Sunday, August 16, 2015

Hooded Oriole at Scissors Crossing

Hooded Orioles are common birds of palm and eucalyptus trees in urban and residential areas of southern California. In fact, they are spreading in such human-altered habitat nearly the length of California now. Nevertheless, they migrate south well into Mexico in winter and are quite rare in winter in southern California, perhaps averaging 2 birds per winter in San Diego County. For instance, in January 2015 there were 3 each of Orchard and Baltimore Orioles known in the county, at least 4 Bullock's Orioles, but apparently only one Hooded Oriole (eBird and San Diego Field Ornithologists newsletter).

Hooded Oriole
Hooded Oriole. Scissors Crossing, California. July 5, 2015. Greg Gillson.
Their historic "native" habitat in San Diego County was sycamore lined intermittent streams feeding into the Anza-Borrego desert and a few scattered oases with the rare native California Palms. This bird photographed above was along one such desert stream.