San Bernardino Valley Audubon 2019-2020
Sponsored Christmas Bird Counts
Once again the San Bernardino Valley Audubon Society is sponsoring nine Christmas Bird Counts in Riverside and San Bernardino counties. Everyone is welcome to participate in as many of these counts as he or she likes. For further information, please contact the compilers at the phone numbers or email addresses listed below. Reservations are not necessary, but it can’t hurt to call the compiler for last minute changes in plans and also to give him or her an idea of how many participants to expect. National Audubon is no longer charging a participant fee, so the CBC is now FREE! Most counts finish the day at a local restaurant to eat supper and to compile the results. That’s often half the fun! For more information call or e-mail your count compiler (listed below). Bring a friend and enjoy the day. Count compilers who wish to change their information should contact Brad Singer (firstname.lastname@example.org) to post it on the website.
Redlands (Mill Creek)
Saturday, December 14, 2019 7:00a.m.
Compiler: Gene Cardiff email:
We will meet at the Mill Creek Ranger Station, just north of the intersection of Mill Creek Rd. (State Hwy. 38) and Bryant St. at 7:00 a.m. The portion of the count circle, which you would like to help count can be arranged at that time, or a prior choice can be made. At the end of the day, around 4:30 p.m., we will meet at the Cuca's restaurant to share the day’s experiences, enjoy some good food (on a no-host basis—order from the menu) and do a quick tally of the count. Cuca's is located at 1752 Lugonia Ave #121, Redlands. It is on the west side of the McDonalds shopping center.
Saturday, December 14, 2019 7:30a.m.
Compiler: Joe Zarki (760) 366-8913
Let’s hope that this year brings a few more rarities, but more than that, let’s hope that our regular birds continue to be found in healthy numbers. Please call Joe for information, or simply arrive at the Parking Lot at Big Morongo, 11055 East Dr. at 7:30 a.m. sharp. Note that volunteer counters may be assigned to any of the eight areas within a 15 mile radius of Big Morongo Canyon Preserve. We’ll compile as a group by a cozy wood stove at the Big Morongo Canyon Preserve Office while munching pizza and seasonal treats. Please note: It will be cold in the morning, especially at our meeting place at the Preserve parking area, but several of our groups on the south side of the count circle work at low elevations where the weather is akin to Palm Springs and Desert Hot Springs. High temperatures will likely range from the low 50s to the mid- to upper 70s; lows will likely be from 25° to the low 40s. People should dress in layered clothing so they can adjust to whatever temperatures they encounter. The Morongo Valley count ends at 4:30 p.m.
Saturday, December 14, 7am
Compiler: Robin Roberts 770-856-4826
If you like high-elevation birding in the snow and cold, join us for the Idyllwild Christmas Bird Count begun in 1952! If you are assigned a territory you may begin the day in that area. Otherwise we will meet at the Lake Hemet store on Rte. 74 at 7:00 a.m. Temperatures may be quite brisk in the morning, so wear layers, and bring food and drink. Some areas may also require hiking, so please dress appropriately. Please e-mail Robin Roberts for more information, or show up at Lake Hemet at 7:00 AM. Note that volunteer counters may be assigned to any of the fifteen territories within a 15 mile radius. Maps and checklists available on request. Beginners will be paired up with more experienced birders. We will tally species as a group at Idyllwild Pizza in Idyllwild (54391 Village Center Drive) at 5:00 PM.
Santa Ana River Valley
Sunday, December 15, 2019 6:45 a.m.
Compiler: Larry LaPre (951) 217-6597
The Santa Ana River Valley CBC covers most of the cities of Riverside, Corona, and Norco. Within the count circle are some outstanding riparian areas like Prado Basin and Rubidoux Nature Center, and some duck filled lakes, like Lake Norconian and Lake Mathews. Meeting places and time for the sub-groups are listed below.
Rubidoux Nature Center:
Meet at the Nature Center parking lot at 6:45 a.m. Take Riverview (Limonite) from Mission Ave. in Rubidoux to Riverview Dr. in Rubidoux to Riverview Dr. (watch for sign), then bear left and go about a mile to the Nature Center. Call Larry LaPre to get the details.
Prado Basin, Lake Norconian and Hidden Valley Wildlife Area:
Meet at the gate to Hidden Valley, located at the dirt road entrance off Arlington Ave. across from the cemetery at 6:45 a.m. To enter Lake Norconian, the Navy requires the names of all participants in advance. Call Larry LaPre to get the details.
San Jacinto Lake
Tuesday, December 17, 2019 7:00 a.m.
