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  1. Re: [LACoBirds] Phainomania LINK
    DATE: May 29, 2018, 3 month(s) ago
    I saw what I thought were exceptional numbers on my trips to the bobs gap area earlier in the spring, especially in the riparian near Valyermo. From: LACoBirding on behalf of "Kimball Garrett kgarrett@... [LACoBirds]"
    Reply-To: Kimball Garrett
    Date: Tuesday, May 29, 2018 at 1:21 PM
    To: LACoBirding
    Subject: [LACoBirds] Phainomania
    
    Birders, One of the rewards of birding a patch with frequent and consistent coverage is gaining insight into year-to-year differences in species occurrences. This month (May 2018) the Hansen Dam basin has seen a phenomenal incursion of Phainopeplas, which appear to be taking advantage of a bumper crop of golden currant berries as well as abundant berries on the ornamental pepper trees and perhaps the elderberries as well; theyre also doing a lot of sallying for insects. Because my coverage has been pretty consistent for the past several years (4-5 shorter morning visits a week, and more intensive coverage a couple of times a month), the numbers are probably as valid as they are striking: May 2014 total of 17 birds on 9 visits May 2015 total of 1 bird on 1 visit May 2016 zero birds May 2017 total of 3 birds on 1 visit May 2018 total of 241 birds on 18 visits This is also the first year Ive seen nesting evidence (nest building) for Phainopeplas at Hansen Dam. Ive heard from others that Phainopeplas seem more numerous than usual this year in their patches I wonder how geographically widespread this phenomenon is. The good crop of currant fruits may also explain the continuing presence of Cedar Waxwings at Hansen Dam (12+ yesterday, 28 May). Kimball Kimball L. Garrett Ornithology Collections Manager Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County 900 Exposition Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90007 USA (213) 763-3368 kgarrett@... http://www.nhm.org/site/research-collections/ornithology 
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