday Lake (see notes). © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke
Gray Catbird found on the northeast side of Holiday Valley Lake (see notes). © 2009 Callyn D. Yorke

Birds Noted

1) Mallard  6 (m,f) HL, open water.

2) Northern Shoveler 2 (f) HL, N side.

3) Ruddy Duck  20 (m,f) QL, open water, W.

4) California Quail  5 (m,f) HL, N side beneath salt cedar.

5) Common Loon 3 QL, preening, open water E, W.

6) Pied-billed Grebe 1 QL, diving, open water, W.

7) Eared Grebe  1 HL, open water, W.

8) Western Grebe 3 QL, sleeping, preening, open water with RD, west..

9) Great Blue Heron 2 QL, S and N shore.

10) Great Egret 1 QL; 2 HL, in water at edge of tules; fly, call.

11) Black-crowned Night Heron  1 imm HL, edge of tules, fly, call.

12) Red-tailed Hawk 4 (ad) HWY 138 between 110th St. W and 250th St. W. dark and light phases.

13) Cooper's Hawk  1 HL, flushed from pine on E side; then soaring high (200 ft. +) on thermals.

14) Sora  1-2  HL calls W and SW (unseen).

15) American Coot  5  HL, staying near tules.

16) Long-billed Dowitcher  6 HL, foraging in one, then two flocks, near W and S shore (photo).

17) California Gull  1 (ad) QL, open water, W.

18) Mourning Dove  2 HL, flying S and SE.

19) Barn Owl  2  HL ,  a pair flushed from same tree, W; flying around to different trees.

20) Downy Woodpecker  1 HL, foraging in Aleppo pines, S. calls.

21) Nuttall's Woodpecker  1 (f) HL, foraging in willow, SW. calls.

22) Northern Flicker  1 HL, N calls.

23) Common Raven  16 HL, soaring on thermals in loose flock, W.

24) Tree Swallow  4  HL, flying in circles high (200 ft. +) above the lake.

25) Violet Green Swallow  2  HL, mixed in with TS and BS.

26) Barn Swallow  6: HL , same location as for TS and BS.

27) Bewick's Wren  2 HL  SE and SW, willows and low shrubs.

28) Marsh Wren   2-4 HL, calls from NW and N tules (unseen).

29) Ruby-crowned Kinglet  1 HL foraging mid-level in cottonwoods with YRW.

30) Gray Catbird  1 HL, flushed into clear view at about 50 ft. away from me, from edge of dried tules; flew into low, chopped willow, then back to tules (photo), then dove into dense cover beneath a large salt cedar, NE. Only two nearly identical photos (in harsh light) showed enough of the bird's profile for positive identification (see above). This bird could not be refound when I returned about 40 minutes later to the same place.

31) Common Yellowthroat  4 HL  SE and N. calls.

32) Yellow-rumped Warbler  20 HL: mostly on the W side beneath Aleppo pines; foraging at all height levels.calls

33) Savannah Sparrow  6  HL  N side, scrubby edge of lake; drinking with Lark Sparrows on S shore. calls.

34) Song Sparrow  3 HL : W and SE shoreline. calls.

35) Lincoln's Sparrow HL 2 dense shrubs, N and NW. calls (unseen).

36) Lark Sparrow  12 HL; ubiquitous around lake; drinking with WCS, SS and VS at S shoreline; calls and song.

37) Vesper Sparrow  3  HL, found only near end of survey along S shore, drinking with WCS, SS. same location as last month.

38) White-crowned Sparrow 5 QL;   30 HL ubiquitous, shore and trees. call and song.

39) Red-winged Blackbird  30 QL (W);  15 HL (E), both locations with noisy flocks of imm. and ads.

40) Brewer's Blackbird  5 QL, W parking lot and shore.

41) Great-tailed Grackle  2 HL  (m,f) calls, foraging on S shore.

42) House Finch  15 HL, ubiquitous, shore line and trees. calls and song.

43) Lesser Goldfinch  4 HL, E side cottonwoods. calls.

44) American Goldfinch  6  HL, S Aleppo pines, calls, song.

45) House Sparrow 3-5  HL around clubhouse.

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