When we were in L.A. last week, we took a little time to visit Huntington Central Park. I'd checked eBird and found that over 300 species have been recorded in this one little park. That's simply amazing to me! The park reminded me of Central Winds, which is one of my favorite birding spots in my home county, though only 162 species have been recorded there. In fact, fewer than 270 species have been recorded in my whole county. However, this park is near the beach, and it's in Southern California. I had a wonderful time, and if I lived nearby, I suspect I'd need to be there at least once per week. The Nuttall's Woodpeckers I saw making more Nuttall's Woodpeckers were lifers for me.
There were a few Western Bluebirds here too--I haven't seen these since I was a kid living in Concord, CA. I was pretty struck again by how beautiful these birds are, especially the males. Our eastern variety is more patriotic, but I still think I'm partial to the western version.
I'd been seeing many Anna's Hummingbirds the whole time I was in CA, even in parking lots, but others were hard to come by. I was starting to get a little disappointed, but on this morning I found my lifer Allen's Hummingbird. This photo doesn't show its green back very well, but I had the chance to see it when I was there.
I've seen a few Hutton's Vireos now, both on this trip and on my visit to Seattle last year. They look a bit less like Ruby-crowned Kinglets on this trip than they did on my trip to Seattle. Now that I'm more familiar with both species, they don't seem so terribly difficult to tell apart.
We don't get many Canada Geese in Florida; the one I've seen in the state is likely feral. I believe the above individual is a "lesser" Canada Goose with a distinctly shorter neck than what seems "normal" to me.
Two Merlins flew into the park while I was there. They both perched on trees not to far from each other, and I suspect they're a pair. I loved seeing these birds, even though we have Merlins in FL. Ours are lighter in color, though.
There was one Western Kingbird in the park as well.This is another bird we can see throughout the winter in Florida; they really are wonderful birds. This one only perched here for a couple minutes before flying away.
There was also a pair of House Wrens breeding here. I must confess that I was disappointed it wasn't some other kind of wren, but since House Wrens don't breed in Central Florida, it was still fun to find a mated pair.
I think I may remember seeing these creatures as a kid, but I'm not sure. A Western Fence Lizard, or Blue-bellied Lizard, was one of the first animals I saw when we arrived that day. I probably should have paid more attention to the non-birds in the park, but I was a bit overwhelmed just by the birds there. In all it was a fantastic morning. I missed out on a couple birds I thought would be easy finds here, including a Black Phoebe and Townsend's Warbler. I'm nearly positive I heard a Black Phoebe, but I was never able to find it, and since it would be a lifer for me I decided to wait until I saw it before counting it. Maybe next trip out there will give me both, but I can't complain about what was here. It was a truly enjoyable time.
Wonderful photos Scott, looks like you had a great time at that park.ReplyDelete
Thanks for posting these photos. I saw the Blue Bird yesterday at Central Park but I wasn't sure what it was called.ReplyDelete
Thanks! I'm glad it was helpful to you.ReplyDelete