Sunday, October 14, 2007

October Report

It was another beautiful day at the Lookout on Saturday. Fall is my favorite time of the year on the Central Coast….Everything smelled fresh and the river was still passable….It was foggy when John & I arrived in the early AM …. pretty chilly for us “coastal” folks but when it cleared mid morning, you could see storm clouds moving up the Carrizo, the Pacific was steel blue…and it felt nice & warm out of the ever-present wind. I am so glad they invented “hooded sweatshirts”! Filled the bird feeders and had many “takers” (hummingbird feeders were empty, no surprise there) - On the way up we saw a spike buck, a coyote and a large covey of quail. I tracked mainly Pinnacles birds as usual, throughout the day but caught signals from several Ventana condors over in Pinnacles’ direction…(7 total birds were out and about despite the weather!)

Only one set of visitors this day….and on the way down, Pozo was having a loud “concert”. So glad to come home to the good news about lead ammo billl being signed…


Saturday, October 13, 2007

Lookout Birding Field Trip Report, Oct 6, 2006

Field trip report by Alan Schmierer, Field Trip Chair, Morro Coast
Audubon Society

Location: Hi Mountain Lookout to
Huff’s Hole
Observation date: 10/6/07
Number of species: 26
Mountain Quail 2
Sharp-shinned Hawk 1
American Kestrel 1
Band-tailed Pigeon 3
Northern Pygmy-Owl 1
Acorn Woodpecker 3
Nuttall’s Woodpecker 1
Northern Flicker 7
Western Scrub-Jay 7
Common Raven 2
Oak Titmouse 7
White-breasted Nuthatch 5
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 2
California Thrasher 3
Yellow-rumped Warbler 2
Spotted Towhee 10
California Towhee 3
Rufous-crowned Sparrow 2
Sage Sparrow 3
Fox Sparrow 50 Conservative number. Most not
identified by race. Photo of one appears to be “Slate-colored”.
White-crowned Sparrow 8
Golden-crowned Sparrow 10
Dark-eyed Junco 12
Western Meadowlark 1
Lesser Goldfinch 2
Lawrence’s Goldfinch 7

Friday, October 12, 2007

6th Annual Open House

The 6th annual Hi Mountain Lookout Project open house event was attended by 55 people, coming and going throughout the day and into the evening. Thank-you to field trip leaders Alan Schmierer for birding, Dr. David Chipping for geology, and Dr. Dirk Walters for native plant outings, and to Estelle Sandhaus from the Santa Barbara Zoo for speaking in the evening about condor nest monitoring in Southern California. Paul Andreano was ill and sorely missed, so we will have to hear about his Mongolia experiences another time!

Birding field trip highlights included 2 black-throated gray warblers foraging in a valley oak near the Salinas River crossing and a pygmy owl calling in Hi Valley. Fresh bear tracks were found on Hi Mountain road near the Salinas River.

Marcelle Bakula was in charge of the annual raffle ticket sales and prize awarding. Our project benefitted with $165 raised from the raffle fundraising.

Skies were cloudless, temperatures cool with a persistent wind from the NE throughout the day. We took shelter in the lookout upstairs in the evening after another spectacular sunset to partake of Jim Duff’s now famous pineapple upside down cake for dessert. Throughout the event folks had a chance to visit and talk with friends and acquaintances, and catch up on happenings.

Once again, thanks to all for putting on the event and attending. A good day was had by all.

Steve Schubert