Rare Bird sighting at Bolsa Chica Wetlands on March 8, 2015 – Photos Below

Mike Sanders and I arrived at Bolsa Chica Wetlands in Huntington Beach today at around 1:30pm in search of two rare sightings:  the Palm Warbler and also the Sage Thrasher.  After walking along the Brightwater Trail for about 45 minutes I had glanced over the fence onto the bluffs in the same area where the Burrowing Owl was previously seen.  In a barren leafless 2 foot shrub, I noted a shadow and slight movement,  I then honed in for a closer inspection with my 10×42 binoculars.  Upon immediate glance I was able to discern a Mimid but was confident it wasn’t a Northern Mockingbird.  Despite the harsh sunlight, I picked up a straight bill and a white throat with some side streaking.  I brought this to Mike Sanders attention and after closer inspection and a 10 minute wait, the Mimid-like bird leaped onto the grassy area and was now out in the open.  We were both more confident this was the previously seen (by Mike Huang earlier in the day), Sage Thrasher.  This was no easy feat especially with the abundance of green leafy plant life and back lighting, slow meticulous observation was the only way to find this species.  A total of 69 species were tallied on today’s 4.5 mile hike.

Here’s the eBird Checklist for March 8, 2015

Some photos of today’s journey are below including a Great-horned Owl (owlet), Glaucous-winged 2nd cycle Gull, Red-winged Blackbird male enjoying a cool splash, a Juvenile Cooper’s Hawk and a Red-breasted Merganser beached.  Enjoy ..comments and feedback are always welcomed.

Sage Thrasher
Sage Thrasher
Sage Thrasher (Rear View)
Sage Thrasher (Rear View)
Sage Thrasher (perched)
Sage Thrasher (perched)
Cooper's Hawk (juvenile)
Cooper’s Hawk (juvenile)
Red-breasted Merganser (beached)
Red-breasted Merganser (beached)
Glaucous-winged Gull (Second Cycle)
Glaucous-winged Gull (Second Cycle)
Great-horned Owl (owlet)
Great Horned Owl (owlet)
Red-winged Blackbird (male) bathing
Red-winged Blackbird (male) bathing

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