Nestled next to Thomas Mt, Lake Hemet is a fantastic place to go birding.
From the high country, there are few bodies of water visible so it is not surprising, that many migrating birds take a stop at Lake Hemet on their way to the Salton Sea and beyond for rest and refueling.
October has been an exciting time to go birding at the lake. Lots of changes have occurred with the changing seasons. In the beginning of the month, the Coffeeberry bushes were full of ripening berries. Lots of Yellow-rumped Warblers and shiny black Phainopeplas could be seen everywhere!
They have been replaced by numerous White-crowned Sparrows and a few Golden-crowned Sparrows.
The biggest surprise this Fall has been the arrival of the Lewis's Woodpeckers!! These beautiful pink-bellied woodpeckers are irruptive migrants. They are not normally here! In fact, this is the first time that I have seen them at Lake Hemet since moving here. They eat and store acorns as well as do some aerial chasing of insects.
Another surprise this month has been the arrival of this feisty Merlin. It is an incredibly fast falcon!
Going birding and finding birds for yourself is a lot more fun than just looking at photos! I encourage you to grab some binoculars and join us for an upcoming bird walk at Lake Hemet.