Desert Cottontail Rabbit


Salton Sea & Imperial Valley with Carol & Charles
Jun 27, 2003 
Guide: Bob Miller

A day of birding and exploration.

species (list follows at end of page)

Click on thumbnail pictures for full-sized shots.

Charles and Carol at Ramer Lake

Desert Spiny Lizard

We met the sun in Calipatria and set about filling in the few holes left in Carol's CA list and pumping up her year list!  The temperature had been running below normal but the forecast was for 111 so we decided to hit the "outdoor" spots first and then bird the Salton Sea from our air-conditioned bird blind!

Lesser Nighthawk

Least Bittern ducked at the last second!!

The first stop was our own backyard where we had almost all of the doves, Costa's Hummingbird and  Abert's Towhees.  Our nemesis for the day turned out to be the Rudy Ground-Doves which we did not find in 3 tries during the day! 

The rookery at Ramer Lake had babies everywhere. At Finney Lake we had the best looks at Least Bittern that any of us had ever had! Lizards, butterflies, damselflies and dragonflies.. all of the heat lovers were out in force.

Blue Dasher Dragonfly

Western Grebe on nest

Western Grebe on nest

Western and Clark's Grebes were on nests while some already had young riding on their backs. White-faced Ibis were nesting here too. 

Forster's Tern 

Red Saddlebags Dragonfly

Widow Skimmer Dragonfly

On to the Salton Sea! The weatherman had miscalculated.  We got out at the end of Pound Road and heard Virginia Rail calling at our feet.  Suddenly we had two adults and three babies came out right next to us like we were not even  there and began feeding in the pools!!!

Virginia Rail 

BABY Pictures!! Talk about big feet!

Virginia Rail and baby

We added Yellow-footed Gull, Gull-billed Tern, Wood Stork and lots of others to our list and headed for Brawley where we had Gila Woodpeckers at a nest and a  Bronzed Cowbird giving us his Darth Vader impression. Mechanical problems caught up to us then and we had to limp our way to mechanics and parts houses but were very fortunate that it happened when it did and we were able to save a few bucks in the process. The temperature hit a record 117 and it was by far the hottest day we had this year but it was one of the hottest days of birding too!

Salton Sea & Imperial Valley, Jun. 27, 2003
  1. Pied-billed Grebe

  2. Eared Grebe

  3. Western Grebe

  4. Clark's Grebe

  5. American White Pelican

  6. Brown Pelican

  7. Double-crested Cormorant

  8. Least Bittern

  9. Great Blue Heron

  10. Great Egret

  11. Snowy Egret

  12. Cattle Egret

  13. Green Heron

  14. Black-crowned Night-Heron

  15. White-faced Ibis

  16. Wood Stork

  17. Mallard

  18. Cinnamon Teal

  19. Northern Shoveler

  20. Northern Pintail

  21. Redhead

  22. Ruddy Duck

  23. American Kestrel

  24. Gambel's Quail

  25. Virginia Rail

  26. Common Moorhen

  27. American Coot

  28. Black-necked Stilt

  29. American Avocet

  30. Snowy Plover

  31. Killdeer

  32. Marbled Godwit

  33. Long-billed Curlew

  34. Willet

  35. Wilson's Phalarope

  36. Laughing Gull

  37. Bonaparte's Gull

  38. California Gull

  39. Yellow-footed Gull

  40. Gull-billed Tern

  1. Caspian Tern

  2. Forster's Tern

  3. Black Skimmer

  4. Rock Dove

  5. Eurasian Collared-Dove

  6. White-winged Dove

  7. Mourning Dove

  8. Common Ground-Dove

  9. Inca Dove

  10. Burrowing Owl

  11. Lesser Nighthawk

  12. Black-chinned Hummingbird

  13. Anna's Hummingbird

  14. Costa's Hummingbird

  15. Gila Woodpecker

  16. Black Phoebe

  17. Western Kingbird

  18. Loggerhead Shrike

  19. Northern Rough-winged Swallow

  20. Cliff Swallow

  21. Barn Swallow

  22. Cactus Wren

  23. Marsh Wren

  24. Northern Mockingbird

  25. Verdin

  26. European Starling

  27. Common Yellowthroat

  28. Abert's Towhee

  29. "Large-billed" Savannah Sparrow

  30. Song Sparrow

  31. Red-winged Blackbird

  32. Western Meadowlark

  33. Yellow-headed Blackbird

  34. Brewer's Blackbird

  35. Great-tailed Grackle

  36. Bronzed Cowbird

  37. Brown-headed Cowbird

  38. House Finch

  39. House Sparrow

Photos Bob Miller