I was captivated by a large group of birds along the path to the upper gardens. Several juncos had arrived - not sure if they will be our winter friends or are passing through but they were very busy foraging near the meadow. A white throated sparrow sang from a nearby bush. A savannah sparrow, some swamp sparrows and our song sparrows were part of the gang. A western palm warbler basked in the sun, high up on a bare tree branch.
As I moved around the lower gardens, Haynes and Jonathan arrived. The chill was in the air and it was clear we'll be moving into winter soon, but the sun warmed us and the birds liked it too. Goldfinch families and house finch families were busy on weeds and in trees finding something good to eat. Haynes spotted several purple finches, so many that he decided to call it a virtual invasion! Normally, if we see one in the fall, it's a special occasion, but we saw at least five or 6 or more. Our regular were there too of course, robins, mourning doves, a red-tail hawk, cardinals, blue jays, downies, a young flicker, a mockingbird and blue jays.
The upper gardens had the same selection of birds, but in addition we saw some chickadees, a young
We cut through the woods and down the path by the pond, where Jonathan spotted a beautiful and active orange-crowned kinglet, busy flitting here and there. The pond which had been dried up or quite a while was filled with water again after the recent heavy rains. I, for one, was happy to see that and I guess the ducks were too, as there were at least three pairs of mallards happily swimming around in their old haunt.