Black Skimmer: Malibu Lagoon, 26 March, 2017


Male Allen’s Hummingbird (Grace Murayama 3-26-17)

As seems usual this year, the weather turned out to be surprisingly unpredictable, or is that unpredictably surprising? We were told to expect rain. No rain. We were told to expect cool temperatures in the 45-60° range. I birded in my T-shirt. Both San Fernando Valley and the Santa Monica Mountains were fog-filled and gray with clouds. The beach was sunny and windless. So it goes.

Killdeer foursome making a heckova racket (Grace Murayama 3-26-17)

Despite the fine weather, or perhaps because of it, we had few birds and a low species count. Fifty-eight total count for gulls and terns seemed extraordinarily low, so I checked when I got home, and found: 2012 – 53 birds, 2013 – 94, 2014 – 643, 2015 – 107, 2016 – 219. So…OK, low, but not supernaturally low. So much for the accuracy of one’s unsubstantiated impressions of…

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