Ornithology 3 Summary (Spring 2016)

If you miss a class, please check this page and study the listed topics in your field guide. Click here for last semester's calendar.

Note: Please park in the Hayes Street Parking lot. All spaces are available except disabled and drop off for the child care center. If the lot is full and you park in the Grove Street lot you will likely get a parking ticket unless you display the temporary parking passes which are available to all registered students. These passes must be stamped by the John Adams office which closes at 7:30pm!

Class notes by Elisabeth Koster are here. (Plumage and molt terminology here. )
Please register at
eBird and email me your eBird ID. I can then offer to share field trip lists with you.

Click here for a summary of bird name changes from the 56th AOU supplement.
Click here for a summary of bird name changes from the 55th AOU supplement.
Click here for a summary of bird name changes from the 54th AOU supplement.
Australia Dogs and Beaches brochure.
An online version of Ridgway's Color Standards and nomenclature is available here.
My bird and wildlife photos from Cuba are here

Replacement Sibley 2nd edition first printing
To get a replacement copy, cut the barcode off the back cover of your second edition, first printing and mail it to:
Penguin Random House
Attn: Consumer Services/DMS
400 Hahn Road
Westminster, MD 21157

I will be offering a free program on Subspecies for Birders on Tuesday 12 July 2016 at the Pacific Grove Museum on Natural History 7:30pm. Details here.


September 27, 2016
We plan to complete and review the buntings and warblers on pages 422-426.

Snow Bunting photos are here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here. Click here and here for photos and discussion of Snow Buntings in San Leandro and Byron.
A photo of the Pribiloff McKay's Bunting from 31 May 1999 is here.
Click here for a photo and description of a Golden-winged Warbler at Point Reyes and click here for my notes on a Golden-winged Warbler in Orange County.
Click here for a photo of a Tennessee Warbler in Southern California.
My Orange-crowned Warbler photos. Click here for my photo of, and notes on, an Orange-crowned Warbler wintering in Texas. My photo of a nominate Orange-crowned Warbler. A photo of a juvenile Orange-crowned Warbler along with identification discussion is here.
Click here for a photo I took of a Nashville Warbler in my yard, Oct. 31, 2003.


May 24, 2016
We completed and reviewed the longspurs on pages 418 & 420.

Click here for a photo and analysis of California's first Smith's Longspur compared to California's only Sky Lark. Additional Smith's Longspur images are here, here, here and here.
Lapland Longspur photos are here, here, here, here, here and here.
My Chestnut-collared Longspur photos from Montana, Coloarado, and Hayward, California. Additional Chestnut-collared Longspur photos are here, here, and here.
My photos of McCown's Longspurs in Colorado and Montana here and here. Another McCown's Longspur photo is here.

This was the last class of the semester. Please preregister if you plan to enroll in the Fall. Click here for details.


May 17, 2016
We completed and reviewed the waxwings & phainopepla on page 416.

Click here for my Cedar Waxwing photos with notes.
My Phainopepla photos with notes from Jasper Ridge are here.
Click here for photos and my documentation of a Gray Silky-flycatcher in Orange County. Click here for a photo of a Gray Silky-flycatcher in San Diego County.


May 10, 2016
We completed and reviewed the pipits on page 414.

Click here for American Pipit of the race A. r. japonicus. My photos of American Pipits are here, here, here and here.
My photos and field notes on Sprague's Pipits are here and here. Additional Sprague's photos are here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.
Click here for photos of the Olive-backed Pipit on the Farallons.
Click here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here for Red-throated Pipit photos in California. My photos of Red-throated Pipit at San Leandro Bay are here and Crissy Field are here.
Click here for my Cedar Waxwing photos with notes.
My Phainopepla photos with notes from Jasper Ridge are here.
Click here for photos and my documentation of a Gray Silky-flycatcher in Orange County. Click here for a photo of a Gray Silky-flycatcher in San Diego County.


May 3, 2016
We completed and reviewed the wagtails on page 412.

