Bryan’s Bird Watch: March 20, 2022

The swallows are back! We may not be Capistrano, but being much further north than that California icon, the arrival of about 40 Violet-green Swallows over the course today is a positive sign that spring is here. Some of these swallows may stick around and nest in natural holes in trees, or in crevices between the large concrete balusters in use in various parts of the golf course. Swallows tend to keep flying insect numbers in check.

Total Birds Identified:  157

Total Species Identified:  23

New Species Added: 1.  

A male Common Merganser was on the Highland 4 pond, species No. 89 for the course.

Mergansers are diving ducks that have evolved to feed primarily on fish and other swimming creatures. They are fast underwater, and their bill is narrow and serrated, or somewhat “toothed”, for securing slippery fish. Look for this showy, white and black male with the thin red bill. One or two pairs of the related Hooded Merganser are often seen on the course ponds.
A pair of Belted Kingfishers is back, this time excavating a new nest hole in a tall bank of fine sand/gravel mix used for  course maintenance. Efforts to protect the bank from further slumping, which took out last year’s nest, will be made.

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