Fallbrook Trip Report

Yesterday, Saturday, December 10, twenty-three birders struck out to the Fallbrook Area. It was a perfect sunny day for birding. We had two-strikes against us to begin with (1) it was December not May, so the migrants were long-gone, and (2) while it is a beautiful area to bird, the specie count is expected to be lower than most of our other haunts.

I was the un-leader.  I say this because: (1) the day before we had returned rewarded but exhausted from a birding Caribbean cruise and (2) Diane and I were hosting our annual Christmas brunch after the walk, and I needed to pretend to help.

Live Oak lived up to its reputation and produced 30 of its famed Band-tailed Pigeons. The two California Quail visitors made a nice addition since we seldom, if ever, have seen them there. Cute as ever, the White-breasted Nuthatches delighted as usual. All in all, twenty-nine species were observed.

Los Jilgueros is our personal stomping ground, given that it connected to our Peppertree community. Although we have walked Los Jilgueros at least twice a week for over ten-years, we had yet to see a Wood Duck there, but darn it, there’s PAS discovering a new bird for us. Diane and I have racked up 121 species at Los Jilgueros. Not a bad number that makes us #2 for the area, but still a long way from catching the #1 master, Ken Weaver, who claims 140 species. We are wondering when our own Justin Hartsell will surpass our number. Justin, by the way, is the 2025 Scholarship Winner entitling him to attend the week-long birding-camp in Colorado. Back to our walk: a total of twenty-four species were observed.

I would love to say, in total we saw forty-four species, unfortunately, because of duplication at the two sites we saw less than that. Overall, despite the count, it was reported that both walks produced a very enjoyable experience.

Although 23 birders went on the walk, the luncheon afterwards was attended by 39. Someone said that we had a lot fewer birds on the property than last time when she said 28 birds were found. That is the difference between May and December. The mating birds had raised their chicks and headed south. Nonetheless, Justin Hartsell did hear then saw Red-breasted Nuthatches. It was later confirmed by John Sanderson, and these nuthatches remain here today! This was a lifer for our backyard bird-count that stands now at 76 (trombones). We don’t mean to boast, but the home-cooked food was varied, more than ample and delicious. It was a very convivial affair.

For those interest in seeing the wonderful photos taken by our wonderful photographers, and the list of birds seen, click on the two eBird links below:

Live Oak County Park:  https://ebird.org/checklist/S156040398

Los Jilgueros Preserve:  https://ebird.org/checklist/S156040572

Until next time,

Doug & Diane Walkley

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