Don Edwards EEC (Alviso, CA) birding

Sarah & I swung by the south end of Don Edwards SF Bay NWR yesterday afternoon for a looksee. Although I’ve birded near their headquarters in Fremont (and only very rarely seen anything even remotely interesting), neither of us had birded here, in the south end of this large urban preserve.

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Bayfront Park (Menlo Park) birding

Yesterday I checked out a new-to-me place, Bayfront Park (along Bayfront Expressway in Menlo Park, between Willow and Marsh). It’s a bit silly that I’ve never birded here before, as it’s only a mile from my office. It’s a larger park than it looks from the expressway, so I’ll have to return to check more of it out. It seems to have a large population of feral bunnies – I saw at least a half dozen of all shapes, colors and sizes!

Although it was cloudy and breezy, the birding was decent. Can’t say the same about the photo ops, however, as most birds stayed fairly far away, and the cloud cover made for low and dull light.

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Fall birding @ the Palo Alto Baylands

I dropped by the Baylands for an hour after work yesterday, and the fall fliers are now pretty well-represented at the park. Unfortunately my camera was set to -2EV exposure compensation, so the pics I took are quite dark. Fortunately(?) there wasn’t anything earthshattering, nor any paricularly close encounters save for a few KILLDEER and SEMIPALMATED PLOVERS.

Western(?) Grebe @ the Baylands

American White Pelicans @ the Baylands

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Hawk Hill birding

S & I finally got around to going to the weekend Hawk Talk and banding demonstration put on by the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory. After an informative talk about hawks, punctuated by flyovers by Red-tailed Hawks and Cooper’s Hawks (and Ravens and Turkey Vultures), we got to watch the release of a recently-banded Sharp-shinned Hawk, which are awfully cute up close!

A soon-to-be-released Sharp-shinned Hawk at Hawk Hill

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Raki available in SF!

I was delighted to receive an email from the proprietor of Blackwell’s Wine and Spirits informing me that they now have Efe Raki in stock for $27/fifth.  I picked up a bottle of it last weekend, and although I hadn’t tried it in Turkey (we drank Yeni Raki almost exclusively), it proved to be very…

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Blog moved

If you’re reading this, then you’ve found my new blog, congratulations!  I decided to move it from my hosted domain to a blog host so I can more easily switch domain hosting providers without worrying about exporting/importing my blog data. WordPress seems very good thus far, and I’ll be importing and back-dating all of my…

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“Garlic & Sapphires” by Ruth Reichl

Reichl’s 2005 NY Times bestseller about her career as the food critic for the NY Times is an engaging read, entertainingly-written and seasoned with 17 recipes, conveniently indexed at the end of the book. There is nearly no background information about her – this focuses almost exclusively on her stint at the Times.

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Pillar Point Birding

S & I did some mid-day birding around Pillar Point in Princeton-by-the-Sea today. Due to the noon hour there wasn’t a whole lot afoot, but we got good looks at flocks of Sanderlings and Black Turnstones.

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