Lesser Florican - August 2023

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Friday 22 January 2016

California - Day 5 - 16/1/16

The day started off drizzly but thankfully cleared to reveal a lovely day. We birded highway 33 where our sought after species were the Yellow-billed Magpies, and although they took time to see we eventually saw several. It wasn't just these along this road, several good birds were encountered on many random stops.
Next up was Carrizo Plain (partly based along the San Andreas fault line) where Mountain Plovers had been seen the day before, but after hours of searching good looking habitat, we failed which was a real blow, though thankfully the next few days will hopefully produce. Birding was generally quiet so we continued on to a Le Conte's Thrasher site, but again no joy here. Although species were missed today, it was still another enjoyable day driving through various habitats. 
Night in Lebec. 

Highway 33
California Towhee - 2
White-breasted Nuthatch - 1
Western Bluebird - 10
Lesser Goldfinch - 8
Red-breasted Sapsucker - 1
Say's Pheobe - 2
Loggerhead Shrike - 3
Mountain Bluebird - 15
Horned Lark - 40
Vesper Sparrow - 1
Phainopepla - 2

Carrizo Plain
Prairie Falcon - 1
Ferruginous Hawk - 3
Bell's Sparrow - 2
Horned Lark - 500
Burrowing Owl - 1
Savannah Sparrow - 1
Western Meadowlark - 20
Northern Harrier - 1 2nd cal male
House Finch - 150

 one of the most sought after species of the trip, were these Yellow-billed Magpies. Being scarce at first along the Pozo Road, they soon became numerous.
 Prarie Falcon on the Carrizo Plain
Bell's Sparrow at Soda Lake - a pair seen by the boardwalk that allowed very close approach
 Richard searching for Mountain Plovers on the Carrizo Plain

 After a few hours of searching for the Plovers, this was my answer hoping a birder would spot it and point us in the right area.......they didn't
spectacular scenery on the plain