Click here for photos and my notes on a White (Black-backed) Wagtail in Alviso and click here for a photo of White (Black-backed Wagtail) in Los Angeles. Click here and here for additional photos and discussion of wagtails in Monterey county. Additional California photos of White/Black-backed Wagtail are here (full discussion), here, here, here, here, here, and here. White Wagtail in India.
See also: Morlan, J. 1981. Status and identification of forms of White Wagtail in Western North America. Continental Birdlife 2:37-50. (Click here for an online pdf of this paper)
Citrine Wagtails from India here and here.


April 26, 2016
We completed the bulbuls and starlings on page 410 and started the wagtails on page 412..

Red-whiskered Bulbul photos from India here and here.
Click here and here for my Common Myna photos in Australia; Common Myna photos from India are here, here, and here
Click here for my photo of a European Starling in the talons of a Sharp-shinned Hawk.
Click here for photos of an Eastern Yellow Wagtail at Fort Bragg.
Gray Wagtail in India.


April 19, 2016
We completed and reviewed the thrashers on page 408.

Click here, here, and here for photos of Curve-billed Thrashers in California. My descriptions of Curve-billed Thrashers in California are here and here. Click here for my photo and notes on a Curve-billed Thrasher in Texas and here for my recent photo and notes from Arizona.
Click here for a photo of a Bendire's Thrasher in California along with notes on identification.


April 12, 2016
We completed and reviewed the thrashers on page 406.

Click here, here, here, and here for photos of Brown Thrasher in California.
Click here and here for my photos of Long-billed Thrasher in Texas.
My Sage Thrasher photos from Coyote Point and Montana. Click here for photos of a Sage Thrashers in Montara. My Mariposa County Sage Thrasher photos and notes are here and here.
California Thrasher with deformed bill and one with a normal bill in Pacifica. Click here for my photo and notes on a California Thrasher in Orange County.


April 5, 2016
We completed and reviewed the thrushes on page 402 and mockingbirds on page 404.

American Robin photo. Partial albino American Robin.
Click here for my photo of a Clay-colored Thrush in Texas. Additional Clay-colored Thrush photos are here and here.
Click here for photos of a Rufous-backed Robin at the Salton Sea. Another Rufous-backed Robin here.
Click here and here for photos of Aztec Thrush in Arizona.
Varied Thrush images with notes on subspecies here
Gray catbird images here, here, here, and here. My accounts of Gray Catbirds in Moss Beach and Mount San Bruno (including photo and sound recordings).
Click here for photos and discussion of the Blue Mockingbird in Long Beach.
Click here and here for my photos of Northern Mockingbirds in Texas and California.


March 29, 2016

No Class! Spring Break.


March 22, 2016
We completed and reviewed the thrushes on page 400.

Click here, here, here, here, here and here for photos of Wood Thrushes in California. Click here for a video of a Wood Thrush in San Francisco. My Wood Thrush photos from Belize are here and here.
Click here for photos and details on an Eyebrowed Thrush in California.


March 15, 2016
We completed and reviewed the thrushes on page 398.

Click here for photos and my notes on a controversial Veery at Point Reyes. An accepted California Veery is here.
My Swainson's Thrush photos are here, here and here.
My Hermit Thrush photos. A Hermit Thrush image from one of our field trips in Golden Gate Park is here..

March 8, 2016
No class!! CCSF Flex Day.
March 1, 2016
We completed and reviewed the bluebirds and solitaire on page 396.

Eastern Bluebird in Minnesota.
Click here for discussion and photo of a problematic female Western Bluebird. Click here, here and here for my photos of Western Bluebirds. Click here (Tree Swallows using bluebird nest box) for discussion of management for Western Bluebirds. Western Bluebirds photographed in San Francisco are here and here. Pair of Western Bluebirds at Point Reyes is here.
Click here for my photo of a male Mountain Bluebird near the Salton Sea.
Click here for a photo of a Townsend's Solitaire in Tilden Regional Park.