Good Morning Barbara,

floating SNOWY EGRET
floating SNOWY EGRET

What a surreal visual that was: a floating SNOWY EGRET on open water. I had been watching Dolphins jump along the shoreline when I saw a SNOWY EGRET standing on the water out in the ocean. I know this bird wades, doesn’t swim nor walks on water. Noticing a dark patch underneath the white statue, I figured it must be kelp or algae that allowed the wader to forage on the water. Watching its precarious balancing acts so early in the morning had me wide awake. The SNOWY EGRET’s moves were breathtakingly suspenseful.

Firework ready for 150 yrs. celebration
Firework ready for 150 yrs. celebration

While focusing on the 150 yrs. firework preparations on the Main Beach, I almost missed this picturesque sight: the wind playing with the women’s colorful, flowing dresses as they were being escorted to the safety zone. I loved the sensation of being pulled out of my accustomed visuals and time travel to an other state of reality.

Picturesque Beach visual...
Picturesque Beach visual…

Okay! Looks like the downstream mystery of the absentee AMERICAN COOTS got solved. Remember how surprised I was to see none of them downstream? A few days ago I caught your little darlings chasing the A. COOTS back upstream at the Riverside St. bridge. The PIED-billed GREBES clearly stood their watery ground at the narrow river section as they charged with lower heads at the befuddled intruders. Two of the misbehaving warriors were still wearing their juvenile face markings. Up to date a few A. Coots have dared to cross the line and are shyly foraging in the unusual looking algae. Then on Sept. 5th the PIED-billed GREBES rudely pestered an EARED GREBE, who was absorbed dodging the maniacs. As you can imagine I was not happy to see the cousins mistreat the early arrivee after such an exhausting flight. Maybe the EARED GREBE opted for calmer waters closer to you amongst the beleaguered A. COOTS?

juv. PIED-billed GREBE chasing a cousin.
juv. PIED-billed GREBE chasing a cousin.

What kind of algae is currently floating on the river? Since I have never seen it before, I am looking high & low for the answer and land on County/City and other experts screens, who don’t have algae species id available, but they are all kindly answering my endless curiosity driven questions. Biologists decide to identify an algae species when the weekly bacteria readings reach a specified level, which hasn’t been the case with this algae. The unknown algae got so dense at one time that a PIDEON just couldn’t believe it wasn’t solid ground and kept trying futile touch-downs. I’ll certainly let you know when I retrieve my answer.

What algae species are you?
What algae species are you?

And who can figure this out? There was yet an other ’unknown cause’ breach on the 9/29 at 6am after which the river mouth quickly closed up again. Sometimes strong high tides can push through a sand-barred river mouth, but high tide had already come and gone, so that scenario was unlikely. Now I am even more stunned, because there was yet an other breach between 10/5 and 10/8. What is going on?
Now here is a piece of news that might surprise you: The Coastal Watershed Council asked me to lead a bird walk for them, which I’ll do as the Acting Conservancy Officer of the Santa Cruz Bird Club on Oct. 28th at 8:30-10:30. We’ll meet @ the SLR pedestrian bridge across from Trader Joe’s and I look forward to talk about my feathered San Lorenzo River delights. My CWC contact person, is aware of my unchanged paddle position and we decided to focus on birds, leaving politics on the sideline.


I strongly believe in the “ Broken Window” theory, which I applied to the Trestle railing disrepair condition. Being convinced that it needed some TLC I have been whining to Mark and Richard about it. And you should see it now, because to-day Richard’s ingenious solution got installed, which is a huge improvement. A big Thank you goes to Richard and Mark in Public Works for this successful railing facelift, which makes such a visual difference.

after ingenious facelift...
after ingenious facelift…

Sending happy chirps your way, jane

2 thoughts on “SO MUCH TO TELL…

    1. Yeah! Your helpful comment came through & I’ll check out the links= thank you so much for your thoughtfulness.
      As always: was great to see you @ the river! Happy water trails, jane

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