Today I returned to Cove East in South Lake Tahoe, specifically to try and see more shorebirds.  Dropping my friend off at the Reno airport for an early flight made it easy to get there early, and it was fairly empty when I arrived at Cove East just after 7 am.  I did not find all the bird activity I hoped for, but I again saw large flocks of the weird-looking White-faced Ibis.  Yellow-rumped warblers (as in photo above) were numerous and the young ones friendly – they were easy to draw out by making “pishing” noises.  I observed the typical array of ducks including Mallards, Gadwalls, Green-winged teals, and Pied-billed Grebes..  My one new find, albeit at some distance, was the Black-necked Stilt.  I have seen these often in the SF Bay area but this was my first time seeing it in Lake Tahoe.  On a large rock near the walking path I saw a juvenile Northern Flicker who was very fluffy and seemed a tad nervous.

My next stop was the trail near Fallen Leaf Lake.  Before I’d seen a number of woodpeckers in this area, and I wasn’t disappointed.  I saw several White-headed Woodpeckers, a male Williamson’s Sapsucker, and a Hairy Woodpecker.  I also saw nuthatches, chickadees, and a Western Wood Pewee.  The aspens at the shore of the lake were gorgeous in the breeze, so I switched to some landscape photography as the birds were pretty quiet.

Today I added 1 species to my Tahoe Big Year list.

Williamson’s Sapsucker – Fallen Leaf Lake

Aspens near Fallen Leaf Lake

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