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Southern California Birding 2013-2
So Cal Biring 2-1

In mid-October, Liz and I went over to Ventura to do some offshore birding and hiking on Santa Cruz Island, part of the Channel Islands National Seashore. We had planned to camp on the island, but the Republicans in Congress shutdown the government and ruined our plans.

So Cal Birding 2-1

October 12, 2013. 12-hour Pelagic Bird Trip.

We lined up early with a hoard of birdwatchers eager for a long day at sea traveling far offshore to look for seabirds that rarely come close to shore in North America. We headed west from Ventura and birded along Anacapa Island where we saw Blue-footed Boobies and American Oystercatchers. We then turned west between Anacapa Island and Santa Cruz Island. We went some 80 miles offshore, but we saw few of the birds we hoped to see. The water was rough and the boat drove fast, making for a cold and difficult day. By the end of the day, most people were sitting indoors and sleeping. I was the last on the bow as the stars came out, and although it was by then too dark for photos, I was accompanied by lots of shearwaters finally flying close to the boat.

So Cal Birding 2-2

October 13, 2013. Day trip to Santa Cruz Island.

Day trip to Santa Cruz Island, Channel Islands National Seashore. For a third time in two months, we boarded a boat and into the Pacific Ocean, this time heading for a day of hiking. The channel crossing was every smooth, much smoother than yesterday, and we again saw lots of birds who were now becoming familiar. On the island, we hiked in a Nature Conservancy Area on the north end of Santa Cruz Island. The trail was a bit rough as it climbed over rocky ridges and dropped into narrow canyons, but we had grand views from high bluffs. We were thrilled to see the endemic Island Scrub Jay and the Island Fox, not to mention all the seabirds and marine mammals.

So Cal Birding 2-3

October 14, 2013. Birding on the Mainland.

We started this day birding a "migrant warbler trap" in Ventura where we saw lots of fun little birds, then we headed north to Solvang so Liz could visit a yarn shop. On the way back, we stopped to walk the beach and see a few more birds, then hit the highway and blasted home.

Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 131226

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