A seldom seen White-throated Sparrow recently made an appearance at Pinecrest Park in Mission Viejo on March 17th and found by Ryan Winkleman. This is a migratory species. The bird continues at least through today, March 20. If you are unfamiliar how to use GPS, just go to http://maps.google.com then copy and paste in these coordinates 33.65171,-117.63865 for precise location:
The most reliable time to see this species is between 8 and 9 a.m and it was seen. At times you’ll find it mixed in with White-crowned Sparrows and Golden-crowned Sparrows. The easy ID on the White-throated Sparrow (confused yet?) is the yellow marking (lore) just above its eye and behind its mandible (bill) and of course its white throat. It’s somewhat of a loaner bird at this location and I noted this sparrow entangling with a Golden-crowned Sparrow fighting for branch space.
Good places to look are on the concrete ribbon at ground level and on the slope, between the last two sycamore trees. Also keep a watchful eye as it weaves in and out of the thick shrubbery.
Here’s several images to give you a head start but don’t wait too long as it may not hang around much longer though the expected rains should keep it at bay for a few days would be my prediction. Of the 6 photos below, the last one is a male Golden-crowned Sparrow for additional reference if unfamiliar. (Sorry no images today of the White-crowned Sparrow – but the males have bold racing stripes on their crowns yet lack the yellow