Compilers: Tony Metcalf (909) 242-7038
Tom Benson (909) 648-0899
We will meet at 7:00 a.m. on the corner of Bridge St. and the Ramona Expressway about three miles east of Lakeview. The San Jacinto Lake Count is in the top 1-2% of all North American Christmas Bird Counts, and regularly leads the nation in species diversity for inland CBCs. We average over 150 species. The San Bernardino Audubon Society is very fortunate in having so many talented and enthusiastic birders who regularly find the time to count birds all day on a certain brisk Tuesday in December. Call it the San Jacinto flu. This year, as in past counts, we will be working closely with the San Jacinto Wildlife Area biologist in ensuring that we have another successful count. We will try to have group leaders in the same count areas as last year. Please notify Tony Metcalf prior to count week if you are interested in a particular area. So, for science, for the birds, and mostly for the fun, grab a friend and join us for another great count. At the end of the day, we will meet for dinner to tally and compile our findings.
Salton Sea North
Thursday, December 19, 2019 6:30 a.m.
Compiler: Chet McGaugh (951)781-3699
We will meet at 6:30 a.m. at the big ARCO just off of the expressway near Mecca. Dress warmly. It can be cold in the early morning hours. We will form six or seven groups and spread out over the count circle for a day of counting the multitudes of birds that spend the winter around the north end of Salton Sea.
Bird identification skills are helpful but not a prerequisite; the group leaders will handle any identification problems. Counting ability is a prerequisite. Each group leader needs people to count common birds (like Eared Grebes, Ruddy Ducks, American Coots, gulls), and someone to record the numbers, so that he/she can concentrate on finding the unusual and hard-to-find species. If you want a mellow day of birding at Salton Sea, save yourself $6 and we’ll see you in January on the field trip. If you want a rather intense day of birding, and would like to contribute to the ever-growing (since 1969) data bank, come on out. You will see lots of birds. We typically record 130-140 species. After the count we will compile our results at a local restaurant.
San Bernardino Valley
Saturday, December 21, 2019 7:00 a.m.
Compiler: Dori Myers (714)779-2201 (home) dorimyers88@ gmail.com
Come join San Bernardino Valley Audubon’s longest running count. We will meet at 7:00 a.m. at the San Bernardino County Museum. From there we will form small groups to cover the count area. Remember, the counts are for pleasure as well as science. Anyone can help and the more pairs of eyes out there in the field, the more birds we find. We will regroup around 4:30PM at the Mimi's in San Bernardino (395 E. Hospitality Lane) to share stories and tally the day’s findings.
Mojave River Valley
Saturday, December 28, 2019 6:30 a.m.
Compiler: Bill Deppe (760) 953-6947 or email
The meeting place is the same as the past years: The Starbucks on the southwest corner of the intersection of Bear Valley Rd. and Hesperia Rd. This intersection is just over three miles east of I-15 (take the Bear Valley Rd. exit). We will meet at 6:30a.m. A post count compilation will take place at a restaurant to be specified at the meeting place. It can get mighty cold (and windy) on the count, so bring plenty of layers.
Joshua Tree National Park
Friday, January 3, 2020 7:00 a.m.
Compiler: Joe Zarki (760) 366-8913
The daily use fee for the park will be waived for the Christmas count participants. Bring layers of clothing, it can be cold and windy or it can be warm and calm, we’ve had everything from 78 degrees to snow blowing straight at you. Also bring snacks, good walking shoes, lunch and drinks, or you can pick up lunch in Twentynine Palms if you choose Group 1. Group 2 will have to rough it, no phones, no restaurants, but just beautiful country. Some Group 1 and Group 2 routes require hiking on trails or in rough, rocky terrain. We will meet at 5:00 p.m. at a restaurant in Joshua Tree to compile the results.
Meet the group leader at 7:00 a.m. at the Indian Cove Ranger Station on Indian Cove Rd. This is off Hwy. 62 on the western side of Twentynine Palms at the entry of the park leading to Indian Cove Camp Ground. Birders meeting here will cover the north side of the count circle including the Indian Cove area, 49 Palms Oasis, the Oasis of Mara, and the North Park Entrance area of the park. In-town locations include Knott Sky Park, Luckie Park, the Twentynine Palms Inn, and any place birds can be found. Group 1 covers low elevation areas of the count so temperatures are fairly mild.
Meet the group leader at 7:00 a.m. at the West Entrance of the Park. Take Park Blvd. from the town of Joshua Tree, parking is just behind the entry station. Areas covered include hidden Valley, Lost Horse area, Barker Dam, Keys Ranch, Ryan Ranch area, Queen Valley, Jumbo Rocks, and the Geology Tour Road. Group 2 covers higher elevation habitats from 3000-5000 feet so temperatures are 5-10 degrees cooler.