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SOUTH BAY BIRDERS UNLIMITED


 

MERLIE the MERLIN

Kendric Smith

A Merlin has been coming to our tree for eighteen years (see below). We are pretty sure that it was the same Merlin for 16 years (Merlie the Merlin), but there were different Merlins for years 17 (2008-2009) and 18 (2009-2010). Now in year 19, we have yet to see a Merlin of any type, as of November 24, 2010.

I believe that the original Merlin was a male Taiga Merlin (F.c. columbarius). For a discussion of subspecies and migration patterns of Merlins in California, click here.

For pictures of Merlie by David Hindin, click here.

Merlie was first sighted on his tree (see below) on the following dates:

YEAR

FIRST SEEN

LAST SEEN

DAILY SIGHTINGS

19

None Seen
(See: Sightings)


2010-2011

18

Oct 2009
(See: Sightings)

03/21/10

2009-2010

17

Nov 2008
(See: Sightings)

04/02/09

2008-2009

16

Oct 2007
(See: Sightings)

3/15/08

2007-2008

15

Nov 2006
(See: Sightings)


(See: Sightings)

2006-2007

14

10/22/05
(See: Sightings)

03/23/06

2005-2006

13

10/25/04
(See: Sightings)

04/02/05

2004-2005

12

11/01/03
(See: Sightings)

03/28/04

2003-2004

11

10/17/02
(See: Sightings)

(See: Sightings)

2002-2003

10

10/25/01

3/18/02

2001-2002

9

10/12/00

3/20/01

2000-2001

8

10/23/99

3/27/00

1999-2000

7

10/22/98

3/21/99

1998-1999

6

10/20/97

3/22/98

1997-1998

5

10/24/96

3/22/97

.

4

10/25/95

.

.

3

10/18/94

.

.

2

11/04/93

.

.

1

10/21/92

.

.

Merlie's tree is a tall Redwood tree, with a very long top that is small in diameter. It is located at 2230 Amherst at College Avenue in College Terrace, but is more visible from Peter Coutts Road, about 0.2 miles from Stanford Avenue. The tree is directly across the road from my house on Mears Court, and we have a dedicated scope pointed at the tree at all times.

The first year that we found Merlie we were so excited, and then he caught a Cedar Waxwing and ate it on top of the tree. We had the same mixed reaction as we did a few years ago at the Palo Alto Baylands when a Black Rail flew up a few times, and then a Great Blue Heron ate it.

Although I think of Merlie as mine, I am happy to share.


OTHER REPORTS OF MERLINS IN SANTA CLARA COUNTY

|| 2003-2004 || 2005-2006 ||