San Jacinto Wildlife Area

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Lots of raptors at the San Jacinto Wildlife Area with Red-taileds everywhere on Dec 27. Don’t go on Wed or Sat for birding as those are duck hunting days.

Northern Harrier

Northern Harrier

 

Another hawk common at Jacinto. It has an owl-like head and flies low over grasslands to feed on small birds and rodents.

Red-tailed Hawk landing on tree

Red-tailed Hawk landing on tree

 

Virginia Rail

Virginia Rail

Virginia Rail found to the south of pond 4 in a pool directly east from the blue Porta Potty at end of ditch.

Sora

Sora

Sora in the same location. Note the yellow bill vs the rail which has a longer orange bill. There were at least 3 Virginia Rails and 2 Soras. Thanks to Charity Hagen for ID on Rail. Both of these birds are heard more often than seen and hide in vegetation unless you remain still and wait for them to come out.

Lewis’s Woodpecker and Pelicans at Sunset

lewis's woodpecker

lewis's woodpecker

 

I photographed this Lewis’s Woodpecker at the Santa Rosa Plateau near Murietta, Ca on the Monument Rd trail just below Monument Hill. These birds flit from tree to tree and do not linger long. If you try to approach they take off long before you are close. Best approach is to see which trees they like and stay near that tree for as long as it takes. I had to wait over an hour to get this close.

 

Lewis's Woodpecker

Lewis's Woodpecker

 

Pelicans at Sunset

Pelicans at Sunset

I took this a few min before sunset and exposed for the sky at around 1/2000 sec to freeze action.

Gull and Waves at Sunset

Gull and Waves at Sunset

Recent Photos

red shafted flicker

red shafted flicker

 

red shafted flicker

red shafted flicker

I had to wait for at least  30 min for this Flicker to come out from behind the branch into the light- but it paid off.  Taken at San Jacinto Wildlife Area.

 

Red Tailed Hawk

Red Tailed Hawk

 

I have taken hundreds of shots of Red Tailed Hawks but it is always worth trying to get interesting wing patterns so continue to shoot birds again and again. You might get a better  shot.

 

San Jacinto Wildlife Area pond C looking east

San Jacinto Wildlife Area pond C looking east

I switched from my usual 400 mm lens to a 17 to 40 wide angle to get this scenic near sunset. It helps to have something in the foreground, midground and distance, plus good clouds.

Pelicans at sunset, Laguna Beach, Ca

Pelicans at sunset, Laguna Beach, Ca

I used a 400 mm lens in this shot. Be careful not to include the sun in your shot until the very last few minutes of sunset as it can cause damage to the sensor and your eyes. Generally do not aim your camera at the sun when it is bright.  It helps if there are some hazy clouds or fog.