Monday, January 18, 2016

A Lifer: The Northern Jacana at Santa Ana

The Northern Jacana is a rail usually seen in Mexico. It can walk on lily pads but in these ponds he was on the floating debris.  He has long light green legs and extremely long toes. This male juvenile was a rare site this far north so there was much excitement for the many birders who flood the valley are carry huge cameras. 

This Jacana has been in the Valley since November. It has been seen at Santa Ana since we have arrived last week. We saw this juvenile last week from afar but today. I got up early enough to see this targeted bird. The plan was to go with Laura who leads the bird walk. When too many non-birders gathered I decided it would not happen with such a large group.  I followed Javi to the third blind at Willow Lakes, no luck.   We went to the levee between Lake 3 and 4 and met 4 guys with big smiles on their faces. We were also smiling when this rail stayed long enough for photos. This male juvenile is molting and getting more color.  

This is last weeks attempt of seeing the Jacana. He was way across the pond, but we were happy to catch a peek. There island of reeds and vegetation in these small ponds. 

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