Because we have been putting most of our focus on our presentation for the RISE program at Cal State- Monterey Bay, I was looking forward to some time off during Easter weekend. However, birding never stops, so we did make some time to do black oystercatching surveys.
Luckily, we have a beautiful site to work at, so I cant help but be distracted by the view and I’m sure all of the tourists that come to the Monterey Bay area feel that way as well. Unfortunately, the more I observe, the more I realize the impact humans have had in this area. They come by the busload, out onto possible nesting sites with dogs not on leashes or feeding the gulls. So when my family came over for the Easter weekend, I took advantage of that time to show them what I am doing, and how to “behave” out in these beautiful areas.
With a scope and binoculars, I took my family out around Pebble Beach’s 17 mile drive and taught them how to look at shore birds. I started with the seals and sea lions to show them how to focus, then moved on to the Black-crested Cormorants that were diving into the water. When the squirrels started to come right up to us, I told them how we shouldn’t feed them; they wouldn’t be coming up to us if they weren’t being fed in the first place. Same goes for the gulls. My family has never been into birding before, and now my dad wants to buy his own set of binoculars. With good guidance anyone can become a good steward of the land and I think that is what I accomplished with my family over the Easter weekend.