Posts Tagged ‘Ballona Freshwater Marsh’

Birding Ballona Freshwater Marsh & Royal Palms Beach

This morning, early, I headed out to Ballona Freshwater Marsh, a birding “hotspot.” There I saw my first Common Yellowthroat, two Eurasian Collared Doves, several California Gnatcatchers (and I walked along the path with one female for a stretch). A delightful, highly vocal Song Sparrow who did me the favor of flying out, perching on the high branch of a bush, and singing her little heart out! I saw lots of ducks: cinnamon teals, gadwalls, mallards, greater scaups, green-winged teals, pied-billed grebes,  as well as American coots and a White Egret and a Snowy Egret. I see these commonly, and they stand out because they are so large and bright white, but I still love to see them, especially when they are standing still, reflected in still water.

Inspired by a movie, a book, and L.A. eBird (as well as the virtually empty freeways during the holiday!), I realized I could go birding in two places today, so I next drove over to Royal Palms Beach. There I was thrilled to see nine Black Oystercatchers keeping company with one American Oystercatcher. I also saw four or five Whimbrels (including one who looked back at me!) and a Spotted Sandpiper on the rocks, doing her characteristic bobbing about. Really wonderful to see! In addition, there were many willets, terns, and gulls as well as yellow-romped warblers and white-crowed sparrows. One of the yellow-rumps flew down to the rocks right by the ocean and was sprayed by the waves!

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