More Death Valley birds

Observers: Tom & Jo Heindel
Remote Name:
Date: 11/13/02
Time: 08:44 AM


On 12 Nov we found a few exciting birds at Furnace Creek Ranch. Most exciting was 26 American Crows! The previous high was 6 and usually none are seen. The flock circled over the north end of the golf course before heading south not to be seen the rest of the morning. Also exciting was an Eastern Phoebe found near the long pond. The adult and imm gallinules are still in "their" pond but the unusually plumaged Common Merganser was not found. Eight Inca Doves were in the residence quarters but no Ruddy Ground Doves. One Ross's Goose was in with 3 Snows, one the individual with the "K-HI" neck band found a couple of weeks ago. Jim Holmes, Sacramento, found an adult Vermilion Flycatcher on the 11th which remained to be photographed on the 12th. He also found a Clay-colored Sparrow on the 12th that we were unable to refind. A late Tree Swallow worked the insects over the long pond. The sparrow flock has dispersed and the few that remained were being harassed by a female Sharp-shinned Hawk. Remaining were one White-throated and one Golden-crowned Sparrows. The Great-tailed Grackles are returning to FCR with 16 found. The reeds are beginning to return to the ponds and may provide breeding habitat again next spring. The weather was great and most of 49ers had departed.