Least Bittern - Imperial Ponds

   
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New River Wetlands Project
Nov 2, 2002, 65 - 75 degrees
- narrated by Henry Detwiler

A morning spent surveying the birds at the New River Project.  


Click on thumbnail pictures for full-sized shots.

IMPERIAL SITE

Western Grebe - Imperial Ponds

Western Grebe
We arrived at the Imperial Ponds close to 8:00 a.m., and found several hunters trying to coax "Trigger" to retrieve a Mallard (?) that they'd shot.  Trigger was a mighty fine swimmer, but not much of a retriever.  Another 1/2 hour of cajoling and Trigger finally hauled it in.

Pied-billed Grebes were numerous, but we also spotted a Western and an Eared Grebe on the big pond.  Common Moorhens were abundant, but shy.  I never could do it, but Suzanne got a nice shot of one out in the open. 


Common Moorhen
    


Imperial Ponds with Least Bittern in center of picture up against the reeds.

The photo on the right is through my scope at 20x, with the Sony DSC-S70 zoomed up to 3x.  The bittern remained fishing for the entire time we were there.


Least Bittern 

BRAWLEY SITE       


Suzanne at Brawley Site


Roseate Skimmer - Brawley Ponds

Only a few dragonflies were left at the ponds--the cool nights had sent most of them south.

When we arrived, this young Cooper's Hawk (note the streaking on the breast), was perched on a large Eucalyptus a long way downstream.  But before long it came in to try its luck at the wetlands.  After all, there were plenty of Verdins, sparrows, and Yellow-rumped snacks flying about. Alas, it fared no better here, and didn't stay long.


Immature Cooper's Hawk


Belted Kingfisher

This Belted Kingfisher would not let us approach too closely, and soon flew up the New River to more secluded hunting grounds.  Suzanne got off a picture before we saw the last of him. 

American Coots, Common Moorhens, Soras, a Virginia Rail, Mallards, and two varieties of teal rounded out the collection of water-loving birds at the Brawley site. 

  
Common Moorhen  

   
 New River Project
2 Nov 2002
Imperial
ID Name Qty
1 pied-billed grebe 25
2 western grebe 1
3 eared grebe 1
4 double-crested cormorant 9
5 least bittern 1
6 great egret 2
7 green heron 4
8 black-crowned night heron 2
9 ruddy duck 15
10 Cooper's hawk 1
11 nothern harrier 1
12 red-tailed hawk 1
13 American kestrel 1
14 Virginia rail 2
15 sora 4
16 common moorhen 27
17 American coot 30
18 least sandpiper 1
19 mourning dove 3
20 common ground-dove 3
21 northern flicker 1
22 black phoebe 4
23 Say's phoebe 3
24 tree swallow 29
25 no. rough-winged swallow 3
26 rock wren 2
27 marsh wren 16
28 blue-gray gnatcatcher 2
29 northern mockingbird 1
30 yellow-rumped warbler 70
31 common yellowthroat 2
32 Abert's towhee 3
33 song sparrow 1
34 white-crowned sparrow 3
35 great-tailed grackle 1
Brawley
ID Name Qty
1 pied-billed grebe 10
2 double-crested cormorant 6
3 least bittern 3
4 great blue heron 1
5 great egret 1
6 mallard 5
7 green-winged teal 8
8 cinnamon teal 10
9 Cooper's hawk 1
10 common moorhen 20
11 American coot 15
12 sora 3
13 Virginia rail 1
14 spotted sandpiper 1
15 least sandpiper 1
16 Caspian tern 1
17 Anna's hummingbird 1
18 belted kingfisher 1
19 black phoebe 3
20 verdin 4
21 northern mockingbird 1
22 marsh wren 12
23 blue-grey gnatcatcher 2
24 ruby-crowned kinglet 1
25 orange-crowned warbler 1
26 common yellowthroat 1
27 yellow-rumped warbler 28
28 Abert's towhee 2
29 song sparrow 2
30 Lincoln's sparrow 1
31 great-tailed grackle 1
32 house finch 3

Photos Henry & Suzanne Detwiler