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 Harry Fuller Birding Tours


Well, maybe not so much a blog as a collection of San Francisco birders' accounts of particular occasions. They appear in reverse date order.

Sunday, August 27

Around noon today (Sunday) I did about 45 mins of birding at Ft Mason. The action is really concentrated around the Himalayan blackberry brambles. Of course the fruit is a major draw and there are more berries cascading off the bushes than Ive ever seen! The foliage of this plant (like the native California blackberry) harbors tiny insects eaten by insectivorous songbirds. If Eucs are historic, by golly why not Himalayan blackberry too. Brambles have been hacked away in most of the places it used to dominate in SF. Spiny yes, invasive yes, but good for wildlife and birds, especially Quail and Brush Rabbits, you bet! Aldo Leopold referred to a 6x6 ft patch of Himalayan blackberry bramble as the "acme of Quail cover". And this stuff used to be everywhere in SF and the Presidio, and so did Quail and brush rabbits... hmmm... So far we dont have native cover sources that can match the protection afforded by brambles. As birders we should make sure the NPS, Presidio Trust and Rec and Parks department realize its importance to local and migratory wildlife and maintain stands of this exotic plant at least until native cover is as dense.

Highlights around the brambles:

Willow Fly-1
PS Fly-5
WW pewee-1
W Tanager-2
Bullocks Oriole-1
Selas. hummer-3
Yellow Warbler-3
Cassins Vireo-1
BC Nightheron-1

Yesterday eve between 550 and 650pm did a big hr with Andy Kleinhesselink on the normal Presidio route. It was late, windy and cold. We ended up with 43 sps. and lots of misses.


PS Flycatcher-1
WE Sandpiper-1 Crissy
Eur collared Dove- 1 Tenn Hollow (the potential coming invasion is not a highlight in my book... but noteworthy)

--Josiah Clark , Consulting Ecologist

Sunday, August 27

Fred Chambers and I had a good morning of birding. Jumping to the end of the report, the best bird of the morning was a 1st year, female Northern Parula in the very tops of the eucs at the southwest end of Middle Lake in Golden Gate Park.


Kobbe and Upton: Warbling Vireo and Western Tanager among other birds that are regular there.

Crissy Field: usual suspects with the best bird being a Great Yellowlegs.

Golden Gate Park

North Lake: Near the redflowering euc at the NW corner of the lake there was a small flock that included Pacific-slope Flycathcer, Yellow Warbler, Wilson's Warbler, Warbling Vireo and Western Tanager. A Common Yellowthroat was in the bulrush by the first island north of there.

Middle Lake: Loaded with migrants! The south end of the lake was where it was happening. Birds were apparent from the down eucalyptus around the entire end of the lake on the both sides. Yellow, Wilsons and Hermit(1) Warbler, Pacific- slope Flycatcher, Bullock's Oriole (2), Steller's Jay (2) and of course the Norther Parula. American and Lesser Goldfinches were there too.

We talked with Jason Yakich who reported seeing an American Redstart, a Lazuli Bunting and several Townsend's Warblers at the south end of Middle Lake too. It was very active and I'd think there is an excellent chance there are more birds to be found there.

--Dan Murphy

San Francisco, Saturday August 26

The migrants definitely congregated at West Wash.

I took my Audubon Field Trip there around 8:20am and we spent two hours viewing from north end of the Ft. Miley parking lot which provides grteat viewing over the slope down to the West Wash along El Camino Del Mar Trail.

>30 Western Tanager
P/S Flycatcher
Willow Flycatcher
Wilson's Warbler
Cooper's Hawk
R/S Hawk
Selasphorus aplenty
Swainson's Thrush
usual local resident birds

Land's End:
many Elegant Tern
usual birds in a feeding frenzy around a school of fish which also drew dolphins and small fishing boats near Seal Rocks
BN Dolphin
H. Seal
C. Sealion

--Harry Fuller

San Francisco, Friday August 25

West Wash, viewed from north end of Fort Miley hospital parking lot, 7:30am:

W.Tanager chasing and calling >8
P/S Flyc 3
WW pewee 2
Warb Vireo
Wilson's Warbler